ManvsMachine has created its fourth global campaign in celebration of Nike’s Air Max Day. Continuously adapting and developing the campaign from the year previous, the 2018 edition sees ManvsMachine take “cues from modern editorial design and hosts an extensive number of assets — from live action, 3D, typographical design, right the way through to cel animation,” creative director Adam Rowe tells It’s Nice That.
In its biggest campaign for Nike yet, “purely through the quantity of deliverables, which supersedes anything we have created for Nike in the past,” the studio took the opportunity to show an alternate side to the motion graphics focused work it’s regularly noted for. “We’ve got some unbelievable talent who have skills in 2D illustration and cel animation which we rarely get to showcase on projects,” Adam explains. “We wanted to push this design style throughout the project, alongside our usual 3D and live action skills.” As a result, ManvsMachine has created it’s most visually diverse project in terms of disciplines and is arguably a massive step for the studio.
In the run-up to Air Max Day, Nike came to ManvsMachine with the concept of a “windows/anti-design approach,” which the studio was tasked with elevating. “It still needed to retain the haphazard nature of the layouts, but through multiple rounds of refinement we looked to land on a crafted version of this on-trend design style.” Across the wealth of disciplines displayed in the campaign, it is clear MvsM have made a conscious effort to carve out connections between each image, particularly by “establishing an interaction between the different elements and windows,” Adam points out. “Finding ways to have a piece of 3D design move in a way that triggered a movement in a live action element was where all the fun was had.”
As a campaign, ManvsMachine’s work is a playfully executed example of how combining different disciplines can make for a cohesive whole, whether “it’s milk explosions, on set raves or people dancing in giant inflated suits”.
The overall theme for the 2018 edition of Air Max Day was centred around “Turning imagination into reality,” says Adam. In visualising the process of Nike Air, MvsM had to combine both the past and present identities of the brand, reflecting Nike Air’s on-going state of re-invention — an eclectic, and ever-changing, melting pot of inspiration.”
About the Author
Lucy (she/her) joined It’s Nice That as a staff writer in July 2016 after graduating from Chelsea College of Art. In January 2019 she was made deputy editor and in November 2021, became a senior editor predominantly working on It’s Nice That's partnerships. Feel free to get in contact with Lucy about creative projects for the site or potential partnerships.