New Balance

Character Design

Context

Design a life-size custom character for New Balance’s 2018 “Road to NYC” campaign celebrating the runners of the New York City Marathon.

Strategy

Reinterpret elements of the New Balance logo and the spirit of the brand’s “fearlessly independent” mantra to create an iconic, real-life symbol of the movement and tenacity of modern marathon athletes.

Solution

STRATA debuted in Hong Kong alongside an experiential AR display, ultimately spinning off into a limited-edition t-shirt run by the brand.

Services

+ Icon Design + Experiential Design

Character Design

STRATA celebrates every athlete running outside their country–and outside their comfort zone.

Three months out from the start of the 2018 New York City Marathon, New Balance asked us to help out with a very cool design project: to think up a new character for the athletic brand celebrating the diversity, athleticism, and tenacity of global marathon runners. Using New Balance’s logo as reference, we designed out dozens of custom characters for the campaign, eventually landing on two designs. Their name? STRATA—an homage to the layered design of New Balance’s iconic N letterform.

Experiential Display

Designing for 3D, digital, and live-printed assets.

Aside from aligning our characters with New Balance’s look, feel, and campaign strategy, we also had to make sure our design was simple and robust enough for fabrication into a both a 6-foot tall, 3D fiberglass model and a limited-run of T-shirts that would be printed using a heat press on-site. Both were featured in an experiential display debuting in Hong Kong to celebrate international runners making their way to the starting line.