In our second edition of Project Picks, we want to share with you some absolute gems from creatives designing for sports! All of the projects featured in this celebratory post were published between January and March of this year (2019). From the branding of high performance running shoes to a fun publication for footie fans, to an outstanding piece of editorial work about one the biggest tennis players the world has ever seen, these projects are some of the most innovative and exciting we've seen and felt inspired by in the last few months. In turn, we hope these picks will inspire you and have you itching to get back to your workspace to make more creative work of your own!
Alouettes de Montréal by GRDN Studio
Montreal Alouettes Football Club is a seventy year old football organisation with a rich history that has marked the city. As a way of reconnecting with its fans, players, and community, the club decided to create a new brand experience and visual identity. From the logo to the uniforms to communications and events, Québec-based design studio, GRDN, were tasked with creating a fresh face for the club in order to engage a new generation of fans whilst not alienating those who have been long-standing.
From its city colours to its nod to past logos to its bilingual slogan ‘Toujours Games’, GRDN’s new identity for Montreal Alouettes Football Club reflects the club’s rich history of resilience and the Quebecer spirit to never give up. Its bold, graphic simplicity is what makes the visual identity stand out. Their logo is pertinent of this with the entwinement of the M of Montreal with a plane that represents the Alouette squadron and a bird. But what’s more is their new identity cleverly reflects the eclectic chapter of the city by integrating both cultural and sports references throughout. Undoubtedly, GRDN hit the nail on the head with this one!
Adidas UB19 by Studio Lore
Adidas UB19 is the new Adidas’ premiere high performance running shoe. In the hope of creating a global campaign that goes beyond the category norms of crisp graphics and slick product photography, yet still convey the shoe’s performance credentials, Studio Lore looked into the creative process and workshop of the Adidas design team for inspiration. The concept decodes the design process and illustrates the tireless thinking and creative experimentation that goes into Adidas's product creations. Taking inspiration from the materials, textures, and readymade methods of the design team, Studio Lore created a visual language layered with imperfections, distortions and charm, and applied it across print, digital, film, and experiential settings.
Unquestionably, their strategy appeals to runners in an authentic and human way. By kicking down the studio door and allowing runners in on the creative process, Lore has sparked a more intimate relationship between the client and consumer. The brand poured over hundreds of running stories to find crews that are recoding running into much more than a sport, but a creative vehicle for cultural and social change. Their campaign shows that Adidas want to be a part of that culture, not just observing or commentating from afar. The deconstructed images and short films make for a raw, gritty aesthetic that stand outs from other brand campaigns. Studio Lore's work definitely gives Adidas that edge.
Red Mist! Football’s Most Shocking Moments
NotOnSunday is an independent London-based brand and design studio. Over the past few years they have created a number of self-initiated football projects. In latest footie book, Red Mist, BBC Sport journalist Phil Cartwright turns a witty and revealing eye over the mavericks, pioneers, and anti-heroes that have defined football history. From Zinedine Zidane’s infamous head-butt to Eric Cantona’s kung-fu kick, Red Mist celebrates thirty iconic game-changing moments that broke the hearts of nations and spawned instant legacies.
Featuring stories of red cards, dirty tackles, biting, pitch invaders and much more, the book's narrative is humorous and honest. The illustrations, created by talented illustrator Chester Holme, showcase the defining moments discussed and add a quirky, accessible feel to the book. The wide ultra-bold typography gives the book a rather masculine and distinct aesthetic. NotOnSunday's footie publication is certainly a stand-out piece of sports editorial that successfully tugs at the heartstrings of true footie fans around the world.
Stan Smith Editorial by Pedro Destefani
Pedro Destefani is a Graphic Designer based in São Paulo, Brazil. Her recent project, Stan Smith 2019 Editorial, depicts the career of retired tennis legend, Stan Smith, and his association with the infamous sports brand, Adidas. In 1972, Stan was at the height of his career when Adidas decided to sponsor him, putting his image of the 'tongue' of sneakers - at the time the most innovative on the market. And the Stan Smith, as they became known, accompanied, in pairs and step, their path of success.
Destefani's personal project is a unique piece of editorial work. Using low-res photography and haphazard layouts, the publication feels somewhat rough around the edges. Yet, arguably, this makes for a quirky and unpretentious aesthetic. The designer uses an array of typefaces, varying in size, width and kerning, again making the publication feel slightly offhand. The mix of black and white photography with brightly coloured pages, reflects the passing of the tennis legend's career but how his career has lived on through the Adidas shoes. Overall, this is a great celebratory project executed with charming art direction and design.
ATLPNTN Digital Sports Branding by Hachetresele
Hachetresele is a branding agency based in Argentina and founded by Horacio Lardiés. In March 2019 they were asked to create a visual identity and 'digital hub' for the infamous Atlanta group ride scene. The outlined mission was simple; create a project supported by the concept of 'peloton' that maintains a bold, minimalist feel. Both parties knew they wanted to design a hub that stimulates cyclists and encourages them to get involved. The result is a slick, contemporary visual identity that can work across any of the brand’s current and future digital applications.
With clean lines and bold graphic elements, Hachetresele’s style shows simplicity at its finest. The logo has a hard, almost intimidating feel to it, reflecting the intensity of the sport and culture. Yet, its colours offer a gender-neutral , inclusive feel to the brand. The Argentinian studio designed the typography for the brand with modules that evolve towards the creation of the isotype in the search to build a versatile system of forms. The use of geometrically arranged modules gradually building to form the brand’s logo acts as a metaphor for the powerhouse sport.
So we hope you enjoyed scrolling through our favourite sports design projects from various different creatives in the opening of 2019. We look forward to seeing what the rest of the year has in store for these few talented sports designers and hopefully continue to showcase their work on our blog. Of course, if you’re working on something and would like for us to see it don’t hesitate to get in touch. You could be featured on our next round of Project Picks!