SP17 RN TRAIN NA E Thompson CAM A 0639
Nike

Speed Revealed.

Photography

When we think of speed, we think sleek, sharp, acute. We think of the breakneck whip around the racetrack, the nearly invisible blur of motion. The crack of the starting line gun. And the moment of stillness before the burst. But what about speed in all of its forms – what about muscle, measurement, and structure? What about the heart of speed, its beauty, its force?

To find these answers, we scouted, prepped, planned, and shot a two-year campaign for Nike Track and Field, capturing images that would be used to create a Visual Center. Nike had partnered with a kickass graphics agency that created ad comps, out-of-home graphics, and editorial layouts. Our contribution was to highlight the extreme bodies of pinnacle athletes who compete at the highest level in the sport.

NABD TF VISUAL CENTER 020516 MCP EDIT 45 2000x1214 CROPPED

We launched our first season with three Olympic athletes, shot putter Tia Brooks, sprinter English Gardner, and hurdler Aries Merritt. Our second season, shot with our same creative team one year later, featured middle-distance runner Clayton Murphy and sprinter Elaine Thompson. Our goal was to capture big images that portrayed big movements. But speed this explosive proved hard to capture....

SP17 RN TRAIN NA E Thompson CAM A 0074
NIKE TRACK A MERRITT ACTION A 0027 03 1200x831
NIKE TRACK T BROOKS ACTION A 0256 04 1000x738

We were challenged with a small budget, but our passion for this project was not small. It called for big setpieces, big backdrops, lights that were bright enough to outshine the sun – and a large enough team to manage the safety and movement of our sets. Location scouting was also a challenge. With bodies moving at high velocity, we needed enough space to catch them at their most dynamic. And we weren’t willing to compromise our vision.

NABD TF VISUAL CENTER 020516 MCP EDIT 33 1 2000x1214
NABD TF VISUAL CENTER 020516 MCP EDIT 32 2000x1214

To achieve our goal, we partnered with the amazing Artistic Director Rebecca Parker, who had a clear ambition for the project – to capture clean images of the body, to reveal speed in all its forms, in all its intensity. Our Motion Director and Photographer was Carlos Serrao, who was no stranger to capturing athletes in dynamic, compelling motion. And, of course, we were shooting with some of the very best athletes in the world. A win-win-win.

NIKE TRACK E GARDNER ACTION A 0128 01 1800x1201

Together, we took stock of our challenges, and we got to work. We considered building an indoor track, but then we scrapped it in favor of an outdoor track. We brought lights bright enough to create shadows and diffusion in the daylight. We built backdrops that covered enough space to give our athletes room to move. Most of all, we maintained an unflinching commitment to the creative vision. This is Speed Revealed – the angle of a sprinter rounding the corner of a track, the intrinsic power behind a shot putter’s throw, the incredible capacity of the human body, in unstoppable motion.

NIKE TRACK E GARDNER ACTION A 0385 01 copy 636x1000
NIKE TRACK A MERRITT PORT A 0403 03 400x600
SP17 RN TRAIN NA C Murphy CAM A 0195 01 V3a 800x577
NIKE TRACK A MERRITT ACTION A 0113 03 800x485

Services

Art Buying & Usage Negotiations
Budget Scenario Modeling
Pre-production & Logistics
Crew Sourcing & Management
Location Scouting & Permitting
External Vendor Relations
Ongoing Budget Management
Run of Show Execution
Stills Retouching & Delivery
VFX, 3D & Compositing

Collaborators

Executive Creative Producer

Davis Priestley

Creative Producer

Alana Spears

Photographer

Carlos Serrao

Set Designer

James Lear

Stylist

Carissa Malka