Sometimes we wear our shoes during our daily errands, but we often wear our kicks when we go out with others at night. For our latest concept, therefore, we have taken the night sights and streetlights of big cities around the world as inspiration for our very own Air Force 1, featuring a neon blue. So, without further ado, check out our finished concept above, and read more about the thought process behind it below.
The concept’s upper is dressed in a nubuck black base with very bright light blue detailing in nubuck on the Nike swoosh on the sides of the model, the lining, and on the eyestay overlay. Blue is also present on the Nike tongue tag, below black Nike Air branding. The upper is then paired with an entirely blue sole. In doing so, our model flips the traditional color blocking for a shoe like this, which would normally feature the sole in black with more of the lighter color on the main upper of the shoe.
Our model takes inspiration from modern cities, and their neon street signs that light up in bright colors during the evenings. Cities like Tokyo and New York have become synonymous with this kind of imagery, two cities that have also played very important roles in the sneaker world. Therefore, we decided to use a defining detail of these cities as inspiration, choosing to do so on the Air force 1, which is an extremely popular sneaker, but especially in New York. That said, we wanted to keep our design relatively simple and not overly complicated the silhouette, hence our decision to stick to only one bright color that we could contrast with the black background.
Such a bright blue on a shoe back in 1982 could have looked very out of place, especially on the basketball court, but these days, brands paint their shoes in a much wider spectrum of colors. And especially with running shoes, we have seen a trend towards using more bright colors on the uppers and soles, spearheaded by the brand Hoka. Running shoes have often featured bright pinks or volt yellows, but now they are featuring every luminous color possible. Incensed by this, we felt like bright blue was particularly appealing and underutilized in the sneaker space, so we decided to change that, using it on our concept of the Air Force 1. Sure, the Air Force 1 isn’t a running shoe, but it’s simple color blocking and chunky sole make it perfect for such a minimalistic yet eye-catching design.