Nike NanoGlide Concept

i dunno if this is the right place: possibly footwear?
Athletic Footwear Design for’s Artist series Ipod Nano COmpetition.

design inspirations

  1. bioglide
    a fitting sequel to bioglide, nanoglide takes the minimalistic theme to the future, with less cues from nature.
  2. jordan XX
    the bare-ly-there part of the nanoglide is inspired by XX’s ankle support.
  3. melo
    toe guard.
  4. ipod nano
    the spirit of the nano is in the nanoglide, performing with no excess weight / materials.
  5. aparna
    a sprinter in my H.S, she inspired the light weight and the green colourway.


  1. FREE
    the fore foot part of the sole (under the wrap) splits when bent.
  2. SHOX
    shox system incorporated into the free cushioning ONLY IN THE FRONT
  3. ZOOM
    air zoom in the heel, the nanoglide is meant for players who land on the balls of their feet and run the ball quickly up and down court.

design features

  1. shroud / wrap
    covers the lacing system, keeps it all together.
  2. moulded inner structure
    for stiff but reassuring comfort, extends up to the ankle to prevent twists.
  3. ankle strap
    keeps the shoe on you, prevents sprains.
  4. anti inversion structure
    assymetric anti inversion structure is rigid, made out of TPU.
  5. sole patterns
    the evolution of herring bone, with diamonds and hexagons instead.

how many ppl prefer plain black and white shoes to a reallly flashy colourway? lemme know

Nice concept, it is good you are looking for feedback.

A few things to take it up a level:

  1. proportion. look at the jordan XX which has a similar laced for foot and ankle leash system. There is no way you are going to be able to avoid comparisons with that shoe on KG, so you might as well bench mark the proportions.

  2. the anti inversion thing is a cool idea, but putting that directly against the foot looks painful. Pad it and make sure it doesn’t hit the malleolus (ankle bone)

  3. design the sock that goes inside. You are going to see a lot of the sock, make it cool and functional (maybe the malleolus padding is woven into the sock!)

  4. color ways. I would do a web search on the Nike Dunk. To me, this is the poster child of good color blocking and creative colorways that are still wearable

  5. drawing style. The linework is clean (if a bit tight for my taste) but the rendering looks a bit flat and scratchy. Try photocopying your linework and render it 3-5 time to work on your light sources and contrast.

  6. graphics. get the shoe right first. Only then do bonuses like box graphics make an impact, but in general you want to implement them the same way you do your shoe design. Right now the box graphics have a lot more contrast than the shoes, you want them to be secondary. Not supporting actors that steal the scene. Also your tittles look a bit large, remember this is background stuff.

Good work overall, keep it up, and keep seeking feedback!

How about wearability and mass appeal? I would either take Nano off your inspiration or redesign the shoe make sure there is some link somewhere to the nano. And/or rename it. The two could not be further apart as visualized currently.

Maybe put a clear toe on it that scratches really easy. :slight_smile: Or sell a cool silicone bootie that goes around the whole shoe to protect it…

Hope you know I am joking. Don’t do either of those. Some people I am afraid would totally think I was serious and spend their thesis on that crap.

but seriously…
the competition as i understood it called for a lightwieght performance shoe, that ressembled the ipod nano in the way it pushes the envolope of weight and size. i did not think it called for a literal translation of the nano’s shape into a shoe. i could be wrong.

d2: will work on those renderings. thanks…
my only (weak) defence about the XX is that i had no idea the XX looked like my concept, (or other way round?) all i sought from the xx’s structure was the ankle support that could be un-bulky and yet work.
the shroud came from the turbine.
prof. K’s site had some early sketches of the stunner. they inspired in me a desire to design a really light shoe that had no unnesesary elements or coverings.
i shouldave put more focus on the shox in front with zoom in the heel.
thanks al lot for the comments.

good rework it and post it back up! It might be nice to make that shroud translucent to slighly see the shox… good shelf appeal.

I expect the real winner will be someone who does not take the literal visual tact either. But I would be careful about the aesthetic link regardless. There should be some form of aesthetic discipline. It has to be considered. It should have the same design ethos as the nano I would guess. Reduction on all fronts.

Remember: restraint. It is not what you put in but what you are able to leave out.

“Your shoes aren’t over designed, they are underdesigned. You over design it when you sweat every single detail and reduce it to what it only essentially needs to be. Your shoes look like designers threw them over the wall to development and forgot about them and went on to the next half-baked design…” - quote from the king of restraint


I want to first say that I think its great that you are posting your work for a contest and want to make improvements.


  1. extras
    I agree with yo- and think that the shoebox, posters, can come after the shoe. I actually think that after you have designed the shoe the box and posters will come easier and be more related. Maybe though if you are deciding to do a logo maybe you could have the logo designed based off your inspirations and then have it be tied into the shoe’s design.

2.inspiration/ story
you gave us a list of things in the shoe, but am wondering what is the thing that is pushing your design, what is it about the nano that is being inspiring? Is it just the weight aspect, because those seem less about an inspiration an more about qualifications. I think you can dig deeper into the company apple/ the evolution of the ipod, who wears them, the colors, how they function, maybe price? I think you can tell a story and find a inspiration to take your design up another level.

  1. sketch
    from all your posts here and on KG i can see your style in your sketches. I think just keep on sketching…and exploring more options, but research, and your sketches will begin to take forms from inspirations that maybe you hadn’t thought…1 side note in the sketches is that maybe you want to work with the form, right now doesnt stand out to me as a basketball shoe. Jason Maden, a while back posted a template for the shape to work off of when doing basketball footwear. I think having the proportions more exact will also take it to the next level.

excited to see where you take it.

scott- been a min, hope all is good. was wondering…who is the king of restraint?
(inside joke?)


time to sleep…

to all of you who replied: thanks for the comments. i’m asking for feed back not cos i wanna win, (that would be nice, too) but right now my aim is taking my designs and skills up to a level where i can get an internship (at JB?) once i get into college.
i made a list of all the things that inspired me in the design process, some you may not agree to the name, but they all have played an important role.
hope you don mind me sharing.
part 1
i started of with a light weight performance shoe in mind, nessecarily Basketball. the only thing i could think of taking off was the “behind the forefoot, before the heel” area, which would not compromise too much on safety or comfort.
since it was baskteball, the shoe definitely needed ankle support(not everybody is Nash). that a designer at nike could push the limits in his shoe design (shox stunner) was an inspiration to me, not everybody is confined to making shoes like the LBIIIs, which are SOLID (not nessecarily a bad thing) but i dint want it to be a hummer for the feet.
keeping with the theme of ultra lightweight kicks, i added the anti inversion structure and modified the ankle strap (made it lighter visually, like the XXs) i figured if a jordan signature shoe could have a strap like that it surely must be safe.
the posite like moulded structure was added to make the shoe a little closer to the hyperflights energy, while keeping the ankle strap from “rolling” from side to side.
since the shoe was geared towards “lightweight performance” i decided to limit shox only to the front, and a zoom at the back. THE NANOGLIDE IS FOR PLAYERS WHO RUN AND NOT WALK. there again, off court wearability issues come to play, but since this is a concept, i decided that just like you would be careful bout not scratching your nano, the player could use it ONLY for playing and not for showing off in town.
end of part 1

part deux:
i forgot to mention that the “players who run the court” nessecarily excluded centres who would rather take a stroll on court, and landed on their heels (horrors!) after a dunk.
i covered the lacing system with a shroud because of the exclusive nature of the nano, (i think hidden lacing systems lend exclusivity and a non conformal attitude) and also since the nano has a very “clean design” with no confusing lines, i felt the laces would distract attention from the overall shape of my design which i find rather attractive.
i designed the shape of the shroud near the toe box so that the shoe doesnt look plain, (some cars have this “slab sidded” look when the sides have no extra lines) i felt that the wrapped around toe box lended a little eye teaser look to the shoe, again to avoid making the shoe look cheap and common.
end of part two, end of structure design process.

part three: colours and materials
the nano comes in two colours. black and white. since i’ve anyway kept the simplicity of design in mind while designing the structure of the shoe, why deviate from the nano’s style by colouring it? i originally had in mind: graphite matte materials for the understructure, which came directly from the click wheel. there isnt too much of it, yet it is a vital part of the device.
the toe box and the tongue and ankle strap could be shiny black / white.
that left the shroud which had me confused: do i keep it transparent and as mentioned, add shelf value? that raised two questions / doubts.
i havent met anyone who is of the opinion that the silicon covering is a desirable aspect of the device. a shroud that was transparent would visually appear to be of the same function, why copy the nanos defects, i should be collecting its good aspects and putting them together.
also, a transparent shroud once again deviated from the concept of a simple design with no confusing lines. the laces would be partially revealed, the shox would be seen, and the result would be too many lines that jarr the eye, something that isn’t seen on the ipod (unlike other mp3 players).
so i decided not to have a see through shroud, but it didnt help me decide what colour and material to use! i would like your comments.
the last few nights have been spent doing line drawings of see through shoes!
ultimately i would like the insides of the shoe and the inversion structure to be made of some ultra soft material that moulds to the shape of the foot and stretches when required eradicating any need for a sock. i realise however that this may not be possible in the near future.
i feel a sock would again ressemble a silicon cover and like that nike kicks that came with a plastic anti scratch wrapping! as a player/ buyer, why would i buy a shoe that was not complet, that required another elemnt of design to be added to it. perhaps i am wrong and the sock is infact like the headphone wires of the nano.

the rendering seems a bit vague, but it gives a reasonable idea of the lack of visual “clarity” and “simplicity” i was talkin bout earlier.

The proportions haven’t changed and the design hasn’t evolved. Move it forward by :

  1. examining the proportions and construction of current shoes.

  2. ideating around different elements, what other ways could that anti-inversion clip manifest itself, work better, be more comfortable. Same with the shroud and the ankle strap.

i do not know if the hardly present heel will appeal, any thoughts?

with a slightly modified toe

for proportions.

for proportions, i took the outline of a carmelo and superposed it onthe original version of the nanoglide…

yo, any views on the new shape of the anti inversion structure?

yo, any views on the new shape of the anti inversion structure?