Senior Performance Designer Position: Converse PDX pod

Thought some of you might want to take a look at this:

Feel free to email me or post any questions you might have.

sounds like fun, Mike. Are you getting a lot of interested applicants on this? Is DL still up there doing his thing w/ you? Looking forward to seeing the future Converse stuff!


Yes, Duane is a key part of the group. Right now we have 3 product designers and a color designer on the performance team, and we colaborate a lot with the Nike Innovation Kitchen, namely Tinker and Eric Avar. We have a lot of heat coming down the pipe and to keep it rolling, this senior design poition with be a pivotal player on the team.



Let me know if you add any other positions to the pod or if plans have changed. I’m lookin’ forward to the Converse stuff as well.

Sounds insane! Hopefully we can hear more about the lucky person who snatches this one up. Wish I had more experience …

definitely will, c77 blogged it on the front page the other day:

Looks like a great opportunity for some of the guys here. I hope later on I will be able to get a job like this.

Hey MD,

How’s the recruiting process been for this position so far?


great, we have a lot of very good candidates from all industries, still have portfolios coming in. We will probably cut it off in a week or so and start putting together a list of people to come out for interviews.

good luck with the search, a tangential question though: how important is mac proficiency? i would imagine it would not be a deal breaker, but how would this be taken into account?

doesn’t really matter. Photoshop/Illustrator proficiency is essential. Pretty much knowing them both like the back of your hand.

This is an interesting requirement. Is the converse marketing team big on fancy renderings and presentations? The rendering just has so little to do with the actual shoe in the end…seems strange.

Is the position still available?

In my opinion, renderings help the mold makers, pattern makers, sales team, developers, and marketing team to visualize what the design should look like. They are an indispensable part of describing constructions, materials, details, as well as the overall feel of a design. An accurate (not stylized) rendering goes a long way and is a key part to the way Nike design operates. As director, I’ve brought this philosophy to our team and I make it a requirement that everyone be able to do their own and to do them in a style which describes the design making it a communication device.

In addition to all that, it is part of the art of what we do.

Yup, still open. I’m traveling until lat September. In SF now, then off to Boston with the design team for some meetings, after that, the team is off Puerto Rico for our annual Athlete Summit to meet with all of our athletes, and then I’m taking them to LA to do some market travel. So we will most likely keep it open until I get back and then organize some interviews.


Thanks for breaking that down. That makes complete sense. When I started out, of course it was ALL about the rendering and it was such a big focus. And now that I am doing it professionally, It doesn’t seem so important to do fancy shading etc. with respect to asia understanding exactly how I want my shoe to be built. A clean line drawing and cross sections seems to do the trick. That being said, I am not in an environment where sales teams or marketing are involved with anything other than a finished sample that they can look at in 3D and there is no need for that level of visualization when you have the real thing. But again, that is mostly due the the HUGE difference in environments and processes. And of course, I would prefer the design-driven atmosphere ANY day. I guess whenever I start thinking about DE, and his process/stances on rendering, it gets me to thinking that it isn’t really that necessary at the end of the day. But I definitely agree with what you are saying. Thanks again!


DE is a bit of an exception to the rule, but his team is required to render, so I think that might give some further insight. Jay and I have rendered many of his sketches, and his line art is so descriptive, so accurate, that minimal shading is just gravy on the goose. He is able to describe form with an economy of line I have never seen before.

Update: Zeroing in on some peoples… Thought you might like to see some of the press the new line is getting:

There is going to be a nice pice with an insert in this month’s Slam as well.

Yo were you the designer of the Wade 3 or was in the work before you switched from Jordan.

Reggie: No. Duane Lawrence designed the 3, as well as the first Wades and the 1.3. He collaborated with tinker on the 2 I believe. Yo, correct me if I’m wrong.