Posts Tagged ‘sketch’

Future of Footwear 2012 Dress Winner: Chris Dixon

 

As you wrap up your Future of Footwear submissions, we bring you the final installment in our 5-week series.  This week we catch up with Chris Dixon, 2012 Future of Footwear Dress winner. 

Did you have any footwear background prior to the Future of Footwear class? 

Prior to Future of footwear I studied graphic design at Harding University. I always sketched sneaker ideas but never really knew the correct process of designing footwear. I had my first big opportunity with footwear design when I competed and won Futuresole in 2010 (mentored by Benjamin Nethongkome). Attending Pensole Prep (Spring 12′) helped me gain more knowledge with the industry way of designing footwear. I can say my design journey has been a bit different than others.

Tell us about your experience in the Future of Footwear class.

Being Coached, mentored and taught by D’Wayne Edwards and Suzette Henry was priceless. From day one I knew it was going to be a tough challenge because of the talent level that was in my category.
Even though it was a competition, everyone in the Pensole studio was willing to help each other out in anyway possible which was weird but hey we were in Portland. We worked long hours as individuals and in teams. I was teamed up with Matthew DeAlmeida, Jared Fiorovich, Jan-Maarten Lubberts and Johnning.(3 of us won in our categories) I admired Matt’s sketching ability and Jared’s hands on skills so I sat close to those guys. We had a lot of guest from Nike and Jordan that came to share advice and critique our projects.  Seeing everyone work and enjoy what they were doing made the atmosphere just exciting. This was simply the best time I have had while competing for a life changing experience.

As part of the class, you where selected to attend the Platform tradeshow in Las Vegas, what was that like?

Making it to the show was very exciting because it was the first time we got a chance to hold our 3d models and samples. Seeing the world of footwear in one room was pretty daunting at first. As time went by it became fun to tell everyone about our different projects and Pensole Design Academy. Since this was the first time a school was in the show we got a great deal of attention. The live voting made people want to get involved and support there favorite project. I would say the coolest thing that happened at the booth was a lot of different buyers were approaching me to place orders for my design. That made me feel like a winner before they announced the winners.

You where selected as the winner of the Future of Footwear in the Dress shoe category.  Can you tell us about your design?

My challenge was to make a shoe for a woman that would make  www.highsnobiety.com. My brief was to design a high heel for the fashion forward business woman. I wanted to focus on a very successful business women feeling and looking her best throughout her busy day. Her surroundings throughout her day became my inspiration as well as the design story. It came together nicely  because I created a particular high class lifestyle I called the diamond lifestyle which started Diamond Lifestyle Collection .

At the Platform tradeshow, you where presented with a pullover of your design.  What was it like to see a pullover of your design for the first time?

That was crazy. I was the last to make it to Vegas so everyone was waiting to see my design. I was extremely excited to see it because of the complexity of the heel.  When DE pulled it out the box it made me think about all the sleep I missed and the headaches of finding the design was well worth it. It is a feeling that never gets old.

What have you been up to over the last 8 months, since I saw you in Las Vegas for the FoF 2012?

For the Last 8 months I have been working on my first collection including this design. I had a chance to work with Suzette Henry in Italy at the Lineapelle materials show, which was incredible. She helped me with shopping the show and basically finding the best materials. Other than that it has been just the beautiful struggle of finding factories and making progress as an independent designer.

What advice do you have for designers looking to be apart of the Future of Footwear class of 2013?

Future of Footwear will give you the experience that you just will not get any where else. I will advice you to try to earn a spot!

Great advice! You can submit your designs to earn a spot HERE

Future of Footwear 2012 Kids Winner: Sarah S4 Sabino

For the 3rd installment in our 5 week series, we catch up with Sarah Sabino, 2012 Future of Footwear Kids winner.  We talked about her experience at PENSOLE and the family she gained as result.

Did you have any footwear background prior to the Future of Footwear class? (study Industrial Design in college, draw footwear just for fun, school project, internship, etc.)

I have been drawing footwear since I was in High School, but it wasn’t until I got to college where I learned that my passion for sneakers and art could be turned into a career.  I attend Massachusetts College of Art and Design in Boston where I studied Industrial Design for a year and more recently, switched concentrations to painting. As a sophomore at MassArt two very big things happened that changed my life forever.  I received an internship at Stride Rite Children’s group where my dreams of becoming a footwear designer was put in play as I worked with designers on children’s shoe projects.  This opportunity for me, was very much learning about the industry that I saw myself working in, and every part of the job became more and more what I could see myself doing for a lifetime.  That same summer, Nike and Jordan Brand sponsored a design competition called Future Sole.  I had entered the Jordan brand competition where I could only hope that I would be discovered and receive a dream opportunity to present my design at WHQ.  A few weeks after entering, I found myself 1 of six semi-finalists out of the country and the only girl.  At that very moment of seeing my own design on the website I knew that this dream was really attainable.  Although I didn’t win the competition I learned a very valuable lesson of networking, and the winner of  the competition became one of my best friends and role models Christopher Dixon.  After that Summer in the fall of 2010, I was blessed through a mutual connection to meet D’wayne Edwards who is the creator of Pensole, and coincidentally, the creator of Future Sole.   Knowing who I was when he met me, and seeing the passion I had, D’wayne had invited me to take part in a course in Oregon where I would be able to learn skills from himself and other talented designers at University of Oregon.  I attended the course and fell in love with every part of it.  I met aspiring designers from all around the world, as well as Designers at Nike and Jordan who made me realize that anything is possible.  Pensole became an experience like no other.

Tell us about your experience in the Future of Footwear class

The Future of Footwear class for me was an experience that was not only as fulfilling as my first Pensole experience, but magically even more exciting.  This time around instead of just learning about the concepts of footwear design and working with a group to create projects, we were competing for a spot at the MAGIC footwear showcase where our designs would be chosen as the Future of Footwear.  Each day at Pensole x FOF was something new.  Whether it was learning some skill from a classmate that would help you, or seeing Top designers from Nike, Adidas, Jordan and more walk through the door to give you feedback on your projects, every day was a surprise that kept you on your A-Game for sure. That Summer, the PENSOLE studio became our home as many of us would spend up until 3-4am working on our projects, because as D’wayne says, “You never know who is going to walk through that door” we wanted to make sure we were truly putting in all of our effort.  Although it sounds great to meet top designers and compete for an amazing prize, for myself, this experience was WAY more than that.  It was the summer of 2012 at FOF that I made a true family of sole brothers that are amazing and inspiring.  The thing about Pensole that people don’t realize is that the “un-advertised” reward you gain is a truly amazing network of people who will be part of your life and family forever.  Winning the prize was only half the reward of what i have gained through the FOF class, but the real reward is being able to call amazing, inspiring people my family.

As part of the class, you where selected to attend the Platform trade show in Las Vegas. That had to be crazy.

I am not much of a traveler, prior to Pensole I have never left New England.  So flying into Las Vegas was such an exciting experience.  As we landed, I could feel the anxiety and excited-ness (I just created that word for you) inside of me.  The way the summer had worked was we found out that we were the winners of FOF and then returned to our homes for a month before Las Vegas,  so I had not seen my Sole-brothers and Dwayne for an entire month! I think I was more excited to see them than anything!  We attended the MAGIC Trade show for a week, where each day we presented our projects to over 1,600 footwear companies.  The A-game was brought as the 10 of us became salesmen and in my case a sales woman for our Designs.  The first day at the trade show we were given a pullover sample of our design ( which is referring to the first sample of our designs from the factory).  For myself, it was the first time seeing a design I made into 3d.  It was such an amazing feeling to see myself and my peers shoes and to be able to actually hold them.  As the days panned out more an more people came by the booth to see us present our projects.  I even got the opportunity to present my shoe to the CEO of Sketchers Robert Greenberg who is D’wayne’s very own mentor.  On the final day in the booth a very large crowd began to form around us, lots of cameras and Press began to surround us.  As I looked around at my peers we realized that the moment that they would announce the winners was beginning to happen. I was so nervous  as I heard my name being called to come and receive my award.  I could not believe that I won. I was so proud of my sole brothers because in my eyes everyone was a winner. 

You where selected as the winner of the Future of Footwear in the Kids category.  Can you tell us about your design?

I was assigned a brief to design a shoe for best friends. I began by focusing on children when they first begin to make friends. I looked back to when I was younger and remembered some of the first friendships I had. What was it about those relationships that helped me remember them?  I thought about different ways children interact and spark up new conversations.  Two major friend-making elements stood out to me from my past,  friendship bracelets and Pokemon cards.  What I liked most about these elements was the idea behind building and trading things for and with your friends. Some of the first concepts I had come up with ranged from shoes that had bracelets as fasteners, a secret note hider shoe, shoes that spelled out names on the upper. All of these ideas led to my final design which is a shoe that is completely interchangeable and built by kids.  It is composed of 4 main parts, 3 that build the upper, and an outsole.  The three pieces on the upper are removable and the can be woven together and traded out with other pieces.  The idea behind the shoe is that it will be sold in one color and in order for children to get more colors on their shoes they can customize and trade with other friends. So the more colors on your feet show how many interactions you have made with new friends.

You mentioned being presented with a pullover of your design.  What was it like to see a pullover of your design for the first time?

As a designer your craft is typically what comes out of your brain translated through your hand and onto paper.  Seeing this idea turned into an actual physical model is like giving birth to your design.  We all worked so hard on our projects, and for most of us this was the first time an actual shoe we had designed was created in a factory.  It feels like your holding your dreams in your hands; there’s no other way to describe it. Because my final design had an interchangeable upper, D’wayne handed me a shoebox filled with 30 pieces and 4 outsoles and smiled as he said “Get ready to get to work” .  I couldn’t wait to start putting together my model. I still can’t believe its real.

What have you been up to over the last 8 months, since I saw you in Las Vegas for the FoF 2012?

I’ve been working mostly on graduating college so that I can become a designer in the industry.  I have been painting a lot and working on my portfolio.  I have also been trying to give back to the community by working with an organization called Sneakers for Success.  It is a program set up similarly to Pensole where we teach kids about footwear, but we focus on more than design. We use the footwear industry as a gateway to get youth to think and learn about different types of jobs in the industry, anywhere from marketing to color trends we try to teach Kids that they can get a career in anything they are interested in.  Its a great feeling to give back,  Currently we are working with a younger group from 7 -14 years old on a project called “Sole Searching”.  The project is asking kids to create any type of creative project whether its a poem, picture, or design, of something that they are interested in the footwear industry.  In the summer we will have a showcase that will double as my Senior Show as I will display my artwork alongside my students projects. Its a pretty great opportunity and it has taught me the importance of classes such as PENSOLE.  I hope to truly make a difference in the world.  After graduation, I plan to continue my work with S4S and get a job in the industry!

What advice do you have for designers looking to be apart of the Future of Footwear class of 2013?

My advice in terms of design is to be as open minded as possible.  Designing footwear doesn’t mean that you have to make something you would see on the shelves at Footlocker.  Designing footwear means your solving a problem that a person has during a specific activity, and you just so happened to be creating something that will help their feet. Try to think of things that haven’t been done before, and be your own brand, don’t design the Nike or Reebok way, design the YOU way!  Don’t be scared of your imagination it will take you very far in this competition.  Most importantly, have FUN!! it shows the most if you truly loved your project, chances are, others will too!

Sarah, Thanks for taking the time. 

Register Here to learn more about Future of Footwear 2013


Future of Footwear 2012 Lifestyle Winner: Jonning Chng

This week we have part 2 of our 5 weeks series, catching up with the 2012 Future of Footwear winners.  By now many of you are hard at work on your PENSOLE: 2013 Future of Footwear submissions, but you will not want to miss as we catch up with Jonning Chng.  Jonning’s Sneaker Freaker design earned him Future of Footwear in the Lifestyle category.

Did you have any background in footwear prior to the Future of Footwear class?
I have a background in Industrial design, and am a sucker for sneakers.  By marrying the 2 things I love to do, I developed a passion in footwear design.  Prior to FoF class, I had been working closely with a local sneaker store designing collaborative SMU releases.

What was the Future of Footwear class like?
My experience in the FoF class was great! The level of creativity in the class was just amazing, and to be able to interact with like-minded people that share similar passion enhances the whole learning experience.  The main take away for me was the friends I’ve made in the short time with we’ve spent as a class.

As part of the class, you where selected to attend the Platform trade show in Las Vegas, what was that like?
It was definitely an eye opener as it was also the first time for me to be in Vegas.  At the trade show we showcased our projects to the public.  It was a great platform to receive feedback from professionals and to gauge ourselves against the industry standards.

You where selected as the winner of the Future of Footwear in the Lifestyle category.  Can you tell us about your design?
I was designing a spring/summer lifestyle shoe for Sneaker Freaker, which is to be inspired by the adidas ZX running range of products.  One of the first things I did was get in touch with Woody, the founder of Sneaker Freaker.  His all time favourite ZX model was the ZX8000 that was a 90s classic.  The fact that Woody liked everything about the original design was quite a challenge for me – I didn’t want to be seen as the one to spoil such a classic design.  So I decided that I want to retain the classic running shoe aesthetics, while exploring into using high performance and ‘futuristic’ materials and finishing.

I drew aesthetic hints inspired from iconic architectural structures in Melbourne, Australia (where Sneaker Freaker is based at). The design tells a story of high breathability with mesh webbing on the vamp and quarter panels – suitable for those warm summer days.  Overlaying the mesh is Bone White 3M reflective leather.  The reflective treatment on the upper gives the shoe a ‘surprising’ glow when light shines on them – transforming a classic looking shoe into a head turner.  Under laying the quarter mesh is a midfoot lock down system that is inspired by the Webb Bridge structure.  The glossy white TPU heel counter is a throw back to the original design and seeks design styling from the Plymouth Roadrunner 1972 – Woody’s favorite car.  The toe cap and heel panel flows continuously overlaying the midsole, revealing the centre die-cut detail.  The die-cut midsole reduces material used and allows you to see-thru from the sides, highlighting the essence of airflow and light weightiness.  ‘Icy’ translucent treatment on the outsole gives the shoe a ‘cool’ vibe.  Finally subtle hits of grenadine red accents on the shoe pays tribute to the Sneaker Freaker brand.  I call this shoe CHEECH, the name of Woody’s pet beagle – which is the main inspiration of my color story.

At the Platform trade show, you where presented with a pullover of your design.  What was it like to see a pullover of your design for the first time?
Awesome!  The feeling of seeing, touching, smelling 4 weeks of hard work  in your hands is indescribable.  Though I have had samples made before, this time it felt different.  This time, every detail on the shoe are designed by me.

What have you been up to over the last 8 months, since I saw you in Las Vegas for the FoF 2012?
I’m now designing casual lifestyle shoes for a local company.

Congrats!

What advice do you have for designers looking to be apart of the Future of Footwear class of 2013?
Go for it! And while you’re at it, keep an open mind – be receptive to feedback.  And most importantly enjoy the experience!

Jonning, Thanks for taking the time. 

Register Here to learn more about Future of Footwear 2013

MESH01 July Talent Show

In June we ran the first MESH01 Talent Show so that designers could show off some of their skills through new or existing work.  We where so impressed that we decided to do it again in July.  The timeline was short, but you came through, the work is fantastic.  We wanted to take the chance to show off some of our favorite designs, but you can see all of the designs HERE.

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The Flat Pack Footwear by MKatchi

MKatchi really impressed us with her flat pack designed footwear.  These shoes where designed to be affordably produced and shipped flat to aid refugees.  Not only does this shoe accomplish humanitarian needs, we also think it is quite fashionable.  It would be great to see a shoe like this sold in stores with a Tom’s type of model where everyone sold also buys one for charity.  See more images of MKatchi’s Flat Pack Footwear.

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Blooming Shoes by Cvejica

Highly decorated Serbian Designer CVejica created this beautiful collection for the Belgrade Fashion week.  The collection was created in cooperation with the Textile Uzice Company, with the goal of demonstrating the usability of their fabric.  We where really impressed by the beautiful use of the pattern on the fabric especially the fun use of flowers that come out of the shoe.  See more images of CVejica’s designs.

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Armani Exchange Fashion by Skittles

Once again Skittles shows some of his amazing watch designs.  These watches in particular where designed for the Armani Exchange Fall 2013 Season.  Skittles 3D models are absolutely stunning as are his sketches.  See more images of Skittles  impressive watch designs.

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Be sure not to miss August’s Talent Show submissions,  and vote for your favorite.  The Talent Show has been such a success so we will start having one each month.  So if you have a project that you want to show off to the community be sure to register for September’s Talent Show.

 REGISTER NOW

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Teaching the Footwear Designers of Tomorrow

A few weeks ago I had the extraordinary opportunity to talk with Ms. Newburger’s third grade class about being a footwear designer.  Let me tell you, if you ever need to be reminded how cool a career designing shoes is, go talk to third graders.

At first I was nervous about the idea.  I mean, I don’t really know how to teach a bunch of 8 year olds.  Luckily I was able to find several other designers who had previous experience with this.  Thanks to the Footwear Design Group on LinkedIn for your help. I would have been lost with out your suggestions.

When I finally met the class, I was blown away- they treated me like a rock star!  It took awhile to get started because each student had to know if I designed the shoes that they were wearing; I hadn’t :(   I broke the ice by first talking with the students about the sports that they play.  We talked about the movements involved in each sport and how those needs affect their footwear.  I then told them about the design process as I passed around lasts and taped up pullovers but they where most impressed by the skeleton foot.

Once the class had a good idea about the process we designed a running shoe together, which I drew for them on their electronic white board.  It turns out these things are very difficult to draw on.  Then it came time for the students to design their own shoes, some of which can be seen below.   Many of the students, even went so far as to and stitch lines and design their own logos, while others copied the Jumpman.

After about 20 minutes the kids each stood in front of the class and presented their designs.  If you are a children’s shoe designer start working on rainbow colors and glow in the dark shoes immediately.

Teaching the third grade class about shoe design was an incredibly rewarding experience.  It was great to see their creativity and to show the kids that design is a fun potential career path.  With any luck, maybe I inspired the next Tinker Hatfield.

If you have a design related story and would like to contribute to the MESH01 blog email nickh@mesh01.com

Visit www.mesh01.com to join the community and help design or wear test the next great sports / lifestyle products.

Day 6: Back from Memorial Weekend, It’s Time To Sketch

Tuesday May 31st, 2011

After a long Memorial Day weekend, we’re back and ready to start sketching!

Sean and Pedro once again joined the class, as we dove into the different materials and construction techniques used to create athletic shoes. This was one of the topics most in the class stated they wanted to get out of the course. We shoved the desks to the side and all came forward to the front of the classroom, around D’Wayne, to get a good look at the samples he brought in for us.

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