Clubs and crews are the heartbeat of running. They represent everything that's great about the sport—from people just getting into it, to the most aspirational goal-chasers, to the loudest cheerers along global race courses. No club represents this full spectrum better than Atlanta Run Club. That's why we were so honored when we were given the opportunity to create their 2023 race kit.
Such a culturally rich club requires an immersive design sprint, where we first dive deep into the DNA of the community, then filter our learnings through the uniquely Bandit lens of fashion, art, and sport.
First and foremost, the design of the kit is inspired by ARC’s brand and approach to color across photography. Through ARCs photography, they play with color, shadows, depth, and heat maps to capture motion and energy of runners, communities, and the running lifestyle in Atlanta.
Taking from this, we conducted analogous research, looking to art to inspire the graphic design and artwork for the Bandit product. In the bottom left corner of the below image you'll see a snapshot from abstract expressionist filmmaker, Robert Breer, who used torn paper and different crafts on his animation table using analogue to create beautiful moments in film.
"One of my favorite inspiration tears is the 1972 Sapporo Winter Olympics stamp art, using halftone to capture the movement of skiing figures in space," says Bandit Lead Designer, Ale Iaccarino.
It's not always in the [art > runway > color] order, but in this case after our research into abstract and halftone art, we searched for how this form may be trending on the modern runway. At Bandit, we always approach running through a fashion lens. Dior's AW23 collection (right below) and Louis Vuittons's SS20 collection both featured a galaxy print that we found super inspiring and translatable into the basis we had laid from an art perspective.
The overall print we landed on is grounded in abstract and haftone art. It blends and balances multiple ideas simultaneously, all while speaking directly to the Atlanta running community's unique and bold identity.
"I love how the color palette captures the depth of cool blue tones and the high warmth of orange and red, embodying the spectrum of emotions/movement/sweat/highs and lows of running/racing," Ale explains.
Dozens of iterations of playing with this idea resulted in the final designs (below). Now because of the complexity and intricacies of the print, we've been working closely with some of the best sublimation manufacturers in the world to produce it to perfection.
Keep an eye out for these kits at starting lines this Fall.
Special thank you to ARC for trusting us with this project.