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The Nike Rawdacious Colorway Celebrates the Unity of Sport

July 01, 2021 - Nike’s Rawdacious colorway palette for Tokyo — a combination of white as a primary, with components of pink blast, total orange and bright crimson — is another example of how Nike uses color to imbue deep cultural, psychological and emotional value in its footwear.

“Color has the nuanced ability to invite both reaction and reflection at once,” says Martha Moore, Nike VP, Central Color Product Design. “You see a color, and you immediately react in a certain way. Color can also open the door to history, connections to other disciplines and to memory. In creating this year’s palette, we worked to consider color holistically to best represent a moment in time.”

Nike designers looked to historical precedent — moments in time when world events put sport on hold — and the spirit that flourished upon its triumphant return. The Rawdacious colorway symbolizes that exuberance of reuniting through sport in the palette's warm tones, signaling new beginnings.

The palette is grounded in a white base to connote unity (it comprises all hues within the visible light spectrum) as well as a return to square one. The layout of colors also act as a beacon to draw attention to the footwear’s technical components. For example, the visible Zoom Air bag in Nike Running silhouettes like the Air Zoom Maxfly sprint spike are highlighted by volt green and bordered and exaggerated by orange detailing. Similar to negative space in art, says Moore, it’s through white space that other parts of the object can sing.

The result is a color system that Moore says instills a deeper meaning for athletes, whether that athlete is running for gold or just around the block.

“Let’s be clear: I’ll never, ever wear a track spike to compete in a race,” says Moore. “But I would wear a lifestyle, color-related model of a spike because something about it spoke to me at a specific time in my life. It was meaningful to the world, and it was meaningful to me. Color can distill all of those values in a millisecond.”

The Rawdacious colorway of select performance and lifestyle products will release on nike.com throughout the summer.

Check out Nike Gallery for more info on Tokyo innovations.

March 14, 2016 - The Nike Metcon 2  "Strong as Steel” collection represents three phases of steel, from red-hot liquid to forged metal to hardened alloy. This colorway is inspired by the strength of hardened alloy.

The third Nike Metcon 2 Amplify from the "Strong as Steel" collection arrives on March 21 at Nike.com.

March 09, 2016 - The pattern on the new LeBron XIII young athletes' basketball shoe is inspired by the All-Star's favorite cereal.

March 08, 2016 - The Nike Metcon 2 "Strong as Steel” collection represents three phases of steel, from red-hot liquid to forged metal to hardened alloy. This colorway is inspired by forged metal in a malleable state of change.

The second Nike Metcon 2 from the "Strong as Steel" collection arrives on March 14 at Nike.com.

March 08, 2016 - The Nike Metcon 2  "Strong as Steel” collection represents three phases of steel, from red-hot liquid to forged metal to hardened alloy. This colorway is inspired by the intensity of red-hot liquid.

The first Nike Metcon 2 from the "Strong as Steel" collection is now available on Nike.com.

March 07, 2016 - Inspired by Art Nouveau and the Parisian Metropolitan arches, the “City Collection" Nike Air Max 1 Ultra women's shoe has an intricate, curving print that pays homage to the City of Light's rich design history.

The “City Collection" Nike Air Max 1 Ultra arrives March 16 on Nike.com.

March 07, 2016 - Inspired by ancient Chinese architecture and textiles, the “City Collection” Nike Air Max 90 Ultra women's shoe has a bright pattern dedicated to the vibrant city of Shanghai.

The “City Collection” Nike Air Max 90 Ultra arrives March 17 on Nike.com.

March 07, 2016 - Inspired by Victorian patterns, the “City Collection” Nike Air Max BW Ultra women's shoe is an ode to London's design heritage.

The “City Collection” Nike Air Max BW Ultra arrives March 18 on Nike.com.

March 07, 2016 - Inspired by Art Deco design and the iconic Chrysler Building, the “City Collection” Nike Air Max Thea Ultra women's shoe is an ode to New York's architectural history.

The “City Collection” Nike Air Max Thea Ultra arrives March 19 on Nike.com.

March 07, 2016 - Inspired by Japanese wave patterns, the “City Collection” Nike Air Max Zero Ultra women's shoe is dedicated to the city of Tokyo.

The “City Collection” Nike Air Max Zero Ultra arrives March 28 on Nike.com.