Rizon Parein created his most intricate neon works to date for Nike's #Sejamax campaign. "The brand briefed me with a comp of previous neon art I had done and sent over some vector designs," explained Parein. "We agreed to make a main neon visual and switch out certain parts for the three different ads," which feature professional footballer David Luiz, world-renowned surfer Pedro Scooby, and beach volleyball champions Maria Clara and Carol Salgado.
Each of the utterly realistic signs is CGI (including the illuminated version in the rooftop shot), modeled with Cinema 4D, and rendered in V-Ray. "It took two non-stop weeks for the modeling – building and bending the tubes," the artist said. "As with real neon, it's tricky to put in corners ... these things take time ... and it was a close-up view of many tubes. I wanted it to be as believable as possible."
Parein started playing with the art form three years ago, after looking at neon signage as objects instead of light. "The image of the little pieces sitting atop the mirror – these are the details that make all of the difference," he remarked. "Since my first successful neon came out, I've seen a lot of imitations floating around and I can tell that they are copies because I added in several components that are technologically inaccurate, but were graphically pleasing." His Nike neons, which herald the arrival of the Air Max Glow in the Dark and Air Max Reflective shoes in Brazil, can be found both online and in stores.
Client: Nike Portland
Design directors: Michael Spoljaric and Colin Matsui