STORIES

UNDER ARMOUR

Visualizing Innovation

For the launch of their first connected fitness app, Under Armour enlisted Mirada to announce the arrival of their groundbreaking training tool: The UA Record.

Building on a long-running relationship with the studio, Under Armour turned to Mirada to spearhead the entire campaign – defining the visual voice of The UA Record for its January launch at CES in Las Vegas.

Led by director Chris Riehl, Mirada artists conceived a design system and visual toolkit to reflect how UA Record works—via collecting and analyzing biometric data—empowering athletes to set and break records, and connect to each other.

In developing the aesthetic, the team drew on the design of the app itself – devising an approach that mapped cinematic projections of UA Record’s user interface into the visual fabric of live-action scenes. “Our goal was to show how this might look in the physical world,” Riehl explained. “We wanted to make invisible data visible in real environments; we wanted people to see UA Record in action, to feel how directly linked it is to the actions of the person using it.”

This visual language was then brought to life in a film showcasing the app’s innovative features. Using diagrammatic lines, profile images, device readings, and screen captures, we see core functions of UA Record manifested in real spaces—a weight room, a basketball court, a park outdoors, etc.— witnessing the remarkable information collected from real athletes’ movements. At first, the dataviz appears as clean lines – i.e., wireframe “ghosts” of the athletes foreshadowing future achievements. Then, they quickly take on a deeper complexity to underline specific features. We see intricate layering, grid work, even social networking profile windows that gently orbit the athletes.

Mirada artists also created key art and designed the CES booth – which featured four standalone banner images using the visual language of the film. Each embodies one of UA Record’s innovative features, like social media connectivity. Parallel to the dataviz tailored to Gisele, Stephen Curry, and others in the film, the team crafted iconic frames of individual athletes – like skier Lindsey Vonn, golfer Jordan Speith, and runner Frezer Legesee. As Riehl describes them: “Even though they’re portraits, we wanted each to feel elevated and alive, so the visualizations look generated by an athlete in motion.”

Across the process, Mirada artists strived to unite UA Record-empowered athletes and their connected dataviz – illuminating features along the way, contextualizing them in relationship to the physical activity being performed. “We found whether the image moved or not, the human action driving the dataviz was what made it feel impressive. The movement of the human body produces some of the most sophisticated, engaging visuals we’re capable of perceiving.” said Riehl.

The result is a campaign that fuses the kinetic and the poetic to celebrate the connectivity at the heart of Under Armour Record. The announcement of hidden layer of empowering data that was always there, ready to help drive all athletes to perform at a higher level; they just never had the training tool to unlock it – until now.

CES 2015 Print Work