Create History Not Hype


Create History Not Hype


We walked the talk with “Create History Not Hype,” as it took nearly a year of close partnership with Converse to bring an era-defining concept to life. The long-awaited relaunch of Converse Weapon took many forms over the months, but in the end, we created a campaign worthy of the storied silhouette and its rising star, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.


The original 1986 Weapon campaign featured two icons, Magic Johnson and Larry Bird. The iconic key visual had the two legends standing back-to-back, holding their respective team’s colorway like a gun with the tagline “Choose Your Weapon.” Great line and art direction for ‘86, not for 2024. For the relaunch, Converse needed an updated visual tone, nodding to the legacy ad, and new messaging that, at once, positioned the shoe and defined Shai’s narrative within the brand. Quite the needle to thread, but we live for this.


We aligned with Converse that we needed to own Weapon’s infamous start-stop history with tongue-in-cheek confidence. Where every other brand was looking for the latest thing and following the hype, Converse was boldly releasing a nearly forgotten shoe with a storied past grounded in O.G. basketball greatness. The line, “Create History Not Hype,” speaks to Shai and Converse’s shared mindset, challenging our audiences to bravely go against the grain to be truly unforgettable.

Before you scroll any further, go ahead and image search “Converse Weapon ad 1986.” One of the first hits should be the aforementioned Magic and Larry ad. Now, scroll down for our Shai version. It’s just referential enough, while giving a clear sense of Shai’s personality and effortless swagger. The product photography lives in the same gray gradient world with sub-copy that connects the creative concept, product and campaign hero.

Create History Not Hype. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander Converse Weapon
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander in leather jacket, sunglasses, jeans and Converse Weapon sneakers. He is sitting on white ground with one leg extended.
Converse Weapon Forget '86, 99 or even 14. The updated Converse Weapon goes everywhere but is here to stay.
four Shai's standing next to each other in different outfits

Building on our success with the launch of the “Create History Not Hype” campaign, Converse deepened the partnership by tapping us to execute their brand activation in Indianapolis for the NBA All-Star Game. Our Industrial Design and Production teams joined forces to turn a parking lot outside of Gainbridge Fieldhouse into the physical manifestation of our “Create History” world.

Industrial Design focused on the build-out itself, while Production traveled the country ahead of All-Star week to capture interviews on key artists we identified who exemplified the same shared, “history over hype” mindset as Shai and Converse. These artists were featured in the experience, itself, as well as in several short videos released on TikTok and Instagram Stories.

Aritst, Madsteez, kneels with his custom spray painted basketball backboard and basketball hoop
Artst, Lethal Shooter, smiles and points to a pair of Converse sneakers he designed
Artist, Kevin Concepts, points to his custom woodwork basketball backboard
Artist,Georgina , stands displaying her jewels wearing Lakers gear and her custom jeweled Converse sneakers
Georgina's Custom Coverse weapon design is a jeweled basketball net hanging on a white sneaker with other rings and attached
close up of Georgina's wall with jewelery making tools, photos and a note saying Work makes Work
Madsteez custom spray painted Converse weapon sneakers. Red, black and purple spray paint cover the sneakers
Wide shot of Converse All Star Weekend building with billboards of Shai and All Star weekend 2024. It is night time with streetlights and cars.
Night time shot of 1 story black building with mirrored converse logo in foreground. Background shows a large building with two billboards. One is Converse Choose your weapon with Shai the other is NBA All Star 2024 Indy.
Night shot of black building with Converse logo and NBA 2024 All Star Indy mirrored logo
Entrance to Converse All Star Weekend building. Entrance are transparent flaps with the text Create History Not Hype printed on them
Billboard with 2 Shai Gilgeous-Alexander's back to back. One with white Converse sneaker, the other with black Converse sneaker. text on billboard reads Create History Not Hype
display wall with Shai Gilgeous-Alexander printed on it. Four Converse sneakers are displayed on the wall. Text on wall reads Shai Gilgeous-Alexander Converse Choose your weapon.
converse sneakeers hanging from basketball hoop net
East wall featuring name, portrait and custom sneaker by Madsteez
West Wall featuring Kenvin Concepts custom sneakers, his custom wooden backboard, and various photos and woodworking tools on the wall. In the background is Georgina's wall featuring photos, jewelery making tools and plants.
Mirror with type Create History Not Hype. Converse printed on it
Mirrored display of white Converse sneaker.
Wall collage of historic Converse sneakers and players. Text reads Converse wrote the history of hoops and it all started here in INDY.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander sits on stool with microphone and holds up a classic pair of Converse sneakers
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander enters room with people seated
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander talks with moderator and group of seated people. A screen displays the message Create History Not Hype with a Converse logo
Basketball court game set up with 3 artistic basketball hoops and rules of Win your Converse Weapon
person gets ready to shoot basketball with a blue sunny sky background and snow on the ground
Shot from behind of man shooting basketball towards 3 artist created backboard and hoops
Young person smiles and holds up a converse sneaker out of the box. it is snowing.
Person at table giving away tote bags to a couple people. There is a crowd of people and a large building in the background
Man and boy look off towards the right. Both have totle bag that says Create History Not Hype