May 8, 2014
Throwback Thursday: What’s With ‘Watermelon’?
Our founder Michael Morrow didn’t know he was going to grow up to be a helmet designer. He was just a kid crazy for sports – a kid who grew up to be a Nike creative designer.
Michael’s inspiration for the first Nutcase was an old sports helmet he covered with rubber ducks. He actually impaled the yellow ducks with screws and then attached them to the helmet to signify how his team, the Oregon Beavers, would ‘skewer’ their rivals the Oregon Ducks during the Civil War football game of November 2000.
Some years later when Michael hung out his own creative agency shingle, he decided to pursue the sports helmet idea – not with screwed-on rubber duckies but with great-looking, inspired graphics.
For the first Nutcase prototype helmet Michael chose a rounded shape, closer to the natural shape of a head – sort of like a melon. Not a stretch, then, that the first graphic design he applied to the prototype was a watermelon.
Michael photographed a real watermelon, Photoshopped the image, and sent it off to a factory he had partnered with. In a few weeks that first helmet came back, and with some tweaks, ‘Watermelon’ became the first official Nutcase design.
“When it brought a smile to the lips of everyone who saw it, I knew I had a winner,” Michael says.
What’s your favorite Nutcase helmet of all time? Let us know, we love to bring back old models when we get lots of requests for them. And soon, we’ll be able to tell you more about our next batch of 2015 helmet designs…