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To celebrate Air Max Day 2015, we’ve enlisted the help of illustrator Dan Freebairn to show how the legendary sneaker franchise evolved over the 10-year period following its inception in 1987.

Nike’s Air Max is perhaps the most iconic sneaker franchise on Earth. Even today, nearly 30 years after the original first rocked the athletic footwear market with its scandalously revealing Visible Air cushion, its popularity shows no sign of waning. With more than 60 different models and literally thousands of different colorways, there’s an Air Max for pretty much every taste, style and purpose out there. In the interests of brevity, however, we’ve decided to focus on five key models: the Air Max 1, Air Max 90, Air Max 95, Air Max 97 and Air Max 180.

Thanks to the work of illustrator Dan Freebairn of Kickposters.com you can see how the design of the shoe, as well as its signature Air bag, evolved over time. While the looks, materials, and structure have undergone change after change, it’s testament to the power of Tinker Hatfield’s brilliant design that the Air Max 1 still remains the most popular silhouette in the range – although, everyone has their own favorite. Starting off as a groundbreaking running shoe, then a youth culture staple, then a bonafide streetwear classic, when it comes to a sneaker with staying power, you really can’t ask for more than the Max.

Words by AJ Gwilliam
Features Editor

Proud Brit. Pathologically addicted to white trainers (AKA "sneakers").

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