IT'S AN EXCUSE THAT WE'RE MAKING.
Is it good enough for what you're paying?
Soulwax is a favorite right now. They have the sickest website, and are also the only ones to successfully remix Justice's Phantom (maybe the most remixed artist of the year).
IT'S AN EXCUSE THAT WE'RE MAKING.
Posted by VGRNTS at 2:06 AM
You don't know how proud I am to be posting this right now...
My man Chris from Free The Robots is in the top 20 of the iTunes charts right now! This is an accomplishment of epic proportions that was done singlehandedly by Chris and friends. Peep!
I first met Chris when I moved to Santa Ana in 2005. I had gotten kicked out of my house, and all I had to my name was my skateboard, a busted iPod shuffle, and a monthly bus pass. On one of my various excursions exploring the city, I landed at a place called The Lab, where I discovered an art gallery/boutique called Subject Matter. Chris, along with his good homie Phil Nisco, were both part time employees here, and I connected with them immediately on many different levels.
Within about a month I became a regular at the Lab, and I think may have been one of the first people to be referred to as a Lab Rat (our equivalent to a "mall rat"). I would always be burning and trading mix CDs with Chris and Phil, and they always threw amazing art receptions and various in-stores they would DJ. Chris actually was the one who ended up getting me a position at Obey Clothing in late 2005, for which I am forever thankful.
Chris and Phil, along with another partner of theirs, are also opening a bar in Santa Ana this year and recently got coverage in the OC Weekly. And when I say coverage...
All else I can say is, if anybody I know deserves to blow up in 2008, Free The Robots definitely takes the cake. From the bottom to the top's the only place to go.
Posted by VGRNTS at 8:22 AM
Everytime I have walked into Turntable Lab these past few months, the first records that have caught my eye were usually any of the Fool's Gold Records 12". I never quite knew who it was that designs them until this morning, when I came across the website of Dust La Rock.
The dude's name is Joshua Prince, a Brooklyn native who serves as art director for Fool's Gold Records, Syintific Skateboards, is designer-in-residence at Studio B and has his hand in a number of low-brow and high-profile projects at any given time.
By the looks of the site, this guy has been shredding for quite a minute now, and has a huge amount of talent that everyone is trying to get a piece of lately. Here are some of my favorites:
Peep Dust's site HERE.
Posted by VGRNTS at 7:59 AM
These music videos are amazing. I don't feel that I need to elaborate on any particular video and what exactly makes it amazing because, well. They're videos. Watch them. If I really wanted to, I could explain that Michel Gondry created the runaway shoe effect in Beck's "Deadweight" video by having him walk backwards with fishing line attached to the shoes. If I really wanted to, I could explain to you that Chris Cunningham created the runaway shoelace effect in Portishead's "Only You" video by having the actor move his feet underwater and playing it backwards. If I REALLY wanted to, I could explain to you that Star Jones obviously lost 975 pounds by running backwards underwater with her shoes on. You're not an idiot. None of this is necessary. Watch the videos.
Bat For Lashes - What's A Girl To Do
Beck - Deadweight
Portishead - Only You
Aphex Twin - Windowlicker (Recommended)
Posted by VGRNTS at 6:34 AM
Before rolling out to the Switch/Diplo show tonight, in a fit of impatience and boredom I decided to make use of my newly downloaded Photoshop CS3. Using new features only available on CS3, the following picture is not a wide angle camera shot, but actually a panorama of 16 DIFFERENT PICTURES OF MY BEDROOM, all taken with a camera phone. If you look very closely you can catch a few of the repositioning flaws, but for the most part it's on point.
Welcome to the future of photography.
Posted by VGRNTS at 6:14 AM
THEY LIVE. WE SLEEP.
Did a little late-night YouTubing and I came across someone who uploaded They Live (yes, the ENTIRE movie), a pretty intense sci-fi/black humor movie directed by John Carpenter in 1988.
Basically the plot deals satirically with the perceived notion of a declining economy, within a culture of greed and conspicuous consumption commonly associated with the 1980s. It posits a world in which some of the monied elite (i.e., the "yuppies") are actually aliens oppressing the poverty-stricken lower classes through subliminal media advertising.
I'm not going to spoil the movie and post the entire summary, so your best (and highly recommended) choice is to just watch the entire thing.
And if it makes it any cooler, this movie was basically Shepard Fairey's inspiration behind his entire OBEY Propaganda Movement. Voila bitches.
The movie starts off a little slow, so here's a crazy ass fight scene to get you started:
Part One of "They Live" (Entire movie)
For all 9 parts of the movie, CLICK HERE
Posted by VGRNTS at 7:11 AM
Good homie and fellow blogdog Alex James (aka Fortune 500), known around LA for his Bentley coupe and immaculate swag, just put up a little 5 question interview with me over on his blog. Click below to check it out:
PS: Notice how I shamelessly posted a picture of myself? It's my blog, I can totally do that shit.
Posted by VGRNTS at 11:50 AM
Barry McGee, aka "TWIST", just held the opening reception for his latest show over at REDCAT Gallery here in LA.
I don't know HOW THE FUCK I managed to miss the opening reception for this on Friday, but I definitely did, and am now crying in front of my computer as I try to live vicariously through the few photos I have come across from the show. Luckily the exhibit will be showing until November 25, which leaves you and I plenty of time to make our way down there, but we all know that the opening reception is always the best night.
Here's a photo from another exhibit he had a while back. I forgot which one it's from, but this is probably my one of my favorite things he's done:
Check some of the photos of the current exhibit that the homie Jon Furlong (Obey Clothing) shot:
BARRY MCGEE: ADVANCED MATURE WORK
Gallery at REDCAT
631 West 2nd Street
Los Angeles, CA 90012 USA
Opening reception: Friday, September 14, 7-10 pm
Exhibition dates: September 15-November 25, 2007
Gallery hours: noon to 6pm or curtain, closed Mondays
Admission to the gallery is always FREE.
Posted by VGRNTS at 4:19 AM
The people over at Lee Dungarees (Australia) are doing some interesting ad campaigns lately. I remember these jeans being sold at Wal-Mart growing up when my mom couldn't spend more than $100 for my back to school wardrobe, and I always hated them because all the other kids had JNCOs while I looked like a middle-aged housewife from North Dakota. I might as well have had some Jordache's.
I can't necessarily give Lee 100% on this one, because nowadays it's pretty easy to find decent photographers and graphic artists to make your company more appealing to this ever-so-hip, trendy, mega-consumerist marketing jackpot we call youth, but they will still get a C+ for effort. It would have been a B or B+, but it's pretty apparent by some of the designs that they are trying to follow the footsteps of fellow Australian mates Ksubi (Formerly Tsubi, recently changed due to a bullshit lawsuit although the "K" looks cooler).
Either way, the campaign has pretty great execution overall, my favorite being the one with the melting shirt effect (below). Check them out for yourself:
Posted by VGRNTS at 3:17 AM
Vintage porno mags are the epitome of amazing design. Everything about them is perfect, from the fonts, word placement, shapes, colors, psychadelic effects, and most of all, THE FUCKING GIRLS.
When their clothes were ON, they had the best style, hair and everything. When the clothes came OFF, they had 100% natural bodies. You know, like real people. No laser removed pubic hair, no liposuctioned guts, and not a single silicone titty or botoxed lip in sight. What ever happened to stuff like this? This is why porn is no longer appealing to anybody that doesn't have a creepy bondage old lady fat titty foot fetish.
This past year or so I have been inspired by a lot of heavy metal artwork and album covers, but I think vintage porn is going to be a big influence on some of my Fall 2008 design work. Here are some my favorites so far. Enjoy.
Posted by VGRNTS at 1:20 AM
SPECIAL SNEAKER EDITION.
Once again, this post is dedicated to all the material shit I don't have, used to have, wish to have, and/or may never have.
Ato Matsumoto Hightops
Pierre Hardy x Kitsuné Serie.02
Creative Recreation Ponti Hightops
YMC Oxford Dress Shoes
Alife Everybody Hightops
But seriously. How sick are those Ato Matsumotos...
Posted by VGRNTS at 12:01 AM
IT'S NOT YOU, IT'S THE E TALKING.
Clip from the 1975 cult movie "Death Race 2000"
In Flagranti - Paroli
Space - Magic Fly
Giorgio Moroder Promo Video
Murder scene from Dario Argento's 1982 horror film "Tenebre" (Recommended)
These should keep you busy for a few minutes...
Posted by VGRNTS at 6:01 PM
Remember when Kanye showed up to Cinespace back in July while graphic DJ/graphic designer SO ME (Ed Banger Records) was spinning?
Many of you may not have known this, but SO ME was actually in LA that week specifically to work on Kanye's new music video, which back then was merely a rumor and remained complete mystery.
But NOW that Graduation is finally out, as well the videos for his first two singles on it, the third has finally surfaced...
Kanye West Ft. T-Pain - The Good Life (Directed by SO ME)
In case you're completely clueless as to why this matters, here's a quick reminder of how SO ME and Mr. West were introduced:
Annddddd here's the video that Kanye thought his was better than without even SEEING it:
Justice VS. Simian - We Are Your Friends (Dircted by So ME)
Posted by VGRNTS at 6:19 PM
It's currently 3:02 AM Pacific Standard Time.
The scent of Nag Champa is slowly engulfing the air of my room. Every time I have purchased these, they have always come with a sample box of another scent called Super Hit, of which the box claims to "increase positive aspects of all zodiac signs," mine being Gemini (Gemini are apparently the communicators of the Zodiac, as well as the nonconformists of the Zodiac). Ironically enough (considering this post), I didn't get a box of Super Hit this time.
Currently listening to Florida by Diplo. While designing I have found it easiest to focus and get in a certain zone when I listen to full albums or mixtapes, or anything that I don't have to manually change for a prolonged period of time.
Decided today that next semester I will enroll to take Business and Management classes, as well as French and Psychology.
Recently did a personal study on various key psychological features within my immediate group of acquaintances, some of which led me to further research the term idiot savant (medically referred to as autistic savant).
Made it a point to eliminate the almost over obsessive usage of the word "like" within sentences, hoping to further develop my general human communication skills (which have seemingly left my sight completely since my move to the greater Los Angeles area).
Inspiration today courtesy of future Columbia University graduate, Holly Stanton.
Posted by VGRNTS at 3:01 AM
Glenjamn and I (and possibly Will, aka Kid Paparazzi) are leaving to Vegas tomorrow afternoon for JUSTICE! This shit is gonna be bananas, and definitely a moment in shred history.
This will actually be my first time ever leaving the state of California. HEAVY.
UPDATE: A-Trak has just been added... RIDIC.
Special thanks to Franki and Travis from I Heart Comix.
Posted by VGRNTS at 10:23 PM
VGRNTS top 5 picks for the first week of September:
1) Calvin Harris - Merry Making At My Place
2) Bjork - Army Of Me (Telegram Cover) (Recommended)
3) Kanye West - I Wonder
4) Mr. Flash - Eagle Eyez
5) Them Jeans - All Work All Play Mixtape
Don't forget about IN FLAGRANTI this Saturday night. This will blow yo' brains out...
One thing about In Flagranti is that instead of making music videos for their singles, they just make short videos EVERY song. Most of these are really weird and kinda leave you thinking for a few minutes. This one is a favorite:
Also, going on TONIGHT at Dance Right, my boys fromELSEWHERE (along with old Pubeski) are going to be showing you once again how to MURDER THE CLUB by playing GOOD MUSIC:
Posted by VGRNTS at 11:06 AM
This post is dedicated to all the material shit I don't have, used to have, wish to have, and/or may never have.
Leica D-LUX 3
Carga Wool Messenger Bag
Apple MacBook Pro (Or any laptop)
Y-3 Poppy Honja Hightops
Aerospoke 700cc Front Wheel
Round-trip ticket to New York
Stay tuned for more episodes of "SHIT THAT I DON'T HAVE"... For there is definitely plenty of shit I seriously don't have.
Posted by VGRNTS at 3:05 PM
One of my good friends and former roommates Zack Blatt has just launched the online lookbook for his clothing line Cosby, with me as the model for it.
I have known Zack for a little while now. I actually met him at the Agenda Tradeshow in San Diego about a year or two ago, and we noticed how we like a lot of the same shit. He is also the proud owner of one of many couches I have stayed on since moving to Los Angeles. So I figured what other way to make it extra official than to do an interview with the owner/operator/designer/one-man-army himself.
HASSAN: Let's get a little history about Zack Blatt and Cosby Clothing. Say whatever you want here.
ZACK: I was born and raised in LA. I’ve been really into skating since the seventh grade. I definitely sucked at skating for a long time, and I’ve always had a weird style. I’m definitely not that natural talent type guy; I had to work overtime for all that I got. It’s always been just me, a couple friends, and a filmer. Never got too crazy. I decided to start Cosby a little over a year ago. I thought it would be sick to offer my own line of clothes. I actually have never, even to this day, really been in tune with the internet and blogs and stuff like that, so I really didn’t realize how many companies there were out there till I started up. I figured out how to get some screen printing done and I just went with it. Everything I’ve learned has totally just been trial and error, but I’m having a lot of fun with it. I just want to learn more and more, and make more and more. Step up the quality every chance I get. I still don’t have too many contacts, so I do a lot of leg work around the city alone. It’s pretty craze. Fun stuff.
HASSAN: A lot of companies who started with only t-shirts their first few years either fell off the grid completely, or grew as a company and started to offer cut and sew items. It was only your second season when you already had a number of cut and sew pieces. What made you make such a bold move? Was this the plan from the beginning, to produce actual clothing garments opposed to merely printing on pre-made t-shirts?
ZACK: I was just going with the flow, and I still think I am the same way. Anything that comes into my path I will try and work with. Luckily, in the time between my first and second season, I learned a couple things about making some real garments, so I tried it out. I was really stoked. I think a lot of companies just start outsourcing complete garments, but the way I’ve had to do it was way crazier. I’m actually working on the patterns first hand and driving around all the supplies. It’s crazy dude. I definitely am down with the idea of starting to outsource if I find ones that will work for me, but I think it’s cool that I had to learn it this way first.
HASSAN: Yeah, it is kinda crazy. And I've actually been with your crazy ass on some of your crazy Los Angeles excursions, with cars full of crazy fabric and shit. I think the fact that you do everything yourself (from designing to delivering, networking to sales, and EVERYTHING in between) is definitely part of the beauty of your line, yet it almost seems inefficient/impossible to operate something like that. HOW THE FUCK DO YOU DO THIS EXACTLY?
ZACK: Shit… I don’t know. There’s been no planning or budgeting really. It’s like one big freestyle, and somehow it’s been sort of working, but there have definitely been parts that didn’t. I saw right off the bat how hard it was to get into the right stores, and stay in the right stores. I’ve never really been good friends with the people that worked at any of these boutiques. And I got to see how hard it is to get paid sometimes (motherfuckers!). So I do need to start delegating some work to others. The money really isn’t there yet for that, but I got this girl to kind of be my bookkeeper/sales, so that should be sick.
HASSAN: Does the name Cosby mean anything significant to you?
ZACK: I really wanted the feel of old grandpa style clothing, I love knitwear. So I thought the name Cosby was perfect.
HASSAN: I've noticed both times so far we have done the photoshoots, you let me leave on some of my own clothes along with your gear. Why did you choose me as the model? Do you feel that my personal style reflects the line? Or is it simply because I fit in the samples and don't shoot heroin in my toes like other models?
++Zack and I, warehouse party in Downtown LA. Photo: Rony's Photobooth
ZACK: I dug the way you dressed right off the bat. I knew you knew you know...?!$?#? But no really... right off the bat I knew you knew what’s up. I knew that you would represent the line well. And for sure I always want you to bring your own style to the table. I like it when you have some of your own gear on. I kinda get bummed when I go to someone’s site and the models are wearing the brand head to toe. Who the hell wears a brand head to toe... that’s like those Gucci jumpsuits or something. I want Cosby to go good with what you already got on.
HASSAN: HAHA great answer. Let’s talk about the tradeshows that recently took place in Las Vegas. A lot of companies that were making strictly all-over or oversized-print tees and hoodies a year ago have been slowly adapting to a more versatile audience to survive (i.e. slimmer jeans, tank tops, etc.). Do you think these same people liked your line? What did you think of everyone else’s stuff?
ZACK: Damn another good one. Trade shows are craze… I almost didn’t want to do it, but I tried it out. It’s funny, you’re exactly right... it seems like everyone has changed their steez up. In one sense they do need too stick with the times, but all of these brands just look like weird versions of each other. As far as Cosby, I feel like either people really like my line, or they just don’t see why I do any of the stuff I do. But I definitely got some cool compliments at the show.
HASSAN: At the end of the day, the point of these tradeshows is to market your brand to clothing buyers worldwide. You have had Cosby in a lot of independently-owned streetwear boutiques such as HUF and Bodega, yet your line has been carried in a few higher end retail locations, such as American Rag. How do you feel about the stores you are in? Is it hard for you to find the right kind of customer for Cosby?
ZACK: Yes, this is the hardest part for me. I believe Cosby is kind of right in the middle of the streetwear stuff and the higher end stuff, so it’s hard. I think there are tons of the right customer for Cosby, but finding the stores willing to take a chance on a different look… THAT’S a bit harder. And the most ridiculous thing is the amount of politics behind a lot of these stores. I didn’t grow up with any of the people that work at any of these places, so I don’t know who they’re cool with, who they have beef with, and all that jazz. I want the stores to know that, and to work with me, because I am just a random guy doing his own thing. So it’s been a bummer to lose accounts to those who thought I was trying to cut into their territory or something like that; I’m new to all this stuff. The definition of something being “exclusive” definitely seems to be evolving within this industry, so hopefully there will be a little more understanding amongst a lot of buyers.
HASSAN: That’s definitely a great point about stores being open minded with what they carry. A lot of places stick to one formula when it comes to their selection, which makes it harder for them to adapt as times change, and when they do it makes it seem almost like a blatant attempt to change their market completely. You have done a pretty good job of giving yourself the balance factor, giving your brand the flexibility to get away with different things. So what can people expect from Cosby in your next line, or even seasons to come?
ZACK: I would say that I’m really happy at where I’m at right now. The type of garments that I’m making I think will continue to wear for a while, so I want to get better at making the same kind of products. At the same time I want to learn more about new stuff, that way I can always add new items to the line. So I feel like it will always be a slow gradual evolution of Cosby. I want it to always be half dressy half messy. OH SHIT, that’s tight... “HALF DRESSY HALF MESSY…” That hits the hammer on the Cosby head.
HASSAN: Alright, this is the end. Is there anything you want to say to the people reading this? And who would you like to give special thanks out to?
ZACK: I want to say that the end is far from near, Cosby will be watching you! Thanks peeps!
Official Cosby Clothing Website
Posted by VGRNTS at 3:48 AM