The Brilliance!


#INTERNET Ah, we're back! Like we said, we were just "chilling out" for like 3 years. Feels good to have the team back writing. Still us three: Chuck, Benjamin, and Virgil. Got new interviews coming up, and hopefully we'll be posting on a regular basis, who knows. We also interviewed each other, check: CHUCK, BENJAMIN, VIRGIL...

Super good interview with A.P.C.‘s Jean Touitou!

Hypebeast did a really good job on this one - and by the way, I’m loving the huge new interview header thing they have on their site, great design. So yeah, I’m pretty fascinated by brands like A.P.C. that seem to keep things so simple but maintain such a ‘rich’ or ‘thick’ brand, you know? I think sometimes the smaller (not that APC is super small) brands rely so heavily on some crazy cut, or cool graphic, or something that is super temporary to set their tone instead of really kind of letting the clothing simply represent the image/idea that they started with in the first place. Does that make sense? Anyway, funny cause Jean Touitou touches on this a bit in regards to ‘rock and roll’ based brands. I love this guys candor too, just very matter of fact, very to the point. His comments about why they do collbaroations, specifically with Nike are so nice to hear - they did them so they could have a shoe people could afford to buy instead of doing all the work themselves at a smaller scale of economy. Love that. No cool guy answer, no ‘synergy’ stuff, etc. So yeah, check the interview - full of really great insight.

OJ Da Juiceman!!1

Man, I know how it works with me now - if I think something is ‘weird’ I’ll probably like it a week or two later. Fashion, music, etc. OJ Da Juiceman is the latest iteration of this. “I tell my car to make a phone call - it does it!” Hip-hop is such an ever evolving thing isn’t it?? I’m sure they’re kids mad I’m even calling OJ ‘hip-hop’ but seriously…whatever, get over it and have more fun!! He is hip-hop. Hip-hop was built on getting your thoughts/scene out there and having fun with it. I think OJ Da Juiceman is having fun, and I’m having fun listening to him. So there you have it, right? True story, Virgil and I were requesting him at Tonic room or wherever we were in Chicago like 2 weeks ago. I love the evolution, I respect dudes who do whatever they want (his adlibs?!!?), and half the time all I want to do is dance and vibe out anyway, so dig it!!! I don’t have much more else to say, thats my post. I actually have to drive home from my office now and I’ll be chirping out my AYE’s and OKAY’s on the way!! Have a good Saturday everyone.

Thom Browne Short Suit is on my Must Have List!!!

So I am in the midst of “upping” my taste level of designers. Going beyond the knee-jerk reaction of saying “that’s weird” and really studying what they are trying to say. Coming from adolescent-Polo growing up, you figure Purple Label is the epotime of American “dressing up”. I had always known Thom Browne’s take on menswear but no I see how it is super revelant in this moment in time. The “suit” is no longer the working uniform… why not have fun with it. Thom Browne is made famous by his “short-suit” flooded trousers, shorter sleeves and little tweaks to a traditional suit. The end esult is something refreshing. If you have the confidence to pull it off, you get to have all the fun. Isn’t that what fashion is about? Wierdo or status quo. Word on the street is the company is in limbo, I have a feeling that won’t be the case for long.

Tim Walker’s photography for Hermes!!!

Ben and I email a lot…just constantly sending emails back and forth about design, music, art, life, emoticons, splash pages, internets, e-viruses, www’s, and so on. I would say that of all the links I send Ben, about 20% either get no response because they were just really not that interesting, or I get one of the following: “Meh. ha.”, “Ehh…”, “Hmm…not for me”. 79% of the time I get “crazy dude…” or “SO cool man…” or “HA” (a capital ‘HA’ means it was a really, really funny video I must have sent). The other 1% is reserved for links like this: Tim Walker for Hermes, upon which I receive an incredibly rare (think Honus Wagner T206 baseball card rare) response of: “Holy crap, those are awesome! Make a post man!” Keep in mind, for Benjamin to say “Holy crap” about a link I’ve sent must mean it’s really, really special. Tim Walker is a 39 year old photographer from London who honestly is doing some of the most beautiful, simple, elegant, and downright cool work out there. It can’t hurt that he was a full-time assistant to Richard Avedon in the 90’s and started out working for Vogue at 25 either…sheesh. So, this post is wholly about Tim Walker’s photography in general, but more specifically this set for Hermes I found on Booooooom. First of all, that first picture with the guy in the window in the field is just ridiculous. I love it. Took me a second to wrap my head around it. And the African tribal stuff and those giant snails!? I love it. So creative. The fact that this stuff is for Hermes makes these even better. As Ben said, “Awesome to see a really, really old brand like hermes doing something like that. they’re one of the only luxury brands that isn’t owned by a holding company - they’re literally still like super small.” So yeah, there you have it. Tim Walker. A true master…

“So Sweaty”, my favorite blog right now!

“Coffee on the menu was 47 cents.” So a good friend of mine/riding partner, Geoff Holstad and his lovely girlfriend SarahDarnell set off on a trip from downtown Grand Rapids, MI all the way to Portland, OR on their bikes. They started about a month ago and they’ve been steadily updating their blog, So Sweaty, along the way. I love how Geoff puts it all together on the blog, seriously, love the short quips, little details, tone, etc. Funny, its one of those things, how do you update a blog about riding a bicycle across the country? Seems like you either write a book when you’re done or you do a blog just as Geoff has with the simple and super fun to read updates. Well done my man. So yeah, check the blog out and get inspired to do your own trip/adventure. And to: Geoff and Sarah: we miss you guys here downtown, and yes, I’m riding the Madison often, seriously!! Have fun, ride safe, can’t wait to hear all the stories.

Water Parkz!!

I love water parks man. And why not - they’re super fun, right? I need to have more fun. I haven’t been to one in forever, but I was just watching some show on the travel channel and it reminded me how I used to doodle water park designs when I was in like 6th grade - I wanted to open a water park. And this was pre-indoor water parks too I think, which is what I wanted to do being from the midwest. As much as I love really beautiful natural parks - the idea of like a Willy Wonka/Peter Pan water-land stirs the imagination a bit. And actually, another true story, my good friend Kevin (Boxed Water operations) and I are planning on a water park tour as a bit of a vacation as a bit of celebration once we get national distribution. No trips to the Four Seasons in the islands, etc, for us. We’re hitting like Orlando, the Wisconsin Dells, and a bunch of the Schlitterbahn locations. Popping corks on the lazy river!! So yeah, thats my post. Super random. Catch me at your local water park with the short Vilebrequins on! ***Why are water park websites always so terribly designed??

Double the Creative Trouble - Dee & Ricky Interview!!!

If there is ever an obvious interview we would do it would be the one we just dropped. Dee & Ricky, Coolest Individuals, making up The Streets Most Famous Twins just hit on all the topics we wanted to know. Get familiar!!! (that DJ Drama drop is effecting my posting style, ha!) Anyways, I’d put my money on these kids to make in impact on this things we call lifestyle for years to come. You know the drill…the kids you went to high school with who you were with-or-against turns out to be kind of a big deal. It’s sorta THE BRILLIANCE!!! moto. So enjoy the read. Get inspired, make something that Marc Jacobs and Murakami can’t live without!!!

DJ Drama + THE BRILLIANCE! + An embedded video!

“The internetest most internet site.” Happy Monday everybody!! Hope your weekend was fun, mine was. Thanks to Virgil and Marc on this one. Just another bit of randomness that is this website we run here. Mr. Gangsta Grillz himself gives us a proper drop. We’re doing a mixtape ourselves actually coming up soon, be on the look out. Free download of course. Check it out:

360-flip-crooked grind down a handrail Status!!

Anyone that is switching scenes/industries and trying to get their point of view across I am am a general fan of. Way back when Nino told me about his push to get skateboarding on the big screen done in the right way I wasn’t even expecting all this. Street Dreams featuring some of the biggest names in the game Rob, Ryan, Paul, and Terry is the type of movie I’d love to see more of. Real people playing the kids that make up their subculture. Anyone remember the glory days of RocaFella films. I need to re-watch those. Any how go out and support. I can only imagine how tough it was to get a movie where skateboarding is portrayed properly as it is here. So ya’ll, get interviewed by the BRILLIANCE and you’ll get even bigger!!! And twitter Chuck for the latest skateboard trick names, he’s good at it.

Creative rambling…

So… I’ve been running NoPattern for almost 6 years now. I opened my online store, NP&CO over 4 years ago. Benjamin and I started The Brilliance over 4 years ago. I’ve been lucky enough to travel a lot and meet some incredible people. So - at this point in my life, I’ve been feeling pretty fulfilled. Lots of great client and personal work over the years, collaborating with some of the most talented people around, learning a lot from Benjamin and Virgil via emails/hanging out/reading their posts on here…But for some reason over the last month or so, and I’m sure many of you can relate, I’ve gotten this urge to create totally fresh challenges for myself. Feeling like I’m at this point where I have to sort of shock myself into new things. New personal projects, trying to learn and grow in photography/illustration/publishing - things that I’ve always dabbled in but never really truly tried to master. It’s so easy to let yourself get routine. Anyways, I went to Art Chicago a few weeks ago and was just totally blown away by some of the work there. People like Angelo Musco, James Roper, Alyssa Monks, and…I mean, artists doing some serious, incredible work. Kind of made me take a look at myself, my own work, and what I’m currently capable of and think wow, if only there really were more hours in a day, I’d be doing (or attempting to do) so much more. I want to think bigger, think huge…Trying to learn more from people, figure out ways to actually apply all the ideas that pop up in my head, and take some crazy steps in new directions. The ‘be a sponge’ cliche is such a good metaphor. It’s the part where you ring out all that you’ve absorbed that’s the truly hard part. Anyways, we always love to hear thoughts, comments, inspiration, ideas, etc…so email with any of that. Anyways, I guess I titled this ‘creative rambling’ for a reason…ha. Get to work!!