What’s your name? Age? Hometown? Current Residence?
I grew up in Mill Valley, California and I now live in San Francisco.
How would you describe your Job at Specialized?
The wearer of many hats.
How did you get chosen to do this project?
I was new at Specialized. Just after I started this came up and I jumped right in, head first. They took a risk by betting on an up-and-comer, but I think I pulled it off.
When you started working on your designs, what were you looking at for inspiration?
One thing that stood out was the iconic BMW Art Car series and their melding of art and speed, specifically those by Andy Warhol and Jeff Koons. It’s nuts: Warhol spent like 36 minutes painting his car. He was minding, but not minding too much. It was the way in which Warhol walked the line between thoughtlessness and over-thinking that in so many ways echoes the sensibility of the Red Hook Crit, so I adopted this idea as a guiding principle.
Tell us about the design process?
Throughout the design process I became aware that the same seven colors just kept reappearing. I felt strongly about using them all, but I kept getting feedback that it was way too many—especially for production. But I knew it would be right, and sometimes you just have to do it without asking first, and tell everyone they need it after it’s done.
So you just went with it, YOLO?
Yeah, I let my intuition guide me and I devised a method by which the graphics would work for production.
So wait, these are stickers?
Yep, I did a bunch of sizing, formatting, etc to make them work for all the different frame sizes. They’re water slide decals, which means they’re a MAJOR pain in the ass. Lots of late nights as Specialized, lots of sleeping on the couch.
These bikes look AMAZING!
Yeah, thank you! Once I figured out how apply them to the frames, I started to extend the Graphic ID to the whole team ecosystem; this is a huge assortment of accessories and equipment, each of which presents its own set of design challenges. Leather takes color differently than kit, helmets have different usable space than shoes, etc. I also had to juggle the timing on production, on getting samples. It’s different for everything, which makes putting together the whole line a huge hassle. But in the end I think it came out. I was told that it was the “fastest” selling special edition bike Specialized has ever done.
You have to be happy about that?
There is definitely a sense that all the hard work and long hours was worthwhile for sure.