Javelin is home to a wide variety of restless souls, big thinkers, creative doers, and entrepreneurial spirits, and we encourage their passions – in and out of the office. In the rare hours he’s not working on designs for our clients, Will Massanet, Jr. Art Director, puts his creative chops to work for himself by merging his love of art, skating, and design into a niche clothing line. Have a look at what this tireless 24-year old has been up to.
Jon Maurice, Partner
Hi, I’m Javelin’s Jr. Art Director, Will Massanet. Meet Steryo Type Clothing, my line of original gnarly threads. Why would I launch yet another indie clothing brand in a highly oversaturated market? Because I love this sh*t.
Over the past few years the success of original brands like Obey and Johnny Cupcakes have inspired an epidemic of lesser brands spewing out terrible lines and designs that only resemble those patriarchs, like Picasso trying to draw a photorealistic portrait – and these folks ain’t no Picasso. I’m sure we’re all sick of seeing diamonds, anchors, and upside-down crosses plastered on shirts, and I’ll scream if someone comes to me about another TapouT-esque design. The world doesn’t need another Shepard Fairey – it needs a new Steryo Type…at least that’s the idea behind Steryo Type Clothing.
When my business partner, J.D. Dillon, came to me in January 2011 wanting to start a brand, we had a lot of great ideas but no name. We were so focused on how we could be different that I thought, jokingly, “Screw it. Let’s just be a bunch of stereotypes and make stupid-ass designs…at least we can laugh at it.” Hold up – that’s it! Let’s mock the rest and wear our antithesis. We’ll be Steryo Type Clothing.
One of our signature images is the cobra, which is kind of funny because I’m terrified of snakes. Since Steryo Type’s very name is about mocking the ideals we are against, why not use the creature I’m most opposed to as well? (Any Batman fans out there?) Anyway, the cobra is also the perfect symbol to remind people to keep an eye out for those slick snakes in the grass waiting to bite style and kill the righteous.
I’m sure you’re thinking, “Okay, that’s cool, kid, but what makes you so different from the rest?” First and foremost, Steryo Type is rooted in the cultures that I and my partners have been immersed in since we were younger and dumber: music, action sports, and comic books. We like to jump in a mosh pit, throw our bodies down gaps with a board under our feet, and then go home to open up an issue from any of the DC New 52 or other comic that happens to be lying around. The point is we’re not trying to be a brand that’s cool, we are creating a brand that’s us…and as it turns out, that’s actually pretty cool.
We always strive to tell a story that has personal significance to us with our designs. Take the one below for example. I recently read Wicked by Gregory Maguire (the book beats the musical’s ass) and – briefly – there was this gnarly part when the infant Wicked-Witch-of-the-West sat in Tiger’s lap, looked into a pensive and saw the future…and uttered her first word: “Horrors!” At the time I was beginning to feel the weight of having a full-time job and a small business; social, mental, fiscal, and other horrors were starting to pop up, but I was determined to stay the course. I took some creative freedoms with interpreting the witch and my situation, combined them in a new way, and boom: a killer design was born. It became our first design to completely sell out; we’re about to re-release it on a unisex t-shirt and a racer-back tank top for women. Every situation, positive or negative, can be a means to progress.
In the two and a half short years that I have been with Javelin, the importance of brand authenticity and a DIY mentality have been reinforced in me again and again, and I apply that to my work on Steryo Type Clothing. Almost anyone can start a brand – slap a simple logo on a pocket tee and boom, you have a clothing brand – but I’ve learned a very important lesson: if anyone can do it, it’s not worth a damn. Dare to have the passion to stray from the herd; someone will always take notice and your brand will be rewarded.