Never Too Much
If you are just starting out in your career, save this information for later. If you’re a veteran, be greedy now. I talk about money a lot to folks because...Read more
Bring Your Own Logo
I had been a designer at Nike for 5 years when Sergio Lozano told me something I needed to hear out loud to understand. I was showing him some sketches...Read more
Not My Thing But...
One of my earliest memories in life is waiting in my mother’s car outside of my Aunt Jay’s project apartment. I remember swearing. I remember anger. I remember pity. I...Read more
Twenty years ago I had to entertain countless questions about my music and my clothes because I’d traveled to a strange new land where there weren’t a lot of people...Read more
A Creative Balance
The expression ‘all work and no play’ takes on a special significance during a pandemic. Our team ranges from midsole construction techniques in one call to the rising potential for...Read more
The Social-Cause Business Experiment
It took 3 years after my last corporate paycheck to realize I didn’t need a job. Maybe even 4 years. No matter how well things were going, I kept checking...Read more
My son, Elijah, is an artist. I wanted him to want to see Kadir Nelson tonight at 7 World Trade tonight but he was busy doing something close to nothing but different...Read more
I get bored easily. I always have. At one point in my early days as a footwear designer I wondered what else I was missing. I would ask veteran designers...Read more
Three. Possible Five. Portfolio Rules.
For years I crafted and recrafted my portfolio based on trial/error, advice from experts/peers and whatever I thought looked cool in the real world. Perhaps to the detriment of my...Read more
About a year ago I started receiving phone calls from area codes I hadn’t heard from in years. I left Oregon in 2011 and Nike, Inc in 2013. I couldn’t...Read more
In 2019 I attended a conference in Washington DC for African Americans in the Footwear industry. The sea of black talent in one a single room was a sight to behold....Read more
What's in a Name?
Back in the olden days a rite of passage was getting a check book for your bank account. I was officially a teenager and my mother wanted me to learn...Read more
What's the Point?
I am a terrible storyteller. Sorry. I went to engineering school in the ‘90’s. My idea of communicating a narrative is ‘show your work’. This is less of an excuse...Read more
Are You Directing, Managing or Both?
As a design director at Nike I fully understood my role. There were shoes to design, branding to maintain, expense reports to sign and marketing briefs to ignore. I’m kidding. Kind of....Read more
Getting in the Game
Without question there will be 6,453 versions of everything that happened at Nike at any given point. 72% of these stories are true. It’s all perspective. I say this because...Read more
That’s my grandfather on the far right. He was part of a semi-pro Negro League team sponsored by National Cash Register. This photo was taken during a holiday donation at...Read more
Scared Money Don't Make Money
Ugly shoes and skinny jeans had the same cycle as retro shoes and expensive denim. Large waves start out as small ripples with a lot of pushback. Thanks to the...Read more