Walking a dog in NYC isn’t like a dog anywhere else in the world. In the sleepy suburbs it’s repetitive, in other urban areas it tends to get predictable. For me almost every morning presents something slightly different—usually a good slightly different though once in a while you’ll run into a not so pretty scene. Weekends I tend to extend the normal walk with Madison to Bowery. I’ve documented that a couple times both talking about architecture and typography. This week I was going to talk about posters (which I will probably post about soon), but something more interesting happened. One of the things I look forward to after walking on Bowery is turning around and going back on Elizabeth St. It’s one of my favourite streets in NYC because I tends to be a lot quieter then a lot of the streets west of Broadway and the shops still seem real and less likely to be found everywhere else.
For a couple months I’ve been watching one shop slowly grow. Yesterday (Saturday Morning) I stopped in my tracks when I noticed a giant sculptural dog. Having Madison beside me it made sense to photograph it. It was dark inside so I didn’t think it would be a big deal. After shooting away a guy inside appeared from no where which slightly startled me. He opened the door and invited me in to shoot from the inside. I was happy to come in to see the dog from different angles. Talking with Bradley Theodore who was the guy who invited me in and created the art piece I found out that he’s had quite the adventure so far, and found out the dog was part of the Little-Brooklyn series. Digging around afterwards I came across this Notcot post about the dog.
As we talked further the conversation turned to denim and some of his designs that are slowly going to make their way to his shop for friends and family. We schooled me about the different types of material and how he’s using selvage denim which peaked my attention. I was finding the whole talk interesting, and as things progressed he kept pulling things out from closets, drawers and briefcases. It was something I wasn’t expecting fifthteen minutes earlier when I thought it would be cool to shoot a dog.
Walking home thinking about some of the photos and things Brad mentioned my thoughts turned to branding and his evolution. My introduction came via a dog, something that is probably common experience for people. Becoming more interested as I’ve become familiar with an image I noticed how it was integrated into other items. There was the miniaturization of the dog, the abstraction with the larger denim dog and further as part of the label of his designed jeans. They were all tied together nicely yet didn’t feel sterile which tends to happen when you combine the words fashion + brand these days. If there’s a takeaway it might be that a brand can be visualized in a lot of slightly different ways to create a cohesive whole, not just a static stamp that’s burnished everywhere without consideration of what is on it.