Screen Shot: Campus
City Based: Temecula, CA
What inspired the brand name?
I'm not really sure what inspired the brand name. When I was a kid, I heard the word "campus" on TV and I thought it sounded cool. I knew I didn't want my brand to be a complicated word that tries to have some deep philosophical meaning. Campus is short, sweet, looks good, and that's about it.
At what moment did you realize you wanted to start a brand?
I started my brand because I felt like I was stagnant. All I had in my life was school, a part-time job and not much else. I had ideas to start a brand and just came up with some designs in my spare time. I thought to myself, why not make it real. Nothing is stopping me. This could either grow into something great or it could fail miserably, but who cares. At least I tried.
What helps you get over creative blocks?
Taking a break from the brand is something that helps me get over a creative block. I stay off of illustrator and photoshop and just let ideas come to me naturally. Sometimes I would go to a thrift shop/antique store in search of inspiration. It's best not to force creativity.
What is the biggest mistake you have made?
Being too confident in my first release and not doing my research. I spent a lot of money on my first collection and still have a lot in stock to be honest. I thought my designs were so good that I would be selling t-shirts left and right. That was definitely not the case. I'm embarrassed to say that I bought 24 shirts for each design-because that is typically the minimum for screen printers. I later found another screen printer in my area that is able to do 12 shirts minimum. It was a big mistake, but I'm glad I learned from it.
What is the biggest success you have had?
I think just having a brand alone is a huge success for me. I'm pretty timid, self-conscious, and I was never really one to display something I've done creatively. Even now, I have some remorse when dropping a collection because I feel like my audience will have a distaste for it. Starting a brand was my chance to be loud and get myself out of that mindset.
A SOURCE OF INSPIRATION PEOPLE MAY FIND WEIRD?
I mentioned previously that I visit thrift stores and antique shops when I'm in a rut. I usually look at books, VHS tapes, and vinyl records not necessarily for what's in them but the design of the covers and packaging. Vintage designs always get me going.
Favorite color to use?
ARE THERE ANY RETAIL SHOPS YOU WOULD LOVE TO SEE YOU BRAND IN?
ANOTHER BRAND THAT INSPIRES YOU AND WHY?
Stüssy without a doubt. Stüssy started this entire subculture back in 1980. Their designs are still cool and they've stayed true to their skate, surf, and hip-hop origins. Everybody knows what Stüssy is. My dad wore Stüssy before I was born and it's still relevant to this day.
Where do you see yourself and the brand in 1 year and 5 years?
In 1 year it will probably still be just a side hustle. In 5 years, I hope to have my own retail store that will carry a lot of the brands that I love along side my own.
In 5 words or less describe your brand?