Saturday, April 9, 2011

Grain & Gram

What makes a gentleman? Is it as simple as opening doors, tipping hats and having inane but polite conversations with the elderly, snotty nosed children and potential in-laws?

Or is it brandishing an indie-endorsed haircut, a sharp suit, polished shoes and minding your p’s and q’s?

According to Grain & Gram, “dedication and longevity are core characteristics of a real gentleman.” The online magazine feature men who demonstrate these qualities in their craft, including - jean making, printmaking, woodwork or music. Each interviewee evokes a sense of old-world sturdiness, perhaps because they clearly know what they are passionate about. They aren’t fickle and fleeting, on the contrary the passion each man has for his vocation is undeniable:

For me though, no matter where the wind blows me, letterpress printing will always be with me.” Nick Sambrato

“I suddenly realized that that was all I was thinking about: all I cared about was making jeans.” Roy Slaper

However obsession alone doesn’t maketh the gentleman, it’s the hard work that goes into creating something.

“I was self-taught. I just went crazy with it. It was the total skateboarder's approach to it. You don't go to skateboard classes, you kind of just pick it up. You see what other people are doing, you read Thrasher. That was my approach.” Roy Slaper

It is also being able to see the impact your actions have on your surroundings. Fostering a connection between yourself, the environment and an awareness of wider society:

“I decided I wanted to take a different route, roll up my sleeves a bit, and create things with my hands. Things that are more tactile and have a long term relationship with the end user” Sean Woolsey

“I really like to explore and create and design. I hope that my clients appreciate the type of work that I do and come to me for that. It’s what my shop is built on: not doing whatever comes through the door just to make money.”
Blair Sligar

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