It’s been a while, huh? In 2013 I wrote what turned out to be the last blog post for, well, ages. I didn’t know that at the time though, and am not sure why we’ve been so quiet, but perhaps it’s because we’ve been so busy.
Thing is, we realised we missed publishing stuff and we found we had a lot to say [what a surprise]. So, here we are, with a new blog, new writers, and new stories to tell.
I suppose it’s only fair to tell you what we’ve been up to, but that would be a lot. So, in the interest of knowing you’re all terribly busy, here are the top three things that occupy front of mind when I look back to where the hell we’ve been since we’ve gone.
We went remote around the same time we wrote our last post. Having an office suddenly seemed pretty unnecessary for a team that spent most of their time travelling. I read “Remote: Office Not Required” [well exactly], “Out of Office: work where you like & achieve more” [sounds lovely] and flew in from Baltimore one afternoon to empty the office in three hours before driving down to Southwold. It’s something we’ve never regretted [the office discard, not the trip to Southwold]. Interestingly, it turns out it has its eco benefits, too. Working from home means less commutes and less surplus. Even more interesting perhaps is the effect it’s had on productivity; when people aren’t in front of their bosses every day, they have to be seen to work. Just turning up at 9 and leaving at 5 doesn’t mean work gets done – as many people know. Now, without being ‘seen’ face-to-face every day, colleagues have to be seen in other ways – namely through productivity. It also means the teams can work around their own schedules, picking the times they want to work, as long as it’s not obtrusive. We’ve been able to switch to New York hours from London when needed and have spent time working abroad just because we can. As long as it doesn’t detract from the business, we can work wherever we like, and that doesn’t tend to mean Starbucks. We’ve worked in libraries, museums, Airbnbs, from farms, by the seaside, wherever, whenever. Slack, Trello and Google makes it all even easier. It’s the future, I tell you. And it works.
We’ve always kept our team small because we have such amazing connects throughout the world. In this way, using freelancers for projects means we can build the right team for the work. Instead of having someone not interested in streetwear at all on a project for adidas, for instance, [just because they’re on payroll] we can build teams bespoke to the work and clients. Last year, for example, we had to interview 30 Streetwear Dons from across the world; not everyone can hold those conversations. But, by hiring people like Steve Bryden for London; the editor of Urban Magazine and DOE Creative Director, Jin, in Shanghai and the amazing Kyuhee Baik [Stüssy] in Seoul, we could have peers interview peers. It’s the way we work best and the best way for the work.
AJ, a PSEUDO hero we met in Seoul in 2014 who then moved to New York [and now lives in Seattle] also joined the PSEUDO team, you’ll have seen her on our Insta. Sasha, who lived in Japan, Seoul, Omaha and now resides in Berlin [possibly moving to Miami] joined last month. Throwing more into the geographic mix is Adrian, who we met in Berlin and now lives in Japan. They join veteran team members Brandon [Super Producer and Network Manager] and Ellie [our Senior strategist and Head of Special Projects] based in London. Keeping up yet? And talking of Japan [we were] this rather nicely moves us on to my next point, Asia.
Investing in Asia
For anyone that knows me, they know I love Japan. As a place I’ve been going to for over fifteen years, it was a safe sanctuary to me. Somewhere I could rest, relax and recuperate [and no, not just in Tokyo. Walk the Kiso road, y’all]. In 2017 we found that we were doing lots of work in Shanghai [with the amazing High Horse Studios], Seoul and Japan and that has continued right up until today. In fact, last year I was in Japan more times than I was in London, figure that one out heroes. Running workshops, investigating porn for Japan’s largest adult content provider and interviewing across the cities, Asia kept us busy last year. In many ways, it’s one of our strongest networks, and that’s even with the language barrier. For anyone who’s interested, we also have a report on the Olympics coming out, and what it means for brands, [hit us up for more info].
So that’s where we’ve been, and this is what we’re up to and that’s who we are. It’s nice to see you, thanks for catching up.