Ten years ago today, almost to the very hour, I received a phone call from this chick I hit on Craigslist about an available studio apartment in SF. I vividly remember hearing my Nokia ring and putting down my paint brush. Remember, this was 2004 and for the first couple of years of REBEL8 I had hella jobs. On this particular day I was a painter. She said the apartment was still available and to come check it out. Rent was just $695 a month! And for the first time I'd finally have my own apartment. I went from Lower all the way to Divis in seconds. Here are a few photos of 833 Divisadero before I moved in that I've never posted or shown anyone until now. Thank you 833. I'll never forget you.
Next week I'll be in Taiwan promoting our Taipei pop-up shop, releasing our limited distribution "Tattoo Girl" t-shirt, doing a grip of interviews, visiting REBEL8 stockists, judging a tattoo convention, sightseeing and eating new foods, and documenting it all on this blog, the REBEL8 Instagram, and my new personal one, joshyrebel8. I greatly look forward to meeting all of you!
Me and Giant.
The original REBEL8.
I've never been an ambi turner. I can't turn left. So when I exit our lounge to the warehouse I see this...
And have to keep turning all the way right to eventually see this...
Went to check out 1982.
Big congrats to the homies Scott...
And Noah on their latest venture. 1982 is fucking amazeballs. I'm going to be very easy to find come this Summer.
And while I could easily blog about how delicious Wurstküche is, and how I typically prefer gator dick links over lamb nut franks, maybe the new shit is just photoing other people photoing their food. Boom! That was your delicious mind, being blown to tasty little bacon bits.
Hours later, still glued to this Metallica pinball game.
But I still got love for you X-Men. Don't trip.
That Wolverine tho.
New High Score. What does that mean? Did I break it?
A couple of weeks ago I swung through a great shop called Backside in Burbank, CA.
They've been proudly carrying REBEL8 for a few years. I'm going to go on a tangent now, so please skip to the next photo if you hate learning. Back in '06 we produced a lot of socks in a domestic factory in National City. They were thick socks of the highest quality. If you're an OG REBEL8er you may still have a pair in your sock drawer today. Big thanks to Tribal Gear for putting us on to Vanari Knitting Mills. In '08 I think ownership changed and the factory shut down. Our sock game immediately crumbled and it honestly wasn't until last year that we started heavily producing socks again. So check it, years ago the owner of this domestic sock factory took all of his original machines over to the Philippines. And until 2013 it's been radio silence. I've now learned it took him a lot longer than expected to restaff and open up a new facility. So to make a long story short, a few of the socks you see in the photo below are from his new factory and made to the same exact high quality standards, on the very same machines, as our very first socks.
Wait what. Huf makes socks too? Really, Huf!? Weed socks? Good luck bro, but I doubt these will ever be popular or result in you becoming one of the biggest and most successful streetwear companies in the world.
Freddie Gibbs went live on Shade 45.
He's a kool dude.
Speaking of kool dudes. I met Kool Keith. He's super kool. And he's not the black dude in perfect focus.
Close your eyes and concentrate. Focus.
In Gotham City/Burbank?
Is it Friday yet!? I'm trying to get fucked up just right.
The lovely Samii Ryan swung through our offices the other day. She did an amazing job of distracting us. Thanks to the good homie Kingston for capturing it all. I can't tell you where to buy everything Samii is rockin', but all her tops/socks are now available in our online shop while supplies last.
Damn near killed someone swerving off the road the moment my eyes saw Ecto-1.
Thought it would be rude to not photo Ecto-1's neighbor.
I've been to Giant's parent's house in Albuquerque a handful of times. On each visit I stumble into Pete's barbershop located in the front of the single-story house Mike spent all of his teenage life, and I think, a few years prior.
Most parents are naturally proud of their kids and boldly display or flaunt their child's artwork and deem mere scribbles as masterpieces. And like most parents they stop putting their kids' art on the fridge when their little ones, well, stop being so little. At the LeSage's, the entire house is adorned with their son's work. The scribbles on the fridge now have a little more detail, but the artist has remain unchanged. Truthfully, most of the art on the walls today has been done within the past decade well-after Giant's popularity exploded. Unquestionably, the collection they have organically amassed over forty-plus years is ridiculous. And it don't stop.
A fully-operational barbershop with neon.
An exclusive print sprinkled with some originals.
If this wall could eBay...
Think Skateboards brought Mike Giant to San Francisco in 1992. And as the saying goes, the rest is history.
An original from Mike to his dad on his 58th birthday. Pete jokingly said, 'He must've did it in the driveway just before he rang the doorbell."
Years ago in Giant's Oakland studio. A terrific photo by Chris Woodcock.
The rest of these photos and illustrations I can guarantee you've never seen before.
Mardi Gras '86.
Mike at the dentist.
High school Giant.
Mike's promo date/photo. Wold Wide Web, you are welcome!
We spent a couple more hours in the barbershop pointing at things, laughing at photos, telling stores and just having fun with the family.
Back to the living room to decompress with the Kachinas.
And then back out into the darkness.
Clean plate club.
That leather dick tho.
Public parks rule.
The McDuffie Park Little Library. Duh.
I meant tiburon. Lo ciento.
This reminds me of our Real Recognize Real graphic.
That gun-knife tho.
Me and MG.
We ride Chevy.
Spring '14 exhibits a selection of tees, hoodies and pullovers emblazoned with REBEL8’s signature script and logo. Denim jackets draw inspiration from vintage motorcycle apparel and button-up shirts see updated “zeus” prints. Flannel shirts and khaki pants are a reoccurring staple, while trademark headwear designs further the label’s gritty aesthetics. Styled over a backdrop made up of Mike Giant‘s hand-illustrated tattoo flash, the lookbook reinforces REBEL8’s bold, graphic-heavy designs in streetwear. Click here to see larger images. Click here to shop Spring '14 in our online store.
Think quality. I love this phrase.
The first step of the lost wax bronze casting process begins with an original sculpture. This is usually created from wax or clay, though other materials can be used as well.
These rubber molds are used to form wax figures.
Molten wax is poured into the rubber mold, producing a perfect copy of the original sculpture.
I observed a recent pouring back at the Shidoni Foundry. This is only one part (there are 10) of the lost wax bronze casting process. The below photos are from step 7, when the ceramic shell is removed from the kiln and molten bronze is immediately poured at a temperature of 2100-degrees Fahrenheit. Bronze is actually an alloy of 94% copper, 1% manganese, 4% silicon, .02% lead, .02% tin, and .06% zinc.
Combinación de La Choza.
Thik as thiev.
Shidoni sculpture garden.
Checked out an enormous exhibit of miniature exhibits.
Every time I see a mask I think of the movie Eyes Wide Shut.
Super fresh Japanese kite exhibit. Tako kichi!
Carp are a symbol of strength, tenacity, and courage.
A popular kite-type is the yakko-dako. This kite takes the form of a man, whose disposition is typically stern, if not browbeating. Yakko were footmen who served the samurai. Their lasting impression was that of a bully, pushing "commoners" out of the way or otherwise displacing them as the samurai came through an area.
Sick wid it.
Ta Ta Tuesday.
Began the day at Owl Cafe.
With some bomb ass chorizo.
Then we got back on the road.
Out to Madrid. Check out this railcar crib.
Rarin' to go.
Two for fives.
On that lean.
Back on the road.
Woke up and headed over to The Range Cafe for breakfast.
Then back to the hotel to gather promotional materials.
Giant broke up some of the Devil's lettuce.
Finished signing all the posters.
Then we went up 10,378 square feet above sea level to Sandia Peak. You are looking at one of the longest clear spans in the world.
Please do not climb or sit on railings.
This tram sees 250,000 passengers per year.
Sandia Park CCC 1936.
Giant looking out over Duke City.
Sandia Peak Ski.
Sandia Peak Tramway was manufactured by Bell Engineering of Lucerne, Switzerland and constsructed between 1964-1966 at a cost of 2 million dollars. Five thousand helicopter trips were made during construction of Tower 2 and the cable installation.
[Insert wind here].
Back to life.
Back to reality.
Back down to 6,559 feet.
And off to dinner at India Kitchen.
Kicking it in the hotel room watching Giant sign posters.
He made a 100 of them.
Exclusively for our Burque familia.
Then off to dinner with the folks at Papa Felipe's. I inhaled the Navajo fry bread.
Giant took out a few sopaipillas.
Pete was parking lot pimping.
See ya manana.