What’s your story? How does your creativity manifest?I was born & raised in Detroit, MI. Had a pretty chill childhood, was always into sports, fashion, and the arts growing up. I have an older brother who left for college and never moved back home. I began visiting him in California every summer during vacation, and those trips really opened my eyes to the world. I realized at a young age that I wanted to visit as many places as possible. I ended up studying mass media communications in college and maintained a creative outlet—from audio engineering to photography to clothing design. My creativity is manifested by so many different things. I love traveling, listening to music, and reading. I’m also around creative people all day long, so seeing them work or having a simple conversation is enough to spark a creative flame.
What drives you to travel?Learning. There’s only so much you can read in a book or on the internet. Most things in the world are only learned through experiences. In most cases, those experiences will never happen unless to travel. It doesn’t even have to be international travel, stepping out of your front door and driving an hour or two will open your eyes to more than you could imagine.
How does travel impact your work as a creative? What do you take away from your adventures?It’s everything. The world moves fast, you need to see what’s happening in other places to keep up. My next ideas always come from traveling, as well as some sort of local keepsake.
What is your favourite destination/the place you've visited which you miss the most?They’re all pretty special, but I would say Japan. It’s like the internet. You can spend hours upon hours wandering around, but no matter how hard you try, you’ll never see it all. I like that unfinished feeling, cause there’s always going to be something new to see.
What are your creative must-haves? (For example, a notebook for tracking ideas, a tablet and pen for precise Photoshopping, anything that you've worked into your routine that you now couldn't live without.)A Muji pen & pad (or Evernote), and my camera. That’s pretty much it, I travel light.
What’s a luggage feature you can’t live without? (i.e. locks built in; semi-hard shell; lots of pockets; silent castors; a beautiful colour?)I love pockets. I’m a storage nut, so it’s nice when everything has it’s own home.
Which Lojel luggage do you have and what’s your favourite thing about it?The Groove. It’s super silent and I love the hardshell.
Where are you from, and what is something from your area that everyone should check out when they visit?Detroit, MI. I would highly suggest a visit and tour of the Motown Museum. It was founded by Rock N’ Roll Hall of Fame member, Berry Gordy, Jr., and has been around since the late 1950’s. There’s been some restoration, but the original building is still in tact. You learn the history of one of the greatest record labels of our time, and stand in the studio where Stevie Wonder, the Temptations, and Michael Jackson recorded.
Recently, you shot the cover and 6-page spread for HOWL publication. Can you tell us more about this project?That was a very organic opportunity. I purchased a hat over a year ago from a brand called Yellow 108. It became a quick favorite of mine, and I made sure to always mention them on my site & social media. Someone reached out to thank me and it was the owner, Lauren. She is also the founder of Howl. I didn't know this at the time, but she mentioned it to me when we met in person. She loved my photography and asked if I'd be interested in contributing to a future issue.
What's been inspiring you, lately?The creative community in LA. I'm surrounded by some very talented people here. Being a part of that community keeps me motivated and inspired on a daily basis. The weather isn’t bad either.
Written and photographed by Roderick Hunt