Some people just have the natural eye and ability to see design in anything and when it comes to the 23 year old, Unathletic, this creative has what it takes to make an impact in the industry. Unathletic takes vintage wash tees and turns them into eye-catching masterpieces. Staying out of the way and letting your work speak for itself echoes a thousand times louder than trying to pour it down the throats of consumers. With the recent collaboration with Joey Fatts, we thought it was time for people to learn more about the man behind scenes designing for Absent, Half Evil and Cutthroat.
Let’s just get down to the basics…we know you as Unathletic but what is your real name?
I try to keep my personal life separated from business, but what I can tell you is I ironically have a biblical name.
Where do you reside currently and have you always been there?
I currently live in a hole in the wall called Magnolia, Arkansas. I haven’t been here long, but it feels like it. I moved here last June over a case.
Why Unathletic? Are you actually uncoordinated in real life?
It has several meanings one being I’m actually unathletic. Also it seemed like I was always left out or couldn’t do things the average American way; making me feel “unathletic” in life. Another reason is I embrace the fact that I am unathletic, and no one will try to steal the name because honestly nobody wants to be unathletic.
What got you into clothing or design in general?
I’ve always loved clothes of course, but I used to do mixtape art for SoundCloud rappers. Doing mad creative shit for $30 a pop. I realized I was over wasting creativity on art that would maybe get a couple thousand plays. I wanted to start putting my energy towards something physical that not only I, but the whole world could appreciate.
Do you feel like the streetwear culture is over saturated? If so, what are some of your pet peeves?
Everything is saturated nowadays. 10 year olds are given the freedom of the internet. The youths brain is a sponge. They absorb everything, and are easily influenced. When I was young I saw Bam Margera skating on TV and the same day wanted to hop on a board because I thought that shit was cool. That’s just how the mind works. I don’t think it has an effect on streetwear, because at the end of the day consumers choose what lives and dies. Either you got it or you don’t. Longevity shows itself.
Who are your biggest inspirations?
It sounds crazy, and I’m not trying to be edgy I promise but it would have to be Charles Manson. Just for the simple fact that he was fearless, and didn’t give a fuck about what anybody thought of him. Even with a million eyes watching he never broke his character or beliefs. Also his power of influence is genius. Although I wouldn’t have the same motives I want that kind of power to change the human mind. Changing someone’s complete belief system or perspective that has been on the same track for so long is incredible to me. That’s real power. Other influences would be Quentin Tarantino, Texas culture, and Satan himself.
Who would you like to work with this year or in general?
I honestly don’t care to work with anybody this year. I have people that I love like Sam (Half Evil), Blazzy, Matthew Harman, Enchanted, Joey Fatts (Cutthroat), etc. but that’s not my focus right now. I’m trying to grow Absent into an empire with Parker. I don’t think I’m established enough yet to be collaborating with every cool brand that we’re tight with. I want Absent to go platinum with no features you feel me?
How did you meet Parker and start working with Absent?
I met Parker mad early 2018. He dm’d me one night a tweet of one of his cut n sewn pieces that was basically the same shit I was doing. At first I was kinda mad but I found out he had no idea who I was until then. We were just on the same wavelength. We kept in touch, and after he dropped the airbrush tees I hit him up with the outline of the MLB design. I jokingly sent it like “wouldn’t this be wild for an unathletic collab?” He fucked with it, and insisted we do it in rhinestones. That drop went so well that he later asked me to be co-owner of Absent. The rest is history. That’s my brother now.
You have quite a few tattoos, which ones mean the most to you and why?
Of course my neck tattoo. It’s a trophy for me. I got it right after my first drop with Absent. This shit is forever. I also have “unathletic” arched across my stomach. I got that when I finally accepted who I was. That one means a lot to me as well.
Do people ever challenge your designs or may feel like they aren’t complex enough?
I mean everyone’s a critic at some point. I don’t really care too much for outside opinions. I’m where I’m at because of my work. I know that I can go way harder because I haven’t touched photoshop on a real laptop yet. I’m making that switch soon, and you’ll know when I do. I’m not going to leave any room for outside opinions, and that’s on my soul.
What would you say to the people that say your designs are negative for more shock value?
I capitalize off of my demons. My life isn’t sweet. This is my form of expression, and therapy so that I don’t lose my fucking mind. That’s why everything is so dark, and evil most of the time. My pain is my reason for success, and just one person relating to my art means the world to me. I’m going to keep challenging the machine, and questioning society through my art. That will never change.
You have any other side passions you want to bring to light?
I just recently signed to Cutthroat Records as an R&B artist. Overall I love any kind of form of art. I direct films, I take all of my own photos, I self produce my music, etc. Everything stays within my vision. It’s never tampered with.
Someone gives you a million dollars, what are you doing next?
I’m copping all my vintage grails, a 3 story trailer house, putting 30 inch Forgiatos on my Grand Marquis, stocking up on cartons of cigarettes, and Jack Daniels honey whiskey, then investing the rest into Absent, and my family.
At the end of the day, what do you want to be remembered for?
I don’t care to be remembered. I just want people to learn how to be comfortable with being themselves. Know that you are all you have when you lay down at night, and when you lay 6 feet deep. Don’t waste energy on anything that doesn’t make you happy. It’s your world. Don’t work for it, make it work for you.