Today we speak to graphic designer and pin maker Luke Flynn:
I am originally from Australia, by the beach south of Sydney. I studied design at UTS in Sydney and eventually found myself in London on an exchange program at Central Saint Martins.
Because Australia is so damn far from everywhere, I used the time to travel all over. My friend and I would just pack a bag and leave on the weekends to snowboard or party in Paris or Amsterdam etc. I would also use any excuse to visit my brother Andrew in New York City. I fell in love with this place and haven’t left since. It helped that my brother runs nightclubs and is always up for a good time. He is currently part of the team at Up & Down and opening a new restaurant called La Barbona, so those good times haven’t exactly slowed down.
I still try and get home to Australia as much as possible, usually for Christmas when all my friends and family are on holiday and enjoying themselves, surfing, fishing, playing cricket and bbqing all day. I was spoiled growing up by the ocean and I miss it, so these days I find myself leaving town most weekends to a friend’s place trying to get the same fix from a jump off a waterfall, or a surf trip when the waves are good.
When I first moved to New York, I naively thought that the Sagmeisters and Pentagrams (design firms) of the world would just open the door and let me be the designer I thought I was. Unfortunately, my $2k savings turned quickly to bar backing and bartending. I wasn’t at my most productive, but working that late and in that industry gives you a certain access to the city and meeting interesting people albeit mainly through debaucherous experiences.
I eventually found my feet in design working freelance under firstandlastdesign and was working for some great humans like Jon Santos from Common Space and Adam Katz at Imprint Projects. Most recently I was the Art Director and designer at Saturdays NYC under the amazing Colin Tunstall.
I am currently starting my own studio called Paradise with three other partners. It is a full service agency with a focus on digital, we have a cool space downtown and some exciting new projects (fashion included) that I can’t actually tell you about … but stay tuned.
I can tell you I have a company making pins called Prize Pins, which has been a fun, creative outlet for me and my friend Kym Naimo. We both had a slight online shopping addiction at work (including vintage pins), and whenever they arrived Kym would say his prize had arrived. I have always done little weird drawings and Kym saw a few of my drawings so one day over a beer we were like, “we should do it; we should make our own pins.” It is now growing and taking shape in a really nice way. It’s a cool creative outlet and people seem to be responding really well. We like to call our pins garment spice. We are also starting to collaborate with artists, which is something I have always wanted to do. They definitely have a humor to them but are adamant about our limited editions, quality and making them here in New York.
As for Luke’s personal style:
Jeans: Luke Denim by Saturdays NYC. I have a few pairs in different stages of wear.
What a great name.
Shirts: Uniqlo. I like plain colors, and it fits big dudes.
Pants: My favorite pants are from Dunderdon, which sadly shut down, but these things wont give up on me.
Favorite Cologne: Cool-Water by Davidoff…yes Cool Water by Davidoff
Your favorite App: I currently have a new addiction to instagram due to @prizepins
Favorite piece of technology: Airplanes. They get a bad wrap, but they have personal entertainment on long distance flights that I secretly love, and people will just bring you food and drinks while you catch up on terrible movies. Oh, and they can fly through the air.
Next tech purchase: Just got a new MacbookPro and a NEC PA241W monitor.