We had the good fortune of connecting with Paris Trumbower and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Paris, what do you attribute your success to?
The most important factor behind my success as a brand is to be as authentic as possible. I don’t want to come off as curated for the internet. I’ve essentially had to brand myself as a person which is one of the hardest things to do. When people go to my shop or social media I want them to be able to get a sense of me as a person and feel that I have touched every aspect of my brand. It’s not made up, it’s just who I am. I let myself change up styles and try to keep a fluid way of creating. We’re all out here trying to pay our bills and if I can do that with my brand awesome but I won’t sacrifice myself as a person to get more clicks and that is success to me.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am a designer and screenprinter from the midwest. I’ve grown up being engaged in extreme sports like competitive water skiing and snowboarding. That paired with a natural love for all boardsports my artwork takes huge inspiration from those avenues. My life is essentially a beautiful marriage between boardsport culture and being an artist. So naturally I decided to go to a college close to the water and a ski hill. That led me to Northern Michigan University. I graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in graphic design in May of 2021. I went to school full time, worked part time as a student designer and ran my own personal brand creating clothing and prints. Now I am navigating the journey of finding a job. While I could get a corporate 9-5 design job surrounded by stone cold walls, I am trying to find a more fulfilling job that pairs better with my goals for the future. My main goal is to grow my apparel brand to that of Bobby Hundreds or Shepard Fairey. They have both been huge inspirations of mine so much so that my buddy and I created a printing studio in his basement and have been running our own stores from there. Dropping an occasional collection every couple of months or so it’s been quite the endeavor. Why buy groceries when you can use that money to purchase sustainable blanks? I’ve been doing freelance and running an online store since high school. It hasn’t been easy or financially the best thing in the world but I don’t see myself doing anything else. I would love to someday be able to create a fulfilling future for my friends and I through my brand. I have dreams of owning a fantasy factory for merchandising and I am setting myself up for that. Having a wave pool across from my job would be sick but I really just want to create an apparel brand focused on sustainability, queer representation and the overall betterment of the community.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I grew up in a small town in Wisconsin and that is where I am currently living while I job search. I went to college in Marquette, Michigan and that is a town I could create an exciting itinerary. I wouldn’t have you visit in the summer though. We would wait until winter to show you the real heart of the city. One day would encompass a three-hour drive to a hidden gem of a ski hill to ride out west conditions in upper Michigan. No money on housing because we would sleep in the parking lot to ride the next day. After our fulfilling snowboard trip, we’d trek back to Marquette and watch the surfers freeze the beards off in below-freezing conditions surfing the barrels of Lake Superior. There are many coffee shops that are worth the visit from Contrast Coffee Shop to 231 Patisserie you’ll never go hungry. If you’re not feeling the freezing board sports anymore there are a couple of breweries with cozy ambiance. When walking from one to the other in your knee-length parka you may meet a couple of people living out of vans, talented independent artists, or some college kids waiting for their friends to catch up. Overall Marquette was a great place to keep the passion for creating alive and it is a great place to visit summer or winter.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I want to thank my friends and family that support what I do. My designer professors were a tremendous guide along the way. But most importantly I want to thank my friend Ali (@demone.png) for pushing me and growing together. Don’t know where I would be without him and really stoked to see where we go in the future.
Other: Shop: frenchiepdesign.store