Denzel Alexander | Men’s fashion in Memphis

Meet Denzel Alexander. The man behind Memphis’s only mens fashion blogger.

His blog began like some of the best creative pursuits do- in the midst of low season of life. Feeling alone within a crowd, Denzel discovered blogger Kelvin  Davis of NotoriouslyDapper. He was inspired by the style, the fun, and consistency found within Kevlin’s brand. After a year of following other bloggers and pin pointing looks from celebrities he wanted to start implementing, Denzel launched the DA blog Dec 1st, 2015. I asked him what words would describe those first few months.

Denzel: Amateur & hope. I was in the pursuit of a creative outlet in my life.

I met Denzel in 2016 at the cash register of H&M. I started the conversation about how their brand inspired me to dress more European. Before I knew it, Denzel had gotten me his card and we were friends. Within the week, I messaged him about a look-book I was filming the next week. The dude showed up in a parking garage without even knowing me basically. We still laugh about how sketch that was and how downhill it could have gone. But instead, we began a friendship founded on creative collaboration.

I wanted to feature Denzel this month because 1. We really needed a reason to finally get coffee again, and 2. When we chat, both of us leave on fire for memphis and creativity. He has such dreams. Denzel reminds me to dream big, and not to settle for what I can see realistically. One day, he wants to be living in a bigger city and at some point of his career have a role at GQ. Denzel Alexander the blog will continue through all his pursuits, as he wants it to transition with him through life. If you hit up his Instagram feed, you will see that talent and passion. He has such an eye for putting a color palette into action. Studying for a Creative Mass-Media degree, his passion for layout and design has been challenged and taken further. Below are different seasons from 2017 where he chose to focus on different colors/textures.

Personally, I choose comfort over fashion too often for my own good. I asked Denzel about that common battle with our age group/stage of life. What are his biggest tips for identifying a style, developing that look, and finding comfort. I also feel like with guys there is a thought of “I want to look good, but not look like I care too much”

Denzel: I just don’t think you can’t care too much. Self care is so important. Often, guys are insecure to take it to the next level. I would say start searching and finding people and celebrities who have the looks you want. Start taking little steps. Don’t dive into wearing suits every day. As you implement different pieces, it becomes more comfortable. As for finding your style, everyday you grow into a different person. Let how you feel that day decide. Its okay to wear colors the days you feel great and when you aren’t feeling it, wearing darker colors is okay! Be inspired by your own personality. To find your style, its important to embrace other’s styles as well. You see someone who don’t dress like you, just respect and appreciate their own look. Embrace the difference.

I completely agree with that. Once I graduated high school, I realized the judgment I hashed out over other peoples looks and styles was what limited me in my own. We all wanted to be different, yet only a few of us truly broke the trends. I was not one of them.

Now lets talk side hustles. In school and growing a brand/blog, what would be your advice?

Denzel: Planning ahead will get you so far. Engage with other people and take criticism. I hate taking criticism.  You start to learn to reflect on the words and not defend yourself.  Don’t just write off criticism  from someone who doesn’t know what you are doing or your style. They are your audience and follower.  Its actually really good to get criticism/advice from people who are completely outside of your industry.

I have loved watching Denzel grow into blogger he is! It has been a joy to be a part of Memphis Creative crowd.  I asked Denzel what his dream for Memphis’s blogger community is:

Denzel: From my stand point, I want even more of a diverse group. We need different style, different backgrounds. Our city is representative of the diversity, but we don’t see the together within creative community. We never see them working together. Collaborating. We have a lot of bloggers who all look and dress the same. 

I would love to connect more. I feel Memphis’s creatives are threatened by each other. I am the only male blogger, but I would love to be embraced and embrace other bloggers within Memphis. Embracing and encouraging their different and respect all our different styles. 

What about your vision for Memphis creative community?

Denzel: We have a bunch of grit and grind, but we are not exposed enough. Like people don’t get how incredible this city is! I want to see our reputation changed. An embracive diverse community. Let us be known for our art community and collaborative posture + attitude.

CHECK OUT DENZEL:

Instagram: @denzelalexander

Blog: DenzelAlexander

Twiter: @denzelalexander

Guardian strip Vibe Consultant is a hilarious send-up of media industry wankery

Lampooning media industry bullshit like a brightly coloured Nathan Barley, the Vibe Consultant comic strip by Kyle Platts is a hilarious and at times, troublingly real look into the oft-ludicrous world of reach.

The strip was commissioned by The Guardian to appear on the back page of its monthly Guardian Guide, and sees the Vibe Consultant battle the rocky terrain of body perfection, street-food start-ups and “negative thoughts.”

“I totally took that as a compliment,” laughs Pentagram New York partner Emily Oberman. “Everyone moans about Pentagram because we have been trucking along doing the best work we can over many, many years and either we succeed or we fail, but at least we try.

“It’s funny to read all the things that get said about Pentagram. Some of it’s accurate and some of it’s so off the mark it’s crazy. And whatever people might think, at its core Pentagram is – and always has been – about doing good work. That is basically the business plan. The fact that we have been successful is as much a positive statement about the world of design as it is about the world of Pentagram.”

 

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Photo © Pentagram New York

IT IS NOT LIKE JOINING SOME BIG CORPORATION

Team Oberman can be found on the lower ground floor of the New York office, right next to that of Michael Bierut, the longest-serving US partner. But the partners all sit together, in a line of desks that stretches down the left-hand side of the office’s first floor. From the waiting area, visitors come face-to-face with perhaps the most concentrated stretch of graphic design talent to be found anywhere in the world. It is an unusual arrangement, and while Michael and Emily can call straight down to their teams, other partners have to go upstairs to the upper floor to discuss their projects’ progress.

This building though was never designed to be a studio – it started life as a bank, became a clothing store and later a nightclub called MK, which Michael Bierut recalls as being themed around the idea of an illicit house party of a louche South American playboy who’s magnate father was away. Michael, it must be said, has an extraordinarily detailed knowledge of the New York nightclub scene of the 1980s and 90s.

“My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.”

The first time Luke was interviewed as a potential partner he was actually turned down – “I was too nervous or too needy” – but he was accepted second time around, fresh off his huge success redesigning New York magazine “I was funnier and I think that really matters”. Now he describes the interaction between the partners when they all get together as “a little chaotic, a little dysfunctional.”

Design Museum London announces opening date and inaugural show

Google Creative Lab has put out a call-for-entires for applications to join its team on a one year paid programme called The Five. Entrants can apply from fields including writing, design, filmmaking and developing, “with the occasional wild card.”

The Creative Lab 5 site acts as the application form, inviting people to “write, design, code, move, and — with any luck — break it.” The site was designed by current members of the programme Andrew Herzog, Pedro Sanches, Simone Noronha, Enli Li.. Asked to compare the creative scenes in London and New York, his tremendously honest response ended with the conclusion: “Everyone everywhere moans about Pentagram.”

“I totally took that as a compliment,” laughs Pentagram New York partner Emily Oberman. “Everyone moans about Pentagram because we have been trucking along doing the best work we can over many, many years and either we succeed or we fail, but at least we try.

“It’s funny to read all the things that get said about Pentagram. Some of it’s accurate and some of it’s so off the mark it’s crazy. And whatever people might think, at its core Pentagram is – and always has been – about doing good work. That is basically the business plan. The fact that we have been successful is as much a positive statement about the world of design as it is about the world of Pentagram.”

 

blog__
Photo © Pentagram New York

IT IS NOT LIKE JOINING SOME BIG CORPORATION

Team Oberman can be found on the lower ground floor of the New York office, right next to that of Michael Bierut, the longest-serving US partner. But the partners all sit together, in a line of desks that stretches down the left-hand side of the office’s first floor. From the waiting area, visitors come face-to-face with perhaps the most concentrated stretch of graphic design talent to be found anywhere in the world. It is an unusual arrangement, and while Michael and Emily can call straight down to their teams, other partners have to go upstairs to the upper floor to discuss their projects’ progress.

This building though was never designed to be a studio – it started life as a bank, became a clothing store and later a nightclub called MK, which Michael Bierut recalls as being themed around the idea of an illicit house party of a louche South American playboy who’s magnate father was away. Michael, it must be said, has an extraordinarily detailed knowledge of the New York nightclub scene of the 1980s and 90s.

“My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.”

The first time Luke was interviewed as a potential partner he was actually turned down – “I was too nervous or too needy” – but he was accepted second time around, fresh off his huge success redesigning New York magazine “I was funnier and I think that really matters”. Now he describes the interaction between the partners when they all get together as “a little chaotic, a little dysfunctional.”

Studio Vanessa Ban’s book design plays with space and typography

Based in Manchester, Slovakia-born designer Jozef Ondirk has been doing work with Deep Throat Studio, an independent design practice he co-founded with Zdenek Kvasnica, which aims to be a space for collaboration and discussion.

As well as creating various printed materials, the studio also runs workshops and presentations on creating better design-based solutions. Asked to compare the creative scenes in London and New York, his tremendously honest response ended with the conclusion: “Everyone everywhere moans about Pentagram.”

“I totally took that as a compliment,” laughs Pentagram New York partner Emily Oberman. “Everyone moans about Pentagram because we have been trucking along doing the best work we can over many, many years and either we succeed or we fail, but at least we try.

“It’s funny to read all the things that get said about Pentagram. Some of it’s accurate and some of it’s so off the mark it’s crazy. And whatever people might think, at its core Pentagram is – and always has been – about doing good work. That is basically the business plan. The fact that we have been successful is as much a positive statement about the world of design as it is about the world of Pentagram.”

 

blog__
Photo © Pentagram New York

IT IS NOT LIKE JOINING SOME BIG CORPORATION

Team Oberman can be found on the lower ground floor of the New York office, right next to that of Michael Bierut, the longest-serving US partner. But the partners all sit together, in a line of desks that stretches down the left-hand side of the office’s first floor. From the waiting area, visitors come face-to-face with perhaps the most concentrated stretch of graphic design talent to be found anywhere in the world. It is an unusual arrangement, and while Michael and Emily can call straight down to their teams, other partners have to go upstairs to the upper floor to discuss their projects’ progress.

This building though was never designed to be a studio – it started life as a bank, became a clothing store and later a nightclub called MK, which Michael Bierut recalls as being themed around the idea of an illicit house party of a louche South American playboy who’s magnate father was away. Michael, it must be said, has an extraordinarily detailed knowledge of the New York nightclub scene of the 1980s and 90s.

“My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.”

The first time Luke was interviewed as a potential partner he was actually turned down – “I was too nervous or too needy” – but he was accepted second time around, fresh off his huge success redesigning New York magazine “I was funnier and I think that really matters”. Now he describes the interaction between the partners when they all get together as “a little chaotic, a little dysfunctional.”

Classic Film Characters Flee in Terror in This Masterful Supercut Made

Madrid-based design studio Naranjo-Etxeberria has produced a publication for architects Fake Industries Architectural Agonism’s proposed designs for the new Guggenheim Museum in Helsinki.

“The creative process wasn’t easy,” says co-founder Diego Etxeberria. “The architects live in Sydney, Carlota Santamaria the creative director lives in LA and we are in Madrid. The process was a mix of Skype sessions, long emails and many proposals.”

“I totally took that as a compliment,” laughs Pentagram New York partner Emily Oberman. “Everyone moans about Pentagram because we have been trucking along doing the best work we can over many, many years and either we succeed or we fail, but at least we try.

“It’s funny to read all the things that get said about Pentagram. Some of it’s accurate and some of it’s so off the mark it’s crazy. And whatever people might think, at its core Pentagram is – and always has been – about doing good work. That is basically the business plan. The fact that we have been successful is as much a positive statement about the world of design as it is about the world of Pentagram.”

 

blog__
Photo © Pentagram New York

IT IS NOT LIKE JOINING SOME BIG CORPORATION

Team Oberman can be found on the lower ground floor of the New York office, right next to that of Michael Bierut, the longest-serving US partner. But the partners all sit together, in a line of desks that stretches down the left-hand side of the office’s first floor. From the waiting area, visitors come face-to-face with perhaps the most concentrated stretch of graphic design talent to be found anywhere in the world. It is an unusual arrangement, and while Michael and Emily can call straight down to their teams, other partners have to go upstairs to the upper floor to discuss their projects’ progress.

This building though was never designed to be a studio – it started life as a bank, became a clothing store and later a nightclub called MK, which Michael Bierut recalls as being themed around the idea of an illicit house party of a louche South American playboy who’s magnate father was away. Michael, it must be said, has an extraordinarily detailed knowledge of the New York nightclub scene of the 1980s and 90s.

“My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.”

The first time Luke was interviewed as a potential partner he was actually turned down – “I was too nervous or too needy” – but he was accepted second time around, fresh off his huge success redesigning New York magazine “I was funnier and I think that really matters”. Now he describes the interaction between the partners when they all get together as “a little chaotic, a little dysfunctional.”