At Paria, we proudly value the diverse inspiration we take for our graphical designs. It sounds a bit cheesey and trite, but our inspiration literally comes from anywhere and everywhere. A large portion is driven out of retro influence, as well as interests from snowboarding, street style/ culture and music – the list is endless.
Cycling apparel has come a long way since the 80’s dominance of dominant logo’d cheap nylon fit kit – fashion now plays an increasingly prevalent part in the way kit is designed – both technically and aesthetically, as the market is led by contemporary style. A brand’s ethos is now writ large in it’s look and feel, showcased by the seasonal offerings adoring their riders and web pages. We are no different in this respect.
At the root of our culture is collaboration. We aim to work with our partners – whether it be suppliers, bespoke kitcustomers or other brands, in full harmony; the objective being to grow both our mutual offerings as well as develop the respective brand.
This is where Johan from Hasie & The Robots enters our world. We have guest designers, and Johan has crossed our path with Dan Smith’s Gravel Grinder kit. We’ve admired Johan’s design work from a far for some time, seeing how Hasie and the Robots interacts with Wyndy Milla, and how the distinctive style has brought an irreverent twist to the market.
We thought it was time we did something a little special with Johan, so watch this space, and also see what inspires the brand.
WHO YOU ARE?
Hasie & The Robots is a proudly South African brand created and owned by artist and illustrator, Johan Johnston. Fueled by his zeal for art and animation, Johan breathes life into his work with every brush stroke. “Hasie and The Robots as a brand is an infinite playground where colour, shapes, and textures come alive organically. I draw what I imagine and my imagination is limitless… it’s magical.”
WHAT YOUR BACKGROUND IS?
I am an illustrator, designer, and mural artist. My designs range from intricate line work illustrations to bold technicolor murals. Working intricate details into my designs allows me to play, whereas painting large scale, gives me the opportunity to push the boundaries of space. I love working on anything that’s a creative challenge, whether it’s the steampunk artwork displayed at Truth Coffee in Cape Town or incorporating colours into my designs for mountain bikes! I have a passion for art and love seeing my design come to life.
HOW YOU HAVE ENDED UP IN THE CYCLING WORLD?
I love bikes. I grew up with a MX bike, rode BMX and eventually downhill. When my mate Iwan contacted me and asked whether I would be interested in painting a custom pair of cycling shoes for him, it just made sense. He is a big Hasie supporter and wanted me to incorporate the brand with his kicks. After coming up with a few concepts and ideas, we realised the potential of this bespoke angle and so Hasie custom kicks was born.
WHAT INSPIRES YOU/ YOUR DESIGNS?
I love anime and 3D and Lego. Hasie and The Robots is where I come to play. I am so fortunate that I can express my creative spirit through my work. Art has taught me so much, which is why I always approached my work with devotion and dedication.
WHAT WOULD YOUR IDEAL PROJECT BE?
I really enjoy projects where I can create alongside product designers. Collaborative design and looking at utilizing different materials and design methods excites me. From a cycling perspective, I would love to design for riders in The Tour de France and Red Bull Rampage!
IF YOU RIDE, WHAT YOU RIDE – HOW YOU RIDE, WHAT ARE YOUR GOALS?
My rider goals are simple, ride with friends, ride to have fun, ride to feel like a kid! Having recently settled in the UK, I am in the market for some new downhill wheels.
WHAT YOU LIKE ABOUT THE CYCLING WORLD….
It is refreshing to see the underdogs rising up and evolving the cycling scene. I enjoy seeing how the design process has evolved and that there are new kids on the block.
WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR FAVOURITE PIECE/PROJECT?
Working on team WyndyMilla’s Red Hook Crit bikes, as well as the kit, helmet designs and kicks, earlier this year was a big highlight for me. Another favourite is definetly the colourful street art inspired, 3D grafitti design I hand painted on a custom made to measure WyndyMilla frame!