INTERVIEW: MANSE JANG LAUNCHES HIS DEBUT LABEL HOMEBOY

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New York based label Homeboy began in 2022 created by Manse Jang, who is graphic and branding designer from Korea. His collection Homeboy has bold, vibrant, noticeable design features based on streetwear. Inspired by his cultural background and life journey, he designed and interpreted graphics that represented them. He merged apple and magnolia, which represent his hometown, and apple and rose, which reflect New York, where he started his design career, using his nature-inspired design aesthetic. Tracker hat, beanies, T-shirts, and sweatshirts more clearly show brand identity by applying intense but elegant color graphics with screen printing and embroidery. The two-toned rework inseam slit jeans additionally display Homeboy’s original fit and silhouette as well as a sophisticated and refined design with a white graphic finish.

Tell us how you got started in graphic + branding design and how that led to creating your own business?

The first time I started design was when I started studying fashion design in South Korea. At that time, I wondered if there was a way to express my design more creatively and in a wider area, and then I became interested in graphic design and started studying in Florida. While I was studying graphics for several years, I had fun in branding class and I wanted to learn more deeply, then I studied branding in New York. 

While studying graphics and branding, and after I became a designer, I always thought about linking them with fashion to make my own label, and I’m so happy to start doing this.

How did you get so involved in this culture? How does it make you feel? 

I’ve been a streetwear lover since I was a teenager. The clothes and accessories of my favorite American, Japanese, and Korean street brands were released with new graphic designs every season. As I grew up experiencing the culture while wearing streetwear, I thought that someday I would like to become a designer who launches a brand like this and presents designs that catch people’s eyes.

What inspires you most for your graphic designs? Is there a creativity process behind any project? 

I have a passion for the artistic aspects of many various subjects, including music, culture, and history. My daily interactions with nature and my background of life events usually serve as my greatest sources of inspiration. One of my creative processes is to immediately capture the positive inspiration I discover in my daily life through photography or sketching.

What is the most challenging issue regarding the expectations of your customers?

In order to meet customers’ expectations, a design style that is distinctly different from other brands and a satisfactory quality that customers can think of buying again should be fundamental think.

What does ethical design mean for you? 

I think the designs that are closest to and exist in people’s daily lives can have a sufficient impact on the way people live. This is also something that designers should always think about when they are designing, and it should have a good influence on the people who consume it. I am also a consumer who cares about design and brand meaning, so I always keep this in my mind when I design.

Can you share with us some exciting news regarding your brand?

I am preparing for the new season with more refined designs, more products and accessories. When it’s done, it’ll reach people with a pop-up store in New York.

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