Sakony Has A New T-shirt for the 'Burgh by Alex Young

Sakony Burton | Graphic by Alex Young

Sakony Burton | Graphic by Alex Young

“More recently, I’ve been dressing more outwards,” Sakony said. Apparently from the silver drip on the Jumpman from his “Pure Money” Air Jordan four. Sakony Shakur Burton, 22 from Homewood in Pittsburgh, is pent-up printing T-shirts, out-of-sight in the basement, which you have to access through a secret door on the floor of Haus of Vain, a thrift shop on Centre Avenue. The graphic designer busied fulfilling orders for his “Stay Away” collection, tees with barbed wire around a yellow smiley face. It’s very anti, but Sakony says it’s for people who like their alone time. “I only go outside to seek genuine connection and then go home.”

InTheRough: How would you describe the wardrobe of a designer? By that I mean Steve Jobs. He dressed mad simple.

Sakony: Yeah he had a uniform.

ITR: Right, you know what I mean, but it’s either one of two things: basic or eccentric. I see you got a pearl Chanel earring on, bro.

Sakony: [laughs] I would say more recently I’ve been dressing more outwards. Usually it’s all black this all black that. My mans came over earlier and was saying, “I’m trying to be like Steve Jobs. Five turtle necks for the week type shit.” I would want to be like that, but I like too much shit. I opted out of that whole thing with making my own shit. I try not to do the same things too often. I had an angel hoop earring that I lost in Los Angeles. I have a weird affinity for angels. I dress how I dress. I dress like the people I’m around. It’s in the details. “Oh, Sakony got a Chanel earring. That’s hard!”

ITR: That includes your Love bracelet?

Sakony: We’re not gonna talk about that. It was a birthday gift from a brother and we all got one.

ITR: Oh, shit.

Sakony: Don’t even hype it.

I only go outside to seek genuine connection and then go home.
— Sakony

The designer describes his fan base as “people who’ve been following me through the Internet” throughout his youth at C.A.P.A., Pittsburgh’s creative and performing arts magnet school. Sakony was a Tumblr kid and that’s where his graphics first received love from around the globe. “I live for the love. If people continue to love me, nothing is for naught,” he said. The love gives him confidence to sell his work. “You can down play yourself all you want, but you really got that gift,” Sakony said.

Also, seeing the demand for SOSIMO, a streetwear brand by Pittsburgh native Ivan Rodriguez, influences him to produce more products. “We’re just kids doing the thing,” he said. “If it wasn’t for him, I wouldn’t be doing what I’m doing right now, and to some degree, if it wasn’t for me, he wouldn’t be doing what he’s doing right now.”

The latest creation from Sakony is an ode to regional slang. While one of his friends was walking around Chinatown in New York, he read T-shirts that said “Fuck You You Fucking Fuck,” and sent a picture to Sakony. He liked the arrogant vulgarity from a classic New York accent. “New York got theirs, why can’t we have ours?”

A black tee boasts “Fuck Yinz You Fucking Jagoffs” in white text to get the point across.

Sakony’s  new T-shirt  is limited to a 44 hour presale now  here .

Sakony’s new T-shirt is limited to a 44 hour presale now here.

InTheRough: That’s very vulgar, but I get swearing is peaceful in a way. Where’d the inspiration for this come from?

Sakony: It’s from a New York tee. “Fuck You, You Fucking Fuck.” It made me think of the “Homewood You Schmuck” T-shirts and The Hill’s “Nephs” tee. It’s a regional tee. I ended up getting one that says “Always You Fucking Fuck” from my boy Mario out in Arizona. I was like I should make one for all of Pittsburgh. I might as well make something for the entire city. This will probably be the only Pittsburgh centric tee that I’ll drop. I'm not going to say I don’t take pride in being from here. It’s definitely one of the key factors of my character, but it doesn’t comprise more than 50% of my being.

ITR: Yeah, Pittsburgh pride varies, but everybody feels a tie to it at some point.

Sakony: I definitely feel the most Pittsburgh when I’m out of Pittsburgh. When I was out in L.A., I was like, damn I’m really a Pittsburgh nigga.

Sakony’s cover art for  Linwood’s  “Hate Breaking Hearts” single

Sakony’s cover art for Linwood’s “Hate Breaking Hearts” single

Throughout his graphics career, Sakony has garnered an influence that “is not so easily seen,” he said. “Outside of apparel, my design makes you want to cop it. Music artists come to me for cover art because they want my little flavor of things.”

As Sakony continues, he refines more skills, like producing beats, so he can sell to the public that loves his work.

I live for the love. If people continue to love me, nothing is for naught.
— Sakony

Aris Tatalovich Moves To Home Décor by Alex Young

Great design is familiar. Something has to hit. Themes continue from project to project and make a mark. Find the signature.

Since releasing his ROY G BIV duffle bag and Stingray backpack, colorful straps begin to be Aris Tatalovich's hallmark. This time, Tatalovich cuts straps to adorn pillows that resemble fruity Starbursts. He's even got cushions that look like pies. Tatalovich has teased this pillow for some time by posing his face with a Tatalovich sleeping mask on surrounded by square, plush pillows. It's just cozy, and the product makes sense for the designer who could easily transition from fashion accessories to home décor. In a recent Instagram post, Tatalovich said he'd release the pillows at the end of June with a $68 price tag.

Keep your eyes peeled for the Aris Tatalovich pillows and his movements in New York City with style icons like Malachai Spivey. By the way, Tatalovich's pillows aren't the only decorative pillow set from a Steel City native that's got the internet hype.

FlickChix by Maxwell Young

F*ck Donald Trump.  Roll up. Courtesy of  FlickChix

F*ck Donald Trump.  Roll up. Courtesy of FlickChix

You may already know Love.Char through her sultry themed Instagram photos or seen LifeofLanie in one of her many YouTube vlogs and beauty videos.  Separately, sisters Char and Lanie have grown and leveraged their social media platforms to explore aspects within the music and entertainment journalism industries, as far as styling on set for music videos or interning at The Fader, but their platforms have also provided interesting entrepreneurial opportunities.  Char parlayed her popularity into merchandise appropriate for her cool, curly-haired lifestyle selling lighters, rolling trays, hair picks, and hair products. Lanie, on the other hand, has utilized her talent for graphic design and web development to make custom websites and banners for other social media personalities, while also designing a makeup box: Sweater Weather.  Together, they have teamed up to launch FlickChix, a one-stop shop for custom lighters.

"Char and I started FlickChix because it was the perfect way to join forces.  I'm a graphic designer, and Char had already been selling lighters with her pictures on it.  You rarely see lighters with eye catching graphics on them, so we decided to create some with the intent of people collecting them and displaying them when the lighter fluid runs out," says Lanie.

Rather than buy another generic Bic lighter in a color you've undoubtedly had several times over, not to mention letting a friend steal it, head to FlickChix for a unique lighter experience. The sister's inaugural collection is politically charged, featuring a vintage Barack Obama and a sinister President Trump, although collections will change periodically.  FlickChix also offers a custom lighter service. Perhaps you wanted your own special lighters for an event or your own brand.  Customers can submit their own photos and designs, and FlickChix will create that one-of-a-kind lighter.  Your shopping for dope ass lighters begins here. Spark up in style.

Uber Redesigns Logo by Maxwell Young

For six short years, we've been able to discern the Uber Technolgies logo by the metallic silver "U"s stuck on the windows of countless Uber Xs and XLs that have reimagined how we get from point A to point B.

As of yesterday, the company has changed its iconography for a graphic less conservative. Colorful and abstract, the logo redefines the company's image as something more comprehensive than a ride-sharing service.

The brand new logo, which will appear on updated versions of the mobile application, is based off of the bit and atom, two of the most important developments in human history.  According to their video that unveiled the logo redesign, the bit, the smallest unit of data in a computer, signifies the complex and advanced technologies Uber is using to express an effortless and refined logistics platform.  The atom, or the basic unit of a chemical element, which is present in everything, represents the rapidly expanding cities the company operates in as well as the goods they serve. 

In an attempt to appear less aggressive and overpowering in international markets where Uber threatens to displace taxi drivers, the redesign will allow each regional arm of the company to have its own country-specific color and pattern palettes alongside five global visuals.

Whether it be cost effective transportation with UberPool or their foray into delivering fresh food to your doorstep with UberEats, Uber is constantly thinking about human interaction in society.  The artistic translation of opaque electron clouds represented by the hues of blue and the rendition of binary code symbols reinforces Uber's role in the physical world as the intersection of technology and lifestyle meets logistics. 

Time will tell if the new Uber icons are synonymous with the brand, like the classic "U" symbol.  In the meantime, check out the company's video highlighting its newest adjustment here.

Here Active Listening Gives Users Control of Audio Environments by Alex Young

Imagine a world where you could personalize your live audio environment; you are on a train and the crying baby next to you is deafening or you are walking through the city and the hustle and bustle is too distracting, with Here Active Listening you can adjust these sounds for a pleasing, enhanced audio environment. "Use two wireless, in-ear buds and a smartphone app to control what you hear and how you hear it," says the product's description. Here is essentially the first development in "hearable" technology, because it allows users to control real world volume and mix their world with the live music equalizer, reduce the reverb at a concert or crank the bass at a violin recital. The developing team, Doppler Labs, also includes preset filters that combine volume, EQ, and effects to elevate the audio environment, such as "Hendrix" for a rock 'n' roll vibe. See the product in action in the video below, and note Here Active Listening is simply a prototype now, but you can move the project along by backing its KickStarter campaign here.