To anyone with a passing interest in trainers or like us a bloody obsesssion with footwear over the last couple of decades you will know or have heard of the work of the Mighty C-Law.
From being a founding father of Crooked Tongues, through Addict, Converse, UnorthodoxStyles and of course adi, Mr Law has been there, seen it, done it and probably designed the tee (or at least the shoes) to go with it.
Currently hard at work in his new role as Head of Design at our friends Clarks Originals, Chris took time out of his Somerset schedule to give us his Favourite Five over a pint of local cider.
Shoes – Clarks ‘Desert Trek’
Yes, I know it’s obvious in a way for what I do now, but actually if you think about it, I’ve built my career on the strength of my passion for trainers, initially from their relationship with youth culture to then working on Crooked Tongues and building relationships with the brands to then becoming a self taught designer. My mum only understood what I did when I could show here that in her Grattons catalogue or what ever it was they had the adidas ‘Seeleys’ in it that I designed.
But back to Treks, through the many years of working at sportswear brands, my go to “Fuck you, I don’t want to be forced to wear my employers brand today” silhouettes, I would always choose my trusted Treks.
I love what Lance Clark did with the design, they’re so simple but yet so characteristic: the collar height, the centre seam, the Nature Last that gives it that amazing toe down, the stitch down and crepe. All the Americans that I worked with would always call them my ‘Hobbit’ shoes, which I actually embraced.
Motor – MK1 Austin Mini Cooper ’S’
The first Mini I drove was when I bought a blue 1275 GT. From that moment I was hooked and have been ever since, Ive had a fair few amount of real minis over the years, my last being a ’68. My dream car would have to be a MK1 60’s ’S’.
Apart from the imminent rust problem, there is nothing wrong with the Mini; Issinonis’ master piece has it all: the stance, the understated British design classic, the performance, the handling, the sound, nothing beats that sound of a straight cut gearbox on 10” wheels with no stereo or wide arches.
Design – Typographic Layout
I can’t draw. Simple. Well I can draw 2 things actually: firstly, graf letters when I was a kid and now I’m ‘ok’ at drawing shoes, I can’t photo render stuff like a car designer and don’t want to either. So creative output for me also comes from my love of typographic layout.
I’ve done quite a bit over the years, a few books here and there, one sold quite well actually. Im a sucker for grids, baselines, kerning and tracking especially with utilitarian information design.
Music – Wolf People
For me music is a huge part of my day, I wouldn’t be one of those people though who says they listen to everything. I’m quite picky with what I like and I’m not easily swayed.
My ideal sound is that of most things from about ’67 to ’72. I could name drop many bands from that era, but one modern band that encapsulates many things I love are the band Wolf People.
If you like anything psych, fuzzy, folky & dusty with ‘break’ type drumming, give these lads a listen.
Something else – Bass
4 strings, the ability of holding down the bottom end whilst filling-in the gaps creatively. 3 tunes made me want to be a bass player: firstly it was Cliff Burton’s epic solo, then Mani’s baseline from “I Wanna Be Adored” and that break in the Charlatans’ “The Only One I Know”.
I play when I can fit it in around 4 kids and a busy job. But that escapism of just noodling around on my Ric is my zone.
Players – Geezer Butler, Mani, Cliff Burton, Ronnie Lane, Al Cisneros, Hooky, Rick Buckler, Darryl Jennifer, Lemmy to name a few.