About

As a 32 year old Berkeley raised kid, I grew up a big A's, Warriors and 49ers fan, first becoming attached to the Warriors listening to Greg Papa call the '91-'92 Warriors season on the radio while I shot nerf baskets in my room emulating the play by play. After the Webber debacle, Sprewell was all I had a few years later, and then.....well, we all know what happened after that. I even had my dad give me a Chris Mullin haircut in 4th grade. I drew a lot as a young child, off and on throughout elementary, middle and high school, taking several year breaks with nothing to show, but regularly returning for a one-off pencil sketch of Frank Thomas or Greg Maddux, or, in high school, Oakland A's collage pencil drawings of the likes of Barry Zito, Tim Hudson, Miguel Tejada, Jason Giambi and Eric Chavez. I always had the interest in making what I was putting on the paper look as real as possible, capturing the life-like quality I experienced at games or saw on the baseball card photos I grew up studying. Thus was the challenge, my eye always saw more than my hand could do. I became an art student at UC Santa Cruz, developing my graphite-centric work into color- oil paintings and pastels, while improving my graphite work and dabbling in sculpture.


However, the last 10 years had been about making it on my own- Dodging the economic crisis of 2007 for a stable 9-5 job with benefits (not lucrative however), paying off student debt, learning business and communication skills, evolving as a person through great relationships, dear friendships and mentors, like Kumar Pallana of Wes Anderson's famed movies. And most significantly, grieving the death of my father (at age 25). So while my creativity never was truly dormant, only expressed in different forms in daily life, my literal hand created art had taken a hiatus in exchange for other valuable life experiences. I left the job in late 2013 to travel and figure out the next steps.

 

This current piece was born from a nose injury on May 4th playing pickup basketball without health insurance, which became chronic inflammation and sent me into a 3 month dark cyclical depression where I couldn't exercise, talk, chew, laugh or move my face without throbbing pain and sleepless nights. The Warriors were making a playoff run, and the artistic part of me which had been in hiding for years, and the Bay Area sports fan in me, held a secret meeting unbeknownst to my conscious self, who was dealing with physical pain. Somehow my instinctual reaction to the circumstances was to sit down and start a pastel of my favorite player Stephen Curry, and as it progressed, and the Warriors advanced round by round, I got the idea that I'd like my friends and fans to wear my art. So nobody was more relieved than me when the Warriors won game 4 in Cleveland and changed the momentum of the series :) 

As someone who appreciates the color, pattern and design qualities of fashion, and feeling the serendipitous timing of this injury experience and the Warriors championship run, this project has brought me great joy and shot of vital energy, purpose and enthusiasm for life. For fellow Bay Area folks to be able to share and express their pride in a stand up guy like Steph and the first NBA championship in Oakland in 40 years is something that some generations never experience. So by research, persistence, thoughtful design and execution, here's the end product, a chalk pastel drawing made into various high quality products for you to enjoy at the best price I could afford to deliver them.

Thank you very much for your interest and support!

Yani