We had the good fortune of connecting with Coast and Company and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Coast and Company, alright, let’s jump in with a deep one – what’s you’re definition for success?
It used to be the case that my definition of success had a specific schematic, detailed down to the wire of what it would take in order for me to reach my ideal of success. But both time and age are shining a different light on that theory, with something a little kinder and less rigid. It seems through my experience that age is a refining process. Since I haven’t achieved the exact ideal I had in my early 20’s, I find myself breaking down that one-dimensional ideal and asking myself, “What is the essence behind this that I perceive as successful”? Personally, I want to be my boss, be creative, and work with my hands.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
My first artistic endeavor was music at the age of 15. I started playing guitar, and unbeknownst to me, shut the rest of the world off. When I’d get home from school, I’d just practice. Friends stopped hearing from me. My mom would bang on the wall at night when it was time to stop. This is when I first experienced “flow state” even though I had no idea what was happening. For about 15 years, I was recording and performing in Southern California. In between this time, at the age of 23 I felt compelled to set music aside and study theatre. After completing a theatre conservatory program, I toured on and off with a production company for about 4 years, ,was able to travel within the US as well as other countries. Unexpectedly, studying theatre ended up influencing myself musically and was able to incorporate this experience back into my music. It definitely breathed life back into my first love. I started pursuing music again, been a part of a few different projects and had some incredible experiences, but something happened. It could’ve been the fact that I was now in my 30s and my life just wasn’t in a place I was content with. I was working day jobs to financially support myself for a long time and I was really feeling the effects of it. I then decided that I needed to figure out a new means of income that I actually enjoyed and that perhaps this would give me a refreshed outlook on my musical trajectory. I found myself really attracted to wood working (something I’ve always felt) and decided this would be my new route to financial means. It was something I can be creative with, work with my hands, and be my own boss. This is when I dove head in and started to immerse myself in all things wood. I found myself honing in on my own designs and learning through mistake after mistake how to successfully create these pieces. Was any of this easy? Certainly not. And I think that’s been the through line of all of my musical, theatrical, “woodical” endeavors have proven. I think I was always seeking some magical “easy” route to my ideal of success. I believe this is why I was always trying something completely different than planting my feet in the ground and pushing through the challenges versus jumping ship at the sign of the first iceberg. It’s not about talent or skill as much as it is about staying true to your course and digging deep in times of struggle. My brand has really become my story. It’s a continuum of who I am via who I was. I made just about every mistake ten fold. I’ve also had many successful moments. And a story has both. Life is teaching me that it’s not a story without the good and the bad.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Easy. I would take them the back way through the mountains to Dume Cove in Malibu, scale those rusty, fossilized stairs to the far end of the beach. I’d bring a beach tent (extends beach time), snacky treats ;), and a frisbee. We could hunt for lobster shells and not think about sharks while chumming ourselves in the Pacific. Afterwards, stop at Malibu Seafood for a fried scallop sandwich and stare at the water some more because there’s no overdosing on that view. I think it’s important to visit the Griffith Observatory, both inside and out, as well as the garden above which is a fairly easy hike. I’m all about views and the sights up there lend themselves to introspection quite naturally. There is also a simple yet rewarding trail up Eaton Canyon to a little waterfall which is a pleasing site within an arid environment. Just look out for the rattlesnakes! And this may sound like a joke but it’s not: In-N-Out.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Makerspace CT has provided me with an environment to start creating again. Since the affects of COVID turned my life (and many others) upside down and temporarily relocating back east, I went from working two day jobs and starting my own workshop, to unemployment and losing that workshop. With makerspace, I’ve been able to not only have access to an incredible wood shop, but many other types of fabrication that I hadn’t anticipated. The space is very limited due to the virus but I’ve managed to make it work.
Valet de Jefe, Lion by Lion Desk – Eugene Lee Hexhale Pipes, Wedgie Skate Rack, Seville Later Planter – Derrick Oshana