We had the good fortune of connecting with Conrad Mar and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Conrad, is there something you believe many others might not?
“Just do what you love, and the money will follow.” I’ll lead off with I’m extremely supportive of anyone that wants to pursue a dream and passion because that’s what led me here, but I think it’s important to either add some to that or not say it at all. The idea of it is great but the reality of it isn’t so easy. It’s almost like seeing an ad on social saying “Quit your job in 3 months and be making $10k/mo.” or “Here’s how to make $1mm in revenue a year, you just need XX people paying this at $XX…” It gives any hopeful business owner a false idea on how hard building a business is. You can pursue what you love but in order for that money to follow, you’ll need to develop as a person to better understand how your passion fits into its respective industry while navigating it. And that is the tip. Be ready to fail and learn some lessons. You can definitely build a life around what you love but know the amount of time and effort being put in stretches far beyond the hours of 9 to 5. You’ll be required to have, at minimum, a general understanding of each area of your business from accounting, to sales, to marketing and the works, At the end of the day, I do love what I do and we have pursued our cause intensely but in order to get here I couldn’t just do what I love and it would have come. It takes grit – I had to and still have to roll up my sleeves…and I would do it at anytime without hesitation.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Our apparel is all developed, cut and sewn here in Los Angeles. And I have this conversation a lot but clothing is hard to be original. Although we make high quality sportswear, our separator and what we are proud of comes from how we push our values into the world. Our brand is purpose driven and one of our pillars is authenticity. The experiential arm of the brand is just that. To get here wasn’t easy though. We have been constantly faced with challenges, now including COVID-19. Our key to overcoming challenges? Embrace it. Analyze the situation, act and move. An important lesson I learned even before PAINKLLR is stay flexible. Be ready to react and adapt. If I could push something out into the world, it would be that we are all capable and to recognize we are built by our experiences. The brand is a reflection of that mentality and we believe through sport and fitness, you can break through barriers. I’m a high school drop out and I wasn’t going to let that decide my story.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
If it were their first time in Los Angeles, we would definitely need to start with dinner at Korean BBQ in Ktown. Next day we would hit Blu Jam Cafe for breakfast, then off to show them around the city. Probably take them down PCH just for the views and hit up Malibu Seafood. Take them up through the canyons on Kanan then through the 101 towards the valley and lunch at Gasolina Cafe. Back on to downtown and dinner at Rossoblu. We would probably go to Highland Park, Silverlake, Eagle Rock and even out to Joshua Tree if time permitted. In downtown… Woodspoon. Shekarchi. Marugame Monzo. Kazu Nori. Juanitas. Grand Central Market. Majordomo. Coles. For drinks? Apotheke. Perch. Angel City Brewery. Arts District Brewery.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
So many. My brother, sister, dad and mom come first. Always encouraging and also realistic with me. PAINKLLR was started and a month in my father past away so I do reflect often on what I would have said to him as we hit each milestone. My girlfriend and business partner April. A business isn’t built by one person, and as business partners we also know that we are making our decisions and moving forward in an honest environment. Friends, who weren’t even close friends when they first started supporting. Nate Pontious (@nates_beard), Rich Munton (@richmunton), Adan Penuelas (@ayypee3), Thomas Yuan (@tyuan), Desiree Rogers (desireerogers_), Madison McElhaney (@madfitt_)… this list can go on.