Rizen (Meaning) – To have an uncontrollable urge or desire to achieve something outstanding in ones life. Pronounced – Ris-en…
In the distance you can see the silhouette of a raggedy downtrodden person. He has done it tough in life! Time and time again he’s been knocked down and kicked in the guts, only to rise to his feet over and over again. He wasn’t born with a silver spoon; in fact he wouldn’t know what a silver spoon looked like! See I am the proverbial underdog, there is no point telling you my name, you don’t know me, and it won’t mean anything to you anyway! I’m a nobody from nowhere, and in my own special little way; I’m here to take on the world. I’m the little battler, I fight for everything I have or achieved, and just when I thought I had achieved something special in life it was taken away, stolen from me. So once again I find myself picking up the pieces and starting over.
I didn’t grow up in the suburbs, I grew up on a small farm, which in some ways gave us more freedom then the city. On the farm was this old dam and kids from town would ride down to our farm to the jump the dam wall. We didn’t have a bike so we would jump loan bikes. It was a lot of fun until people got hurt.
We Create Fun!
It is ironic that my passion is making and designing things such as clothing. See I grew up with very little, and made do with what we got. We would be the family that you see buying second hand clothes and shoes from the thrift store, or the local charity store. We were never the family that you see buying the latest cool clothes. For a while there I didn’t even have shoes to wear to school, so I went barefoot. I remember playing football barefoot and getting studded a bunch of times. My feet were a wreck after the game! For a long time we went to school without lunch, and had no money to buy any. Yes I got picked on and got into fights, but this just makes you tougher and hopefully stronger…
Eventually I got a casual part-time job after school, first door knocking asking for any chores or work we could get paid to do, then a real job, all be-it for minimal pay and bought my own BMX bike that I shared with my brother. We spent hours by ourselves jumping the dam, and digging extra jumps. We then managed to get my brother a bike, and now we also had transport to get around. We made jumps and trails in a few spots around town and managed to convince others to do the same. Next came the surfing! We found an old discarded board, and then we would hit the beach. Our local little two-shop town had a train station, which meant we were a one-hour trip from the beaches. This opened up all sorts of new opportunities! We eventually got ourselves skateboards, so when the waves sucked; we would be skating all over town or riding our bikes. We discovered a couple of cool multi-story buildings that were in the construction process which were a lot of fun; we would sneak in on weekends and shred these spots. Life started to look good; we surfed, skated, rode BMX, and hit up the local trails and street spots.
After years of living on this small outta-town farm we got a stroke of luck. Some city kid who knew my dad had a Postal Delivery Motorbike, which he found at the local dump and somehow got it working. Living in the city he had nowhere to ride it, so he left it at our farm. He would come out once every few weeks to ride, but what he didn’t know was my brother and I had started jumping this heavy ass motorbike over the dam wall. This thing was so sketchy and unbalanced; it was a piece of crap. However; it didn’t stop us from launching this thing over the dam and a few other jumps that we made. Somehow we didn’t get hurt “ever” on this thing, maybe we didn’t push it hard enough!?
Seeing all the big Surf, Skate, MX and BMX brands and athletes in magazines inspired me, so I started to design random things. Then as an adult I designed numerous products for various different brands and companies, and as always, they made the money, not me.
So my inspiration comes from years of participating in action sports and alternate cultures. My heart, drive and desire comes from being that underdog, that nobody, that guy who was never really been given a chance; to now being that guy who once again has Rizen to his feet, dusted himself off, taken another deep breath, dug deep one more time, and has the courage to have another go!