Courtesy of Arthur/ Photographed by June Kim
One of the things we look forward to at the Man/Woman shows are the people we end up meeting behind the scenes. This season in Tokyo, we spent a weekend housed next to the exuberant guys of Yeti Out, the Hong Kong- and London-based DJ collective. Mornings would see them amped up on caffeine after a long night spinning at Trunk or Vision – neither of which would dampen their ready smiles and outgoing energy the next day. Because of their free-spirited nature, we felt an instant connection to the Yeti guys even though our respective aesthetics couldn’t be more different – see our taste for the slow life contrasted by their love for the high-altitude nightlife!
Here, a chat with Arthur Bray, one-third of Yeti, on how he navigated his way from Hypebeast editor to independent DJ and entrepreneur and why nothing beats the simple pleasure of having a beer on a rooftop.
Hi, Arthur! Tell us how you started Yeti Out.
It’s kind of a long story but I’ve always worked between nightlife, editorial, and fashion. Since I was 17, I was modelling for a good eight years. I used to do shows in Milan, Paris, and London so I was always working in fashion as a bystander. Some of that stuff helped me with how a shoot goes, how a lookbook is styled – it kind of rubbed off and [manifested] later on in life when I started directing collections and ideas.
Before I launched the Yeti brand, we started out as DJs for club nights, which we still do. It’s just that now we do it alongside the brand and it’s a little bit more work but in essence it’s not that much more work because it’s just about switching the medium up a bit. Like, we would do flyers with a lot of graphics already and now it’s just about printing them up on T-shirts and dealing with other stuff like production and logistics.
Before this, I was working at Hypebeast, overseeing the editorial content on a global level. So part of the idea of storytelling and being able to present an idea in a narrative in an editorial world has also benefited how we tell the story on the branding side.
That’s not exactly a linear answer but it’s all kind of one thing!
“I want the whole Yeti Out brand to always represent something authentic, like a DIY culture, like genuine relationships, genuine friendships, genuine conversations in communities between creative forces whether that’s happening here or in a club or at a bus stop. The clothing aspect will always represent an independent spirit.”
What’s the vision behind Yeti Out?
I want the whole Yeti Out brand to always represent something authentic, like a DIY culture, like genuine relationships, genuine friendships, genuine conversations in communities between creative forces whether that’s happening here or in a club or at a bus stop. The clothing aspect will always represent an independent spirit. I’d rather focus on the idea or spirit of it being inspiring and the clothing being secondary.
You juggle a lot of things. What do you like to do in your downtime?
I don’t know if you feel the same way, but I found that because I worked at such a hectic job [at Hypebeast] that now that I’m doing exactly what I want to do, it’s all such great fun. Before, I would do a 9 to 8 P.M. and then after that, I’d be working on Yeti. Now, I get to do what I used to do in my free time all the time. Unwinding is being able to go on an inspiration trip – it’s all technically work if you want to bracket it that way but it’s all good fun. And because we do nightlife and we DJ – like I was just in Taipei last weekend helping W Hotel with some music programming and luckily, I got to stay there so that was work-related but I was enjoying it. You sort of cherry-pick the nice things about work and turn that into a holiday! It’s all great fun.
“Before, I would do a 9 to 8 P.M. and then after that, I’d be working on Yeti. Now, I get to do what I used to do in my free time all the time. Unwinding is being able to go on an inspiration trip – it’s all technically work if you want to bracket it that way but it’s all good fun!”
Name 3 things you recommend to do when in Hong Kong.
Just being able to get a beer from 7-Eleven and going to IFC rooftop and just enjoy the skyline – that’s definitely something that doesn’t cost much and you can use the landscape of Hong Kong as the background of a conversation. Another one is to try to get food at Shiam Shui Po or just get lost in it. It’s Mongkok area. You can find lots of things there – it’s one man’s trash is another man’s treasure! And then the other one would probably be Tycoon, it’s a new place that just opened in Central. It’s an old police station turned heritage site. We did a party there, in an old prison turned bar – it’s called Behind Bars. So that’s probably all three!