Young and Laced is a creative program and network that has been active since 2013. Its aim is to help young people achieve their creative goals by providing funding, expertise and support for specific projects. This year, for the first time, the focus will be skateboarding and its surrounding culture. Young and Laced is looking for 12 new members, all aged 16-24, to pitch creative projects in this field. The creative banner is pretty broad, so don’t be afraid to send in an application for any idea or goal you may have, be it related to video, photography, publishing, even starting a brand…
To find out more about this exciting opportunity, we caught up with Bobby Pecotic from Young and Laced.
Interview: Henry Kingsford.
Can you give us a brief overview of Young and Laced?
It’s sort of like a creative incubator. Put simply, we help young people do really great projects. We also help them day-to-day. We’ve been running for a year now and I think we’ve completed 13 projects in total, many of which are still running self sufficiently.
When selecting participants, what criteria are you looking for?
Talented people who can get us excited about their future. They don’t need to be creatively accomplished. For example, one of our guys, Josh Renaut, had only done pretty low-key music videos before he joined us. We helped him set up as a proper filmmaker and now he’s touring with some really big bands.
Do participants have to pay anything?
Which project stands out for you from the first two years?
There were so many amazing projects. It’s hard to pick one. The most recent one we did was Counter Culture: The Curse of Online Status. Hamish (Stephenson) and his mentor, Brett, travelled to New York to interview celebrities who have made their name through social media, people like Mike the Ruler. I felt like the subject matter was a relatively new phenomenon that hadn’t properly been discussed. Hamish’s documentary did really well. It got featured on a lot of sites and blogs.
Do you have any examples if how Young and Laced has helped participants careers longer term?
Kevin Adom is a fashion designer. He’s quite young, but he has been really engaged with our program and has already got a job at a clothing company that he’s really passionate about. I mentioned Josh Renaut above; he’s currently travelling the world with some huge bands, making films using the same equipment we helped him get at the beginning of 2014.
Why is the emphasis shifting towards skateboarding in 2015?
Skate culture is growing fast and it feels like there will be increasing opportunities for young people to work in this field. Also, we know there are lots of talented, creative young people involved in skateboarding who would be a perfect fit for Young and Laced.
What types of projects are you looking for this year?
The person pitching the project needs to be passionate. We always use the word creative, but last year we supported charity and business projects. Everything is creative in its own way. If you’re excited about something, there’s a good chance you’ll get us excited too.
How is the program structured? Can participants work or study while participating in the program?
Of course, we only ask for your time outside these commitments. We wouldn’t want anyone to jeopardize education or work. We have monthly meetings when the program is active and then as many meetings as required to ensure your project does as well as possible. If your project is active, we do expect you to put in the necessary work to make it a success.
How do you see Young and Laced expanding and growing in the future?
More people are hearing about us this year, which is great. More members, more projects, more we can be proud of.
You can apply to Young and Laced here.