Footpatrol Meets Lorenz.OG | Footpatrol 20th Anniversary Exhibition

The upcoming Footpatrol exhibition is a visual documentation of Footpatrol within the world of sneakers. Collaborations, community and culture, we’ve been at the heart of it now for 20 years and long may it continue!

Wanting to expand on this for years to come, we want to highlight people within the community who are pushing the boundaries within their work. For the upcoming exhibition, we begin by highlight Lorenz.OG. A creator who specialises in colour and design, Lorenzo works on ‘Patented Colour Schemes’ and adorns them across some of our favourite and sometimes, most sought after pairs creating the most unique one-of-ones.

To celebrate his skills and passion for sneakers, we commissioned Lorenzo to create 6 bespoke New Balance 2002R’s which will be on display at the Footpatrol Exhibition 10th – 11th September! 

Stay tuned for more information coming soon.

Footpatrol: Mr.OG, we have finally pinned you down! How are you?

Lorenz.OG: I’m well, its great to have you and the team in the Lab! Usually nobody gets to see behind the curtain.

FP: I would normally ask to offer a bit of insight into who you are and what you do. But I feel people know you, and if they didn’t know you, they will most definitely know your work. So rather than ask that, tell me about what ‘Patented Colour Schemes’ and what it means to Lorenz.OG?

L: Its hard to define concisely. Last year I had just been connected with Virgil and I was so keen to show him everything I was working on, I sent him a few new sample colourways I was working on and he simply replied “PATENTED COLORSCHEMES®”.

Immediately I loved it, it showed how much he understood everything I was about in just two words, completely impromptu. It was so him, and it encapsulated my work so perfectly

I now use the term “Patented Colorschemes” to refer to the colourways I create and reuse across different silhouettes and mediums.

I always made an effort to take risks and jump into the unknown, utilising dyes to create a new colourway on my favourite pairs. It took some learn the finesse of how to control colour in a considered and subtle way but eventually I found my style which I have been running with ever since. I feel strongly about the style and design process I have created and ” PATENTED COLORSCHEMES” sums it up perfectly. 

Though my work on sneakers has become watered down with the amount of creators and brands replicating the aesthetic, I give myself the credit of having a huge impact on current sneaker design and trends. Not everyone will know where the subtle gradient fades and originate from but Virgil understood the vision and gave me all I validation I’ll ever need.

FP: What about your starting point, how did everything get to where it is now?

L: I’d say the real starting point was just being a young teenager in London and being obsessed with sneakers, this is where I learnt everything I use today.

But the idea to really take action and create came to me when I was at Nike, interning at EHQ in Hilversum. I was working as a buying intern so I got to see alot of cool stuff, but from the sidelines. I struggled with the analytical side of the job, all I wanted to do was add value but being passionate couldn’t help me with an excel spreadsheet.

That’s when I realised that my passion is for product, specifically colour. Being able to recognise that became quite a big deal for me. I left at the time Covid struck. So I found myself with all this time to explore. I had never been or seen myself as a creative as such. Dyeing shoes however, was something that appealed to me. It wasn’t something I saw a lot of people doing other than A Cold Wall. With that time, I used it to practice. Dying my shoes, my friends shoes and sooner or later I developed my own aesthetic and processes that was mine. My inspirations for colourways is usually found in nature as I like to pay homage to and a focus to God’s creation.

The first pair that really started everything was on a pair of Air Force 1s using my *Genesis* Colorscheme, the OG colourway. I knew I’d created something special as I’d never seen a pair comparable to it, using soft subtle hues fading into the next. 

Slowly but surely I have come up with ways to direct the colour on specific parts of the shoe, and use colourblocking. As confidence grew, I then started trying it on more sought after pairs like AJ4 OW, CDG 95s, this definitely helped get more visibility and I’ll continue to explore new mediums.

FP: Naturally many people would call what you do customisation, but to an extent I would disagree I think what you do offers more than that. How would you describe your work?

L: As I mentioned, I wanted to be a colour designer whilst at Nike but hadn’t had any previous experience or education in the field. I can’t draw and I’m not technical on digital either. I had no idea where to start, and I wanted to replicate what I saw working on the industry. So I began using dye as my means of designing samples. This worked well for me as I could keep adding to samples to get them right and that practice gave me skills I never intended on learning.

For me, a customiser is someone you approach asking for a service. Whereas my currency is in ideas and providing a finished product that has been through sampling stages. I am selling my concept and unique ideas rather than the service itself.

FP: How do you see what you do growing?

L: It’s a tough one… I am not one to give myself a solid plan as I like to move freely. When I started I never had the plan take it to this level, I just wanted to make an impact and work with product I feel passionate about. Though I dreamed it, I never thought any of this was achievable. By going with the flow it naturally ended up here. 

Now I feel the opposite, I’ve witness my work impact brands on all levels, from sportswear to high fashion. And social media trends. Now I believe in my ideas and know if the opportunites don’t arise I’ll make them for myself.

The dream is still to have a real product collaboration with a brand I believe in. I would also like to carry on with consultation roles that I have been picking up. 

It would be great to work with a brand that allows me to follow my design approach but with infrastructure to really scale it on a commercial level. Creating dye friendly prototypes for myself to work on, then I can come up with the colour ideas in my way. This was an idea I planned with Virgil that he came up with.

FP: The fact some pairs you have done have been seen so well received is amazing. So much so, artists like Drake and Lil Yatchy own pairs. What were your first thoughts when these conversations first became a reality?

L: It’s crazy because Drake was probably the first commision I ever took, about 2 months after I started. It was the moment  I started to take it seriously. When that first happened, I was so excited. But, just because someone high profile wears your stuff, doesn’t necessarily mean you are going to be an overnight success however it gave me alot of self belief, something I really needed in the beginning.

Yachty was amazing too, he was always someone I wanted to work with, because he is genuinely obsessed with sneakers, like he has high sneaker IQ he doesn’t just cop anything. I was fortunate enough to link up with him when he came to London last August and not only did he buy all 6 pairs I came to show him. He got them all out, analyzed them, tried them on and was so gassed. It was amazing to give someone who has so much heat that reaction.

FP: Do you feel that sneakerheads do?

L: I do! Obviously not everyone will like my work and that’s okay, but for the most part it’s the proper sneaker obsessed who are my biggest supporters.

I spoke about Yachty, but people like DJ Clark Kent, Joe La Puma and Madgi from Archive DNA are just a few of those I feel great satisfaction knowing my work resonates with them as they’ve seen it all.

FP: You spoke about him early in our conversation but I want to bring back the conversations you had with the late Virgil Abloh (may he rest in peace). I know he had a part to play in helping you find the right direction and not only that even loved your work. Is there any advice that he shared with you that has stuck?

L: The thing I took away from Virgil was his approach to think outside the norms of what you can do. He suggested that I do a collab on Off White heels and handbags. Suggesting something like that made me realise the potential one idea can have on multiple different things, which initially I never thought about. That thought of ‘Why stay in one lane’ really stuck with me. Don’t get me wrong, I want to work in sneakers but that doesn’t mean it stops there. By showing my aesthetic on other things I wouldn’t normally think about, was a gateway for me to grow. 

At the time one of the big brand approached me for a collaboration, and naturally I was excited and we got underway creating the concept and CADs for the design.

At some point tho, I started to have second thoughts and being honest, I feel the shoe was me. Having just connected with Virgil and regularly recieving advice from him gave me the confidence to walk away without having the “what if” feeling and doubts I made a mistake.

FP: Finishing up on a slightly different note. Besides your backstory, there are other reasons as to why we have you here! Footpatrol’s 20th Anniversary Exhibition is soon upon us and we have been fortunate to work alongside you on a series of commissioned pieces on the New Balance 2002. Could you give us a bit of insight into your design approach with these pairs?

L: Firstly, this has been such a great opportunity to showcase my work properly for the first time in London in a real life setting. With these 6 pairs, I wanted to recreate some previous colour ways that I have done before that were a success. 5 out of the 6 were colourways I can produce again and again that I have developed. The last pair however, I am looking to take a few more risks. The colour initially didn’t take as well as the others, but it’s lined up for me to produce another colourway that I don’t do very often. 

Sometimes things change as I am going through the process. Which makes things more exciting within the design process! 

FP: Well Lorenzo, I can only thank you for your time and wanting to help support Footpatrol during this big year for us. Before we let you go, we like to sign off every interview with the opportunity for you to gas yourself up or even spread a message of positivity. So please take it away…..

L: I want to thank the team at Footpatrol for thinking of me for this project. It’s something I have always dreamed of doing, especially a store like FP, that has been embedded within the culture for 20 years. Footpatrol was one of those stores growing up that I would always visit when I came into cental. 

London as a city has so many amazing creatives and untapped potential and for Footpatrol to be supporting me is really nice to see. I would encourage all brands, stores and media agencies to work more with those creatives and bring them up to help them grow. 

FP: Well Lorenzo, I can only thank you for your time and wanting to help support Footpatrol during this big year for us. Before we let you go, we like to sign off every interview with the opportunity for you to gas yourself up or even spread a message of positivity. So please take it away…..

L: I want to thank the team at Footpatrol for thinking of me for this project. It’s something I have always dreamed of doing, especially a store like FP, that has been embedded within the culture for 20 years. Footpatrol was one of those stores growing up that I would always visit when I came to London. 

London as a city has so many amazing creatives and untapped potential and for Footpatrol to be supporting me is really nice to see. I would encourage all brands, stores and media agencies to work more with those creatives and bring them up to help them grow. 

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