Though it’s relatively new to the scene having started back in the first lockdown in 2020, Hartcopy was never short of knowledge. Acting as a digital documentation of all things within street culture, Hartcopy became a place where you could enjoy learning new things about the things we all know and love whether that’s special apparel pieces, the oldest (or latest) sneakers or accessories, you always came away having learnt something new.
Now, two years later, Hartcopy are releasing their first physical printed matter with ‘The Hartcopy Journal – Volume 1’ and at Footpatrol, we’re excited to announce we’re the UK’s exclusive stockist. To celebrate, we caught up with creative lead Sam Le Roy to learn more about Hartcopy, how it came about and how they gather the knowledge for all the product.
To be in with the chance of getting your hands on a copy, head over to the Footpatrol Launches App or alternatively, join us in-store on Thursday 14th April between 7PM – 9PM BST where we’ll be joined by Sam for an in-store signing where we’ll also have limited availability of the book to purchase!
Footpatrol: Sam Le Roy, the man behind the copy, how are we doing?
Sam Le Roy: I’m great! Very busy, tonnes going on, but it’s a good problem to have.
FP: Let’s start off nice and easy. Could you give people a little bit of insight into who you are and what you do?
SLR: I’m a sneakerhead first and foremost, a collector, a writer, a content creator, all wrapped into one. I’m the creative lead at Hartcopy, a platform dedicated to shining a light on some of our favourite stories from the sneaker scene and its peripheral subcultures. I’ve got the best job in the world – writing about things I’m already fascinated in.
FP: HartCopy, a page conceived during the Covid pandemic. How did this journey for you all begin?
SLR: Well the journey started with Tim Suen, an amazing bloke from Singapore. Hartcopy is his creation, he really dug out the blueprint from a love of classic Japanese print mags and sneakers. Tim posted the account on a now disbanded Facebook group, and me being an aspiring writer, I sent him a message asking to give him a hand. That was near enough two years ago now, and the two of us really grafted to hollow out a space in the industry, and we’ve picked up a few amazing people on the way that have spend countless hours helping out.
FP: What was the aim with the page itself?
SLR: A few things really. For Tim, he wanted to simply document his collection. Things really developed quickly and we realised that we could do something big – speaking on my behalf, I saw an opportunity to capture some like-minded individuals, build a community and really become a force in the culture. On a more surface level, Hartcopy opened a door for me to escape reality and work in an industry I previously thought was inaccessible.
FP: The diversity HartCopy has in stories, brands and products is so wide that it’s hard not to be drawn into wanting to learn something new. Without giving too much away, where do you source this information from?
SLR: Personally, I get it from all over the place – there’s no one outlet. Old blog posts, instagram posts from collectors, chatting to designers and employees from big companies, the information is really a mish-mash from anywhere I can find it. In terms of inspiration, and figuring out what I need to write about and cover, it’s all about dissecting what’s relevant in the moment and thinking about how I can relate it to products from years ago. Sometimes it comes very easily, sometimes it ends with me in a very frustrated state, shutting the laptop for another night.
FP: Now of course, the book. I have been excited for this since you told me about it last year. How has it been producing your first printed edition?
SLR: The book has been amazing to make. All of the intricacies I have to consider on social media and digital content are blown up tenfold; the stakes are higher, and it’s amazing to think that someone will be able to open The Journal up in years to come, and (hopefully) admire what we did.
On another note, it’s been a massive learning experience for me, one that I’m hugely grateful for. I know so much more now than I did six months ago, and I’m excited to push hartcopy even further with these insights.
FP: Do you see this as an ongoing journey?
SLR: The Journal, and books as a whole, are absolutely an ongoing journey for Hartcopy. Tangible products are so hard to execute, especially so in a world so obsessed with the digital and disposable, but I’m confident we can build something really amazing from the foundations we’ve already got in place.
FP: What do you think is the next step for HartCopy, you are already a global platform. I am intrigued to hear where you look to take things?
SLR: Just like the products we write about ever day, the goal with hartcopy is longevity and timelessness. We’re in it for the long run, which is exactly why we didn’t rush anything putting this stuff out. I know we’ve nailed our goal of documenting culture, and we’ll never abandon this mission, but I really want to start steering the culture little by little. This will come through more books, products, maybe sneakers, all of which will have some brilliant stories attached.
FP: Sam, thank you so much for your time as always. We are really looking forward to the in-store book signing and launch on Thursday. Before we let you go though, we like to give all our interviewees a chance to sign off the interview in any way they wish, whether that’s to get people excited or just a message of positivity. So without further ado Sam, take the stage!
SLR: I’d love to say a big thank you to Tim Suen, who really is the man that made this whole thing happen. Him and I have worked so hard on this, but in reality, without him, Hartcopy wouldn’t exist, and I’d be in a lab doing a very bad job at a Masters Degree in Chemistry. On the same note, everyone else that contributed to the book deserves a big pat on the back and some love. Phil, Joash, Chris, Arthur, you guys really killed it.
Onwards and upwards!