When thinking of a stereotypical 16-year-old boy, one might assume that boy is living day-by-day, chasing after girls, spending his time with friends and hasn’t really thought about what to do with his life.
Jack Mundy is not the stereotypical 16-year-old boy.
Artist, entrepreneur and avid member of the skate community, Mundy used his skills and connections to create what he describes as a new and exciting clothing brand being brought to Lacombe.
At a young age, Mundy realized his skills as an artist and decided to enhance his artistic abilities by trying new techniques from realism to a more creative standpoint.
“It started at a really young age, I was probably around five-years-old and what I first started out with was that I would draw shapes and then keep adding and connecting them together. In the end, sometimes there would be hidden pictures within it and my mom actually came to me and said it was really cool and you should carry on with this.”
What began as doodling in between daily routines, has now become the fashion brand ‘Burner’ in the local community, and with help from his business partner Lyle Notice, pastor and youth leader for Burman University, his business style and priorities are, according to Mundy, certainly one of the reasons he has succeeded this far.
“I met Lyle at a skate park and we were just skating and I saw his hat, I was like oh that’s a pretty cool hat, this guy’s into fashion just like me. So I got to know this guy and he had brought up the idea of making a clothing line, which at the same time I was trying to do the same thing too,” he explained. “So, we spent a few months trying to come up with just the name and then a few more months to get the actual pieces made.”
Mundy said because he realizes handling the financial aspects of the business could be difficult, he has partnered with Notice in the sense that he will focus on the creative side of the brand while Notice will continue to help him with the business.
The name for Mundy’s brand is Burner, which he explained is an artist way of warning other brands that they better bring their A-game if deciding to move in on Lacombe, because competing with him will not be an easy feat.
“If you’re cruising down the street and you see a wall of a bunch of street art, the burner on that wall is the one piece that makes everything else look bad. It burns the rest of the pieces, so all you can see out of that whole piece is the burner. So for my brand, since it’s the first in Lacombe, those who come after this brand, I want this to be the burner (compared) to the rest of them.”
For Mundy, it’s sometimes difficult to put his business above his schooling, but the support from his peers and family has made the two endeavours easier to handle, and his education is still important to him.
“Sometimes it gets a little bit stressful. But, when you have the passion for something like this, you have to forget about that and go with it and in the end everything’s coming together.”
On Monday night, Mundy teamed up with the Students’ Association at Burman University to create an event, Art Form, which included many different artistic factors in the community.
Artists from the University brought their paintings, some read poetry and others helped Mundy in modeling his fashion pieces as a way to help contribute to his brand ‘drop’.
Mundy’s family, Notice’s peers and members of the community came to the event to show their support for Mundy’s new clothing line as well as to support the local artistry. Mayor Steve Christie also attended the event with his wife Cheryl to congratulate the young man in his endeavours.
“I’ve been to many art shows and artists events but I’ve never been to a launch for a new clothing line, so this is new for me. Congratulations Jack, this is a great evening. We know you’re nervous, we know you’re a little bit scared, we know you’re excited and just round those feelings together for your next line. It’s great to be here to share this with you.”
Steve also added the event was a great way to pair the City of Lacombe with Burman University and because the City is such an artistically-minded community, he was glad to see a new ‘realm of art’ being showcased.
Mundy then began the fashion show, where the models of Burman donned his new line, which included t-shirts, long sleeve, crew necks, hoodies, ‘coach jackets’ and hats.
Mundy is hoping to add more designs and items throughout the business’s life.
“This is my main focus right now and it’s all expanding, but for each drop I’m going to have to up my game so I’m starting on designs now. Before this one even dropped, I was in my sketch book coming up with different ideas, trying to envision what the colours are and everything.”
Looking into the future, Mundy hopes to create more clothing lines and hopes to see his own clothing store in the community, something small, but prominent.
With a last bit of knowledge, the young man sheds light on following your dreams, and never losing the thing that interests you the most.
“It takes a lot of effort to start something like this but it’s very easy to follow passion, so if you believe and as long as you are having fun, there’s no reason you can’t become successful.”