Scott Sternberg has had more than one life. In his first life he was an agent at a big Hollywood agency. In 2003 Scott left the agency and founded his brand “Band of Outsiders” and became a designer and entrepreneur. Until he left the brand in 2015 Scott designed modern, playful innovative casual clothing for men and women. He won several awards and sold his clothes in over 200 stores world wide.
FC: Did you sleep well last night?
SS: Yes. I did. 6 straight hours!
FC: Ok , I'm jealous. Do you go to bed early?
SS: It depends. Throughout the year the light helps determine it. Typically I go to bed at 11 h and get up at 5 am. If I sleep anymore the entire morning is like the “stone zone”. The light s screwed up. 6 hours. that’s it. Its not even my choice, my body is up.
FC: When are you most creative? What do you need to be creative?
SS: There are so many factors that go into it…But,…deadlines! I like to work under pressure. I am definitely more creative in the morning, before the light comes up. I like the idea …between 5–9 am , before anyone else gets up, its kinda like “open road”. I can chill out and I can work, with no pressure at all. I don’t have to focus on one thing in particular but I am very open to everything. Throughout the rest of the day all these distractions come in and things get more complex. As for creativity in regards of making clothes, there are always deadlines , there is always something to decide. With clothing you have an idea, and that’s the best part because it is in your head, and then you sketch it, and it’s a little frustrating because you realize it has to go on a body so its not always as good as what was in your brain. And then you go to sample and then you have to start iterating to get it to the right place. And that’s a whole different type of creativity. Because the first type is just imagination, the second type of creativity is problem solving. Like, how do I get this to fit, how do I get this to look and feel the way I imagined it to be ?
FC: Do you have reoccurring dreams?
SS: I do. For sure. There are typical dreams, you know Freudian things I fall into. There is one I call the “Summer camp” sort of scene. It is all disjointed. There is a specific moment with me surrounded by people, that probably change depending on year and age or whenever I had the dream, on the bottom bunk of a bunk bed and we are sort of reading with a flash light, everyone hurdled around me. And another one, it takes places in the house I grew up in and I discover an extra room that wasn’t there . I love when I have this dream. I love finding this room again. It’s the most exciting thing and I can picture how to get there.
FC: When you are creative what makes you doubt your process and how do you get out of it?
SS: When I started making clothes, a lot of the doubt came from lack of craft and experience. Not having the goods to know if an idea would be able to be fabricated and not understanding the bridge to take it from idea and execution. I am very execution oriented, very pragmatic. I would also get tripped up if I feel like I don’t understand the market place. I would wanna make sure to a fault that my idea was original. Its not about what other people do, its about where does this idea fall in the canon of ideas, under this category. Which is…silly.
FC: That seems hard to determine. What are your markers?
SS: There i none. I always come back to timing, the idea of time being an element and dimension that helps sort of encapsulate an idea to make it relevant or exciting or vibrant at any given point in time. This is what fashion really taught me. For instance a movie might play so much better now than 5 years ago because of the context where the world is.
FC: Can you define beauty?
SS: I think beauty is that…which…its that what usurps the NOW and sort of the surface world. It can transport and elevate an object or a person into something spiritual almost.
FC: Why is art important?
SS: Art is important-‐outside the fine art market – because it is at its best the purest expression of civilization at any given point in time. Its our heart and soul.
FC: What is part of a good conversation?
SS: Shock and awe! You know when somebody says something you absolutely didn’t expect.
FC: What has surprised you lately?
SS: I am surprised by the state of this country. The messy, misplaced cynicism and aggression. And how that’s manifesting itself in this election.
FC: if you were at a dinner what energy, person would you gravitate towards?
SS: Feminine for sure. Maternal, warm. I would go to the warmest, kindest lady in the room.
FC: What do you “need” to trust a stranger?
SS: I don’t know. Typically it is less of a conversational marker. Just that sort of a connection you feel but cant quite place. Strangers are what get me out of bad moods. If a stranger starts talking to me, it completely takes me out of my head. I cant quite place what that connection is though.
FC: What is your most magical place?
SS: I think my most magical place , which I recently rediscovered is, ….i went to a Montessori school in Ohio, there was adjacent to the school, this area where we all played in the woods . I went back there Thanksgiving and met the people who run the school now. It is pretty magical.
Thank you for the conversation.
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