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Primitive Skateboarding is the brand of Paul Rodriguez. Primitive Skateboards was launched in 2014 after Paul was no longer sponsored by Plan B. He had been with Plan B for a long time, felt loyal to the sponsor and still had many close friends. But after doing some thinking he knew it was an opportunity to launch his own brand and to have more control over that side of his career.
When looking at a brand it’s important to know its roots. And in this case we have to look at the roots of the founder, Paul Rodriguez. He grew up just outside of Los Angeles. Skateboarding had seen a resurgence in popularity in the ‘90s. The X Games helped bring the sport back into the mainstream. It was right around this time when Paul received his first skateboard as a gift. He said that gift was what changed his life.
Paul Rodriguez, P-Rod, as his friends called him spent just about every waking hour with his skateboard. And he even claims to have slept with his board close by under his arm many nights. That’s a love many of us never discover. But for Paul it was all about skateboarding and he took that love all the way to the pro ranks where he has been and continues to be very successful.
So it’s with that backdrop that the roots of Primitive were formed. Paul has said that he never really had a plan for creating the brand. And that probably worked out for the best. He was able to focus on his style and just kind of let the ideas flow when it came to designs. The brand became a reflection of himself. He was the only pro with the brand to begin, but in the last couple years the team has added more.
But let’s back up a bit here.
It turns out that the Primitive brand has been around for longer than just a few years. The brand launched in 2008 with a partnership with Rodriguez and two others: Andy Netkin and Jubal Jones.
Primitive, in those days and all the way to today, was clothing brand. Just a few shirts and hats. But they’ve been in the game for the long haul. Nearly ten years later the brand is really finding its stride.
When it was time for Paul to launch a board brand he was smart to launch it under the Primitive name. It was a recognized brand. Skateboarding fans knew what the brand was about. Paul had been involved since the beginning. It made sense and now the brand is taking on even more characteristics that make it unique in the industry.
Passion. That’s probably the word that best describes Primitive Skateboarding. Paul is passionate about skateboarding. Even today, well into his career, he still spends most of his time skating. He may be the president of the brand, but his focus is mostly on skating.
And skateboarders are usually pretty passionate about their gear as well. That passion goes into the hard and soft goods at Primitive.
On the soft goods side, you’ll find a number of different styles and designs. But they all have a distinct feel. You’ll find a lot of the apparel with nothing but the Primitive logo in its different variations.
You’ll see nods to California life. You’ll see nods to the fun side of life. The chill side of life. Just lots of things that the designers at the brand can come up with. Paul has said in interviews that it’s a free flowing design team. They come with design ideas. The riders come with ideas. It has an open feel and the best ideas that everyone likes get produced.
The key to the brand seems to be the personalities of the riders. They’re encouraged to be themselves and to let it come out with the products. And the cool thing is that it’s perfect for a lifestyle brand like Primitive. Fans can connect with the riders they relate to the most. And they can buy shirts and other products that best fit their personalities.
The future of the brand is intriguing. The team is taking things slow, but consistent. They want to be a brand that sticks around for a long time. They’re not overextending themselves.
That is an appealing trait and makes this brand and this team worth following.
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