Read Pharrell’s GQ Interview Where He Talks About God, Gratefulness & Doodling On Garms
Looking at Pharrell, you can’t help but notice that his style is always so smooth — so smooth it’s awesome. That’s why he was named one of GQ’s Most Stylish Men Alive and even called a “style icon” by Kanye West. Pharrell’s been making big waves in the fashion game over the past two years and his new Adidas track jacket which looks like its been customized with Egyptian hieroglyphics just got added to the ocean. Well it turns out that the designs are his own doodles that have been embroidered into the jacket! P sat down with GQ to talk about how he thought of them, what they represent and appreciation for nature (while standing up for wearing rainbows, flowers & suns). Read on…
PHARRELL X GQ
How do you make your embroidered track jackets and what were you thinking the first time you started drawing on one?
I feel like they serve as the perfect canvas. Basically, once I drew on one we found somebody who could embroider on top of the work. That just made it feel way more special and bespoke.
What are you channeling when you start doodling on your clothes?
Whatever I’m thinking about just comes through. It’s a way for me to express myself, but it’s not like I’m taking it seriously. It’s not like I schedule this. Every once in a while I just take my pen out and doodle. They wouldn’t be as good if I took ’em super seriously like I’m some artist and shit. I think it’s that DIY thing that I grew up with as a kid.
There is something childlike about the doodles, but at the same time there are some pretty evolved messages that pop up as well, right?
All I’m really trying to do is offer people information that blew me away. So I’m grateful for anyone who sees [the messages] and Googles them. None of them are so esoteric that you have to go to the Bibliotheque Nationale in Paris. It just reads esoteric because a lot of it is drenched in interesting symbolism. It’s stuff that’s incredibly poetic and the messages are so deep and real and accessible to everyone.
So sometimes the words are references that people can unpack if they Google them?
The one I’m doing right now says, “THE UNIVERSE IS MADE OF THE HOLY FIRE.” That’s basically just my belief that we live in God. God is everywhere. The Bible says, “If you open a splinter you’ll find me there.” Jesus also says, “I am in the father and the father is in me.” To me, if I looked at that from a scientific point of view—and I’m not trying to debate or argue with anyone—but I think what’s being communicated there is that the All, the universe, is of a ubiquitous nature. It’s everywhere. There wouldn’t be theories like the God Particle if there wasn’t any truth to that, you know?
Pardon the simple-mindedness of this question, but do you get shit from your friends for wearing doodles of flowers and rainbows and sunshine? What does it say about the culture that men can now wear jackets covered in those kinds of symbols?
Wow, I don’t know. I’d be afraid for anyone that had a problem with a rainbow. You know? It’s one of the most amazing things ever and it’s actually a gift from the holy. It’s an illusion where light is refracting through moisture or a dense rain system and because you’re blessed to be standing where you are or driving where you are or flying where you are or looking out a window, you’re lucky enough to catch the light that is all around us in a refracted way. Because truth be told there are always rainbows, but not everybody is always in the right conditions to see them. It takes the light going through a prism or it takes the light going through water for us to see that. So when nature gives that up to you randomly, it’s a gift! It would be crazy not to appreciate that. And flowers—who doesn’t appreciate flowers? Yes, women appreciate flowers. But man, if we don’t have flowers the bees can’t pollinate and the food chain… it’s over! I dunno, maybe I’m just in a really grateful place. There are ills in this world, but there’s also inspiration.