Preston Ball’s clothing line WE ALWAYS C is on the rise across the Philadelphia area. You may see Millennials walking around the city with a mysterious circle and diamond on their caps and wonder. Preston sits down with Tribe Culture and gives us some insight on the meaning behind the WE ALWAYS C brand, the symbolism behind the logo, his experience as an up-and-coming graphic designer, and more.
What inspired you to start doing graphic design?
Preston: I’ve been doing art since kindergarten, I was always in advanced art classes growing up, consistently winning artist of the month awards in grade school, and was always into art. I’ve always been into hip-hop and started doing cover artwork for my friends and for other local artists.
Referring to graphic design, how would you categorize your style?
Preston: It’s definitely a cartoon inspired style, I loved cartoons growing up as a kid and still watch them until this day. I wasn’t into the realistic route of art much…I’ve always wanted to do things that I felt within my own imagination which is why I focus my art on cartoons.
Tribe Culture has seen that you have been pushing a clothing line called We Always C, can you explain the name of this brand?
Preston: From the origins, the name started with me and my friends from high school. My friends Shon Jones, Forrell Grant, Taivon Braxton, Nasir Muhammad and I all started this collective back as teens. The full slogan of our company is “we always see the vision”. We are all different types of people within this collective group, so we have different visions for ourselves. No matter what you believe in or whatever you are trying to do in life, make sure that your vision is fulfilled in the end and that is what we want everyone to take away from our brand We Always C. We made a slogan that was so ambiguous that it doesn’t matter who you are, it is your own perception. When you always see, you always make your vision come true.
Can you explain the symbolism behind the logo for We Always C?
Preston: The logo was made by my friend and collective member, Taivon Braxton. The funny thing is that it was a completely random logo. There was no true thought process behind it, it was just something that he came up with and we just ran with it. He just wanted to make something unique that would instantly catch the eye. It was not until recently that we put a meaning behind the logo.
The vision started and has grown since high school, but when did you guys start taking We always C seriously?
Preston: The vision started long ago, but we started taking things pretty serious back in 2016. As of November 2016, we got everything legalized forming an official LLC.
Were there any particular brands or styles that have influenced We Always C up until this point?
Preston: Yes. We have always been fans of the bigger streetwear brands like Supreme, Stussy, Thrasher, and brands like that. We want our demographic to be the people who represent the underground such as rappers, skaters and those who fit that type of lifestyle.
Since you are apart of a collective within We Always C, do any of your friends do music, graphic design, or any form of art?
Preston: For sure, our main business marketer (Shon Goner) does hip-hop music right now and I do a lot of his cover artwork and logos. Taivon Braxton does graphic design artwork like myself and also does music, and the other two (Forrell Grant and Nasir Muhammad) are on the business side of things.
Do you have any future plans or any future goals for We Always C?
Preston: We just released a variety of shirts, our fall catalog is going to be dope with the release of hoodies with many color variations. Long term, we would like to branch out of the Philadelphia area and spread to different locations to spread our message as far as possible.
Where could the public purchase your clothes from?
Preston: The public can purchase what we have on our website, which is wealwaysc.bigcartel.com. There, you guys can see all that we have and future content. We also always have events across the city, so if you hear us on a bill definitely come out and support!
Do you plan on giving back to others or the community with your success in We Always C?
Preston: Yes. We have always planned to give back to the community. Our high school was going through some rough times and we had ideas of revisiting our old high school and speaking to kids to help inspire them. We want to eventually be an active part of the Cheltenham and Philadelphia communities with continued success.
What advice would you give a young up-and-coming entrepreneur?
Preston: Always stay focused and stay patient. Don’t worry about other people’s progress, stay focused on yourself and stay in your lane. Success does not happen over night. But if you keep attacking and give it 150% every day, you will find success in whatever you’re doing.