Artist Spotlight: Jacob Foulk

Jacob Foulk poses for his senior photo up on Mt. Tabor Park. Foulk plans to continue PDX Culture post-high school and release his designs periodically around the seasons. Photo by Buck Chapman.

Student. Skater. Creator. Jacob Foulk (12) is following where his passions lead. Whether adventure leads him to abandoned buildings or underground tunnels, one way or another, he and his friends “have been pretty consistent in finding places where [they] shouldn’t be.” Foulk also enjoys reading up on music and exploring different music genres and groups, with his greatest interest being in cars. All of these parts of his life have influenced him into creating PDX Culture, a creative outlet to his ideas and designs.

PDX Culture may have just started as a street art sticker brand, but right now Foulk, creator and owner, is in full swing of his original idea: running a clothing line. His influence largely comes from music. “I’m not really sure why but I can’t really create anything unless I’m listening to music. Certain music influences me more than others like, for example, Tyler, the Creator is one of my big influences. I really love the colors of his work, in general, like the music, the clothing, just everything about it appeals to me,” he says. Foulk released his first line of prints for T-shirts and hoodies from his website this winter, accomplishing a goal that he had been working towards for some time now. He pulled it off with around 25 sales, a great success that Foulk did not entirely expect. Products have been handed to friends through school, and shipped to people from out of state (including all the way out to a girl in Miami, Florida). The brand is only just taking off, and the future holds Culture as a staple in streetwear society everywhere.

So far, Instagram has primarily been the pioneer of PDX Culture’s success. “A lot of supporters have been friends, which I like, but I also want to get away from that,” he says. Foulk has dabbled in Instagram ads, but it’s not what he sees as the future for his business. Instead, word of mouth and guerilla marketing have been the most productive and efficient modes of marketing. As Foulk sees it, “Try to hook people up, people with influence.” He plans on giving some products out to popular influencers in Portland to help expand his presence, but so far he says his success is from “word of mouth, social media, and honestly pure luck.”

On running a business, Foulk explains that he definitely focuses more on clothing than school, but luckily his senior year has been a lot less busy, giving him more time to create. The biggest challenge has been getting durability in his products. His current method of production relies on heat printing, which is applying heat onto the decor and material, resulting in the printed garment. Foulk no longer relies on screen printing with his newfound producer, which he’s proud to announce will lead to a big rise in quality from this point on. “Taking the time to design stuff instead of just ripping it,” is what Foulk sees as a challenge, but Culture is ready to take it to the next level, continuing to release new lines of designs starting with this upcoming spring and summer.

Jacob Foulk continues to make his dream a reality, fueled by the passion and support of those around him. He can be found on Instagram as @culture_.clothing or in the hallways of Franklin. Show your support and grab one of his original creations to show off your Portland culture.

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