Orange & Park

Interview by Glenn Sakamoto

Who is Orange & Park and how did you get started?
Orange & Park is David Klinker and John McCauley. We've been friends since the early 90s when we first crossed paths at Coronado Middle School. David spent the better part of high school making music and designing, John tagged along for the ride, often with a camera in hand. We went off to college, David spent some time in Barcelona, John went to New York. 

By 2005, we found ourselves back in San Diego as full-fledged adults with real jobs and wives. We kicked around a couple ideas and in 2009 we arrived at Orange & Park: a bit of clever typography, a tad of love for geography, and a whole bunch of screen printing to create unique products inspired by the places and things we love.

How much of your work is related to your relationship to the ocean and surfing?
We grew up surrounded by water in Coronado and spent a big chunk of our childhood in the ocean and playing water polo. Neither of us are stellar surfers by any means but we have an affinity for the ocean and surf culture, a theme that comes up often in our work.

What is your design background?
We find beauty in simplicity, an aesthetic that definitely drove the early stages of surf culture. Take a spin through a Leroy Grannis or Ron Stoner book. The clean lines on a Velzy, the basics-only Birdwells, the subdued colors up and down the Pacific Coast Highway. Oh man—to have lived through that era. And there's John Van Hamersveld's Endless Summer print, what an enduring image. A legitimately iconic image.

Who/What are you influences?
I think we are seeing a return to basics in surf culture, there's definitely a retro movement underway. We love the Aloha Sundays of the world, stores like Saturdays, Mollusk, and Almond. On the creator side, there are so many people out there that influence us: Cyrus Sutton, Foster Huntington, the Malloys, Morgan Maassen, Todd Glaser, Grant Ellis, the list just goes on and on. 

Chris Burkard is at the top of our list. We recently launched the Scout Series, a collaboration with Chris focused on remote surf destinations. It was a huge honor to work with a world-class photographer and all-around awesome person like Chris. We hope to do more in the future. 

Who is your typical customer?
Our customers span a wide spectrum. We have roughly 20 wholesale accounts, everything from surf shops like Aloha Sunday and Emerald City to small boutiques. One common theme in our customer base: San Diego. San Diego is to Orange & Park as Germany is to David Hasselhoff! Stay classy San Diego, we love you.

We have at least one super star famous customer. About a year ago Surfer ran a short video on Sterling Spencer. As luck would have it, the frame grab for the video was a photo of Sterling with an Orange & Park print behind him! We probably had 10 friends call us that day. So Sterling is a customer, which is so rad. 

What do you hope to communicate with your art?
The beauty of simplicity. You don't see a lot of layers and texture in Orange & Park designs. David's work is clean. It makes you think, Hey, I could have done that. Then you sit down with him and he walks you through the grids, the font selections, the spacing and sizing and so on and you realize, Wow, this is really complicated. I love that. He's a super talented guy. 

What’s next for Orange & Park?
More of the same, a steady stream of new designs. You'll start to see us put out more non-map designs, like our recent surfboard prints. Hopefully more exploring; California, Baja, Spain is were you'll likely find us.