#ScaleYourPassion | Brian Seymore
Scale Your Passion Feature Interview | Brian Seymore
Creative Director of FRS
Tell us about yourself and your company! What do you specialize in? How long have you been in business?
Of course! I am the Creative Director of FRS (For Rent Shoes). I am also a fine artist by trade and have been running an independent painting practice for five years. I am also the Program Director for Baltimore’s Gifted, and Founder of Brian Seymore Supply Group. FRS is a lifestyle and apparel image boutique. Within FRS I curate “The Combine by FRS”, a compact boutique that features 8-10 independent Baltimore brands.
So, like many creatives, you wear a lot of hats. Tell us more about your role at FRS and what you’re building there?
FRS opened six years ago. We have always been about providing our customers with unique and exclusive items, including selections from the 400+ local artists and brands.
Our name “For Rent Shoes” stems from the fact that our original logo was based around a “For Rent” sign. The story goes that it was kind of a play on words, on knowing whether or not the store was officially “open”. At the time our only way of knowing about us was word of mouth, we didn’t advertise. So a sense of community has really been cultivated around this space. I had worked with FRS as an independent artist before I came on as the Creative Director. So when I was approached to come in and redevelop and re-push our programs, it was very much a perfect fit.
One of the key programs I’m developing is “The Combine” a compact-shop within the store. The concept very much stems from my passion for building programming designed to enhance creative and business development within the city. While also providing platforms for designers and emerging artists alike.
What is your “big vision” for Baltimore’s creative community?
The goal of everything that I do is engagement, especially when it comes to black and brown people. There are a lot of un-nuanced narratives around “empowerment” [directed toward black and brown communities] which can ultimately be oppressive, especially in a Capitalist society. The fact is, everyone is empowered to be a creative. People just need the tools to build. That is what drives my work, personally and professionally.