Friday, January 11, 2008

An interview with Eponymous Trenchmouth

If you're noticing the name of Eponymous Trenchmouth all over this blog, there's a reason; in the world of Second Life where good men's shoes are kinda hard to find, Eponymous has made it something of a goal in life to bring better footwear to the males of the species. Electing for a more mature, dare I say "adult" style over the flashy, trendy styles of his peers, Eponymous creates reliably great shoes and boots with a lot of taste and the occasional dash of flare. You'll notice me looking at a range of his stuff over the next little while (which is available at Jeepers Creepers), but I wanted to take a few minutes out and ask some questions from the man behind the sole.

On Your Toes: Give us a thumbnail sketch of who you are and what you do.
Eponymous Trenchmouth: My name is Eponymous Trenchmouth and I've been in SL since November 2005. At that time there was very little in the way of shoes for men and I introduced my first shoes - the crepe-soled "Jeepers Creepers" - in February 2006. Since then I've introduced many men's and women's shoes, although recently I've begun specializing in men's shoes, where I see much more room for new styles and ideas.

OYT: What kind of things are you working on at the moment?
ET: At the time of writing, I'm working on men's slippers!

OYT: It's a commonly-held belief that men have fewer decent options in Second Life where fashion and accessories are concerned. What's your take on that?
ET: Thanks to people like Ben Vanguard at SLMen and Ryan Darragh at Men's Second Style, attention has turned to the world of men's fashion. This has inspired designers, like myself, to focus our energies on creating the best products for Second Life's diverse community. I see SL as a place where people can experiment with their "look" without spending tons of RL money. For this reason, I like to push the design envelope a little, to introduce new styles and ideas. Hopefully this will rub off into RL, and we can get away from the ubiquitous and boring jeans and sneakers.

OYT: How does your own creative process work?
ET: My designs begin in RL on a yellow pad, where I doodle away my ideas. In SL I begin with the shape: I try to make my shoes as lifelike as possible, though given the ugly bulges on our avatar's feet, this does require some concessions to the shape. When I'm satisfied with the shape, I begin working on the textures in Photoshop. I've developed a technique that allows me great control over the placement and size of details like stitches and seams, and using Photoshop's Layers, I can create different colorways quite easily. Nevertheless, this is a time consuming process and on some shoes, I have uploaded over 100 textures before I'm satisfied that the shoe is as good as I can make it.

OYT: Which shoes from your own work are your personal favorites?
ET: If I could buy my black suede Oslo elastic-sided boots in RL, I'd be a very happy man.

OYT: What kind of advice would you give to men who want to make good decisions for footwear in SL?
ET: 1. Always try the Demo version before you buy.
2. Unless you're going barefoot, reduce the size of your feet to 20 or less. (I hate to see feet poking through the side of a fine shoe).
3. Make sure you wear the shoebase with the shoes.
4. If you want to wear boots under your pants, don't bother wearing the leg portions.

1 comment:

Cloud Galbraith said...

Mucho applause to OYT and Joel for the interview. To Eponymous please, please, please keep up the great work and designs! The Oslo... omgooodness is absolute fab and can easily be worn with a variety of apparel. I love your texturing!

When I became a part of SL in April of 2006, the state of menswear was... let's just say it was low on quality, selection and variety.
I think a certain amount of passion must be present in any endeavor and it's obvious that Mr. Trenchmouth brings his passion and flair to Jeepers... and SL residents have been the beneficiaries!

Continue onward!