Allow us to introduce you to Ben, a unique individual whose passions for people, art, and wine have shaped his journey on this planet (so far). Hailing from the picturesque town of McLaren Vale in South Australia, Ben's upbringing in a renowned wine region has undeniably influenced his outlook on life. However, his thirst for exploration led him to embark on a globetrotting adventure at the tender age of 17, immersing himself in the diverse cultures of Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia, New Zealand, and Canada. These formative years were filled with unconventional experiences that left an indelible mark on his character.
Presently, Ben's creative energy is channelled into Home of Plenty, a wine brand he initiated with his father. Together, they grow the grapes and craft the wine, while Ben takes charge of the rest. In this interview, we gain insight into Ben's profound appreciation for human connection, his love for uncharted territories, and his immense joy in simple pleasures. So, join us for Point of View #7 as we delve into the vibrant world of Ben, where good times and great stories await.
WHO ARE YOU?
Lover of people, art, wine and good times, citizen of planet Earth. My name is Ben. I come from a little town called McLaren Vale in South Australia which is a wine region, so I'm heavily influenced by this, but also left when I was 17 and lived in a few places like Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia, NZ, Canada so you’ll find remnants of these places in me where I experienced a lot of my formative years doing weird things. At the moment I’m working on a wine brand called Home of Plenty which I started with my dad - he grows the grapes, we make it together and I'm running the rest of it.
WHAT'S IMPORTANT TO YOU?
For sure people. Without them, life is pretty dull. People are the creators, innovators, and celebrators. I really enjoy meeting new people, talking to them and learning from them. Also, really good bread is really important.
WHAT DO YOU DO?
Mostly walk around bumping into stuff and asking a lot of questions. Things i really love doing are surfing, skating, making art, seeing interesting things and exploring with people. There’s not much I will say no to. Most happy when I'm in the sun with friends, drink in hand and listening to some good music.
HAVE YOU GOT A LIFE MOTTO?
It's either a good time or a great story. Think about that one.
ANY TATTOS? GOOD OR BAD?
Plenty. I have a cowboy riding a horse who is riding a surfboard on a wave on my leg. I got it in Mexico.
ARE YOU AN EMOTIONAL GUY? WHEN DID YOU LAST CRY?
On a plane, in Step Up 2. The movie is hectic good.
DO YOUR VALUES INFLUENCE YOUR RELATIONSHIP TO CLOTHES?
Yeah, I think so. I’m pretty DIY (for better or worse), so I often think I have the skills to do or make something when most of the time I actually don’t. I love turning clothes into different items as well. Got some jeans? Cut them into shorts. Got a shirt? Hoon a vest. And also scarves are the most underrated item of clothing. Face mask, beanie, tourniquet, whipping cloth, endless uses.
HOW DO YOU FIND YOUR LIFE SHAPES YOUR EXPRESSION THROUGH CLOTHING?
My closet is pretty eclectic, I think. This is probably shaped by having lived in a lot of different cultures, and worn a lot of different hats - from working in kitchens to digital marketing and everything in between. I like to wear interesting things, customise them and recycle garments and probably have legacy periods of my life that still influence me (90’s punk studded belt and dyed black hair era, I’m looking at you). I’ll always have a pair of skate shoes in my closet and always wish Mum let me get snakebite piercings.
WHAT'S YOUR FAVOURITE WINE?
The French do wine the best, something mixed and beautiful from France like Tibouren Clas Cibonne is easy with anything.
HOW IMPORTANT IS CREATIVITY IN YOUR ROUTINE?
I have a love-hate relationship with creative time. I really love being creative, but I sometimes find it hard in the hustle of life to dedicate the time so I really have to be disciplined to block out the time to paint, draw or work on creative projects. I’m pretty easily distracted so I'm trying to practise this and dedicate a little more time to be creative.
WHAT IS YOUR DENIM GO-TO?
Something super loose fitting and something I can ruin. I want to wear something I can wear forever and it fades out, get paint and wine on it and it still looks skitz. My Dr Denim go-to fit includes the Colt Worker, Tropper Tee and Sam Vest.
WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO?
At the moment, heaps of electronic. Overmono, logic1000, Barry Can’t Swim, DJ Seinfeld, Four Tet. But I also grew up on punk and hardcore - playing in lols bands while I was growing up copying bands like Alexisonfire, Underoath, Escape the Fate, 94 Hours, Saosin.
WHO/WHAT DO YOU LOOK TO FOR INSPIRATION FOR YOUR CRAFT?
In people, I'm quite lucky to know some very creative people and am stoked by some of my friends creating sick stuff like Harry Nathan & Alex Hayes (producers), Mehdi Sultani (life sensei), Ben Hewett (Yeo Haus clothing) Dan Aldridge (artist - we collaborated on the artwork for Home of Plenty) to name just a few.
And in other things, it's definitely new places that inspire me - different cultures, scenery and viewpoints.
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