Born in Albany, New York and now a student at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, Will Cobain, designer for SoFaygo is making waves with his art in the rise of the youth. After designing the cover art and merch for Faygo’s prominent album, “After Me”, the 19-year-old designer continues to expand his influence over music. Will runs a large discord group for fans, artists, and followers of the underground music scene. Simultaneously, preparing to launch his own brand in due time and working for other artists like TyFontaine, SSGKobe, Cochise and many more. Will gives us insight as a rising designer in the hip-hop industry.
Designer can be a broad title. What is your primary role?
I feel like I don’t have a primary role besides being a creative person and staying versatile. I do everything. Whether I’m working with others, designing clothes, working on cover art, it’s an all-around position.
How did you meet SoFaygo?
I did some fanart for Faygo, Pasto Flocco and Lil Tecca. Faygo really liked it, showed it to Tecca and we got connected. Nothing crazy but it developed naturally. Eventually, he brought me on to work with his projects and asked me to join WEB. It started off more business oriented, but we’ve become friends over time.
You designed the After Me merch. Can you tell me about the creative process behind it?
It was a collaboration between me and Fern, the owner of Sin Scars. He printed the tees out in Atlanta. I actually went out there in the midst of designing the collection. It was actually for the release party of After Me. However back to the pieces, we wanted them to be a staple and showcase the web theme all throughout. We didn’t want to do too much in terms of being extra, so we kept it conceptual.
You run an underground music Discord server with over 700 members. Can you tell me about Discord’s significance in the underground music scene today?
Discord plays a huge role in the community. Most of the members are young. A lot of servers allow people to connect with smaller artists and stream their music. Some servers also have virtual concerts due to Covid. I want this server to connect everyone on one platform. There’s a lot of smaller servers doing similar things, but I wanted to bring everyone together on one.
You’ve done cover art for SSGKobe, Lil Gotit, SoFaygo, Slime Life Shawty, Ty Fontaine and more. How have you navigated your way through the industry and received great placements?
I try to not take it all too seriously. I really care about my relationships with others and making sure everyone’s good. There’s real love behind my conversations with people and creatives in the industry, I want us all to win.
In your eyes, what artist tied fashion and hip-hop together?
For me, it was Lil Uzi Vert. He sparked my interest in individual style and got me heavily invested in the underground. The most prominent fit that got me into my individuality was when Uzi was wearing a Meouthe “Brittany” jean jacket during his 2016 XXL Freshman Cypher. I remember seeing that and everything changed at that moment. From the Goyard bags and crazy sweaters, to his charisma and jacking his own swag, he just ties it all together for me. He’s a pioneer in bridging the gap.
What’s been your biggest networking tool and how would you advise others to utilize it?
My biggest networking tool is instagram forsure. I would advise others to use it to build or join a community. Reach out to who you think is fire, let your presence be known as well.
Can you tell me about the collective you’re in WEB?
I can’t say too much about it now but the members are myself, SoFaygo, Sportvvs, Wolfacejoeyy, Its2ezzy, Bryceuknwn, and Y2tnb.
You have a long career ahead of you. What’s your biggest success and toughest learning experience?
Seeing the millions of streams for “After Me” and the merch selling extremely was a great feeling. When so many people appreciate work you’ve done and millions of people have seen it, it’s wild to think about. As far as a toughest learning experience goes, it’s the realization that you need to be credible before you have leverage. You can’t enter a room and expect something without leverage.
What is your favorite thing about what you do?
The relationships and friendships I’ve been able to make. I was never really social growing up and would spend my time scrolling through instagram and feeding my interest in art, music and fashion. I honestly think that the internet helped me get out of my shell and pushed me into what I’ve wanted to become for years.
What can we expect from you this year?
Firstly, I’ll be dropping my plushie “Baby Bane” and emerging more into the modeling industry and overall the fashion community. As well as big roles on some big projects. There’s a lot on the way that no one thought I could do.