The Early Hours Presents: Bboy Luis Prado

I can't believe January is already almost over!  Here we are moving forward with the third interview in our new series, taking a close look at how people are spending their time and why. 

This week we talked to Luis Prado, a dancer/b-boy from southern California. Luis actually was a customer first before we ever talked, but he quickly caught my attention with some fantastic photos featuring our product. We started talking and I started keeping a closer eye on his feed on Instagram - which you can find here. Breakdancing has always fascinated me because of the confidence it requires from the participants. I used to photograph competitions when I was 15-16 in Dallas, around the time I started painting graffiti, and I loved the energy at the events. The good dancers were kings of self promotion, selling their style and brand to the opponent and the crowd.  Luis is no different.  The quality of his breaking and instagram feed drew me in, and I was pleasantly surprised to find a super nice, humble individual on the other side. He's my favorite type of customer - supportive, humble, and hard working. It seems to me that he's going places - so without further ado...

1. Time is the most valuable resource. Do you agree or disagree, and why? 

Time, in my opinion, is one of the few resources that never seem to satisfy my needs. It's a challenge in itself to decide what to do with my time and figuring out how much of my time to dedicate to something. Personally, I think time is the most crucial resource for anyone with a mind set on a goal. I think of time as crumbs falling from a cookie. The more crumbs I allow to fall, the less cookie I get to eat. And the entire goal is to eat (figuratively and literally). 

2. How DO you spend your time? 

I'm a bboy (breakdancer) from San Diego and I represent Knick Knack crew. I've been dancing for 7 years and even then it feels like just yesterday I was watching YouTube tutorials on how to breakdance. A lot of my yearly projects involve planning and executing hip hop events for my local community down here. I also perform when presented with the opportunity and I teach elementary school kids how to dance. When I'm not practicing my craft or planning an event of some sort, I find myself behind a camera and often times in front of it. I think of a camera as my best friend through any creative journey. It provides a lot of unplanned usefulness. You never know when someone will want to have their picture taken, or when I'll come up with a new move to record on video or whenever I will see a great landscape that could easily be my next phone wallpaper. Additionally, I like anything that has to do with graphic design or just design in general. My general pictures folder on my computer is filled with tossed ideas for event logos, personal brand banners and even half fleshed-out, poorly photoshopped memes. 

Click below to read the rest of the interview...

3. Ideally, how WOULD you spend your time, if money were not an issue? 

If money were not an issue, I sincerely imagine myself doing a lot of the same but to a higher degree. I would thoroughly enjoy traveling to other communities and experiencing their iteration of hip hop. I would probably also dedicate more funds to a lot of hands-on crafts.  T-shirt design and building my own furniture immediately come to mind as I think about it. There's a little bit of beauty to lack of resources though, because a lot of great ideas and creations can come from having to find alternatives. If I didn't have to worry about money, then life would be a lot more straight forward and there's no fun in that. 

4. How do you plan to get from where you are, to where you want to be?

In order to completely answer this question, it's important to identify where I am exactly. It feels a little surreal to see everything that I've been through and accomplished to get to this point. My 13 year old self would have totally been a fan of who I am now and I find comfort in knowing that if my journey ended due to any unforeseen circumstance, I would be happy. Being a part of a community for so long and meeting a myriad of people in that time span puts me in a spot where I don't entirely feel like a "veteran" but I've been around long enough to understand the cycle of a dancer. I'm a community leader and representative for an area of San Diego that sees very little hip hop activity. Hosting my own annual event that draws people from different states and NorCal cities feels like a huge success because it provides one day of the year where our area is celebrated for it's dedicated dancers and artists. I want to continue shooting upward and connecting with individuals who inspire me to continue to pursue my path, even if we don't share the same medium. Ideally, at the very end of the road I want to know that I've inspired others to fulfill their desires and to pursue the changes they wish to see in their environments. 

5. What is the one biggest time wasting habit or thing you endure in your life? Could you reduce the impact of this if you wanted to spend the time doing something productive instead?

As an artist, I admit that I am very guilty of spending too much time dwelling on the criticisms that I receive. It's a complete waste of time that often ends in self loathing and lack of inspiration. I guess its part of the package when you're involved in some form of art but it could be entirely avoidable with a little self confidence and a firm grasp on the end goal. Social media is also the great double-edged sword of wasting time. It's very easy to scroll through any of your feeds and get lost in all of the buzz that's created by the daily lives of other people. I often find myself caring too much about my social media presence and I find it a little unhealthy. On the other hand, I would not be where I am without the power of social media. The internet is a hallway of unopened doors and a few online exchanges can bring a lot of positive outcomes that I wouldn't be able to relish in otherwise. 

6. What one thing do you indulge in that takes significant amounts of time that others might see as a waste, but you see as a blessing or integral part of your life?  

As ordinary as this may come across, I indulge a lot of my spare moments in collecting things. Right now I'm working on building up a library of X-Men comic books for no particular reason besides self enjoyment. I really appreciate the storytelling in some of these books and the art is an experience all on its own. I spend a little bit of money every month on these and obviously a little bit of time but its a way for me to cool down. Other notable collections include: hats (shout out to the Outdoors Caps, hands down my favorite hats) pins, event flyers, gemstones etc. Don't ask my parents about my collections though, because they would be the first to tell you about all of the things I could have rather saved up for instead. 

Thank y'all for taking the time to read these and offering feedback here and on Instagram. We look forward to bringing you more of these this year - if you're enjoying them, sign up at the top of the home page for our newsletter. We won't spam you - normally you will receive one or two emails a week, tops. Til next time..

Never Hesitate, Never Surrender