Meet Rocky. AKA "Rock" or "Rockstar". He was a dog of many names.
Continuing Rudder's underlying theme of nostalgia and tradition, I felt that the first T-Shirt design of our new Water Colors Series should be symbolic to my roots and really help paint a picture (pun intended) of my vision for this brand. Rocky was my dog growing up, and he was the best. Yes, it is a completely biased statement, but we all believe we have the best dog in the world. In reality, all dogs are the best dogs in the world.
Personally, I grew up with Golden Retrievers all around me. My grandparents, aunts, uncles, and Mom and Dad all had Golden Retrievers. During the summer months growing up when my family was at the cabin together, there were Goldens everywhere running around and swimming in the lake. It was amazing, almost dream-like.
Some of my fondest memories of Rocky were at the lake house. That's where my family and I first met him once he was adopted, and where he could do his favorite thing in the entire world… “go fishing”. This would be where he would wade in the shallows of the lake for hours, waiting for fish to swim between his feet, and if he got lucky, maybe even snatch one out of the water. Rocky would do this for hours on hours. Did he ever catch anything? No. But that didn’t seem to matter to him, he was just happy to be in the lake.
The best part of the dogs "fishing" for me and my cousins was the fact that having them wade in the shallow water provided endless entertainment for us. These Goldens were gracious enough (or really had no choice) to let us little kids hold onto their bushy tails as they walked in the water, literally dragging us behind them. We would slap some goggles on, maybe even a snorkel, and have the time of our lives going wherever our dogs would go in the lake.
Rocky sparked my love for dogs from the moment I met him, and to me, he's symbolic of summers as a kid swimming in the lake, hanging by the bonfire with family, and running around barefoot aimlessly without a care in the world. Our Goldens are water dogs, and we are water people. It all just collectively adds to the cohesiveness of the picture.
So, I consider Rocky to be our mascot. Is one type of dog better than another? Is one cuter than another? No. But, for this brand and how much it derives from me and my experiences, it felt right to have our “unofficial-official” Co-Captain be my childhood dog, Rocky. Plus, it just so happens that Rocky and Rudder both start with Rs… love boating… and have a knack for the water. See!? Cohesiveness.
I hope you all love him as much as I do.