SALT. Optics

Author: JOAN GRADY

Interview of the Month
February 14, 2016

Handmade by nature

His love for sport and travel led David Rose to create SALT. Optics in 2006. Almost ten years later, as Head of Design of the Californian company, he maintains that “the purest form of design comes from the shapes and colours nature provides us” and that “the treasured inspiration of nature will always push us forward”. Yet with the help of Japanese craftsmen, the 2016 collection builds on that core value with an innovative technical component.

Q: What kind of audience does SALT. Optics attact?

A: I design in a way that I believe speaks to everyone. My goal is to create the perfect basics for everyday life, regardless of personality. I’m inspired by a clean sensibility with unexpected details. Our frames are meant to be worn, and worn a lot!

Q: How would you describe the latest SALT releases?

A: Nature continues to be a source of inspiration. The new C1 collection for 2016 has a Californian sensibility with a little bit of ease to it. There’s bi-colour tortoise enamel platting on our Beta Titanium frame, hex head real rivets on our flat sheet Titanium, and rain-drop inspiration shows up on our temple ends. This season, I was heavily influenced by my summer experience rafting the Rogue River in Oregon, surfing my home breaks in Newport Beach and hiking the John Muir trail in the High Sierras. These experiences reminded me of how vibrant and yet calming colours in nature can be.

This season, I was heavily influenced by my summer experience rafting the Rogue River in Oregon…

Q: What’s the most inspiring place in California in your opinion?

A: It never ceases to amaze me how the colours and textures in the sunrise reflects off the ever changing tide waters and sandy banks during my early morning runs along the trails of the Back Bay in Newport Beach. Everything’s perfect at exactly that moment. 

Q: What kind of materials are used in SALT. Optics’ eyewear and how are they nature-friendly?

A: I really like working with acetate. I like the weight and overall feel of it. I love all the amazing rich and unique colours and finishes. There are endless possibilities with acetate and no two frames are ever alike. Typically I use cellulose acetate. It’s lightweight, strong, hypoallergenic and made from renewable resources. For our C1 Collectio, I really wanted to up our technical component by using more Titanium and Beta-Titanium fully thinned out to create lightweight frames with excellent strength to weight ratio. I just felt like it’s such an attractive material and that it needed to be more represented in the collection.     

There are endless possibilities with acetate and no two frames are ever alike.

Q: Can you tell us about this first SEESALT event and its initiative to benefit Charity Water.

A: The goal of SEESALT. is to celebrate the people and organizations that inspire the people behind the SALT. brand. The objective of the SEESALT. Events is to provide a platform of recognition for three inspiring photographers and raise money and awareness for one inspirational humanitarian cause. Over 300 people attended the New York event and were able to raise almost $20,000 USD for the humanitarian organization CHARITY: WATER.

Q: Who attended?

A: The people who attended the event were like minded artists, performers and business people. Overall, SEESALT. New York was a success. We had many of New York’s finest creatives telling us that they stayed at the event well over an hour, great people, great creatives. More importantly, we raised a lot of money for an amazing cause. In total, enough to provide 817 people with healthy water.

SEE SALT NYC Exhibition to benefit Charity Water

SALT. Optics’ CEO Aaron Behle is behind the SEESALT. Events, launched in NYC in October.  SEESALT took place at The Hole Gallery and showcased the work of three inspirational photographers: surf photographer, Daniel Russo, Cole Barash, a photographer from Brooklyn, New York, and Meg Haywood Suulivan, an outdoor lifestyle photographer and environmentalist.

\\ SALT. Optics told 20/20 EUROPE that plans are underway to hold similar SEESALT. Events across Europe featuring European photographers.

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