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Blog

Beat Submission Sundays

Zach

Happy Sunday all! In honor of spring, the season of new growth, we are happy to announce a new initiative to help our musically-inclined fans fuel their mindful release. As of today, and on every Sunday going forward, Mindful Release is accepting, and encouraging, beat submissions to be featured in our non-commercial videos (Instagram, Youtube, etc.) as part of Beat Submission Sundays (BSS). 

Every Sunday, we will review the submissions from the week prior, and choose a few to accompany our videos for the upcoming week. When an artist is chosen, their name and social media accounts will be advertised with the video when it is published.

At the end of every month, one of the chosen artists will be interviewed and featured on our blog as a Submission Spotlight Artist (SSA). Each SSA will have their music linked to our blog as a way to promote deserving talent. Artists can submit as many times as they want, and all genres of music are accepted.

To Submit your beats, click here.

Artists must only submit their own work, and Mindful Release is not liable for any copyright claims if you have submitted someone else's work. To learn more, visit Section 20 of our Terms & Conditions.

 

Release and Resistance

Zach

Right now, friends, I’m a little concerned with the direction my country’s politics are headed, and because of that I can’t help but make this inaugural blog post a loosely political one. I feel a kind of dread at what the next four years might hold for the people and the land of my country. Sometimes it feels like a humid summer day where the air is so heavy that it hangs on you like a weighted coat. Right now I could use bit of release, but when I think of “release” I think of prisoners, or waivers and some kind of corporate liability.

When I think of moments of personal pleasure, of release, I can’t help but ask myself if those are appropriate right now. Is it an extravagant use of my privilege to lose myself in a drawing, or sit down to write a poem about the creek behind my childhood home? When C.S. Lewis first wrote the Chronicles of Narnia they were poorly regarded as “escapist” books, allowing people to flee their lives for a land of fantasy, and many mocked that desire to find a space outside of the dreary reality of postwar Europe. At any time, but especially when the future could be grim and there’s much to be done, how is release a responsible use of our time?

I suppose it depends on what we deem responsible. Is resistance of the negatives forces in our world valuable? If we find a moment of personal release, isn’t that a liberation from any larger problem that could be sucking you in? Cathartic release doesn’t have to be separate from the release of a prisoner if it builds a bubble outside of the prison. And if we can start to envision a world outside our “prison," whatever it may be, what better place to start? If we want to make a change we have to start with the things around us.

Calligraphy is Shane’s release. He takes a pen and creates something beautiful right in front of him. Is that escapist? If thousands of people from around the world spend 50 seconds watching an instagram video of the graceful, intricate process of calligraphy, does that have no larger impact?

Shane told me “when I sit down and do calligraphy, there’s so much attention to detail, I literally can’t think about anything else while it’s happening, I'm too focused on each stroke. It reminds me of meditation practices where they give you just enough to focus on that you can’t focus on anything else.” Even if nobody ever saw his work would feeling that way, letting everything else go to focus on every last stroke of the pen, not carry into the rest of Shane’s life, and then into the lives of whoever he saw that day, sending out ripple effect like the butterfly who flaps its wings in Brazil and causes a hurricane in Florida? A man with a pen in his hands can change the world, even if at first it just changes his mood.

But release is only half of what this is all about. Addiction and adultery can come from release and a desire for it that rules out everything else. That’s why it’s Mindful Release. When you’re mindful you focus entirely on what it is that you’re doing. You stop running on autopilot so that every action is deliberate. And so, in a way, Mindful Release is not separate from prisoners and it’s not separate from liability either, the deliberate nature of creation is an assumption of personal liability.

Some weeks, I carry a lot of baggage into the weekend. Or maybe I get to Sunday and find I’m already fretting about the week ahead. Perhaps I want to think about an unfinished project, or I fret about what a friend who I haven’t spoken to in a while thinks about me. But my mindful release is baking, so when I feel this way I realize I need to make something. I take responsibility for the world inside my head and when I roll balls of cookie dough for the baking sheet or knead a big lump of bread I work everything out, just as I work the flour in. I am taken aback by the beauty of the soap bubbles swirled over the mixing bowl as I wash the dishes and when everything is done, I feel refreshed. I go into the next week with renewed energy and enthusiasm. How could that release not be essential to any role I want to take in making change?

So as you ask yourself how you can fight against the forces of hate or set others free, ask also: what is it that sets you free? Where do you find happiness? That is your mindful release. And if you act on it you are creating peace in yourself that will spill over into the world.

I asked Shane what the unifying theme for his first line of apparel was, and he told me “Mindful, and Release. Also, all the prints are going to be in walnut.” Eventually the white long sleeve with the black print came to be, but the original plan was to do all walnut-colored printing. I’m often amused at the words that people use to describe colors, but walnut actually seems quite fitting. Even more fitting that the items that feature walnut do so on a black background. When times are dark we must plant seeds for good things.

The Release Collection - Winter 2017

Zach

The wait is over, and our first collection is here. Simple and practical, everyday but elegant, The Release Collection finds itself manifested in two items: the MNDFL Hoodie and the Release Long Sleeve. 

The hoodie as a garment is a classic piece of street wear and this one is no exception. A black background with walnut graphics, it’s comfortable enough for a night in, but the signature calligraphy element gives it an air of sophistication appropriate for a gallery opening as well. The sweatshirt is light enough to layer or to be used as outerwear as soon as the summer heat starts to wane. An easy but important piece of every wardrobe, the hem tag says it all with the signature question: What is your Mindful Release?

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The Release long sleeve serves as a lighter layer, available in both black and white to suit your taste. The intricate lettering sits in the middle of the chest but doesn’t speak too loudly. These shirts don’t try too hard to prove anything, they embody release by letting the graphic sit as it is, coexisting naturally with stretches of empty shirt. Both white and black versions are 100% combed, ringspun cotton and come pre-shrunk so you don’t have to guess at sizing. For a better idea of sizing, view our Size Chart.

All items have been hand designed and are printed with water-based ink. We use exclusively water-based inks to treat both the wearer and the environment right. While plastisol-based inks leave a film that can be felt and cracked, our water-based ink binds with the fabric itself. The printing process doesn't leave any film so the fabric is just as soft and pliable as before the printing. This means no blocks of ink folding awkwardly when you sit down, and no cracking and fading of the design as you wash it.

The water-based ink also helps us stay Mindful about our carbon footprint. Plastisol inks typically contain chemicals that deplete the ozone layer, are harmful to the environment, and have been linked to numerous medical disorders. They also require the printers to use harmful solvents when they clean their screens. Water-based inks can be washed right off of the screen with water and can be made without the chemicals, lead, and heavy metals you find in plastisol inks. So in the end it was easy––we chose water based inks to do right by our customers, our printers, and our world.

Consider this our formal invitation to explore your Mindful Release in our first collection, and in your own life. Whether you need some fresh clothes or a fresh perspective, we could all use some Mindful Release.