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Oakley Obsession – The 7 Most Significant Sunglasses


– The One Obsession campaign is a big part of Oakley’s recent history. It’s the idea that many of us, most of us have an obsession with our chosen sport. But many of us have also got
an obsession with Oakleys. And one person who definitely ticks that box is Brian Takumi. Now he’s worked here for 21 years. He’s the VP of Brand Creative and he literally wrote the book on Oakley. And he is gonna take us
through his top seven coolest, favorite, most important
Oakleys of all time. (intense music) Right, I am looking forward to this. We get to geek out on sunglasses. In front of us, we’ve got a selection of what you think are the most important or your favorite Oakley
glasses of all time. Where are we gonna start? – I think first thing we’ll start with, we have to start with
the beginning of Oakley and sunglasses and that’s the Eyeshade. I think definitely without this you wouldn’t have Oakley
as it exists today ’cause it really put us down the path of starting out with eyewear, so obviously it’s a very
sports-specific piece and a very niche piece. At the same time, it’s what kind of helped put us on our path to making
what we are today with eyewear. I think the next thing as you look at is obviously one of
the next steps in that, which was Razor Blade. Because I think while this was the piece that helped create Oakley, Razor Blades was probably the piece that really defined it to becoming, leaving that niche world of just cycling and snow sports and things like that, and really going into this
blend of sport performance could become lifestyle eyewear
that you could wear everyday. So when you look at the Razor Blade, that it transcended not
just being used in sport, but could be worn as an everyday piece. And certainly over the years this shape, the shape of the lens, the iconic ear stems
certainly became a mainstay of helping to define sports eyewear. – Yeah, and I mean, ’cause
they were used in sport. Greg LeMond wore a pair to win the Tour de France, didn’t he, in ’89? And then equally now,
was it Pharrell Williams had a nice diamond
encrusted pair recently? – Pharrell Williams has a
nice diamond encrusted pair, a solid gold pair that he had a jeweler make,
– A solid gold pair. – so it’s definitely found
its place in pop culture, history and the present day, so certainly that is a definitely
a defining moment for– – And the customization
on the Razor Blades, that obviously wasn’t
available on the Eyeshades, but the range of color and
options, the start of it, was that different between
these two generations? – Yeah, I think there was definitely, Jim saw the opportunity here with the removable and
adjustable ear stems, something he had on there and then as they were continued
working on Razor Blades, not that it had the adjustable ear stems, but certainly the fact
that he was able to create the earpiece kit that he was able to sell and sell in multiple colors and basically that you could
customize ’em yourself. So certainly was the first step of seeing customization come to life and I think that’s why Razor Blades were actually to become
an iconic thing too, because it allowed not
just the performance that you could do in it, but
also the personal expression of being able to pick and choose your colors and shapes
and things like that. – All right, then what
are we movin’ onto next? The third most important pair. – I think just going down the timeline, it probably starts with Mumbo M-Frame, just because really this was the dawning of that optically
correct, the torque shape, which more the shape of a sphere versus the cylindrical shape here, so also it was the starting of really to think about the different lens shapes, so this was a very square shape back in the day of what we were doing and then to start to think about how do you really make
this fit someone’s face? And so one of the things Jim always liked, this idea about a three-point fit, which helped define the shape of this, where the hookier stems went away, we went to the straight ear stems, and that was really something about really creating this idea that it wouldn’t hang off your face, that as it would sit
back here, it would sit these two points right
here and on your nose and it had this idea
about three-point fit, which is also why when you
look at these ear stems, they have the hammer ear
stem, had the trigger, had the shape go this way, whereas when you look at a M-Frame, you’ll see that the ear stem
comes out and goes back, and that was really to create this idea of fit going right here and holding onto your head
versus hanging off your face. – Okay, so where do we go next then? From our M-Frame to… – The next one for me is probably, didn’t have a huge
mainstream place in history, but it definitely had something in helping drive where we are today and it was actually, obviously
for the cycling world, you guys are very aware of Racing Jacket, but it was this one we did for Atmos as a co-lab in Australia, or in Japan, and the thing with it was is this actually glows in the dark, all this color, the celeste
color, the ear socks, the celeste paint glows in the dark. And really obviously at that time, you’re talking about, I want
to say early, or 2010ish, around there when we were
doing that, or late 2000s. Obviously trying to do something like this on a piece of eyewear was not easy. And so a lot of detail
went into this too of these had to be hand splattered, on top of that, making sure
the glow-in-the-dark paint didn’t rub off, at the
same time the detail that we put in of having the little A actually stamped on to the bolts there. This was really, I think, really helped us set the tone for how we would push the boundaries in deco again and start really putting some stuff that was interesting
out there in the world and take it to a whole new level. – Yeah. It’s quite an iconic shape,
I guess is well-known, given that Geraint
Thomas is single-handedly still flying the flag.
– He still wears that to this day. – Are you tempted to do a
custom pair for him this year? – Oh, it goes back and forth. I think it’s, you guys are cyclists, so you know it’s hard
to, sometimes, as much as we look to progress the
shape, put new technology in, for some guys it’s hard to break away with what they’re comfortable with after so many years of wearing it, so we look at ways of how
can we leverage the fact that he’s still wearing Racing Jacket and think of ways like, okay, well, instead of just using
all the existing line, is there opportunity to do stuff with him or do something that’s special for him, or how do we breathe new
life into Racing Jacket? What’s the opportunity there? – Yeah, okay, cool. Right, so from super limited
edition collaboration then, where are we heading next? – So I think, as I said, this
really set the tone for deco and I think this was very limited in its scale and visibility ’cause it was done as a
limited edition for Japan. I think one thing that
really holds a special place in my heart is what we just
did at the Olympics in Korea, and that was with the Harmony Fade. And so we’ve always tried to have colors for our athletes at any
of the Olympic games, whether that was summer or winter. A couple of winter games we did the green, at Rio we had this Green Fade, but I think this was really special to me. While my team has always worked on these, I think this always holds a
special place in my heart, ’cause I actually really
did work on it myself. So this is actually the
original hand-painted prototype of what we wanted to do,
which very this 50-50, yin and yang type of look,
that painted in my garage, just the concept piece that was done to think about what we
could do for Olympics. – That’d be a cool
country flag, wouldn’t it? The Harmony Fade.
– Yeah, exactly, yeah. – I think that would be, yeah, yeah. – Become our flag. – Yeah, there you go. Okay, all right then, so we’ve gone from limited
edition color ways… – So the next piece that I think for me helped in shaping where the brand can go was really this idea about Frogskins Lite. I think at times, what you look at here, that performance eyewear
has to look performance. And I think as you talk
about different cyclists now, especially you guys being from that world, you know that all cyclists
are not elite guys who are racing in the Tour de France and they’re not all
carbon fiber frame guys. There’s a huge breadth of
guys that are out there and guys ride carbon fiber
bikes, guys ride aluminum, guys ride steel, some
people are using it, yes, to do big coffee rides
or things like that, some people are riding just
to go to the local market, and so when you talk about, or
just to get work and commute, so when you talk about,
what can Oakley be in that? It shouldn’t be if I’m gonna do cycling, I have to wear something that looks like I’m racing in the Tour de France. It could be like, well,
yeah, I ride a bike, but there’s times I just want go, I want some of these performance features, but I don’t need to look like I’m racing. – Cool. All right, so there’s one pair left then, these ones, which are
not gonna be familiar, I think, to many of our viewers. – Yes. The silhouette, they are very similar to what you would see in
an M-Frame or a Radar, but those are actually one
of our military glasses and I think while the military thing at times can be a very touchy subject, at the same time it’s very
meaningful as a brand, and you think about as an eyewear company, what does eyewear mean? And I think I had the personal
opportunity to find that out, because one time we had visited a hospital here in the States that deals with our soldiers
who come back from overseas who’ve suffered some type of amputation. And so one of the things
was we went to visit them and went into this soldier’s room and he had lost both of
his arms in a IUD explosion and we went in there and
he knew we were from Oakley and he said, “Thank you
for what you guys do.” And you’re sitting here
talking to this guy who sacrificed both his limbs. And I said, “Well, thank
you for what you did.” And so the next thing really probably hugely changed my perspective
on what we do, but he said, “I don’t think you
understand what you guys do.” He’s like, “I lost both my arms “and they’re gonna give me new arms, “but if I didn’t have my Oakleys on, “I would have lost my eyesight “and I would have never seen
my baby daughter again.” And you think how powerful
that is of we literally could change someone’s
life with a pair of eyewear and we think about what we do as like, oh, do I look cool in this color or things like that and
those things that go on, but literally of all the things that you can have
replaced on your body now, the eye, vision is still the
one thing you cannot replace, and so when you think
about, we hear things like, oh this shape’s not cool
or this shape’s cool or I look cooler in these, you could literally change someone’s life and especially in a world
like cycling, where it’s like, we think about sunglasses
as sun protection from when the sun’s out
or can I see the road? We don’t think about how
many people ride at night or you start a ride before the sunset or you’re finishing your ride after, or you start a ride before sunrise and you end a ride after sunset and you think like, oh, the sun’s not out, let me take my glasses off, but you think about like, wow, what if a rock got kicked up in the dark? And you can’t see that
rock in the road now. It’s even harder to see
when there’s no light up. And how easily a rock, whether
that’s you riding by yourself or a car driving by or you’re
in a group of five guys and someone kicks up a rock, that could literally change your life. – Yeah, it’s the story that’s
not told very often actually in relation to eyewear when cycling. Like you say, it’s easy to get
obsessed with the performance of the glasses themselves
or the style of them, but actually the fact that
we should be wearing them in the first place, to protect our eyes. – And that’s something Jim
always talked about was there’s some ads that we
have up here that talk about, we don’t make sunglasses,
we make eye protection. And really getting behind that and that’s why some of
the stuff you guys see with all the impact tests
and things like that. We may sit and go, well, no one’s ever gonna shoot a shotgun at me or no one’s ever gonna drop a
four-pound weight on my face. At the same time, it doesn’t take a four-pound weight to
take your vision away. It takes a rock this
big just being kicked up that could blind you forever. So while the high-speed impact or the high-mass impact
may seem like overkill, it’s certainly gonna be less than that that could actually
take away your eyesight, especially as you talk about
cycling and being on the road or any of those things, mountain biking. I mean, let’s put you down a trail where dirt’s just being
kicked up in your face and you’re gonna take your glasses off ’cause there’s no sun. It’s like, let me just
stick my face behind a wheel and have it throw stuff up at you. It’s like really about eye protection. – Yeah. Right, well, an important
message to end on then, after touching on shape,
performance, style and now actually protection. Let us us know in the
comments section down below which of these are your favorites and if in fact your
favorite aren’t in here. Also please make sure you
give it a big thumbs up, thank Brian. It’s been super cool talking to you. – Thank you. – And if you wanna have a little look around Foothill Ranch,
Oakley’s headquarters, then we got another video
on the channel already. You can get through that just there.

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