Virgil Abloh has launched a new mentorship series, “Free Game.” The program is offered to all at no charge and Abloh's latest in a host of ongoing efforts to empower the upcoming generations of designers and creatives.
The series was built in response to the ongoing injustices facing the Black community, as well as the inequalities in opportunities available to them, with Abloh making particular note of the disparities in opportunities still present in the industry where he has personally excelled.
"As part of my long-standing initiative to see design, art, and culture more inclusive to young Black designers and those coming from non-traditional backgrounds, I wanted to assist in providing the means for them to advance on the road to ownership of their ideas and brands," Abloh said in a statement. "I am launching this organic platform for widespread access to information and mentorship. The exact notions and tools that I used to formulate my career open to all. For free."
With a focus on brand building, Free Game participants will receive mentoring and a step-by-step guide to building a brand, based on Abloh’s personal experience and how he established himself in the creative world. He described it as “the exact notions and tools that I used to formulate my career.”
Via the just-launched platform on the designer’s site, visitors will have the opportunity to take full advantage of a step-by-step guide on how to turn an idea into a full-blown brand; Encompassing everything from picking a fitting name and obtaining a trademark to learning the ins and outs of Adobe Creative Suite.
Abloh added that the accompanying Free Game page will include insights from friends and fellow artists. The page will continually be updated as part of the overall goal of constantly improving this collection of "all-access knowledge."
This is Virgil Abloh's latest of many initiatives launched to elevate young Black creatives. Free Game epitomizes the designer's approach to giving back to his community: no gimmicks, no strings attached, just the willingness to open doors that were previously barred for people like him.
It makes you wonder why other designers haven't employed this model themselves. Why do philanthropic initiatives always come with densely formulated press releases, all the trimmings of patting oneself on the back, without any tangible life-impacting change? Throughout his career, as one of the Black pioneers in high fashion, Abloh has consistently taken it upon himself to uplift and open doors for Black youth. Wouldn't it be nice if more people were like Virgil Abloh?
To be a part of Free Game, click here.