Created by the life of writer Robert Brink, The Hundredth Acre is a vehicle to induce memory and share past experiences with one another. Committed to producing high quality handcrafted candles, each candle scent hopes to inspire and create new moments. At SALT. we believe in true craftsmanship and draw our inspiration from like minded individuals.
All photography shot by Robbie Jeffers.
1) What inspires you?
More than anything … seeing or hearing or reading something that blows my mind and shifts my view of the world. Whether it’s seeing something like the film Tree of Life by Terence Malick, or reading Fight Club for the first time or listening to Tool’s music or watching a skateboarder like Daewon Song or Dylan Rieder … originality and people who are pushing the envelope are paramount for me.
On a more granular level … I am heavily inspired by nature. By the music I like. By the skateboarders and creators doing the aforementioned trailblazing.
Memories inspire me. The past. More often than not, in my case, it’s haunting … because it’s gone. But there are good memories mixed in there too.
2) How has this inspiration driven you to create “The Hundredth Acre”?
No one had ever presented a candle and writing-inspired brand to the skateboarding community before. So that was my initial mission, to do that while also making something for non-skaters to enjoy. The nature theme is obvious throughout the entire line, so is the idea of past and childhood memories.
3) What is the connection you are trying to make to your audience?
As I was just getting into … memories … stories. I terribly miss and think back fondly of my times exploring the pine forest behind my grandparents house when I was a kid. That forest was bulldozed when I was 17. It was a knife through my heart. So I made a candle to tell that story. A Walk in the Woods keeps that fond memory of my time there alive.
Maine is one of my favorite places to travel. I love some of the used bookstores I found there. So I made the Used Bookstore scent. When someone tells me that my pipe tobacco candle reminds them of an uncle they loved dearly who passed away … that’s the connection. We all have stories and very often a scent can trigger amazing memories. More than any other of our senses, scent has the power to do so.
People may not “feel” the memories the same way I do … from experiencing the aesthetic of the brand or the smells, but they do feel something, and that’s critical to me. Maybe their “Walk in the Woods” is a memory of camping with their kids in Montana … for example.
4) How did you decide on candle making?
I was buying a lot of candles for the years leading up to it. Candles sort of always accompanied me while I was sitting home and working or writing. They create a mood. A fire … be it a fireplace or candle … it feels like there is another living entity in the room. Kinda keeps you company. But really … the concept was a brand aesthetic that reflected my life as a writer, and the romantic view our society has of “the writer” … Hemingway sitting at a typewriter smoking a pipe … or Stephen King deep in his home the middle of nowhere in Maine hammering away on his next novel. Or the libraries full of books and knowledge and stories from so many writers before us. The idea was to try and capture this feeling in a brand, be it sitting around a campfire in the woods to roaming the aisles of a centuries-old library in Europe. Or toiling over the opening line of your screenplay while sitting at a café all day drinking coffee.
5) Where did you learn the craft?
Like most things in my life … be it skateboarding or writing or whatever … Self taught. Trial and error.
6) Was it intentional to highlight the sense of smell? If so, why?
Yes. Because it is the most memory evoking of our senses. You could catch a whiff of a perfume your high school crush from 40 years ago wore and remember EXACTLY what it is. Even if you never knew it’s name or discussed it with her when you were young. I can’t tell you how many times I am in a bar or somewhere and I smell something and I am like “Holy shit that smells like my old grade school classroom!” Even if I can’t pin down and name the actual scent … be it the wood floors or the fingerpaints or the trees outside the windows in bloom once a year or whatever … the recollection and the memory are there.
7) Why have you chosen to call California home? What specifically do you believe makes it unique?
I came here in 2004, when I was 28, because skateboarding was, and is, my life. And I was determined and dedicated to do whatever was necessary to have a career writing and working in skateboarding. I can’t say I always love it here or always want to be here. I yearn to drive all over America and explore the mountains and forests and national parks and old libraries and weird little towns. I love old European cities too. Laguna Beach is a very special place to me here in California. It was the first place that resonated with me and made me feel at home here. So my loyalty is fierce. And it is a huge part of the brand.