Curbed Young Guns, now in its first year, aims to identify promising up-and-coming talent (35 and under) in the fields of architecture, interior design, and urban development. For the next few weeks, Curbed National will run individual stories on each Young Gun; here's a look at a member of the Class of 2013 based in LA:
Max Humphrey, 34, is the only member of this year's class of Young Guns that ever toured for a couple of years as the bassist in a Los Angeles-based punk band whose sound was once characterized by the LA Times as "Pulp and the Jam playing a dance party celebrating the British Invasion." Though that article went on to ask, "What's not to adore about the L.A. quartet the Adored?", when the band broke up in 2007, Humphrey decided he didn't want to go back into TV production, which was the very first gig he landed after graduating from Emerson College. "I had just spent a couple of years playing music professionally and I couldn't go back and do anything that I wasn't 100 percent in love with or anything that wasn't creative," he says. "So while I was looking for a new career I was just kind of decorating my apartment because I had nothing to do during the day. I was one of those LA people—you see them at coffee shops during the day and you think, Why isn't that person at work?"
Months went by, and Humphrey realized he was spending all his time and energy decorating his place. "It just hit me that that could be a career," he recalls. "So I dove into it. I didn't go to school for design, but I started really learning everything I could and reading everything I could about the history of interior design, familiarizing myself with as many designers as I could, especially ones from the '50s and '60s who had connections to Hollywood. You know, like Tony Duquette and those people who crossed over from movie-set design into residential design."