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About the Artist: Gray Malin

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S'well interviews the photographer Gray Malin to discuss their latest collaboration

 

S’well’s latest artist collaboration takes you on the trip of a lifetime. Photographer Gray Malin’s limited-edition bottles are a work of art in themselves, epitomizing the desire to make every day a getaway, each image is a visual celebration of the sights of summer. Malin looks at life from a bird’s-eye view: he’s known for going to extreme lengths to capture the serene beach scenes we’ve come to know and love. We got a chance to pick Malin’s brain and talk about everything from humble beginnings to getting the perfect shot, to being an artist in the digital age.

Photos courtesy of Gray Malin

 

How did you get started in photography?  I started taking pictures when I was a teenager and I never really thought of it as a viable career but in college, I pursued it as a second major and never gave up on ‘the dream’. After graduating from college, I moved to LA for a job and thought it was a great opportunity, after one year I left because I knew I had to give photography a chance (my parents thought I was insane). I decided to take out a booth at a Sunday swap-meet in West Hollywood. Though it was a humbling experience, I met so many incredible people in the community and was able to display my work effectively, eventually making a name for myself.

 

Where do you get your inspiration?  I am inspired by so many things, whether it be a trip to the beach, an iconic destination or something as simple as a balloon. Typically, an idea pops into my mind and then I just keep thinking about it until it evolves into reality.

 

What’s your favorite beach you ever photographed?  That is an IMPOSSIBLE question to answer but a few of my favorites are the beaches along Sydney, Australia’s coast (3 of which are featured on our S’well bottles!), Rio de Janeiro’s Ipanema and Cape Town’s Camp’s Bay.

 

S'well interviews photographer Gray Malin about his creative process and his latest collaboration

Malin getting his signature aerial shot from a helicopter

 

What made you decide to take such an adventurous approach to your photography?  From above, the people with their umbrellas and towels create patterns that are eye-catching and unique. It began with the beaches above Miami during Art Basel one year, then I quickly followed up with trips to Australia, Rio, Dubai and Europe. I was hooked!

 

Aerial views seem to be your niche photography style; was there a time before when you experimented with other genres of shooting?  Yes, I have a large collection of conceptual work, which I’ve been building in unison with my aerial photography. For aerial series such as A La Plage & A La Montagne it’s more about capturing the joyfulness of being at the beach for a day of sun or hitting the slopes during your winter holiday. There is no instruction ahead of time, I’m simply flying above these moments and capturing the ones that catch my attention. Whereas, for a series such as Gray Malin at the Parker, I certainly had very specific shots in mind. I pretty much created an entire storyline ahead of time.

 

Who are some of you favorite photographers/artists?  I am a huge admirer of Gaston Ugalde who mentored me during my shoot in Bolivia for my series, Far Far Away. I just adore his whole demeanor and his vision. He’s a true artist. Then, of course, I love Slim Aarons for his timeless and luxurious photographs, Christo and Jeanne-Claude for their forward thinking and structural work, and David LaChapelle for his artistic editorial vision.

 

 

So how do you know when you have the shot?  What I love about photography is composition. The first thing I do is find the balance and then the rest unfolds itself as I shoot.

 

When you go out shooting, what are some essentials you always have on-hand?  Other than my camera, of course, I always have hand & feet warmers with me when shooting in a cold climate and then lots of sunscreen regardless of the temperature.

 

In a world where everything is shared and published digitally, how do you maintain authenticity to your brand and aesthetic?  Once upon a time, the photographer was behind the camera, rarely seen. Nowadays, with social media, people want to relate to you on a more personal level so I find the camera turning on me a bit more which is interesting. Overall, I find social media very helpful because I can interact with the online community in a very positive way. It is a benefit to a brand as long as you remain authentic to your audience.

 

What’s the next travel destination on your bucket list?  As far as bucket list goes, I would love to explore parts of Asia more as well as the Nordic countries. 

 

S'well interviews photographer Gray Malin to learn more about the pictures behind their latest collaboration

Photo by Jody Kivort
Feat. 17oz Teal Ocean, Sydney Swimmers, Starmint Diagonal, & Bondi Beach

Starmint Diagonal Gray Malin Summer S'well Water Bottle

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Teal Ocean Gray Malin Summer S'well Water Bottle

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Bondi Beach Gray Malin Summer S'well Water Bottle

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S’well S’potted: Guggenheim Museum

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S'well stainless steel water bottle window display at the Guggenheim Museum in NYC

It surely is a S’well summer. If you find yourself on NYC’s Upper East Side, be sure to stop by the iconic Guggenheim museum to check out their latest art installation: a S’well bottle windowscape. Spend a sweltering summer Friday perusing the current exhibits on display and make sure you exit through the gift shop, which proudly sells S’wells.

S'well stainless steel water bottle window display at the Guggenheim Museum in NYC

Swell insulated water bottle display at the Guggenheim Museum in NYC

S'well insulated water bottle display at the Guggenheim Museum in NYC

 

 

Best in Class

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So long, sweet Summer! The warm season is coming to a close, and it’s time to trade pool floats and popsicles for pencils and protractors. Small S’wells are perfect for tiny hands, whether they’re toting them to class, band practice or a little league game. New dyed-to-match caps are bright and bold for sending kids back to school. Our smallest 9oz size is the perfect study buddy or playground companion. Show us the fun ways you serve up S’wells to your little ones by using the hashtag #SwellBottle.

 

Back to School with S'well Water Bottles

Backpack best–S’wells are 100% spill-proof.
Feat. 9oz Ocean Blue | Shimmer Collection & 9oz Monaco Blue | Satin Collection

S'well Back to School Kids Water Bottles

The 9oz keeps juice cool until the lunch bell rings.
Feat. 9oz Monaco Blue | Satin Collection

S'well Back to School 9oz Kids Water Bottle

When it’s time to hit the books, always have a sharp pencil and a S’well at the ready.
Feat. 9oz Bikini Pink | Satin Collection

S'well Back to School 9oz Water Bottle

The 9oz is the ultimate study buddy.
Feat. 9oz Bikini Pink | Satin Collection

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S’well S’potted: Bloomingdale’s NYC

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S'well water bottle window display at Bloomingdale's department store in New York City

For the past week, you’ve been consulting The S’well Standard, a definitive guide to some of our favorite spots in downtown NYC. Once you’re done exploring lower Manhattan, hop on the 6 train uptown and set out to explore New York’s favorite department store, Bloomingdale’s. This New York institution is home to some of the chicest fashion finds around, including S’well bottles. Be sure to swing by the store’s Northeast corner at 60th street and 3rd avenue to check out the go-to fashion accessory in S’well’s highly-coveted windowscape. If you haven’t already seen it, add to your list of things to do this weekend. Snap a picture and share by using #SwellBottle.

S'well water bottle window display at Bloomingdale's department store in New York City

S'well water bottle window display at Bloomingdale's department store in New York City

S'well water bottle window display at Bloomingdale's department store in New York City

S'well water bottle window display at Bloomingdale's department store in New York City

S'well water bottle window display at Bloomingdale's department store in New York City

 

#SwellAdventures in Italy

S'well bottle adventures in Italy with insulated water bottle

 

From the streets of New York to the cliffs of the Amalfi Coast, our fans are taking their S’well bottles on adventures all over the world. We’ve seen the pictures and heard the s’tories, and now we want to share them with you. The first in our #SwellAdventures series comes from Annie, a recent college graduate with an incurable case of wanderlust. Read on the find out how she combines her love for travel with her love for S’well.

 

S'well bottle adventures in Italy with Silver Lining insulated water bottle

 

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

My name is Annie and I’m from Washington, DC.  I’m obsessed with all things technology, innovation, and design, and love finding ways to combine them all together. I love to travel to travel to new places and have an incurable case of wanderlust!

 

Tell us about your #SwellAdventures.

This past month I went to Italy for three weeks. I met my boyfriend who was finishing his Masters in Rome, and from there we ventured to five other cities including: Florence, Cinque Terre, Naples, Capri, and Positano. Getting lost in the meandering streets, hiking, and cliff jumping into turquoise blue water were just a few of the highlights from our adventure!

 

S'well fans take their insulated water bottles on adventures around the world

 

Which S’well bottle did you take with you?

I took a 17oz Silver Lining bottle with me and it was the perfect size – It kept me going long enough and wasn’t too heavy to carry with me all day when full. I loved the color and finish because it was sleek for the city, but durable for our more athletic excursions.

 

What are your other adventure essentials?

This may sound silly, but I tend to travel with a ridiculous amount of Ziploc bags in all sizes – being able to compartmentalize is really helpful whether you are going away for three days or three weeks. I would always have a few in my bag and they usually would come back full at the end of the day, whether it was a wet bathing suit or an impromptu way to bring back some beach treasures in my bag (sand not included).

 

#SwellAdventures in Cinque TerreItaly with Silver Lining insulated water bottle

 

Have any good adventure tips and tricks you’d like to share?

Through experience, I really believe that packing smart can make or break a trip; I packed for three weeks in Italy in a carry-on and have definitely learned the value of versatile pieces. My number one is an extra large scarf or sarong – one day it was a picnic blanket on a hike, a skirt when I didn’t want to wear shorts over my wet bathing suit, and even a pillow/top sheet when we stayed in a hostel.

 

What’s your favorite adventure to date?

My favorite adventure to date would probably be riding camels in Morocco! Although anything that gets me outside or on the water makes me happy. It doesn’t have to be far from home to be a good adventure.

 

#SwellAdventures in Italy with Silver Lining stainless steel water bottle

 

What’s the next #SwellAdventure on your bucket list?

I’m a big rider and love being outside, so I’ve had my heart set on a horseback riding trek in Iceland. Although a close second would be a surf trip to Costa Rica or Bali!

 

You can follow along on the rest of Annie’s adventure on her Instagram and website. Don’t forget to share your adventures with us by tagging @swellbottle and using #SwellAdventures.

A Summer Weekend in the City

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Written by Khadim Dieng

Summer weekend in the city with small stainless steel water bottle

With half the summer already behind us, we’re sharing our weekend guide for you to enjoy the very best of what the city has to offer for the remaining warm weeks. Watching sunlight dance steadfast amongst the cars, crowds, and concourses of New York City, the alluring views from S’well Bottle HQ have us busy making plans for soaking up the sun.

 

Smorgasburg, Williamsburg

Start your weekend off right by taking a stroll along the Williamsburg waterfront. Bring a few pals and your appetite and check out Smorgasburg along the way: a vendor collective, only available on weekends, and perhaps Brooklyn’s most eclectic bazaar. The food extravaganza provides everything from Blue Marble Ice Cream to Ramen Burgers. Between the flea markets, vendors, and elevated bars, we’re sure you’ll find something sweet or savory. Remember to bring the 9oz Smokey Eye from the Glitter Collection. Fill it with something sparkling and watch your bottle glisten from the inside out.

 

Guggenheim Museum, Upper East Side

Travel around the world and back again by visiting the Guggenheim. While promenading the museum’s scrolled paths, you’ll find a few steps can take you from the epic expanse of african sculpture to the occult domain of 21st century Expressionism. Match the museum’s blanc backdrop with our 9oz Moonstone bottle from the Stone Collection. As you engage in the unendingly explorable ethos of the Guggenheim, you’ll be happy you have a travel buddy there to quench your thirst.

Tip: Keep an eye out for S’well bottles on sale in the Guggenheim gift shop.

 

Baby’s All Right, Williamsburg

Invite your special someone to swig and shimmy at the treasured Williamsburg locale, Baby’s All Right. The 5,000 square foot space is sectioned into a bar, lounge, and music venue- so there’s a little something for everyone. We recommend chowing down on house favorites like the Risky Chicken or Creque Madame, while grooving to the likes of En Vogue, Chuck English, and Sonny & The Sunsets.

Tip: Watch as lights beam from the disco ball and reflect off your 9oz Silver Lining bottle from the Shimmer Collection, it’s certainly a sight to remember.

 

Rockaway Beach, Queens

Spend a Summer Friday at the beloved oceanfront made famous by S’well favorites like Woody Allen and the Ramones: Rockaway Beach. After traversing the ever-expansive boardwalks and capturing the ocean’s charm via Instagram, you’ll find within this vast city an infinite miniature one. Sand castles encircle cul-de-sacs as friends turn the ocean’s bouncing buoys into a game of whack-a-mole. Pack a 9oz Opal Marble from the Elements Collection with a S’well Cocktail and enjoy our version of the classic mimosa for hours to come.

 

High Line Park, Chelsea

If you ever tire of the city’s hustle and bustle, we highly recommend catching some shade along one of the most sustainable parks in NYC. With its local sourcing and bio-based operations, our friends at The High Line are our bona fide kindred spirits. Watch your eco-elegant crown shine while sipping from a 9oz Smokey Quartz from the Stone Collection, for bringing a S’well will ensure you align with the park’s planet-friendly vibe.

Tip: Near the center of The High Line, during a clear weekend night, take a look at the sky and wait for the stars to smile back. You’ll thank us later.

 

Summer weekend in the New York City with small insulated Swell water bottle

Check back next week for The S’well Standard, a guide to our favorite s’pots in downtown New York City.

S’well Summer Cocktail

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Swell summer cocktail recipe to take on-the-go in stainless steel water bottleIt’s Fourth of July weekend and we’re shaking things up with a S’well summer cocktail. Take your S’well Bottle on-the-go to enjoy this citrusy twist on the classic mimosa. Check out the ingredients and instructions below.

Ingredients:

  • 1 bottle of chilled champagne
  • 2 cups of fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 lime
  • Mint for garnish

Instructions:

  1. Combine chilled champagne and grapefruit in S’well Bottle.
  2. Slice lemons and limes.
  3. To serve, pour into glass and garnish with citrus slices and a sprig of mint.
  4. Enjoy!

Share your S’well summer cocktails with us on social by tagging @swellbottle or using #SwellBottle. Happy Fourth!

S'well summer cocktail recipe to take on-the-go in stainless steel water bottle

The Secret to S’well Travels

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Here at S’well HQ, we love to travel. Whether it’s a weekend road trip to the local watering hole or a month-long voyage across Europe, there are always new places to see and people to meet. While it does require a considerable amount of planning, traveling doesn’t have to be complicated. Here are a few of our go-to tips and tricks to make the most of your trip.

1. Book smart. Travel sites are notorious for tracking how you interact with their websites. Enable private browsing when searching for flights or reservations to ensure they don’t raise prices every time you revisit.

2. Have backup. Make digital scans of all important documents (ID, passport, visa, itinerary, contact information, etc.) ahead of time incase they are stolen or you lose them. You might also consider investing in a portable phone charger. You never know when you might need a little extra juice for that iPhone 6.

3. Call ahead. Let your debit and credit card company know that you will be traveling ahead of time as to avoid any problems with foreign or suspicious charges.

4. Find the right bag. We’re partial to these new Away rolling suitcases that offer “first class luggage at a coach price.” They’re sleek, stylish, and even come with a built-in USB charging port.

5. Pack light. Remember that layering is key. Think about your outfits ahead of time to figure out the best ways to mix and match. Store your liquids in smaller containers to conserve space and weight. Check out Muji for a great selection of travel accessories.

6. Don’t forget the essentials. A good camera, a comfortable pair of shoes, and of course, a S’well Bottle are all major key when it comes to traveling. Our Seafoam and Tahoe Dusk bottles are perfect for any type of summer destination.

7. Make space. When it comes time to pack, roll all of your clothes for the most efficient use of luggage space. If you’re using a bag with wheels, pack with the heaviest items at the base. This will make maneuvering the bag a lot easier.

8. BYOB. Regardless of how you’re planning on getting to your destination, it’s always a good idea to provide your own drinks. S’well Bottle is the perfect accessory for staying hydrated throughout the flight or sneaking wine onto the train.

9. Consider bathroom breaks. If you’re on a road trip, plan pit-stops along the way so you don’t find yourself in a pickle. This is even more important at airports, where flights are time sensitive and security lines are long.

10. Check the reviews. When planning for your trip, utilize resources like Trip Advisor or Kayak to see what other travelers have to say about potential lodging options or activities.

11. Immerse yourself. For a more authentic experience, consider using a service like AirBnB. It’s a great way to connect with other travelers and get to know the locals.

Happy traveling, jet-setters. Share your S’well travels with us on social media by tagging @swellbottle or by using the hashtag #SwellBottle.

Poolside Playlist

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Here at S’well HQ, we’ve been working for the weekend and now it’s finally time kick back and relax. In celebration of the 3-day break, we put together a Spotify playlist to accompany you and your S’well bottle poolside, beachside, or wherever else you might be this Memorial Day. Yes, we know there’s a lot of Drizzy included. But an office that loves Drake together, stays together. Enjoy!

S’well Grad Gifts

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The school year is coming to a close and it’s time to start thinking about grad gifts. From high school students beginning their college careers to undergrads making their way into the real world, every graduate deserves a congratulatory present. In the spirit of giving, we put together a solid list of graduation appropriate gifts for guys and girls from some of our favorite brands. Check them out in the galleries below:  

FOR THE GUYS

Shinola Canfield Chrono Watch, Herschel Travel Kit, Jacob Bromwell Money Clip

Classic Sport TokyobikeMarshall Stockwell SpeakersAthletic Flash Happy Socks

 J.W. Hulme Co. Brief Case, Areaware Pocket Knife & Bottle OpenerOnyx | Stone Collection S’well Bottle

  

FOR THE GIRLS

Mansur Gavriel BackpackDaniel Wellington Classic Sheffield WatchAreaware Flask Bracelet

Gentle Monster Vanilla Road Sunglasses, Case-Mate Karat Rose Gold Phone Case, Tumi Carry-On Suitcase

Ban.do 17-Month Agenda, Indulgems Cadence Necklace, Tahoe Dusk | Satin Collection S’well Bottle

 

Congrats to all the grads out there! Cheers to a S’well future. For more grad gift ideas, check out our Pinterest page.

Cinco de Mayo Recipes

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It’s Cinco de Mayo and we’re ready for some tequila drinks. Check out the best Margarita & Paloma recipes to mix up in your 9oz S’well Bottle below.

 

S'well Blog - Cinco de Mayo Recipes Spicy Margarita

Image and recipe via fedandfit.com

Lime & Jalapeno Margarita

  • 1/2 cup fresh-squeezed lime juice1/2 large green jalapeño pepper, sliced thin
  • 4 ounces silver tequila
  • 2 ounces honey
  • 2 tablespoons sea salt
  • 2 lime wedges for garnish

Directions:

  1. In the bottom of a pitcher, muddle the jalapeño slices with the lime juice. 10-12 presses with a muddler or back of a wooden spoon will do the trick.
  2. Add tequila and honey. Stir or shake in bottle to combine thoroughly – or until all the honey is dissolved.
  3. Pour the sea salt in the bottom of a small bowl. Dip the top of each serving glass in the margarita mixture, let it drain off, then press the top of the glass into the bowl of salt. Gently tap the glass to knock off any excess.
  4. Fill each glass with fresh ice and pour in margarita mix.
  5. Garnish with the fresh lime & enjoy!

 

S'well Blog - Cinco de Mayo Recipes Peach Margarita

Image and recipe via bakerbynature.com

Fresh Peach Margarita

  • 6 ripe peaches, cut in half, pitted, and peeled (don’t peel if you like a chunkier puree)
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 3 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 cup tequila
  • 1/2 cup fresh lime juice (or bottled lime juice, not from concentrate)
  • 1/2 cup triple sec
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges

Directions:

  1. Peel and pit the fresh peaches.
  2. Combine the peaches, orange juice and sugar in the body of a blender; pulse until completely smooth.
  3. Combine all ingredients (peach puree, tequila, lime juice, triple sec) in a large glass or bottle. Shake or stir until thoroughly mixed.
  4. Serve in bottle or pour mixture evenly into 4 large glasses full of ice.
  5. Garnish with a wedge of lime and enjoy your fresh peach margarita!

 

S'well Blog - Cinco de Mayo Recipes Paloma

Image and recipe via bbritnell.com

Classic Tequila Paloma

  • 1/2 cup Tequila
  • 1/2 cup grapefruit juice (preferably fresh)
  • 1/2 cup club soda
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon sugar or agave nectar
  • Salt or sugar for rim

Directions:

  1. Combine all liquid ingredients (tequila, grapefruit juice, club soda, lime juice) in a glass or bottle.
  2. Add sugar or agave nectar and stir or shake until the sugar has dissolved.
  3. Fill a plate with sugar (or salt if you prefer). Wet the rim of a glass and dip it in sugar or salt.
  4. Add ice to glass and pour the Paloma mixture over.
  5. Garnish with fruit & enjoy!

 

S'well Blog - Cinco de Mayo Recipes Lavender Paloma

Image and recipe via poshlittledesigns.com

Lavender Paloma

  • 2 parts Milagro Silver
  • 1 part fresh squeezed grapefruit juice
  • 1/2 part lavender simple syrup (ingredients below)
  • 1/2 part fresh lime juice
  • 3 parts DRY lavender soda
  • Fresh grapefruit peel
  • Sprig of lavender

For Lavender Simple Syrup

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup syrup
  • 1/4 cup dried culinary lavender buds

Directions:

  1. To make lavender simple syrup: bring water, sugar and lavender buds to a boil. Boil for 2 minutes, pour syrup through a strainer, and chill.
  2. Combine tequila, fresh squeezed grapefruit juice, and lavender simple syrup in a cup or bottle.
  3. Stir or shake until syrup is dissolved.
  4. Top with DRY lavender Soda.
  5. Garnish with grapefruit peel and sprig of lavender & enjoy your Lavender Paloma!