Tyler Ney: The Mind Behind Scatterbrain Co.

An inside look at the creative past, present and future for this young, entrepreneurial artist.


Photo by Daniel Ra

   Many students on campus continue to use clothes to express themselves. Walking from class to class, kids can be seen wearing bright colors, a plethora of patterns and different brands. One student is taking this expression to a whole new level by designing his own clothing brand and continuing to grow his presence around the school and the city.

   Tyler Ney is a senior at West Ranch High School who started his own clothing brand, Scatterbrain Co. His passion for clothing and creating finds its start as early as elementary school. Ney cites that he has “always really loved creating clothes and drawing,” and continues by remembering that even since he was “in sixth grade, [he] used to try to make clothing brands with others.”

   While many tend to wait until adulthood to pursue their future goals, Ney got some advice that urged him to do otherwise:

   “I’ve talked to a few different people that told me to start now when I’m young and just pushed me to do it.”

   This sets Ney apart from many other artists and demonstrates a passion and a drive that can be hard to find at such a young age. Much of this drive comes from the abundance of support that Ney receives from friends, family and consumers.

   “Everyone always supports me because they love my stuff; they want to help out,” says Ney.

   He even reveals a friend who got a tattoo of one of Ney’s own designs on his leg, a symbol of infinite support and appreciation for his creative mindset. Throughout school, Ney has met a multitude of people that are excited about his work and want to support it.

   While he takes it extremely seriously now, Ney did not always consider clothing design a viable career. He stressed that “high school has been helping out a lot. It has really brought out this side of me, as I’ve matured, realizing how much it means to me.”

   Ney has felt extremely supported by his classmates, but he expressed a disappointment in the lack of creativity that is encouraged by the school and its curriculum.

   “I think that the school system kind of discourages [art] a lot, besides in art class or those electives, other classes are more important.”

   This trend speaks to a history of creative suppression that has occured in our schools and schools across the world. With little outlets to express their creativity, many students have been pushed out of these fields and into something more academically practical. Ney describes this pattern as a “routine” that our school systems have never broken out of.

   “At first, going into high school, I felt that I had to be mostly academics,” but Ney credits the support he received from his mom and others as his reason for not continuing with that idea.

   “My mom has just been really supportive. She talked to me about how it doesn’t matter how much money you make, doesn’t matter about this, and she just really pushed me in what I love.”

   In seeing his fellow students being pushed towards purely academic careers, rather than the creative careers that they would prefer, Ney feels that it is a side effect of a strict school system and, often times, parents.

   “Most of them, their parents make them get good grades and kind of push a path on them of what they either did, or what they feel will make them the most money.”

   Ney reveals what drives him to pursue his own art and how important that is for his brand and himself.

   “I think coming up with new ideas, and just always feeling the need to draw them down, I think that really helps. With the clothing especially, just people asking ‘when is the next thing you’re gonna make?’ or ‘when’s this?’ and there is people really supporting me and wanting me to make something new and that appreciate my art.”

   When asked about pursuing art as a stable career, Ney expressed the opportunities in numerous art fields. But, he stressed the importance of sticking to one’s own ideas and creative voice.

   “You should always stick to it, and it should always be there with you, and you should always be doing what you love.”

   He continues in contemplating the need to continue pursuing art and artistic careers even if there is not immediate success.

   “Art is everywhere. It’s just something that you have to keep working for, and hopefully, you will grow that following, and eventually you will.”

   In looking across West Ranch High School, along with the bright colors and patterns, students can be seen wearing shirts from Scatterbrain Co. Tyler Ney’s tenacious creativity has helped to fuel his brand and his passion for art, design and drawing. His supporters, friends and family continue to push him further into the field, and he serves as an inspiration to those seeking a path in creativity.

   To view or purchase from Ney’s brand, visit https://scatterbrainco.bigcartel.com/