You guys. I did a thing. I opened my own barbershop.

Over a year ago I decided to quit my job and attend barber school full time. It was the best idea I’ve had as an adult, aside from the woman I’m about to marry. I attended a traditional barber school here in Utah and was classically trained in tonsorial arts. During school I began to develop pretty specific ideas that wouldn’t leave my mind about the kind of barbershop I wanted to work in and eventually open. In graduating and working in my first shop, those ideas became more formed and more real. A conversation over coffee with friends solidified the fact that I could really do this on my own and that I had the support behind me. A little over a month later and I’ve opened the doors and am making my mark in the city that I truly do love. Every haircut and straight razor shave given at the shop will trigger a $$ donation to the local chapter of Volunteers of America Youth Outreach program. Its feels good to have a small part in making a difference in one of our most underserved populations.

It’s tough being a new business owner and I go through mini panic attacks every day. At least once a week I ask my fiancé “what in the fuck was I thinking?!”..but life is pretty sweet right now and I wouldn’t change a thing.


One of the first things I do everyday is go to the Essex st. Market in Manhattan to get a cup of coffee from my boy Lucas.  While drinking a cup of coffee and wandering around I saw a little stall barely bigger than a closet with a man cutting hair and listening to Russian news on the radio.  I needed a haircut and I wanted to try something new so I walked in and sat down in one of the two chairs designated for people waiting for there cuts.  When my turn came up I sat in the chair and he very simply asked how tight I wanted my fade, I motioned towards the 1 1/2 oster blade and he nodded and silently went to work.  The conversation was minimal but interesting, Mr. Aminova has been cutting hair for a long time, at least 45 years in New York City and before that he was a barber in Russia.  He gave a quick and precise traditional haircut. complete with a dry shave on the back of my neck and on my temples.  I wish I could have gotten a picture of his closet sized space covered in clocks and pictures of Russia but I didnt want to have an Old Russian man being cross with me.  I paid the man and I left knowing that I looked a little bit better than when I stepped into the market to get some coffee an hour earlier.  If anyone finds themselves in Lower Manhattan in need of a haircut they should check out Aminova’s Barber Shop in the Essex st. Market, on the corner of Delancey and Essex.

Here are some photos of the shop that I found on the Internet and my hair after it was cut.

P.s. If you do go to the Essex st Market, get a cup of coffee from the Porto Rico Stand and tell Lucas that Matt sent you.

The Gentlemen’s Barber is looking to add more talented Barbers to our team. We are looking for experienced, licensed Barbers with at least two years shop floor experience. Skills with a straight razor, scissors, and clippers are needed.

To apply and for more details, please email us at

Get more info on our shop and professional Barber Team at or visit us on Yelp!

‘RAE THE BARBER’ - New 18 x 24” print now available through my online store

$70 - Hand signed - Open Edition Giclée print on Moap Entrada archival paper

This painting documents my boy Rae doing what he does best. Through his dedication for the craft, he has made a name for himself in the traditional barber community. He is living proof that art lives in more than just paintings, but flows through anyone with true passion for what they do.