Japanese American Outdoorsman feat. Galen Nishioka

April 7th, 2014

We met quite a few cool guys during our recent trip to San Francisco. Galen Nishioka was one of the coolest. He’s done a lot of living, dabbled with a diverse array of careers, and developed a very natural lived-in sense of style that combines his Japanese Heritage and Western American roots.

“Growing up in the Central Valley of California, there wasn’t much cultural stimulus so I spent a lot of time in the Sierras; hiking, fishing, climbing, etc. I studied economics in college but I was always drawn to aesthetics, whether it was drawing, painting, design, film or photography. Light, color and texture have always been a fascination of mine.

My first job in film was shoveling cow manure. We were shooting a commercial for Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream, at a dairy farm. After many careers, including fishing guide, producer and working at the Pacific Stock Exchange, I have come back to my passion in photography and film making. I am presently starting a film and video production company. You can see my stuff on Vimeo. When I’m not writing, editing or shooting; you’ll find me rock climbing and bouldering.

The influences and references in my personal style are a combination of Western American and British. I’m also influenced by my Japanese heritage. The natural world is an inseparable part of the Japanese culture, as is evident by the colors and textures of their garments.”

Here Galen gives us a taste of his day-to-day personal style, including his country-inspired staples that are cut from sturdy fabrics and built to last.

    1. British Workwear Chic


    “The first look is how I imagine country folk in the 1940’s might go out for an evening. They would wear the same pants and work shoes but put on a tie. It’s an American take on the British country look.

    The hat is an homage to my grandfather and men of his era. They would never leave the house without their hat.”


    “The Belstaff leather is one my favorite pieces. I could never wear Belstaff because the fit was too boxy and the sleeves to short. In 2004 they were bought by an Italian company and they changed the fit.”



    • Beige Felt Hat by Borsalino
    • Waxed jacket is by Belstaff
    • Brown suede vest by Brooks Bros (Vintage)
    • Grey Shirt by Taylor Stitch
    • Blue Tie by Taylor Stitch
    • Jeans by Rogue Territory
    • Moc Toe Boots by Red Wing

    2. Country Leisure Suit


    “My second look is slightly more urban. The Icho jacket is a good example of Japanese tailoring. They’re a small family run shop in Tokyo. The fabric is a heavy linen that works well for the mild San Francisco climate.”


    I love the tones of grey in this look. The beige/taupe undertones make for an interesting take on a textured monochromatic look.


    “I tried on the shoes at Black Fleece, then looked at the price. I thought, maybe next time. I couldn’t get them out of my mind because they looked so cool fit my foot really well. I have a difficult fit. I called the shop and bought them over the phone. An hour later, the salesman called me back and said the shoes were actually 70% off. How often does that happen?”


    • Beige Felt Hat by Borsalino
    • Blazer by Icho
    • White Shirt by Yohji Yamamoto
    • Beige jeans by PRPS Noir
    • Beige Wingtips by N. Peal for Black Fleece

    3. Outdoorsy Weekend


    “The third look is based on comfort – and the moleskin workshirt by Barbour is as soft and comfortable as they come.”

    Again, playing with the idea of almost-monochromatic, with a focus on sturdy fabrications that are built to break-in over time. Moleskin overshirt? Just added to my list…




    • Beige Felt Hat by Borsalino
    • Khaki Moleskin Shirt by Barbour
    • Brown Trousers by Prada
    • Yellow Sneakers by Jack Purcell Converse


    Thanks for reading and special thanks to Galen for participating.

    Great content coming up!

    Yours in style,

    Articles of Style


    Photography by Alex Crawford 

    • Vivian Stone

      In a world where so few really stand out…Galen has, does and always will. I love his style…it’s unique just like him, his style is all his own, fits his body, his spirit, personality and love of fashion.

    • Dickie

      You know he could have just been an American outdoorsman, or simply outdoorsman.

    • http://www.lucidlingo.com.au/ Gazman

      I like his style. A pleasure seeing men wearing looser fits.

    • MN

      Great post.

    • Al Bizzy

      That’s my boy right there! When I was managing BKc, Galen was easily our most stylish of all clients. I was always respectful to his authentic approach of personal presentation. He truly dresses for his lifestyle, and was doing the work wear/outdoor-gear thing before it was even a thing. Peace to the OG’s

      • Galen

        Alan, how are you dude? Thanks for the kind words. You are truly a gentleman!

        • Al Bizzy

          It’s good to see you getting some well deserved coverage. I’ll probably see you around the Fillmore as usual. Haha!

    • ChrisD

      I cannot pull off a light monochromatic look like 2, so at first I didn’t like it. But looking closer at the textures and details everywhere.. damn this guy know’s what is up.

      Pants in 3 look like they belong to a much taller man heh.
      What a cool dude.

      • Galen

        Yeah, I used to be taller. To me, fit, is always key. I need to listen to myself more :)

    • TT

      I have never understood the point of “designer” work wear. I think it’s a bit Emperor’s New Clothes, but to each their own. A handsome dude with a kind face, I like him.

      • Galen

        Thanks for your comment. I hear you. I never started with “designer” work wear in mind. I buy the pieces I like as far as fit, color, texture and quality and try to work them into my style. To be honest it doesn’t always work :)

    • Randy

      One of my favorite posts. This gentleman really looks like he’s comfortable with his style.

      • Daniel

        Exactly my thought. He looks happy and at ease

    • Alex

      One hat, three different looks. Love the worn in/lived-in feel of these looks.

    • http://unseenflirtspoetry.wordpress.com Unseen Flirtations

      ps: This has got me thinking seriously about the benefits of lighter shades of monochromatic looks in sunnier months. With the right texture play, you can strike a tidy and surprisingly natural balance of limited palettes. Intriguing.

      • http://www.tsbmen.com/ Westley Dimagiba

        I second that.

        With the right mix of textures, monochromatic looks during the warmer months have great potential.

    • http://unseenflirtspoetry.wordpress.com Unseen Flirtations

      The posts just get better and better. It’s like a style novel being woven right before our fashion-thirsty eyes, binding an eclectic array of interesting persons, each with a story to tell.

      You are truly doing the Lord’s work. Danke schoen.

      • http://www.tsbmen.com/ Westley Dimagiba

        *cough* coffee table book *cough*

        • cam

          I prefer my coffee table books to be about coffee tables

          • http://www.tsbmen.com/ Westley Dimagiba


        • http://unseenflirtspoetry.wordpress.com Unseen Flirtations

          Hey, if the Sartorialist can get away with it…

    • JM

      Only complaint is the yellow sneakers in the last shoe. Not tonal enough for me. This has to be my favorite feature from any site ever. Love this guys look.