Todds Terrace, St. George. Barbados

Art met Business and a LIFESTYLE BRAND was Born!

The following article is based on an interview conducted with Mr. Jamar Odwin of odBo!h


Jamar Odwin is Graphic Artist, an Entrepreneur, and the Managing Partner at Azure Studios which features the popular odBo!h brand. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design from Barbados Community College and has been in the industry since leaving high school.

An Emerging Leader

Jamar was awarded the title of “Emerging Leader” in the Duke of Edinburgh International Award for the Americas. His tenure was from 2017 to 2020 but because of Covid it was extended until 2022. He believes his associations with the Duke of Edinburgh International Award (DEIA) and CASC (Caribbean Award Sub-Regional Council) has helped him with his personal and career development as he built very tight-knit friendships and gained the opportunity to work on the World Ready Discussion Papers as Graphic Designer. The DEIA challenges many young people, like Jamar, to dream big, celebrate their achievements and make a difference in their world.

The Birth of a Brand

Whilst Jamar contemplated whether he should continue to 6th form or attend the local Community College, one of the questions that came to his mind was “what am I going to wear?” As an art student, he realized that his clothes may get dirty, but he also wanted to look good. At the time there weren’t a lot of options for nice, affordable apparel, so he and his friend Daniel Nicholas (who would later become my business partner) started odBoih! The Barbados Youth Business Trust was very supportive helping the young entrepreneurs to develop  their business plan with its associated marketing plans, budgets, balance sheets, etc. 

I remember my first encounter with the “odboih” brand.  It was quite unique and I thought it was quite interesting especially as young persons we came across seemed familiar with it. So we did a small project with him for Independence celebrations to sell t-shirts at our Port shop at the time.  
I am always looking for updates on his brand, hoping that this brand gains popularity to the point that it grows to a globally recognized brand, especially coming out of Barbados and the Caribbean.


What or Who is ‘odBo!h’?

Jamar’s life as an entrepreneur started while he was a student at ‘Queens College’ secondary school. Back then he designed shirts for the school’s track and the volleyball teams, under the banner of ‘Odwin Designs’. 

Later, when he met Daniel, they decided to adjust the name. Whilst they were at BCC, they were required to complete a project where they were required to brand themselves as musical artists. Jamar thought of all the nicknames he had at school and landed on “odDBo!h”, which was then spelt with a double ‘d’. They decided to use this name but dropped one of the ‘d’s and made the logo more modern. So by the time they started the business with some shirt designs they went with odBo!h as the name for the brand.

How is odBo!h Different?

Like cooking competitions, where contestants are given the same ingredients and the same amount of time, but each contestant comes up with a completely different dish. Jamar believes every brand in Barbados is different. The designer, the thought process, the inspiration, the colours they put together, makes each one unique. odBoih sets themselves apart with their unique designs fed by the inspiration they draw from everything around them.

Design Inspiration

Whether it is Mexican art, the Ocean, or Traditional architecture Jamar sees designs and finds inspiration for his next project 

  • Happenstance:

As Jamar expanded on their design inspiration, he referred to the shirt he was wearing during the interview. He said that it was not originally meant to be a t-shirt design, but his business partner Daniel developed the pattern for packaging they were working on. From there it became a design for their slides, and then later a t-shirt design. 

Phot Cred: or @tqmediaproductions

  • Culture

One of the first collections produced was the D’Culture Brand with ‘Barbados’ Tees. These young designers found that the Barbados tees at that time were boring, and most of them featured the ‘Happy Independence’ wording or the Barbados flag. So, they started the D’Culture brand. They also wanted to offer Barbadian shirts that people could wear not just during Independence time, but all through the year. The designers also realised that some Barbadians believed that a Barbados tee had to be blue, yellow, and black (the colors featured on the national flag). He believes that OdBo!h broke that mold, they produced some designs featuring different hues of  blues in it which represent Barbados, but didn’t scream ‘Barbados’ 

  • History: 

Jamar and Daniel are very interested in Barbadian history, an interest they developed while at community college. Jamar wants to ensure that the history of the island is never forgotten. The old Bajan chattel households huge historical significance and so provides inspiration for some of their designs. 

  • Foreign Art: 

Thinking back to some of their earlier designs, Jamar recalls that he was scrolling through a book his art teacher brought to class and was inspired by photos from ancient Mexico. As he looked at some of the designs, he could see the odBo!h icon in some of the designs.

  • The Sea:

Their most recent collection ‘the Sea Shades Collection’ was inspired by the beautiful beaches and coasts of Barbados. This collection features the different shades of blue representing the different depths of the ocean, and the cliffs are represented in grays and blacks.

  • Sports: 

Jamar remembers when he was younger and lots of sneakers were in the colors of basketball teams, and today this is still an inspiration for how he puts colors together. Jamar is an athlete and frequently watches sports, so he sees things in sports that inspire him.

odBo!h Brand Ambassadors

Jamar believes that every satisfied customer is an unofficial brand ambassador. Over the years they have fostered relationships with customers that purchase their products so often that people actually ask them if odBo!h is their brand! Jamar says that they find pride in this loyalty, and they are delighted that their “brand ambassadors” have built such a connection with odBo!h

Business Collabs

A trend that started at AnimeKon; a local exhibition, persons that bought merchandise were given treats such as tamarind balls, sugar cakes, hot sauce, etc. Since then odBo!h has continuously aimed to collaborate with other young entrepreneurs, where they make it their business to go to these business owners and purchase their merchandise at the price.

To date, odBo!h has collaborated with young local entrepreneurs such as:

ll. Jamar extends a special thanks to their partners.

Creative Collabs 

Jamar recalls that their first ‘artist collaboration’ was with a brand called Tyde (a clothing brand that offers unique tie-dye clothing as well as outerwear and printed fabric clothing), its founder owner Jamar also met at Community College. Since then odBo!h’s Collections have gone on to feature a number of tie-dye merchandise.

Photo Cred: or @kurkrouse

odBo!h continues its endeavor to partner with some truly talented Barbadians, and this year they collaborated with two local artists ( // and ) for the first installment of their Artist Series. odBo!h reached out to these artists to see if they were interested in working on some straps and the forthcoming designs were featured on their slides which carry removable straps. The removable straps allow a customer to purchase one pair of slides with the  additional straps. Some people also prefer to have more than one platform, which is called the base. 

This first output of the Artist Series features designs that relate to Barbados things, so these slides are uniquely Barbadian without screaming Barbados. They are for those patriotic persons who prefer something with a twist. A closer inspection of one of the patterns reveals a cricket bat and a flying fish. The other graphic features the Pride of Barbados, which is Barbados’ national flower. Jamar says that odBo!h plans to continue their alliances with other artists, as this introduces their customers to these artists, and gives other artists a different platform to promote their work. Whether you are collaborating with business from other industries or those in the same field as yourself, Jamar cautions that as entrepreneurs and persons with brands, you must really understand that not everyone is going to be willing to work with you. It doesn’t make sense to collaborate with everyone, so you have to find that balance. As an entrepreneur, you have to receive some ‘NOs’ and you have to give some ‘NOs’. Interestingly, he notes that because you’ve received so many NOs you may find it almost difficult when it’s your turn to say it.

The Entrepreneurial Journey

Jamar shared that one of the biggest problems in his business journey was getting started. He recalls that someone recommended a certain lending institution supposedly big on helping young entrepreneurs, so he proceeded to fill out the application. After several months, the institution finally called to say they didn’t think the business was a viable investment. He said that as a young person at that time the only thing he probably didn’t do was cry.

Not willing to give up he called every small business aid organisation in the yellow pages and finally  came across the Barbados Youth Business Trust. He reiterates that this institution is a big part of the reason odBo!h is still here today. The BYBT took them in, taught them about business and provided them with a mentor.

Jamar has been an enthusiastic person/entrepreneur who has always been keen to learn everything there is to know about building his brand and business. 

His body of work exemplifies the attitude and passion we should all aspire to as a young person seeking to build their life and career.  He not only does it for himself, but he also encourages others to do the same and come up wherever the opportunity presents itself. 


Here he met other young entrepreneurs, even fellow creators in the same business. Jamar knows now that brand promotion can be done in many unexpected ways. For example, his recent talk to a group Scout Beavers at West Harris Primary School about business and the brand. In addition to their marketing efforts on social media, Jamar noted that promoting the brands happens in different ways. Recently he was asked to speak to the young persons were working on a badge where they have to speak to persons in their community. He enjoyed speaking to them on their level. At the end of it, we give each of the beavers a shirt from the D’Culture line. This was significant as recently there’s been a trend in Barbadian schools where the children get to wear Barbados shirts every Friday of November. He believes that they were able to help some parents who probably cannot afford to purchase more than one shirt. The company also benefited as some of the parents asked about their product line.

(Watch a bit of this interaction from Jamar’s Instagram post: ).

The Youth Entrepreneurship Scheme (YES) has also played a significant role in the development of the brand as well. Jamar touts himself as a graduant of YES Entrepreneurial Development Training Programme. More recently the duo was able to benefit from Technical Assistance from YES which was used to procure services for the odBo!h Sea Shades Collection photoshoot.

Advice for Upcoming Graphic Entrepreneurs

Jamar’s foremost advice to budding entrepreneurs is to just get started. He believes that oftentimes people are waiting for the ‘right’ time, but he thinks that you only fail if you don’t try. So he advises budding entrepreneurs to just get started, yes it may not work, but at least you could say that you tried.  He said he was willing to get started even though he knew that he could fail at a point in time. He puts ‘failing’ in quotation marks, because in his estimation somewhere down the line you may be able to return to your idea.

Jamar added that “you don’t necessarily have to start big” if you’re looking to get into clothing, for instance, you could start with one shirt and see how your friends and persons in your neighbourhood respond. He remembers that they started whilst they were still at Community College and they had very few ideas about starting a brand. 

He recalls that in one of their first sales, they had just returned to the collage and were viewing their first set of shirts when someone passed by and said, “That shirt looks really cool. How much for it?” Just as simple as that.  Yes, it may not necessarily work how you wanted it at that point, but keep trying.  

Jamar encourages others that even if the response isn’t the one they want, and it may not be the right moment for what you’ve done, don’t lose hope. Store the idea at the back of your mind so that, as time goes on, there might be an even better time to get started. 

Jamar believes that as entrepreneurs we sometimes come up with something we think is what people need, but they may not necessarily need it at that point. Further down the road, may actually be a much better time for you and you would have already sampled it. You have an idea of how it works, and how it looks, and you’re in a better position to go forward from there. You may have failures, but just keep going and tweak as you see the needs arise. He also encourages that sometimes you may segway into a whole different thing; you can still be creative just  in a different space. So you don’t know where you will end up, but keep at it. 

What’s ahead for odBo!h?

This lifestyle brand started with mostly t-shirts and has now expanded into caps featuring the ‘dad cap’, hoodies, tumblers, water bottles, slides and varsity jackets (the most recent addition).

Apart from the expansion of the product line Jamar envisions one day having a Brick-and-mortar retail facility. He acknowledges that the world has gotten to the point where brick-and-mortar stores are slowly dwindling, but it is still his desire to open a store, but a store with a difference. He envisions the odBo!h place to be a cultural experience where customers can socialize . This odbo!h facility will allow fellow entrepreneurs to trade various local treats and ply their trade as well.

How to Reach odBoih?

See more of Jamar’s brand on this clip featured on their Instagram feed (where he was interviewed by ‘Buy From Bout Here’:

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