ARI Bio:

I was born in California and raised in the chaos of 1970’s Los Angeles, running up and down Hollywood Blvd all day and night until the age of twelve. After a few really tough years of with my mother and sister, I abruptly moved to the Germantown (G-town) section of Philadelphia to live with my father. Both my parents, as well as my siblings, were all born in Philly then moved to California. So the return to Philly was always the goal for them. I was the odd man out being born elsewhere. My dad returned to Philly years before, and I landed at the airport in the early 80’s with a bag of clothes, a Ray “Bones” Rodriguez skateboard, and no clue what to expect. It was the summer of 1982 at the height of Philly’s urban decay, I had no plan, no friends, and with nothing to do, I quickly became a willing participant in the neighborhood during the period when Hip-Hop was going through the dramatic transformation from burgeoning regional subculture to international phenomenon. Between Hip Hop music, graffiti, and skate boarding, all as my pass and distraction, I managed to literally dance my way through the crack laden and crazy streets of Philly in the 1980’s. Armed with my mom’s creativity, and a desire to turn art into income, I entered art School in 1988. Upon my graduation in 1992 from art school, I hit the ground running having already established myself as a hungry local designer for the music industry, designing clothing, logos, album covers, and any sort of thing I could figure out how to design, or make by hand, for people.

As they say, timing is everything. Logo and flyer design led to album cover and fashion accessory designs for a number of Hip Hop artists and record labels. Right at this time, having seen where my digital design level was at, my friend Steve “ESPO” Powers made offered me 50/50 partnership in publishing the Philadelphia “subculture” magazine, "On The Go". Now I was finally 50% stake holding in something completely worth no money! Huzaah! But of course… with no hesitation I said “HELL YES!”, and in only 18 issues, "On The Go" grew from a one-page photo copy folded 11”x17” black and white self-distributed newsletter to a full-color glossy magazine, boasting an international circulation of over [42,000] copies. So I actually didn’t do too bad with that! Although there never was any profit, it gave us some credibility that is still cashing in till this day. Plus a lot of worldwide fans that always have great stories to share of how and where they managed to “buy” the magazine! Many of which still save them in their storage spaces for nostalgia reasons, because they are still not worth much. *last I checked eBay.

Ready for new creative challenges, I was presented with the idea to apply the creative strategies we had developed to promote the magazine to the marketing world. So, after publishing its final issue in 1997, "On The Go Magazine" was reborn into On The Go Marketing in partnership with Mark DiPippa. Going strong for over 14 years now, the agency boasts 7 full-time employees and is recognized in the industry as a scrappy, reliable, creative go to agency in the field of experiential marketing. At On The Go Marketing I’ve helped to define the experiential marketing industry through many innovative campaigns for ESPN, X Games, Nike, XBOX, and Disney, to name a few.

While On The Go Marketing keeps rolling, I have brought one of my passions to the forefront… belt design! Yeah, that doesn’t sound like much, but after years of sewing in secret, learning and developing my techniques by myself, I have finally released my belts, in a limited capacity, to the world, and the response has been much larger than I thought. I have a list of other product designs under development to my private accessories line.

Additionally, with the time left in my week, I stay busy tending to a wide range of ongoing projects including occasional interior retail/interior design, as well as multiple collaborations with long-time friend Steve “ESPO” Powers. Most notable of my random side projects was my social design experiment The “ARI Menthol 10’s” back in 2006, and my long-running friendship and design development with the fashion duo “DEE & RICKY”, whom I discovered and mentor to this day.

My projects are a continuation of my original foray into all areas of design, dating back to my early days in the music industry. All of which simply serves to fuel the “ON THE GO” legacy of “quality and quantity that never quit!” – Mark Surface

MY Timeline:


  • Family life.
  • The birth of a lifetime love of skateboarding
  • The never-ending creation of arts & crafts
  • Personal and creative freedom. Thanks, Mom.
  • Survival
  • Living in motels
  • Dreaming
  • Graffiti
  • Hip-Hop
  • Skateboarding/Spikes Skates
  • Graphic design, club flyers and logos
  • Fashion and accessories design begins


  • Art School
  • Graphic Design - The Roots, Kris Kross, Ruff House Records, ESPO’s “Art Of Getting Over”, and a lot of advertising design
  • Digital Design - Star Trek Klingon Language Lab, West World Game, many B2B Apps
  • "On The Go Magazine" - De La Soul , ODB, Mobb Deep, and an unreleased issue with Jay-Z…
  • On The Go Videos - Eye Shocker Express, Repeat Offender
  • Fashion Design - Accessories for Kid & Play, 3 x Dope, Ruff House Records, Eight Ball Records…
  • Viral Marketing - Translating the promotional tactics from the magazine and graffiti into a corporate language.
  • On The Go Marketing – Taking experiential to the many brands and agencies of America.


  • On The Go Marketing evolves into a full service experiential marketing and brand strategy agency with a who’s who of projects and clients.
  • Graphic Design – Goes from print design to real life 3D in the form of creative build outs for a variety of Fortune 500 companies.
  • Art – Began to apply the arts & crafts background to personal promotional projects.
  • Sneaker Design – From Nike/ESPO, to The ARI MENTHOL 10’s.
  • Fashion Design – Continuing to develop the ARI SAAL line, and DEE & RICKY brands, as well as collaborating with a wide range of lifestyle brands.
  • The success of OTGM allows ARI the freedom to develop the next phase of the company.