Today we’d like to introduce you to Bryan Ye-Chung and Brian Chung.
We’re Alabaster Co. Our mission is to create beautiful and excellent work that expands people’s understanding of God and inspires people to make work that serves others. We’re mostly known for making bibles that look like coffee table/art books. It began back in 2016 when Bryan and Brian were discussing ways creativity and faith could be more connected.
The question felt incredibly relevant to culture today. We’re growing increasingly visual. Everyone has a smartphone with a camera. Everyone has access to creative tools; everyone is a content creator.
Whether we acknowledge it or not, faith is also always informed by the culture we live in. We wanted to build something that was faith-based, but also part of this growing creative culture.
Our first project, The Gospels, launched on Kickstarter in October 2016. We had no idea what to expect but were blown away by the response and are beyond-thankful to those initial backers who helped make the project a reality. It showed us that something like this was needed as—especially younger generations—are exploring what faith means in their own context.
Since then, our brand and our team has grown. We’ve published a total of nine bible books now. We’ve also created our own written content, notebooks, and videos—all exploring creativity, beauty, and faith.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Definitely not. We’ve made a ton of mistakes that inevitably happen when you’re trying to build a business. Our biggest struggle was a considerable typo we made on our first print-run in the Gospel of Mark. An entire line of text went missing in Chapter 5. It was incredibly disappointing and went against the level of excellence we wanted to showcase in the books.
Ultimately, we reprinted the book and sent a new copy to all of our initial Kickstarter backers. It was painful. We lost a lot of money. But in the end, it was worth it. We wanted to build a brand that was honest and transparent, and while this was a huge setback, it was character-building for the type of company we were trying to create.
We’d love to hear more about your business.
We integrate visual imagery and thoughtful design into different books of the bible. The end result doesn’t look like your typical bible, but rather like a coffee-table/art book. We’re interested in how art and design can change the way a person interacts with faith.
Since our last interview, we’ve grown what the brand offers. We know the conversation around creativity, beauty, and faith goes beyond the bible—to stories and experiences of real entrepreneurs and artists making things in the world today. We’ve created notebooks, art prints, blog readings, music, and videos all to help support these people.
What were you like growing up?
Bryan: I grew up loving to build and make things. I painted and played with a lot of LEGOs. Creativity was something I was always interested in, so it felt right to start something like Alabaster.
Brian: I grew up reading a ton. It’s probably why when I picked up my first bible in college, I was so startled—it was designed like nothing else I had read before. It’s awesome to see how some of my interests came full circle through Alabaster.
- Book of Psalms – $38.00
- Book of Proverbs – $30.00
- Book of Genesis – $38.00
- Book of Isaiah – $38.00
- Book of Romans – $35.00
- Book of Mark – $30.00
- Book of Matthew – $30.00
- Book of Luke – $30.00
- Book of John – $30.00
- Alabaster Notebook – $24.00
- Book: All That Is Made – $16.00
- Website: www.alabasterco.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: alabaster_co
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/alabasterco
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/Alabaster_Co