Telling the stories behind the stories

Published on 10 July 2020

The Capricorn Line

Ron Neumann loves the Rocky region so much that he developed his own t-shirt range.

His inspiration for The Capricorn Line comes from the stories, words, names or phrases he hears from locals – our stories of survival, adaptation and overcoming challenges are sensational. “Every town has them, the stories behind the stories, but there is something unique about this region,” say Ron.

TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOURSELF AND THE CAPRICORN LINE

My name is Ron Neumann. I feel very blessed to have married an amazing lady and helped to raise our many wonderful children and grandchildren. I oddly love both AFL and NRL. The Capricorn Line is the name of a local apparel and accessories company that features designs unique to the Rockhampton / Capricorn Coast Region. Quality of the product is always placed in front of profit.

The motivation behind starting The Capricorn Line came from two separate thoughts I was struggling with at the time. Firstly I loved some of the unique, yet quirky names used in various contexts in Rockhampton. I did not know what to do with these ideas so I sat at my computer and began to do some rough design based on my thoughts. Secondly I was really frustrated to see t-shirts that advertised major American cities being sold and worn by locals who had not gone outside our country. I understood there were not many options available as I could not find any myself, so the two ideas joined up and The Capricorn Line was born.

WHAT HAVE BEEN THE BIGGEST CHALLENGES YOU HAVE FACED?

The biggest challenge early on was finding a graphic artist who would work with me. I had a low budget to work with so it was difficult. Many national companies I approached did not respond to emails so my frustration levels were climbing until I heard of a local graphic artist.  Angelo Conway from Conway Creative called me back within an hour, listened to my waffle and agreed to work with me. We've had a great working relationship since and I'm a huge fan of his band The Shortfall.

Secondly and still an ongoing challenge is sourcing quality products at prices that are ultimately affordable to the public. I had to ensure the quality, but more so that any materials obtained overseas were certified under the FairTrade agreement. The journey into retail is still ongoing with much to learn. 

WHAT INSPIRES YOU?

My inspiration comes from the stories, words, names or phrases I regularly hear spoken by locals and from the people of this region. Not all stories from our past are favorable but the stories of survival, adaptation and overcoming are sensational. Every town has them, the stories behind the stories, but there is something unique about this region.

WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT ROCKHAMPTON?

The best thing I love about Rockhampton is our water supply from the Toonooba / Fitzroy River catchment. I love that it only takes about 15 minutes to travel from one side of Rockhampton to the other and that peak hour lasts about 20 minutes and two changes of traffic lights. I love that it takes only a 30 minute drive to arrive at some of our country's best beaches and only 10 minutes to walk on some of the most outstanding walking or biking tracks. It would be amiss of me not to mention the people of Rockhampton. We are a quirky mob with a sense of humor that leaves many outsiders scratching their heads.  

WHAT TOP 3 ATTRACTIONS DO YOU RECOMMEND TO ANYONE VISITING ROCKY?

  1. Botanic Gardens
  2. Walking Mount Archer (Nurim) or the CBD historical building walk 
  3. Fishing the Fitzroy

Wrap these up in the new coffee culture that has emerged in Rockhampton and who wouldn't want to live here.

WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO MOVE TO THE REGION?

I had travelled around and I knew the capital cities were way too vast and crowded for me. In my early twenties I visited and stayed in Rockhampton numerous times while performing in various circuit bands. I loved the feel and size of the town. I was offered a job here and the rest is a new chapter in the pages of Rockhampton history!