Ian Reid has a stockpile of largely unseen skate photographs from the early-to-mid-2000s. They are not so much photographs of actual skateboarding, as they are candid documentation of behind-the-scenes moments to many mythologized skaters and videos from that era. Our friend Ted Barrow recently began sifting through Ian’s photos, and sat down with him for some commentary on a few key selections. As there are hundreds of these, expect a volume two post, and a potentially larger archival project down the line. You can check out Ian’s current photo work here.
Thanks to Ian for sharing the photos, and to Ted for the accompanying interview.
When was this taken, and who took it?
Brian Wenning took this photo of me doing a one-foot ollie on Wall Stree. I’m still skating in Air Force 1s, so maybe in like 1999, because that’s Chris Camillo sitting right there.
Loudmouth New Yorker, skateboarder from Staten Island. He was great, I loved him.
So what is it, a one-foot down the seven stairs then a drop?
Yeah, you land on that platform and roll off. It’s high.
I remember walking by that building, and someone was like, “Ian Reid rolled off of that thing…”
Yeah, the thing I rolled off was actually next to it. I don’t know what I was thinking, but yeah. This was a different thing. You ollie, land, then roll off.
That does not look fun.
No, that wasn’t fun.
That’s Kyle James. The man, the myth, the legend. He’s at work right there. That’s his work truck, the fuel thing. Sometimes he drives the actual tanker truck with the fuel in the back, where it’s like, if he’s smoking, which I think he is, he can actually blow up himself, and take out a city block, you know, based on his level of not giving a fuck. So that’s him at work, man.
Do you see him often?
Yeah, I see him all the time. That’s my guy, man. He works down the block from here. If we went all the way down to the end, you’d see him.
And he’s not skating anymore?
He has no interest in skateboarding at all.
The last time I interviewed you, you said something which I didn’t quite understand. You described Kyle as being on some “New Age Thug type shit.” Please elaborate.
He’s talking about, like, e-pimping and selling drugs online and shit, and I was like “Nah, fool, you can’t do it like that.” You know, when the hood gets ahold of technology, they be going a whole ‘nother way with it. They try to take that shit to the extreme of the extreme, so, he was trying to figure out ways to sell pussy on the internet, sell drugs on the internet, so he’s like “My nigga, everything is on the internet, everything is on my phone!” He had like just a horrible telephone, not even a good one…but that’s just new age…New Age Pimpery.
Yes, Bum Juice! Ok, so my man John, who still comes to my house to this day… I’m from Fort Greene, John was from Fort Greene too, and we kinda grew up skating together. It’s just that he stayed at one particular level in skateboarding, due to his alcoholism, and did not progress past that.
As is evident in this photo…
Yes, in this photo — I wish you could see the time stamp, because this is easily about 10 A.M. and he has a Coke and a Bacardi, and this look of happiness on his face due to holding those two things.
His knuckles are all fucked up too, I like that detail.
Yeah, he fights a lot.
When was this shot?
Probably 2000, because that’s Venice there on my computer. I had just come back from California. He did not care about my trip. I kept trying to tell him about it repeatedly, but he did not give a fuck about that shit. He just wanted to drink that Bacardi.
So that’s Pinky, The Brain, Eddie Munster, Secret Squirrel, Snidey, and Steve.
Who’s that dude?
I forget, some foreigner.
So Pinkie is Clark Hassler, The Brain is Jason Wakazawa — I used to give all these kids nicknames when I lived out in L.A. Eddie Munster is Paul Rodriguez. Snidey, well that’s just Christian Snidey. Secret Squirrel is Nigel Hawthorne.
Why is he called Secret Squirrel?
Because he used to film all this shit and he wouldn’t show it to us. It was back in the VX days. He used to hold it hostage, like on some secretive shit. It’s like “Yo, I just witnessed it. He just did it. Let us see it!” and you know, it was a secret, so, we called him Secret Squirrel.
And then, you know, we were at Steve Vanesco’s house, A.K.A. Van Styles.
I like that detail of Clark’s chain, too.
Yeah, I love it. Very Snyder-ish. He has an Axion shirt on, I like that.
And some really good cargo denim…
Pinky’s outfits used to be the best, man.
Dirtywhite.com, and there you have Mr. Wenning and Mike Butler. Dirty White, from New Jersey. Uh, yeah, that shit don’t even need an explanation.
I’m guessing that’s in Venice somewhere.
Yeah Venice, California.
What year was that? I would guess 2003.
Nah, this would have been our second California pillage. He ain’t have no tattoos then, so…
Yeah, you could maybe date it by hair length, or tint of blue Elwood t-shirt.
Yeah, you gotta gauge it by hair length: he wasn’t pro yet, so he still had the long hair.
I just wanted to introduce that picture, because there are a lot of good photos of Mike Butler, but that one…
Dude, that is just creep-tastic, like, he’s just styling there with that New Jersey pose, like “I’m right here! Yo I’m here, I’m here!”
I wish this was a video interview, because you could just imitate Sam’s voice. “Yo, so I’m not really feeling it man, but yeah, I want you to do it.” This was s spot that we used to go to in the Bronx, which really sucked, but for some reason I wanted to keep skating it. I did three tricks on it, and these three little kids were there.
The one in the middle kept saying “Yo, I could jump down that shit.” So he attempts to jump down and just eats so much shit, and it was hilarious. That’s Kenny and Lewis right next to him. If you could see Kenny and Lewis now, man. I wish I had photos of them now, man, goddamn. Kenny got like big ass diamond earrings, tattoos up to his chin, chains and shit, and then well Lewis is, uh, I think Lewis might be in jail. Thuggery has caught up to him. And then you know, there’s Sam.
So is this Lurkers 2 era?
Yeah, we were still going out filming for Lurkers 2 in this.
This is a good time right here. I’ll start from the left and go to the right: we’ve got the good old Jake Duncombe, Aaron Suski, Shane Cross, Lewis Marnell, Ryan Shecker — the man, the myth, the legend — and Chima Ferguson; all of which are good buddies of mine. Yes, Sheckler too.
This was a Volcom thing. They were on a Volcom trip and it was actually everyone on the team except Caswell Berry. It was dope to hang out with all those dudes and go skate with them every day. It was sick because I had just met Shane on that trip, and dude was such a stress-box on the skate session every day. He’d always get a trick or two, and just like hate it to death, like “I shoulda done a better trick!” It was just hilarious to hear that shit.
Whoa. Is this in the same photo?
No, this is a compare and contrast.
Oh it’s a split! I was buggin’ like wait…I don’t recall this being in the same photo.
So, this is Jereme Rogers wearing a “Reserved for Mark Appleyard” placeholder at what I think was the Transworld Awards. This is clearly, pre-J. Casanova. This was Jereme from Boston, skateboarding his ass off, living in Los Angeles, doing what he does. You know, you can tell he’s coming into J. Casanova by his watch, ring, chain and demeanor…can’t forget the Burberry.
And next to J. Casanova we’ve got Patrick O’Dell.
They both have red hair right here.
Yeah, Patrick O’Dell’s got a sweater vest that was knitted by his girlfriend, probably. And Jereme’s got Burberry. It’s like, you know, fashion clash, but nonetheless two equally cool individuals who helped skateboarding immensely.
But may have taken some weird sidesteps to get there.
Many a weird sidestep taken by Patrick O’Dell and Jereme Rogers, but both equally cool, and always were down for Ian Reid.
Early 2000s were weird.
This is like a sequence.
Oh shit! This is a collage of photographs starring Danny Renaud, Fred Gall, and Tony Heitz. Tony Heitz was the Alien team manager for quite a while, and that’s little Kyle Nicholson right there. Kyle’s sick.
We were in Spain, and uh, this bottom photo on the pool table is clearly — those dudes are out of their minds, if you can’t tell. Danny was very inebriated and Fred was, as he would say, “Looking for that shit,” and yeah we were just in this pool hall in Barcelona.
This other photo, we were at this spot that is like three down, and then another set of eight or some shit. This is the trip where Danny got kicked off of Habitat, and it was for focusing everyone’s boards in the apartment, barefoot, which I personally thought was pretty fucking sick. I was psyched on the fact that he focused everybody’s board. It kind of bummed out Mr. Burns and Kerry and Danny to come out and see their boards focused, but shit, I was psyched on it, man. Fred didn’t give a fuck, Fred was hyped, but no one else was excited about it. Tony Heitz was especially bummed about it.
You can see here that Tony is not too psyched, but you can also see that Danny Renaud does not give a fuck. I love Danny Renaud and Ryan Nix. Danny Renaud and Ryan Nix for Senate.
Oh shit, that was at Staten Island. That’s where Brian got his Plan B ad. He had the sample for his shoe from DC and he shot his Plan B ad which was a switch flip back tail 360 shove. I remember the day clearly, I watched it all go down. In typical fashion, I did nothing, I just watched.
Yeah, fucked-up ass jeans, man. That was it right there, man.
That’s Lewis again. One day we were out skating, and I guess he didn’t land any tricks, like he didn’t get shit. So he was a little upset sitting in the back of my car, and wrote “Fuck you and fuck you” to the people that were sitting next to him. I think it was Lurker Lou and someone else. It may have been either Matt Mooney or Ty, and little Louis was just not psyched on that event at all, based on the writing on his t-shirt.
This is in the Surf Motel in Carlsbad, California. Pat Duffy, Brian Wenning, making a pact, to do lots of wild shit and skateboarding.
Brian was talking about some trick, I wanna say he was talking about a switch back smith he had just done, and Duffy’s just like, “Yeah, dude, amazing” in true inebriated Duffy form, just like not really giving a fuck, but still giving a fuck, because they’re teammates. And then Duffy starts talking about something that he had just done as well, like they’re both filming for the Plan B promo at this time. Then the conversation just shifts and everything became all smiles, and the hotel room became trashed, like they were 16 and have never been on tour before.
Why were you guys in Carlsbad?
It was just where we always used to stay. The Surf Motel. It was either there or stay at Colin or Danny’s house. Brian just liked the Surf Motel better. It didn’t matter, I was gonna stay wherever.
I like that moment in the photo, where it’s like, there’s two coasts, you know: there’s sincerity on both sides but it’s directed at different things.
There’s a lot of energy there. It’s a very energetic photo even though it looks all mellow. Not to mention that its actually like two people at the pinnacles of their careers at different points in life, I guess. Like Brian was at the top of his shit, and Duffy was like on the comeback. This is the first time we had all hung out together, like outside of the “team.” It was just me, Duffy, and Brian, so it was like full-on rage mode. Then somehow, I swear to God, Nate Sherwood shows up at some juncture. Like randomly, Nate Sherwood showed up this night, and Duffy was like “Get the fuck away from here,” and so Brian was like “Get outta here!” It was an interesting occurrence.
First of all, how dope does he look? Like, that’s really good pool-jumping style.
So we stayed in that room on the first floor. He had it his head that he would jump off the balcony and into the pool. I was like, “I don’t think you’re gonna do it.” The pool says eight feet deep at the end, but from where he was jumping in, it was like four or five feet. He’s just like “Yo, I’m going for it, I’m going for it. I’m in Carlsbad and I’m jumping off shit!” and he just jumped into the pool from the second floor. I was like “Fool, have you lost your mind?” He tried to convince me to jump in, and I’m like “Hell no!” Then we go out and skate, get back to the hotel at the end of the day, and he puts on this hoody, takes my hat, runs to the top of the stairs, and jumps into the pool again — fully dressed — and I’m like “What the fuck is wrong with you?” Then it became just this routine he would do, he would just jump off the balcony.
He looks deranged in that photo! Jack Nicholson in The Shining.
This is my board. That’s the fruits of labor, right there. I had just learned switch back tails, and I had made a bunch of money off my video, and there’s a sticker for my video on my board. That was a good day. I think I got my first sales from Supreme and local New York stores. That’s Brian’s board, with the NJ logo,
And tons of switch back tail marks.
Yeah, because if he could do it, I had to do it, but I couldn’t do it as good.