Guardian Angels — An Interview With John Petras

Intro & Interview by Adam Abada
Photos by Bradley Culebro & John Petras

At their best, skate videos use their subjects – namely, the skaters and the spots they skate – to blend the narratives of place and character into a cohesive whole. When this happens, you get a special product that recalls the intangible things we love about skating. John Petras‘ new Pittsburgh video, Celine, does just that.

In the height differential of a high-to-low ledge on a crusty Pittsburgh hill, I can sense the city-wide spot survey that led to this one’s constant reuse. In the high-contrast, black-and-orange-lit night footage at the Museum of Natural History, I can nearly see the frayed edges of a Toyota Yaris’ cloth seats and smell the stale spliff smoke from the half-day commute on I-80. The interim vignettes – gentle hugging of friends in quiet moments and the repeated handing off of a flower – drew me into the skaters’ world in unexpected ways. John Petras seems to have pulled off the difficult trick of imbuing Celine with a personal voice and a representative view of a city.

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Sports Club — An Interview With Roman Lisivka

Intro & Interview by Frozen in Carbonite
Photography by Kubo Krizo

Anyone whose parents forced them to take piano lessons remembers that antiquated wooden metronome with a metal needle going back and forth. Practicing scales might “suck,” but maintaining a consistent tempo forms the foundation of any musical journey.

ANYWAY, a symbolic representation of the discipline necessary to achieve mastery of one’s instrument, the metronome at Stalin Plaza has become a metaphor for the technical excellence that locals like Petr “Euro Wenning” Horvat and others have created there since the 1990s. After the supernova of They Don’t Give a Fuck About Us, EuroTech™ expanded across the continent. Gunslingers from all over the continent migrated to Barcelona, but only a few — like Roman Lisivka and fellow Slovakian Marek Zaprazny — gained widespread recognition on account of their undeniable virtuosity.

Lisivka has produced some of the most forward-thinking EuroTech™ content of the past decade — including the “Stalinista” edit, footage in Sportsclass’ “Enter the Stalin” (the Only Built 4 Cuban Linx of contemporary EuroTech™), and a two-song last part in Primitive’s “Rome” vid — a section that I claimed as my favorite of 2020.

We caught up with Roman to discuss coming up skating in the aftermath of the Soviet Eastern Bloc, his new venture Métronome, and the process that goes into composing some of the most diabolical technical skating ever put down.

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Five Favorite Parts With Beatrice Domond

Collage by Requiem For A Screen
Original Photography by Mike O’Meally

We are never not in the midst of a perpetual stop and go with “Five Favorite Parts.” (The last one was Suciu in …September!) With just three days left in January, going to make a public pledge on here to do one of these a month for all of 2021 ♥

The year’s first installment comes from the first lady of F.A. who has made straight-on no comply mechanics make sense to my no-comply-deficient brain more than anyone else — but not enough for me to actually have a breakthrough because no complys will never make sense ;)

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The Best Skate Videos & Parts of 2020 — QS Readers Poll Results

Illustration by Cosme Studio
Ballot Tally Assist by 4Ply Magazine

One of the biggest cliches is discussing just *how much* skate content there is. Everything is available at once, and keeping track of it for one viewing — let alone multiple — is hard.

Last year’s decade poll aimed at a snapshot of skateboarding in a ten-year span, as it grew exponentially into the content waterfall it is today. It was very fun to do, but perhaps easier in that with ten years to reflect on, it was apparent what loomed large over tricks, styles and trends. We brought it back for a single year to try and form a canon at a time when so much of the conversation is geared around things moving too fast for a consensus.

Yes, you’ll notice an inherent recency bias here, and year-end content is obviously an imperfect art — the poll closed on December 4, which is before John’s Vid and Third Shift came out online, two projects that definitely would’ve ranked if eligible. (Honestly, John’s Vid might’ve ended up being #1 or #2 given the readership of this website.)

So here it is. No commentary for the full-lengths this round. Full-length skate videos capture a zeitgeist, and sometimes, it takes a while for those effects to truly make themselves known.

Shout out to all the writer friends from the internet who helped with write-ups, and extra major shout out to the team at 4Ply Magazine for the help on tallying the ballots.

And if you’re joining us, this ranking was voted on by QS readers during the first week of December, with voting ending on the 4th.

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