These Days & Times

The predictions were true. The quarantine has everyone inside making #content — this was one of the most extensive link lists for a Monday update in a while. How sustainable it is? Who knows. Boil the Ocean is already speculating on what will happen if we enter a COVID-19 induced footage drought, e.g. will Thrasher be forced to only post “Classics” videos like how ESPN plays old games during off-seasons.

Until then…

Keep Reading »

What Is ‘Poetic Collective?’ — An Interview With Tom Botwid

Intro & Interview by Adam Abada
Photos by Tom Botwid

What “is” skateboarding? A seven-ply piece of maple? Thirty-three inches of length and no more? “Not a crime?”

Just as skateboarding often eludes definition — existing in a purgatory between physical expression and existential thought — poetry uses language to access a similar type of feeling and add something new to our shared experience.

Keep Reading »

Rust Belt Trap — An Interview With Jerry Mraz

Intro + Interview By Adam Abada
Headline Photo by Mac Shafer

If you live or skate in New York, chances are you’ve come across Jerry. In the sixteen years since he moved to New York City from Michigan, he has mostly left the warm familiarity of Lower East Side haunts to leave his mark elsewhere. If you haven’t caught him in the streets, you’ve probably skated his well-chronicled concrete work. From patching up must-see-for-visiting-pros spots like the Bronx bank-to-ledge to more meandering locales like the B.Q.E. spot, Jerry’s legacy is clear and present.

He just finished up a video called Rust Belt Trap, which acts as a great visual representation of his philosophy, practice, and craft — and we realized we have never formally spoken to him on QS. Thankfully, Jerry found a slot of time in between picking up 2 x 8’s at the lumber yard to update us on his life and work. (Rust Belt Trap is still due out on Thrasher at some point.)

+++++++

You’re from the Midwest but have been in New York for quite a while now. What’s keeping you here?

The fact that there’s something always happening. Even if you stay in and you feel like you’re missing something, that’s cool. A lot of the time, I just decide to stay home and know the whole world is still moving on and I’m fine with that. But when I was stuck in a small town, it was really moving on, and I felt like I was missing it go by.

Keep Reading »

Five* Favorite Parts With Anthony Van Engelen

Intro + Interview by Adam Abada
Photo by Ben Colen

Sometimes, a person’s favorite parts are an array of influences and terrain. By admission from the man himself, these selections can all sort of be grouped in the same era, with similar sensibilities. They come as no surprise, especially given the type of skateboarding Anthony Van Engelen does.

He enthusiastically continued past five, so consider the extra three a bonus.

Keep Reading »

The Best Skateboard Videos of the 2010s — QS Reader Survey Results

Illustration by Cosme Studio

This was the decade that the full-length skate video was supposed to die. We began the 2010s with everyone insisting that Stay Gold would be the last full-length skate video. Then, Pretty Sweet was supposed to be the last full-length video. Some people thought that Static IV would be it — the end, no more full-lengths after that. But I feel like I heard someone say Josh was working on something new a couple months back? Idk.

The experience might’ve changed. We’re not huddling around a skate house’s TV covered in stickers to watch a DVD bought from a shop anymore (if this past weekend is any indication, it’s more like AirPlaying a leaked .mp4 file via a link obtained from a guy who knows a guy), but the experience of viewing a fully realized skate video with your friends for the first, second or twentieth time is still sacred.

Just as we asked for your votes for the five best video parts, we did the same for the five best full-lengths: if you could choose the five videos that defined the 2010s, what would they be? The results were a bit more surprising than the parts tally in some ways, given that it felt like independent, regional and newer, small brand videos dominated the decade, yet Big Shoe Brands™ and Girl + Chocolate still made their way into the list. The top-heaviness of some companies or collectives was less of a surprise, in that certain creators loomed large over the 2010s.

Like the installment before it, this list is sans comment for 20-11, and then via favors from writer friends for the top ten: here are the twenty best skate videos of the past ten years.

Keep Reading »