In the face of a global pandemic skateboarders face the ultimate challenge, not being able to skate. Although we can’t enjoy relief that a good session with the homies provides, we can still contribute to the culture in meaningful ways. Unlike many sports where the fan lacks the skill to participate, we rarely spend any creative energy on anything other than the act itself. Here are a few ways you can use your free time to stay connected to skateboarding during your time off-board.
1. Edit a part
Instagram has taken over the video output of the average skater. It is so much easier to put together a 15 second clip of the day’s tricks then it is to painstakingly put together a full 3 mins of footage. Now is a great chance to take all the clips you’ve been keeping on your phone and edit them into something that requires a slightly longer attention span. Pick a song you like, take considerations such as ender, put some thought into the pacing and upload something that will be around even after you forget your IG password. Some of us might even have an old hard drive full of clips from 2007 that never saw the light of day. Now would be a great time to finally put them together.
2. Make a zine
In the same way you have a phone full of clips you might have a phone full of photos that nobody will ever see. This is also a great chance to reach out to friends for little interviews that double as a check in on the homies. It can be a great chance to build up your scene without having to leave the house. Anything from stories about a trip to a collection of themed photos (gloves on the ground, for example). Even screenshots of footage where you write a story about the mission to get the trick. The stories behind the clips often get lost and it’s a great time to get a little extra length out of your bangers from last year. You don’t have to make the next Thrasher, a fun 4 page issue is just as enjoyable.
Lots of people are using this time to go back to traditional creative outlets such as painting and drawing. Lots of skaters have these other talents but most often they use them as a time to get away from skating and their art doesn’t incorporate skating at all. With the itch to shred currently unscratchable it’s a great time to bring skating into your artwork. Draw a picture of a trick you’d like to do. Paint a picture of Guy at Venice in Mouse. Cut and Paste from some old mags. Make memes. Skateboarding feels so huge to us but when it comes to skateboarding in art we could always use more.
4. Read old mags
We all save them but have you ever even opened up your old mags? It’s more than just a trip down memory lane, its a chance to look at the past through fresh eyes. A TWS from 2001 reminds you how big World Industries was and all the shoe brands you forgot about that went out of business. You can laugh at the Check Out sections and be surprised at who made it and who didn’t. You can wince at the things Big Brother thought were O.K. to print. Right now @lookbacklibrary is doing a deal where you can buy a mystery bag of magazines for 10$ that has mags ranging from all eras. It’s a great deal and a great reminder how how much mags meant to you growing up.
5. Review your favorite skate video
You don’t have to be a writer to have something relevant to say about a video. As skateboarders we are incredibly detail oriented and things as small as the way Wade Desarmo’s pants fit to how close a flip trick went to primo down Wilshire become important things to us. Some videos are cannon and everyone loves them, but how about explaining how much The Popwar Promo meant to you in 2004? When you go back and watch with a critical mind you notice things you might have forgotten the first time. You might even watch Jordan Richter for the first time. It is a chance to rewatch some of your favorite videos but also an opportunity to think deeply about what things stood out about this video that it became a staple to you. You could even join a video book club and talk with others about a video each week.
Book Club 1
You could start a skate blog, or update the one you’ve been neglecting. When the biggest of us nerds have exhausted all the writing on Jenkem and Chrome Ball we seek out whatever we can. Anything to keep us off of the Slap message boards for an extended amount of time. You could even write an article about 6 things to do in quarantine.
Remember there is no pressure to do anything creative with your time. You are doing just fine by staying home and staying safe. Can’t wait for the session on the other side of this. Love you friends ❤