I used to be able to save four photos for the [dot] like it was nothing. But this time things were different. Brad and I talked for a good 8 months or so about getting this feature going. Stuff kept getting pulled and used elsewhere, and I kept getting unhyped on what I had put aside for this and had to throw those photos out of the selection.
I finally settled on four photos and I think I’ll actually remain hyped on this selection…. unlike the selection for my Fresh Crops… But anyway….
The funny thing about this photo of Kass is that he was skating with two heel bruises and a rolled ankle, all of which he received earlier in the day. He could barely walk, but was more than able to do this 5050.
Mat’s just that guy. Have a spot that’s too gnarly or unskatable? Have an OLLLLDER woman that nobody else wants to try to get with? Let Mat get a go at either one of them, I bet he’ll knock out at least one and a half of those two tasks! This spot has been looked at for years, but nobody’s ever skated it. At least not in the past decade and a half.
Everyone complained about the brick runway and the grind/manual blockers lathered about the whole park. Mat didn’t care though. He hopped on this nose manny in the dark like a champ. An angry champ who was mad that I was getting him to try to nose manny through skate stoppers on an angled, curved ledge in the dark.
But what’s wrong with challenging your skateboarding every once in a while? And it only took me saying “JUST ONE MORE TRY!!” about eight tries after he landed it, before I finally got a photo I was pleased with.
Timmy and I met up one day and it started pouring right as we got to our first spot. With our only options being head home, or go skate this up rail that recently got some love in the new Focus, we decided to head to the rail. This feeble was a race against the clock, once I found a shot. I noticed this puddle that in my opinion, makes the shot what it is. Oddly enough, as fast as the rain came down, the rain was drying up just as fast, and my puddle was going away. It’s not even that the feeble was taking long, it was just a matter of battling Timmy’s Instagram breaks between tries and the sunlight beating down on my beloved puddle. I’d just sit there and watch my puddle dry up as he would scroll through his feed. I guess it didn’t help that I didn’t mention the importance of the puddle in the shot until the last few tries, so scroll on, Timmy! It all worked out in the end though!
This back smith was also shot on a rainy day. But what day isn’t rainy when you live in Florida? I met Dakota and some of his friends at this rail in the rain, and we hung out there until it stopped. Some tricks went down in the rain. Some really good tricks went down in the rain, but this back smith went down as the sun came out. I decided to stay far away from a vertical fisheye shot at the bottom of the rail, after splitting my head open while shooting a vertical fisheye shot the last time I was there. Thus why I shot the loose, (possibly too loose) long lens shot that you see here.
photos and words by Stephen Oliveira
Stephen writes at Focus Skate Mag