On the night of Monday, January 7th, 2013, I left my apartment in the high hills of Sunset Park after a dinner with my roommates and headed for the R train. Eventually I arrived on the Lower East Side and made my way to Odessa, eager to get a look at the Schleyer Video 2012, a skate video by Matt Scheyler. I had recently met matt at SUNY Purchase in the STOOD, Purchase’s Student Center, where he was filming with two members of the Thrive Skateboards, Alex Farrara and Jordan Syrop. Speaking with Matt I quickly realized he was just a nice guy doing what he loved. We skated a little and I told him I’d see him in New York. On the night of the film’s preview, I hustled into the bar and spotted Matt Sharing a booth with Shane McGrane. We greeted each other and I sat down to interview him. -Ethan Barnett

Schleyer Video 2012

Schleyer Video 2012 Premiere

All right Matt, are you excited for the premier?

Yeah, I’m pretty excited. We had two planned: one at my friend’s house, which wasn’t too great, and another, which was scheduled at Oil City but got canceled.

How did the premiers come about at Odessa?

Well Shane [McGrane] told me he could somehow get a premier in the city if he talked to some of his friends, and Frank Nicado helped work it out: he set the whole thing up. All I had to do was show up.

How old are? Where are you from?

And how long have you been making films? I’m nineteen, I’m from Long Island, New York and I’ve been filming eight or nine years.

Is the Schleyer video 2012 your first full-length project?

Yeah, it’s the first video I’ve been able to finish.

How long is the video?

37 minutes, pretty good for about a year’s work, it was hard though.

What are you currently filming with and skating on?

I’m currently filming with my HVX, although I filmed almost all of the video with my DVX. My board is pretty big, almost 9 inches with cruiser wheels.

Do you use any lights or generators?

Nothing special, I have an on camera light, but don’t own a generator, I don’t use one often.

Was it difficult to work on the video since you’re a full time student at SUNY Purchase?

It was difficult because of travel: it’s an hour there and an hour back each time, Sometimes getting one clip, sometimes getting nothing. Spending $20 each time, it ended up costing a lot of money.

When and how did the project start?

I started attending Purchase in October-November of 2011 and I didn’t know what to do. I was bored and my DVX was broken. So I ended up spending all my money on a new camera, so I could go out and skate and film.

How did you decide who was going to be in it?

Well, everyone who had a part in it had been a friend of mine for a pretty long time. The only one I hadn’t known from back in the day was TJ. Little Frankie was friends with him and started bringing him along, so we just all skated together.

Is there a Friends Section?

Yeah, it’s 8 minutes long!

Nice. How did post-production go?

It was rushed, and half-assed. When I started post-production it was too much for me to handle. By the time I realized it, it was close to the deadline I had set for myself. Some people picked their own song and for others I picked the music. If I found a song I liked I used it, or I would ask for suggestions.

Who has your favorite part?

Everyone’s part is super good. They all have different styles and they’re all good friends of mine. I can’t really pick a favorite part.

Whose was your favorite part to edit?

Ahh haha, last part. 

What’s the best thing about filming skateboarding? 
It’s fun! You get to go out, skate and hang out with your friends.

Shane and the homie

Shane McGrane and Matt Schleyer

As a filmmaker, what’s your biggest pet peeve while filming skateboarding?

When everyone complains.

Whose filming are you hyped on right now?

James Messina, he’s a homie. He has a video called Culture Shock coming out this summer.

What’s the best part about being in NY?

Not needing a car, being able to skate everywhere and being able to get almost anywhere by public transportation.

What’s next for you? 
Just to keep filming.

I haven’t decided if I’m going to work on another video of my own; I might have a split video with Richie Banks. I’m looking to have another premier this time next year of all the footage I shoot in 2013.

Any last shout outs?

Everyone who helped out with the video and was in it: James Reres, Frankie Spears, Matt Nesemann, Shane McGrane, Anthony Savillo, Tyshawn Jones and anyone who wanted to see it. They’re all helping me continue to do what I love to do.

Buy the Schleyer Video

photos and words by Ethan Barnett

Ethan blogs at his personal website
Instagram: @Etun_Barnett
Email: Ethanscottbarnett@gmail.com
Matt Schleyer YouTube Channel