Skateboarding on the cover of the September 2015 issue of the American Bar Association magazine AKA the ABA Journal. The cover stunt person looks like a cross between Michael J Fox and Mark Wahlberg. I like the out-of-focus statuesque lady in the background. Is it just me or does her board look like an out of scale (too large) photoshop job. It appears that the cover is just used to illustrate the concept of a “Legal Rebel” and is not skateboarding specific, although it looks like the board in the photo might have actually been produced. Skateboards (still) = Rebels.
– Thanks to Sam for the photo.
The July 15th, 1977 issue of Rolling Stone featured a 7 page spread on skateboarding by Tim Cahill and photographs by Warren Bolster. The cover story is on remembering the Beatles. Flipping through the pages is a trip, Roling Stone, supposedly with it’s finger on the pulse of alternative youth culture and rock and roll, but woefully square. One highlight, a full page ad for the Ramones first album, also shown here. A lot of the other ads seemed to be aimed at actual musicians instead of the general public. Check it out after the jump.
I learned that Rodney Mullen was in Wired by following J Grant Brittain on Instagram, as the Wired feature uses quite a few of his pictures. The lengthy article covers the events that led to Mullen’s first TED talk, his love of Linux, and his subsequent speaking and consulting business. Mullen obviously likes to use skateboarding as an instrument for illustration and inspiration in his new work, as it that’s where his credibility and recognition comes from. He draws parallels between skate culture and tech culture. It’s all very interesting, in a warm fuzzy way, but none if is paradigm changing or particularly new for that matter. It’s important to remember that the job of a professional speaker is more or less to inspire, often times through getting an audience to adjust their thinking a little. It’s the equivalent of removing a few pieces in a log jam or loosening up a few strands in a knot, hopefully allowing the listeners to attack their problems successfully with a new prospective, or at the very least, make them believe they can. On the front page of Wired there’s currently an opinion piece by former competitive skater and NHS team member Kathy Sierra. Sierra’s opinion piece dwells on sexism in the skateboarding world at the expense of everything positive that skateboard culture has to offer. The important thing to note, there is no singular skateboard culture. Rampant sexism certainly exists, but it is in no way indicative of the entire culture, or even the entire industry.
Another installment in the long history of Mad Magazine skateboard as comic vehicle. This is Spy vs Spy. Jr in Reversin’ Surfin’ from the 2007 compendium Spy vs. Spy 2: The Joke and Dagger Files. Yes “Hip” is the sound every skateboarder makes when ollieing. The onomatopoeia is not actually part of the gag, but it’s actually funnier than the gag by far. It could be a good premise for a video skit. Check out the full spread after the jump.
– Thanks to MC for the photo.
This is a 1980 advertisement for Kodak photo paper featuring Michael Landon. This ad came out in the 101’st year of the company when they were probably at their peak. 30 years later they filed for bankruptcy mostly due to the fact that they couldn’t keep up with the world of digital photography, despite having invented it! Michael says you should order more fun for everyone. Sure, why not? It looks like the kid in the photo is wearing volleyball kneepads and a couple of rolls of paper towels around his elbows. I’m not sure about that skateboard either. The single conical wheels are pristine but I’ve seen issues of Thrasher thicker than that deck.
Issue #268 of Mad Magazine, on the newsstands in January of 1987. It’s the lighter side of evolution. Bonus punk rock lighter side of appearances after the jump.
I couldn’t find out a single thing about who this Tiffany Eubank is. There are too many current day Tiffany Eubanks littering social media for Google to be much help. I believe she must have been an English model or actress. She was featured in a series of ads for Ushers Green Stripe scotch doing things like skydiving and skateboarding. The advertisement on the left ran in 1965, the same year as this Nash Sidewalk Surfboard ad. Actually, It’s unclear what company produced this advert. It appeared in a surfing magazine, and Surfing Heritage lists Ventura International Plastics (in Ventura) as the manufacturer of the Duke Kahanamoku surfboard model, but the Nash name is not on the (at least) 2 different Duke Kahanamoku skateboards, and their address was in Texas even back then. Then there’s the mail away surfing stickers. That address is for a third entity called Program Sales with a Hollywood address. It’s a bit of a head scratcher, but the Cowabunga ad is a pretty cool one.
Adam Shomsky has a Youtube channel filled with high frame rate slow motion videos of skateboarding and “other random stuff that looks cool in slow mo, like fire.” A writer over at Wired used an open source physics video analysis tool called Tracker (Insert Tracker vs. Indy joke here.) to break down the forces at work in an ollie. The resulting animated gifs are vaguely interesting and sort of hypnotic, especially if you like looking at lots of vectors and symbols overlaid on skateboard videos. Check out The Physics of Doing an Ollie on a Skateboard, or, the Science of Why I Can’t Skate.