Focal Point

Wheels To Grow: Javier Mendizibal Visits Cambodia

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In early December 2012 pro skater Javier Mendizabal and the Quiksilver by Verich B project team traveled to Phnom Penh to meet the Skateistan Cambodia team and their students. This marked the beginning of an exciting new collaboration to release a range of sunglasses made out of recycled skateboard decks to help support Skateistan. As an ambassador of the Quiksilver Foundation, Javier participated in all of Skateistan Cambodia’s day-to-day activities with the students, hosting workshops on the mechanics of a skateboard, giving trick tips to the staff and students, and doing skate demos. Through their shared passion for skateboarding, Javier was able to inspire and motivate the students of Skateistan to push their own skating to new levels.

Released on June 18th, the Wheels to Grow film demonstrates how skateboarding can not only cross cultural barriers, but it can also be used as a tool for self expression, creativity and access to education. For more information about Skateistan’s work with youth in Cambodia and Afghanistan, visit skateistan.org

“Soul Rebel” The Mark Appleyard Video


For over a decade, Mark Appleyard has stacked numerous iconic video parts under his wing, and with Element’s “Soul Rebel” his legacy continues. In this four and a half minute online piece of epic street skating, Appleyard takes the gnarly hits (and misses) under his own directive and once again lays down his magic with effortless style. This video is also available on iTunes for all of your digital devices. #soulrebelvideo

Congrats Apples!

– Bryce Kanights

Fear and Loathing in Australia – Oakley in OZ

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Oakley has released its Fear and Loathing mini site with a video series featuring and highlighting their skate missions in Australia earlier this year with their powerful skate team including Erik Koston, Rune Glifberg, Curren Caples, Sam Beckett, and Ryan Sheckler. For the full story, videos, and a photo gallery of the action, drop on by the Oakley in OZ mini site.

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What’s more, is that professional skater cum skate photographer Arto Saari was in the mix on his first shoot as a hired gun for Oakley. As you can understand, I have the ultimate praise and respect for Arto as he is now pushing his creativity upon another realm of his life as a few of us did many years ago. Who better to carry the torch and to shoot meaningful and vivid skate photos than a pro skateboarder that’s taken the time to refine his craft right?! Right.

Dig in!

– Bryce Kanights

King of The Snake Camtest in Arvada

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Skateboarding is one of the greatest things ever. It truly is. Skateboarding gives one a sense of independence and freedom, it teaches us to never give up and to do it ourselves, it creates community, it opens doors of opportunity, and most importantly, it gives back – on many levels.

This past Saturday, May 25th, droves of skateboarders and skate enthusiasts from all over the country made their way to Arvada, Colorado to show their support of Dave Tuck who is battling cancer and to witness the high energy action of a skateboard contest in the impressive skatepark’s snake run. In the mix of the afternoon, the skatepark was abuzz with friends getting together to skate, watch some heavy skateboarding in the Camtest / King of The Snake event, and to generate funds for Tuck.

At the end of the 20-minute, 10-man final skate jam Josh Borden skated tough and fully earned the 2013 King of The Snake crown. Andy Macdonald landed in second place and Dalton Dern nailed down third place.

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Many thanks to Cam Dowse for hosting this epic and meaningful benefit event for Dave Tuck and of course, all respect to the sponsors and those that made it a great day of skateboarding. Drop by facebook.com/camtest for more information. #thankyouskateboarding!

– Bryce Kanights

This is Eric Koston

Desillusion magazine, supported by Nike are proud to present their latest video “This is Eric Koston”, a video portrait that pays tribute to the legendary street skateboarder, Eric Koston.

As one traces the evolution of modern street skating from its earliest foundation to the unbelievable heights to which it has risen, Eric Koston has served as a constant innovator each step of the way. Since turning pro in 1992, Eric Koston has remained unfadeable in a cut-throat contest capacity as well as on the raw street level that prides itself in taking no shorts, all while never seeming to take any of it all that seriously. The wheels are always in motion, even when off his board, as Koston has helped advance innovation in skateboarding through his dedicated approach to footwear design (his creativity has yielded several classic skate shoes already) and by co-founding The Berrics with long-time pal and former roommate, Steve Berra.

The video comes with a full report on Eric Koston on the latest issue of Desillusion magazine available via dslmag.com

VULTURE COUTURE – a Skateboard Fashion Show

The recycled skateboard jewelry and accessories company, MapleXO recently hosted a fashion show on Friday night March 15th, 2013 as a statement against plagiarism. 

At Nemo HQ in Portland, Oregon twenty models took the red carpet wearing skateboards as clothing (literally) to represent the influence of skateboarding in fashion and more directly to mock fashion designer, Jeremy Scott for sending stolen skateboard art down the runway.

The show came as a response to Jeremy Scott’s recent debut at NY Fashion week which included pieces that were direct rip offs of Jim and Jimbo Phillips’ iconic Santa Cruz Skateboard art.

“It really struck a chord with us since our entire business is based off of turning skateboards into fashion. As skateboarders ourselves, we take a lot of pride in giving credit back to skateboarding for every piece we make,” says Lindsay Jo Holmes, owner of MapleXO. “We couldn’t just sit quietly with him pulling such a kook move on skateboarding, so we sent the original skateboard art down the red carpet.”

It’s not the first time the skateboard community has been affected by plagiarism. Skateboard artist Michael Sieben’s art was recently mimicked by Target to create an entire line of youth clothing. – Furthermore, the overall style of the skateboarding subculture is constantly exploited in fashion trends that often teeter the line of plagiarism.

“Inspiration is great. Plagiarism is just wrong. Artists and creators deserve credit for the ideas they bring into this world. Shameless rip offs of their work should be shunned,” says Holmes

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MapleXO has been directly affected by plagiarism a few times. One example is the nearly identical copy of their recycled skateboard iPhone case that was mass distributed and portrayed as an original creative accessory by a larger company out of southern California.

“In our case, the more skateboards that are recycled the better, so we tend to just ignore the copy cats,” explains Holmes, “After seeing the plagiarized Jim and Jimbo Phillips art, however, we felt like a statement had to be made and since we bridge a gap between skateboarding and fashion, we felt compelled to take charge”

Songs from memorable skateboard video parts played as the models walked and a “Program” was passed out at the show with the song and video credits. The Vulture Couture Fashion Show and installations pointed a middle finger to the copycats, fakers, and takers of the skateboard subculture by literally bringing the spotlight back to the original source of its influence in fashion – skateboarding.