Brazilian skateboarder Felipe Nunes, 20, is on the cover of this month's Thrasher magazine. He just joined Tony Hawk's elite Birdhouse squad. He also has no legs. Nunes lost them in an accident when he was six years old. From Thrasher:
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What did it take to get back to where you were mobile again? Were you in a wheelchair at first? What were the biggest challenges to regaining your movement and independence?
I was six when it happened but the doctors said it was super fast. I didn’t really hesitate because I was so young. I used a wheelchair until about the age of 11. I was a kid who wanted to do everything. Regardless of not having two legs I wanted to do it all. I rode my bike, played soccer, pretty much everything out in front of my house. I was a normal kid. It didn’t even look like I was missing part of my legs. My parents were essential in my recovery because they never stopped me from doing anything. They were afraid of me getting hurt like any parents, but they never held me back. When I wanted to give up the wheelchair and ride the skateboard full time, they let me go.
These days, my 13-year-old son and his friends are all about playing with their Tech Deck fingerboards during lunch at school. This 1999 video "Fingers of Fury!" is from 1999 yet two decades later, kids (and adults) are still fanatic about fingerboarding. From Consumer Time Capsule:
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Famous fingerboarders Darin Langhorst, Damien Bernadet and Tony Pauthex showcase their skills on a variety of obstacles, such as a mini railing, a wooden box and, well, more railings and boxes.
After a two minute and thirty second compilation including all three athletes' arsenal, we're treated to a feature dubbed, "learning how to do what you want your fingers to do," featuring Darin Langhorst. In this section, Darin explains the succession of tricks that you should learn, each supported with slow motion illustrations. After covering the basics, Langhorst describes the importance of ollies: a lifting of the board, using the "g-forces" exerted by your fingers.
On Saturday at the X Games Minneapolis, Mitchie Brusco landed the first 1260 in the history of professional skateboarding. And yep, he acts like it was nothing.
This was exactly twenty years since Tony Hawk famously landed the first 900 at the X-Games in 1999 (video below).
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Some of SoCal's finest skaters jumped the fence of Palm Springs' Wet ‘n’ Wild water amusement park when it was closed for winter. On their way out after a short session, they ran into the proprietor on their way out. Uh-oh? Turns out, the fellow was a new owner and planned to tear out the existing attractions. So he invited the skaters to come back for a week and shred the park to their hearts' content. Even Tony Hawk showed up. Tim Aguilar writes in Thrasher:
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We were given free reign [sic] to skate anything we wanted—and you better believe we did! The street dogs sniffed out the ledges and rails and the tranny lords terrorized the tunnels. Conquering the main attraction was on everyone’s bucket list, but few overcame the mental barrier to do so. The entire week was epic but the days Tony Hawk showed up were a true spectacle. Entire families watched as a 50-year-old man took the slams and eventually conquered a loop in the wild. Thought he wouldn’t?! Our time in Palm Springs was made possible by taking a chance and luckily finding generosity on the other side of a No Trespassing sign. You never know ’til you barge.
Launched as a NYC skateshop in 1994, streetwear brand Supreme has become a religion for hypbeasts (and the flippers who serve them). Now, a private collector is auctioning off their collection of every single Supreme skate deck ever made, many of which are emblazoned with graphics from esteemed contemporary artists. The lot of 248 skateboard decks along with the Louis Vuitton Boite skateboard trunk with tool kit, trucks, wheels and shoulder strap is expected to bring around $1 million but I bet it goes for much more. From Sotheby's:
Supreme started producing their own skateboards in 1998 and have collaborated with many well-known brands over the last 20 years - most famously with Louis Vuitton. Supreme is also known for their artist collaborations, featuring the likes of George Condo, Jeff Koons, Damien Hirst, Richard Prince, KAWS, Marilyn Minter, Nate Lowman, and Takashi Murakami, among others.
"Own the Entire Supreme Skateboard Collection, Now Open for Bidding" (Sotheby's, thanks Lux Sparks-Pescovitz!)
Decks by Marilyn Minter and Jeff Koons and Louis Vuitton Boite skateboard trunk with accessories:
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To make it clear that it's run by skateboarders for skateboarders, East Vancouver's Drive Skate Shop put a skateable sign in front of its store.
The two-sided wood veneer "sandwich board" is not only skateable but looks great too.
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As skate culture has become woven into the fabric of society, exhibitions like Against the Grain: Skate Culture and the Camera (coming to America next year) strive to contextualize its impact on aesthetics. Read the rest
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Australian skater Jackson Pilz is making the internet go wild with his latest skateboard trick. Watch it first in slo-mo, then at regular speed. Either way, prepare to be impressed. Read the rest
Dan Mancina of Livonia, Michigan began to lose his sight as a teenager due to two disorders of the eye. Now he's 95 percent blind. And he's a killer skateboarder. From a Red Bull interview with Mancina:
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Can you speak a bit about your goal of helping people build more parks for visually-impaired people?
My new kind of goal I'm working towards is having a skatepark built entirely for the blind, using techniques I use, like tactile things on the ground, audio speakers within objects to help orientate yourself and things hanging from the ceiling that can help let you know where you are.
I would love to have it fully equipped with skateboards and pads to help bring blind people in and introduce them to skateboarding.
One of the biggest allures of skating is the ability to have your own freedom, choose your tricks and your style. I'd love to try to spread that to other blind people, to give them a chance to try that out.
Dianna Cowern, aka YouTube's Physics Girl, recruited skateboarding legend Rodney Mullen and a couple of friends with a high-speed camera for this look at the physics of skateboarding. Read the rest
Spliced with footage of him skating in his youth, here's a video of skate legend Tony Hawk showing what he can still do at age 50. A lot, as it turns out.
I never imagined being able to skate into my adult life, or that anyone would still care if I did. To celebrate, I did 50 tricks that I've created (and/or pioneered on vert). Thanks to all of you that made this dream possible. It's been an unreal ride, but I'm not done yet.
Previously: Watch Tony Hawk's awesome 900 at age 48
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French designer FA makes models from scratch, like this cool imaginary skate park titled 1490 - sk8park #01. Read the rest
This week I got the chance to interview pro-skater Nora Vasconcellos after watching the inspiring new digital short, "Nora," (above) which is about her journey from being a kid who loved to skate to being the first woman on the Adidas global skate team. The film gives us a look at what it’s like to be a woman within the predominantly male skate world. Nora kicks ass and doesn’t let anything hold her back. I saw Nora skate this past summer at a competition, and she is super talented. She has become a skate icon and is an inspiration to many.
What do you love the most about skating?
I love how happy it makes me. Whether I’m skating alone or with friends, it always makes me feel good. I tend to always be in a better mood after skating.
What has it been like so far to be a part of the adidas Skateboarding global team?
It has been unreal. To get to travel alongside guys I have always admired has been incredible. I love going on trips and feeling like I have known the team forever when really it has just been a year.
What piece of advice do you have to give to other young girls who are part of a male-dominated industry?
Just to be yourself and work hard…really hard. Do not be discouraged by other people’s opinions and insecurities. It is so rewarding to get to do what you love, even when you think things aren’t working out. Read the rest
This made me laugh. It's a quirky video by YouTuber Kevin Parry where his fingers and hands play "miniature action sports," like skateboarding and surfing.
Here's his behind-the-scenes video:
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Pro skateboarders Amelia Brodka and Alec Beck first met at the Vans Combi Bowl skatepark in Orange, California. Beck's recent marriage proposal to Brodka at that same skatepark is absolutely wonderful. Their joy is infectious. (via r/MadeMeSmile)
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The Los Angeles punk and skate scenes of the mid-1980s produced a brief, shining moment of total badassery in the form of The Hags, a now-legendary all-girl skateboard gang that prowled Hollywood and West LA. Bust magazine takes a loving look back. Read the rest
Roof skating has been around for a while, but this worthy entry from Colin Read has it all: near misses, night skating, and a couple of moments that will make you flinch. Read the rest