Longtime supporter of Slapstik Skateboard Art, skateboarder and artist Tyler Kline was recently featured in an article on Thrasher Magazine's website Thrasher Canvas: Three Decades of Skate Art. I'm going to spare the words and just show give you the link. Scroll to image 24 of 87. For more information about Tyler visit http://inliquid.org/complete-artist-list/kline-tyler/.
Figuring out which image to apply to a skateboard can be stressful. Spending hundreds, if not thousands of dollars on mass producing a thing you like, with the hopes that at least 100 others will buy (because your "like" is only worth 1/100 of a buyer's monetary value). I've tried not to let this get in the way choosing which artists and images to work with for Slapstik which has sometimes cost me a lot of money for a small learning experience. However, I've learned that my missteps have taught me how to accurately judge the market value of other designer's work on a skateboard. All of this brings me to Andrew Thomas. When given the opportunity to design a deck graph for Slapstik Andrew was a bit intimidated by the size of the logo he had to work around. No matter how much freedom I expressed to Andrew that he had over the direction and use of the logo it just couldn't get going until a series of text images back and forth over the span of a week. Below is that process from Andrew's perspective on how the final graphic came to be. It was a pleasure working with Andrew and seeing the ideas and planning come to life. For more of Andrew's work visit his site at www.henryandrewthomas.com.
Most of the skateboard industry knows David Clark as Krooked's most stylish am, but it's David's life off he board that is on the verge of making bigger moves with his woodwork. Earlier this year I invited David to join the Slapstik Skateboard Artists and produce something, anything of his choosing to be featured in the next exhibition. David's immediate excitement translated to quickly to the hard work and innovative and creative thinking shown in his repurposed skateboard decks and parts. Below is a series of email exchanges between David and I about this process.
SSA: Could you describe the process you took when you starting treating skateboards as an material for woodwork?
I got the idea after DeckSpecks started, and Skateraid was holding their annual benefit. At Skateraid, artists would contribute their work using a skateboard deck as their canvas, then sold them for charity. The second year I contributed, I decided to cut my skateboard into a rocket ship, and painted it. So, I guess that's where it all started for me.
SSA: How was the response to your rocket ship at Skateraid? Did you continue making things from skateboards following the fundraiser? Were you more interested in reusing skateboard as decorative art or objects intended for use?
Hah I don’t really know. I didn’t stand next to it and talk to people about it, but I think people were stoked.. Flynn bought it! I remember seeing some that looked thrown together the day before, so that might’ve helped mine look better.
Yes, I made different shaped cruisers for a little while. I made another rocket ship so I could skate it. I didn’t put as much time into that one, but it still worked out.
It depends. If I spent a lot of time on it, I would like to see it as decor. If I just cut a shape and threw a paint job on it, then I intended it to be skated.
SSA: I see what you mean. From the looks of it, I get the impression that you're taking your current project pretty seriously. Did anything in particular change with the new pieces you're making?
Yes, I started making stuff that was useful in everyday life, such as cutting boards and clip boards.
SSA: How has the transition been going from decorative objects to useful ones, and how have they been received by others?
With the decorative objects, I usually work on a piece until it is finished. I've worked on the useful objects in groups of 5-10 pieces at a time. It's more efficient that way, but it's definitely time consuming getting the materials. I try to get boards off of my friends, as well as use the ones I ride. I've only shown a handful of people the useful objects I've been working on, and everyone seems pretty psyched on it.
SSA: That's good to hear because I'm definitely excited to see that they look like. Who do you see using your products?
Do you have plans for making more things from skateboards, or anything else?
I could see anyone that conducts business on the go. Being in the film industry, we use clip boards often. We're constantly taking notes, filling out paperwork, checking in/out equipment. It's a good way to keep organized.
Absolutely. I'm still brainstorming what is possible. Even the simplest idea can become difficult to follow through with.
SSA: That about wraps it up. Thanks for taking the time to let people know what you've been doing and for being a part of the show at Bluetile this May. Is there anything else you'd like to ask or add?
No problem, thank you for involving me!
David's clipboards can be purchased at Bluetile Skateshop on May 15th, 2015 at the Taste The Rainbow product release or direct at firstname.lastname@example.org
Filmmaker Wes Mahon was kind enough to take some time and document the creative process and fine art influences behind Slapstik Skateboard Art. Wes is a very talented artist that enjoys balancing his daytime jobs with projects like this one. Take a few minutes and watch the short doc., and spent some more time checking out Wes' sites at http://www.wesmahon.com and his vimeo page at https://vimeo.com/wesmahon.