Grant Brittain is the greatest skateboard photographer in the history of skateboarding and he didn’t even start shooting photos until he was 25 years old. Amazing and Inspirational!
While managing the Del Mar Skate Ranch in San Diego, CA in the early 80’s, Grant got himself a 35mm camera, took every available photo class at Palomar Junior College, and honed his skills at the skatepark where he worked.
In 1983, Grant became the founding Photo Editor and Senior Photographer for TransWorld SKATEboarding Magazine and his work began to become a part of our lives. I first met and began shooting photos with Grant in 1986, and his early photographs of me became the seed stock for my entire published skate career.
Through it all, Grant has been such a positive and consistent part of my skate career. Though sometimes many years may pass between us seeing each other, he’s family to my wife Ann and I, and one of the few people in the skateboard world who has only ever given us good energy and support right from the start.
In 2012, I began work on what I determined would probably be my last interview in a skateboard publication, and I knew I wanted — No, Needed — Grant to shoot some of the photos for the piece. Grant was hobbled at that time by a back injury, but he still made the time and effort to connect with me and shoot. It really meant a lot to me to get the hang time with Grant and to shoot the primary photos that would accompany the article.
This video, shot and edited by Mark Nisbet, documents the two days I spent with Grant in 2012, attempting to encapsulate and bookend my published skate career. From the age of 16 to the age of 42, Grant had been there with a smile and with his camera and I couldn’t imagine my life and skate career any other way. And today, he’s still there, and still a part of my life and my skating in a very meaningful way. Thank You Grant!
— Mike Vallely