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By: Kyle DuVall

Kristian Svitak didn’t have to film a new video part for Street Plant. He’s long past the point where he has anything to prove with his skating.

“After my last part in 2011, I kind of figured: ‘I’m 36 years old. That’s it. This will probably be my last part.’” Svitak explains, “but it is kind of like being a songwriter, you put out an album and think: ‘there’s nothing left’ and, then, maybe years later, you feel that instinct to create again. I’ve been filming since I got my first video camera when I was 18. It’s a part of my skating. That instinct to create came to me again and I had all these ideas that I just wanted to get out.”

With no marketing department or team managers issuing marching orders, Svitak’s new edit is 100% a product of personal inspiration.

“There’s nothing groundbreaking in this part. Everything I did I did because it felt right. When I was out filming I was always coming back to the idea that I can only do what I’m feeling.”

So don’t expect another shot in the high stakes corporate skateboard video arms race. This is a portrait of a skater whose only agenda is to create. Not that Svitak, at age 40, isn’t still willing and able to drop a few hammers.

“I feel like this part captures how I really skate. There’s nothing in here that I wouldn’t possibly do again in my normal skating. Sometimes I just go out and jam around, but, when it feels right, I’ll still go out and attack some monster of a gap or rail. It’s still part of my skating.”

Filming the lion’s share of the part in Svitaks’ old stomping grounds of Cleveland, Ohio was an obvious choice.

“Downtown Cleveland is a very old friend to me. There is one spot in here that is literally one of my first skate spots,” says Svitak. “Even the stuff from California has a very strong Cleveland vibe… I didn’t want any palm trees in the background.”

Svitak: Cleveland

But this is not a nostalgia trip or a victory lap for a hometown hero. It’s a look at the present state of a skater who has always moved forward by keeping his roots firmly planted.

“The only way I can feel connected and grounded to the moment is by thinking about the path I had to take to get where I am. Even now, I feel the most connected with what I’m trying to get at with my skating on a personal level when I’m in Cleveland.”

Cleveland, San Diego… Wherever the streets may be, Svitak has been making them his own since his first push way back in the 80’s. This edit testifies that he’ll be owning them far into the future. Street Plant is proud to present this portrait of Svitak’s skating, and proud to support Kristian Svitak as he charges forward.

Charge Forward

Kyle DuVall has been writing about skateboarding almost as long as he has been skateboarding.