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In between being sponsored by Black Label and Element Skateboards, I was “given” my own brand by the powers that be: Vallely Skateboards. I didn’t name the company and I didn’t really have much say or control over anything. The whole thing was a collaborative effort by the “best minds” at the distribution company that seemingly owned me, I was just along for the ride I guess. It couldn’t last. But the one thing that the desk jockeys can’t or don’t do is actually skate, and so that is where they needed me, and that was the only place I had any real level of freedom, on my board.

To promote the brand, Mark Nisbet and I began shooting a series of commercials for 411 Video Magazine. Mark shot these on 16mm, and this footage is a montage from those commercials, outtakes and other previously unseen footage from those sessions. At that time, I felt like Mark and I were hitting on something very real together, but our work was disconnected from the business of the brand. In a way, we’d always both felt that way about our work and our art. Skateboarding has always been bigger and better than the box that the umpires of cool try to cram it into at any given moment. “Living in their pools, they forget about the sea”. But we ride the Permanent Wave. And so, although this footage is from 2002, and from a brand that no one really cared about, and that no one remembers, the skating lives on.

— Mike V

Shot and Edited by: Mark Nisbet

Music:
Ampline
Rosary
Red & Yellow
SofaBurn Records