Skateboard Filmmaker Josh Stewart Creates His Latest Video One Clip at a Time

Skateboard Filmmaker Josh Stewart Creates His Latest Video One Clip at a Time


Get it over the lip one more time. Get it over the lip. You committed to it. I guess you’d say I’m a skateboard video
maker. I also run a distribution company called “Theories of Atlantis.” I do a
series of videos called “Static” and so I we made a website for each video, and
after like the third video it hit me that we should maybe just have one
website you know and instead of calling it after the video we named it “Theories
of Atlantis”, which I could give you an hour-long explanation of why it has that
name but I’m super fascinated about like conspiracy theories. In the early to
mid-2000s skateboarding had blown up. There was, you know, like there’s MTV
shows you know was weird that skateboarding got to this like corporate
point. It was inevitable that skaters were gonna become disenfranchised with
that. The goal was to give a home to the underground and like independent stuff. In skateboarding, a filmer is basically a cameraman but the role of filmer goes so
much farther than that. He’s like the guy who basically organizes everything, he
motivates everybody. Without that filmer a lot of skaters who never have been
discovered you know because that guy’s kind of the conduit for the industry to
see, you know what’s going on. It brings exposure you
know to a local scene. My brother was a skater before I was so I was always
surrounded by it as a kid and I would watch his videos before I skated. I was
not really interested in the skating at the beginning there was something about
the videos themselves in the way music and the art direction would pull some
kind of emotion out of you. Like the first “Stereo” video called, ‘A Visual Sound.’
Its just all jazz music and is shot on super 8 and just the way it was captured it
brought you into like a whole other world and then the “Alien Workshop” their
first video called ‘Memory Screen’, just so beautifully put together he edited it
on two VHS decks from one to the other, which is baffling. Those two things had
such a big influence on me as like wanting to like give somebody else that
same experience. What’s so exciting about street skating in a lot of ways, is you
know finding these things that aren’t intended for skateboarding but so
miraculously all line up perfectly. I’ll see something like that nobody else will
understand why I’m looking at it but it’s just like ah this is amazing this
thing set up so perfectly. What I like about it and I think a lot most skaters
like about it is that this stuff isn’t intended for this. “We’re heading downtown
right now. I’ve got about a week and a half till the video premiere so we’re
kind of in crunch time.” “What’s up? How’s it going?” Luke Malaney is one of the newer riders
on the Traffic team. The trick he’s been trying, I think it’s almost impossible
it’s just the thing he’s landing into is so steep. I’ve never seen anybody do
anything into that bank that way. Some skaters have a different way of seeing
things all together you know like different ways you can approach it Luke
has kind of a unique eye for that stuff. You just never know because it’s probably
60% skill and 40% chance “That was so it.” Does his board hit the crack
in the ground at the right angle to where it positions his feet just right
so that he’s able to ride out? In New York City which makes this city
literally the hardest city I’ve ever filmed in is the pedestrian factor you
know it’s just so many tourists so many people and you can’t get mad at them them because it’s just you know one of the ones whose aren’t supposed to be
there. He tried it for for ages and just it just didn’t work out. “You didn’t
choose an easy one.” There’s a lot of time invested and pain and agony and stress
to amass that’s the 45 minute project. It’s just the way it goes I mean it was
like four hours probably that we spent there trying it. If you add up all those
tries it’s got to be in the hundreds. A skate video in its entirety is
typically 35 to 45 minutes the average single trick is around two and a half to
three seconds long once it’s edited down in a video. You see how much goes into
just getting one clip, you know they shoot a whole movie in a matter of
months you know whereas it takes two years to make a normal skate video. “He’s
landed like 20 of them and just hits the ground like a sack of potatoes it’s like
so hard to control it you know.” Ricky is like, I would call him the
Godfather of East Coast skateboarding. He just had a very different approach. The thing that I think everybody remembers Ricky for there was a video called
‘Eastern Exposure’ still to me hands-down it’s the best like street skating video
part of all time. When that video came out so many skaters either identified
with it or change the way they skated because it was a whole new thing. “Going to Hudson and Canal.” “You guys are all skating up there or what?” ” Yeah.” Before today I know he hadn’t filmed in
at least three to four years. Now you know he’s like has a full-time job three
kids it’s a very delicate thing you know trying to film with him here to finding
something that can like really showcase his style and his skating’s but that he
still came that he’s capable and he’ll have the confidence to
do it. “Man that thing is sticking too hard.” It’s well known Ricky has like he has a lot of
attitude and he’s got very strong opinions.
Ricky’s not afraid to to say something that’s going to be unpopular or it’s a
piss people off. “Do a kickflip.” “I’ll do it right now you (expletive) douche.”
“You have YouTube channel?” “Yeah I got a YouTube channel.” So to the people like me who so appreciate
you know his personality and his style and skateboarding we just want to see
him on a board skating you know I don’t care how difficult the trick he does is
and with this short amount of time you know it’s like we’re what a week and a
half out from the video premiere and we still don’t have any clips of him. “Go! You’re not going to get in trouble for (expletive) crossing the street. Jesus (expletive) Christ.” There’s a lot of like days where I’m
like finally it’s a Saturday morning I’m like dude I just want to chill but I
still feel like there’s a mission you know that is unaccomplished. “Oh my God dude! (expletive) awesome clip.” “I’m worse than when I (expletive) started when I was (expletive) 14.” Its more common than not that we spend
an entire day out filming and we don’t we don’t get anything. The premiere for
the video is coming up really soon and we’re gonna do it at the white hotel
they have like a rad little theater underground. Still have to make sure that
it’s good make sure the skaters are happy with their music and get it
mastered to a DVD I’m sure it’s gonna be filled with a few pitfalls but we’ll see
how it goes. The premiere for the video is tonight. This is basically the world premiere. “Thanks everybody for coming out we’re
stoked you guys are here hope you guys enjoy this is everybody who’s here knows what goes into making the state video
it’s crazy that we have this many people who are down to support you know all our
friends here so thanks everybody for coming out. Trying to be like sentimental.” “I guess we’re going to just play the video. Thanks for coming out.” That’s kind of like the most rewarding part of the premiere is seeing how
everybody reacts and now always before premiere it I remind you know the
people in the audience like this is rare to have all of us together experiencing
this video for the first time see nowadays everybody’s at home watching
everything on their laptops so to see all this stuff culminated into one video
make noise make everybody know you know that you appreciate what you’re saying
because it is a struggle we all go through for this purpose, you know for
this one night. The premiere was awesome. We had like more people than the theater could hold I’m really stoked on how like
the guys came through with footage you know the fact that we’ve gots got some
awesome clips of Ricky right at the last minute you know really
helped make it feel complete. “Stoked. I’m happy with how it went.” For the last three videos I swore is the last video I’m ever gonna
do and once you finish it you’re like there’s no way I could ever do that
again but you start burning for that feeling
of being able to create that experience again you have an idea of like and that
song would go so good to that you know I mean you just start picturing things in
your head and it’s like well what where else am I gonna do that you know and I
mean people are gonna be making big fooling videos like they were but people
are coming back to it a little bit because it’s hard to really create a
moving experience in a short you know 30-second Instagram clip. The best video
is the past ten years the majority of them were small independent things from
kids you’ve never heard of. They were making far more interesting stuff than
all the big brands. Any businessmen who came to see what we’re doing at Theories
of Atlantis would be like wait hold on a second what there’s only something like
16 million skaters in the world and we’re catering to maybe 5% of that the
videos we make the things we film the skaters we work with by choice the
brands we carry it’s all done out of respect for this this history and the
ideals that we all believe in and people like Ricky started or or influenced us
from in the beginning you know the guys who paved the way and the guys who gave
skateboarding its identity and created the culture. Ricky in my opinion
contributed a ton. He in my opinion has gotten the least amount for it. It’s
rewarding to help promote the people and styles that have been so meaningful to
me growing up the things that gave me like something to believe in and
something inspired me and and to help hopefully create new things like that.

80 thoughts to “Skateboard Filmmaker Josh Stewart Creates His Latest Video One Clip at a Time”

  1. This topic had potential to be so lame, but there's no better representative of skate video makers than Josh, particularly that of the independent and underground scene. really enjoyed this, thanks

  2. Best man in the business. "Look Left" is an amazing video. And I'm glad Ricky Oyola has a few clips. Such an inspiration. Keep it up, Josh!

  3. Ricky's influence on me is huge, he changed my perspective on skateboarding and world around, I'm also a part of those who changed their skating, growth which seems natural to me because of being enlightened by his view, opinion and of course EE3 part. Glad I'm not the only one who's still thristy for some Oyola action and footage. Josh is responsible for breeding my taste in skate videos. Making my taste sophisticated and hard to please. And I'm grateful to both of them. I'm grateful that I found about their stuff which made me hooked for life, makes me feel connected, feel part of something that I share the same mindset and creation, makes me wanting to support great personalities, different views, styles, the struggle and overall underground stuff and movement that creates sensation. East Coast and Philly scene seems to be at the very top of skateboarding in all aspects. Long live Traffic and Theories of Atlantis.

  4. So rad i just bought this video in my local shop in seattle. Trying to make a full length myself so its really inspiring to see this

  5. Finally some exposure to the open public on what skateboarding truly is and some limelight on the work it takes to capture it all

  6. Cool how he insists on making sure the OG's get their due props. Even if you've never skated yourself, you have to appreciate that Dan Wolfe's Eastern Exposure videos featuring the likes of Ricky Oyola was the skateboarding equivalent of Wu Tang dropping 36 Chambers. It presented a way grittier and rawer vision of what skateboarding could be and to this day inspires kids all over the world to seek out the roughest, grimiest street spots on principle.

  7. Thanks for not ruining this rolling stone…usually when a big median out side of skateboarding tries to "do" something skateboarding they completely botch it and make it disgusting. So anyway. Thanks for just letting josh be josh

  8. That about about Ricky doing so much to influence and getting so little is so true. This was great to see. Ricky Oyola is my favorite skateboarder of all time, hands down.

  9. "Hey you just dented that guy's car"

    "Well FUCK HIM for parking it in a parking spot! I'm a fuckin' SKATER! The world belongs to me!"

    –Every Shithead Skateboarder Ever

  10. So you literally defaced the building by sanding it and then hit a brand new car with your board? They should have kicked you guys out. This video is dumb.

  11. "The best videos of the past ten years, the majority of them were small independent things from kids you'd never heard of. They were making far more interesting stuff than all the big brands" facts… illegal civilization, 917, polar skate co, dime, FA etc…

  12. I like Josh Stewart and have supported all his video efforts but Rolling Stone is nothing but a mouthpiece for shitty left wing politics. Nothing cool or edgy about it.

  13. So did you leave a note for the owner of the car that you hit? Better have, that's the kind of shit that gives skaters a bad rep.

  14. Ricky Oyola is amazing, I'm ashamed that I've never heard of him before or even watched a part of his. It's great to see such passionated people. Respect !

  15. Been a fan of Josh Stewart since Tampa in the late 90s with Cigar City. TOA and the distributed brands are def ones to support.

  16. I really really enjoy this video, I love all the theories videos and all of Josh's video and its really sick to get an insight behind the lense

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