NEW SKATEBOARD GRAPHICS BOOK
The MVA compiled, wrote and designed this collection of contemporary skateboard graphics for Mark Batty Publisher.
The design of NSG was inspired by clean sportswear aesthetics that were more keeping in line with the way we experienced skateboarding in the 90s. More Nautica/North Face/Menace/Wu-Tang than Bones Brigade/Misfits/Pushead (though all 3 of those are cool).
We used the font Locator throughout the book because of its precise technical feel and range of weights.
The cover is supposed to evoke an unstained blank deck. The lighter area is a spot gloss varnish that makes it feel like there’s a sticker on the wood.
The end papers display every board in the book in the order that it appears so that they work more like a visualization of the content.
We imagine the book as a museum catalog meets North Face: super clean, lots of white space, and a rigid sense of order.
The foreword was written by Michael Leon, former art director for Stacks Skateboards, Rasa Libre, Girl and Nike SB, and currently Global Creative Director for Sonos.
The book is structured alphabetically by brand. The opening spread is always an immersive photo or graphic from the featured company.
We designed just a few layouts for showcasing graphics so that the emphasis is always on nice big reproductions.
A few defunct brands with strong graphic legacies were given “Complete Services” features wherein we tried to feature as much artwork as we possibly could.
Each “Complete Services” feature included an interview with the art director and a wider assortment of visual ephemera (when available).
New brands like Roger, Hopps, and Skate Mental were featured as “Upstart:” companies.
The Zero skateboards section had an interview with company-founder and legendar pro skater Jamie Thomas on brand building and aesthetics.
The final section of the book is an appendix that features interviews with as many of the artists included in the book as we could get in touch.
The appendix featured interviews with Kelly D. Williams, Ed Templeton, Jason Adams, Evan Hecox, Jahmal Williams and many more.
With the back cover we wanted to express the range of styles featured, that it wasn’t just the kind of stuff that graphic designers were into or purely skulls and cartoons (though in the end there were not as many skulls as we would have liked).