Friday, November 27, 2015

Skatepark Guide: Orlando Skatepark

   In an effort to revive and modernize the skatepark guide, I stopped by Orlando Skatepark a few weeks ago. Having lived in Orlando in the late 90s, I have to say that with the help of places like this park, Orlando has leapt exponentially forward into the present. I'm not quite sure who built this park, but it doesn't seem to be a Team Pain project. Having said that, the design of the park is still fairly competent. The pool has some interesting lines, as does the main flow area of the park. Instead of having a main "street" section, there are ledges and benches scattered around the outside. Additionally, there is a beginner/mellow area just to the right of the entrance that is a lot of fun to skate. For being a small park, there certainly is a lot going on, be it transition, bump to mini hubbas, long grindable ledges, and a pool. It's only 5 bucks to skate if you are from out of town, but if you are a member the prices are cut in half.
You can check out the City of Orlando's page with all the relevant info you need HERE, including online registration so you can save time getting into the park.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Go Skate Day 2015 - Jacksonville

Jacksonville is full of skateboarding related things to do this weekend. No need to debate which ones to go to here!

Gio Georgallis at Hemming, 2013
Today at six, there is the The Block Party hosted by Hawthorne Salon at The Block skate shop.

Downtown at Hemming Plaza, the park will be open for skateboarding from 12 to 8 with contests going on throughout the day.

Sunday the 21st- go skate day, Hemming will be open to skate from 11am to 5pm.
You can find info on these two events here:

Also on Sunday, Riverside Arts Market will be home to it's own go skate day celebration, with a street course, mini ramp, and tons of vendors, all under the cool cover of the fuller warren bridge in the riverside/Brooklyn area.

Info and directions are here:

Whichever your persuasion, there's plenty to do. Go have fun!

Monday, May 18, 2015

The Boardr Sets up Shop in Gainesville, Opening Celebration Ensues

If you guys follow Norm on social media, you might have caught wind of the Boardr grand opening party down in Gainesville. If not, well - it happened! You can check out their summary on the Boardr website here.

You could also check out this clip, if so inclined. Thanks to Clem for the heads up!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Interview - Photographer Dylan Wynne

Dylan as shot by L. Holt. 
I want to start of with Skateboarding. Most skateboarders that do photography that I know are heavily influenced by skate photographers. Would you say that the same was true with you when you started shooting photos, or were other types of photographers more influential to you?

Well the first skate photo I'd ever seen was an Atiba photo (Atiba Jefferson) so that's the obvious answer. But I've been influenced by numerous photographers around Jax, such as Logan Rigby and Eric Staniford. But as far as them making me want to start taking photos I would say not so much. I honestly started taking photos cause me and the homies never had anyone to take photos/videos, so that's how all of this came to play, but once I picked up my camera and took that first photo I fell in love.

Your nighttime photography is great. I saw that they used some of your photos on the display at Everbank field, how did it feel to have your photos shown in such a dramatic way?  

Aw, man-seeing my photos up on that mega screen was such a blessing. It was an indescribable feeling. I won an @Igersjax contest on Instagram. That's how that came into play! I won regular tickets to the game plus the cabana tickets which where reallllllllly nice on top of 2 of my pictures making up on the screen at halftime. So, shouts out to Stephen Stears for that.

Tell me about some of your favorite photographers and why they are your favorites. 

Well as far as skating wise, my favorite photographer would be Chris Jolly. Hes also one of the guys in Jax that I grew up admiring. Whether it was skating, videos or skating pics he kills it all around. As far as landscape and everything that goes with that, my favorite photographer would have to be my buddy Lee Holt with Holt Media Productions. I met Lee a while back when I was still a buster to the photo world and he showed me basically everything I know about my camera. I'm thankful these dudes always looking out and helping me in any way they can.

Let's talk about Skateboarding. So you come from a small town outside of Jacksonville. Are you still living out there? What was skateboarding like out there?

I'm from a little town outside the city called Baldwin. Yes, I still live out here in the boonies, its quiet and peaceful but so far from anything. I'm 20 miles from downtown and 40 from the beach. So I have a love/hate relationship for it.

Does the skatepark out there still exist?

When I was in school they built a small prefab park (Baldwin Rails and Trails) that had a lot of the skaters at school pretty hyped. It did pretty good for about 2 years, then everybody kinda fell off. The park is still there but only a few of us locals still hit it up. Sad, but at least its never packed out.

If you could go anywhere to shoot photos and to skate, what would be your first 3 choices of places to visit?

Hmmm-that's a hard one. Well I would definitely love to go to Africa to shoot all the wildlife-lions zebras and such. Skating-wise, I'd love to go to Japan simply because every video I've ever seen from there, skating-wise and landscape-wise, I've seen some of the dopest spots ever. Then the last spot I'd want to go to for both skating and photos would be Italy. The cityscapes there are so mind blowing to me, not to mention the food and culture. I've seen some pretty dope videos of spots there that look amazing.

Okay, say you had an unlimited camera gear budget. What would you put in your camera bag?

Oh man its like that? First off I'm a Canon man so I'd definitely have a Canon 5D Mark III body. The Canon 8-15mm Fisheye/wide angle. I'd have the canon 70-200mm for Portraits and the 24-105 for landscape/cityscapes. Plus a number of Canon high-speed sync flashes. I could go on and on for days about more stuff, but those would be the main ones I would use!

Do you have any projects or big plans in the works? Any clues for the readers on what to expect from you in the near future?

I don't really have any projects in the works. I'm going down to Miami next weekend so hopefully I'll be able to get a bunch of dope photos, landscape and skating-wise! You can look forward to me just staying consistent with photography and keep flooding your feeds with sick photos. Photography is what I think I'm meant to do, so God willing I'll be doing it for a long time.

Can't thank you enough for your time and patience here. Lastly - You've already mentioned people that have helped you out in getting to where you are now with photography. Any more shout-outs, hellos, or last comments or Oscar style speeches?

Yeah man, like I said before: I owe the world to my buddies Grosser and Lee. They basically showed me how my camera worked. I forgot a person who I grew up looking up to, Trevor Stevens. That guy always had the sickest photos out of Jax in my opinion. He's the homie and such a sick dude all around. Definitely gotta give you a big shout out for doing this whole interview Norm, thanks for always getting hyped on my stuff. Crazy how time flies. I remember meeting you at a Kona contest years ago and being hyped on your stuff. You had Jax on your back, back in the day with Glad we got to do this brotha! Thanks to anyone who helps and supports me. One love!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Transplants - Jake Sykes

I wish I could remember the first time I met Jake Sykes. It seems like I’ve known him forever. To me, he’s memorable as one of the nicest dudes ever to work behind the counter at Kona Skatepark, and it’s hard for me to picture him not smiling. Not only is Jake adept at being personable and rad in regular life, he also kills it at skateboarding. I’m thankful I got to talk to Jake about his recent move to California, and double thankful Eric Staniford came through with these rad photos.

So I see you aren’t in Jacksonville right now. Where are you and how did you get there? 

I had planned on moving out west for a while.  I left Jacksonville on May 31st and made it to LA. I’m currently living in North Hollywood, CA.

Tell me about the trip out there. Was it the longest thing ever?

It was pretty chill. The flights were smooth and didn't have much of a layover, so it went well overall. 

How has it been adjusting since you've moved?

It was hard to get used to the time change at first. But it’s been pretty easy adjusting. The weather here is amazing. Can’t really complain. 

Have you seen tons of familiar spots since you've gotten there? Is it tough finding new spots that haven’t been seen before now that you've moved?

I’ve seen so many famous spots! It’s crazy, going from just watching these spots on videos to actually being able to skate them. It’s not too tough finding new spots, there’s plenty of things to skate all over the place. 
What’s your favorite thing about California so far.

My favorite thing is definitely the weather, that Florida humidity is one thing I won’t miss!

Do you have lots of free time to go skate, being that you are in a new city? Do you pretty much Just have skate homies there now, or do you know other people there, too?

I do have a lot of free time to skate for sure. I’ve definitely made some skate buddies since I got here. 
The OG homie Eric Staniford and his chick looked out real hard by letting me crash on their couch for the first 2 months. Thanks guys! But the fellow Jacksonvillian Craig Clements just drove out here and we got an apartment in North Hollywood! 

Tell me about what your skate days are like now that you are in California.
There hasn’t really been like a routine everyday haha it’s all kind of random occurrences. I used to take the train to NoHo Plaza from Eric’s all the time, but now I live pretty close to it and only a few miles from another epic park called Sheldon. It’s nuts how many pros and amazing skaters you see here, being in the mix is a pretty crazy feeling.

JakeTrolly1colorbackside flip

Have you found it to be true that everything is more expensive in California?

It’s most definitely more expensive! Their tax is like 9% and the gas is above $4.00 almost everywhere. Luckily, I’ve had money saved from working back in Jax. I’ve been applying to jobs and going to interviews here and there. I’d be content with working a lot while still skating so I can be able to maintain out here.
Is it weird skating spots and knowing you might randomly run into some famous pro skateboarder at any time? Has that happened much, and if so is it intimidating?

I’ve already had some pretty crazy encounters with pros, it’s kind of unreal. I’ve seen so many big names and they’ve all been pretty cool to me, but here was one encounter I’ll never forget. One Sunday morning, the good homie Nick Blanco and I got to skate with P.J. Ladd at the famous JKWON spot in LA. It was way early in the morning, we had not even 2 hours of sleep and woke up at 7am to go skate the spot. About 20 minutes into the sesh, P.J.rolls up by himself, it was pretty intimidating at first. He comes up to us, we say what’s up and start shredding with him. We skated with him for a good hour or so. Just us, but two other little kids showed up with their filmer dad towards the end of the session. P.J. was a really chill dude and he literally did some of the smoothest tricks I’ve seen go down, all within only a few tries. Most of them were first try. Nick and I were hyped to have experienced that for sure! 


I’m thinking that skating wise, things are way better in California. But with people, things are a little different. Who are the people you wish you could see the most from back home?

Yeah this place is a lot different people wise, for sure. For instance, being on the roads is a lot crazier than back home. People speed and run red lights all the time. However, I have met some really laid back people out here that I can get along with, so I can’t complain. But I definitely wish I could see my family and my lady of course, as well as all my friends and everyone I ever skated with, you are all included in this shoutout.
I miss each and everyone of you! 

Thank you Norm, and thanks to anyone that takes the time to read this! 
Much appreciated!