Tony Trujillo- fastplant, Marseille, 2005.
This was a gnarly maneuver (note the standing guy’s head to the right- the extension was no joke) and I only got one chance to shoot it as no-one was meant to be up there.. I could tell he would make it this try though, so I jumped up and shot it..
These photos are from a contest article I did for French skate magazine Sugar. It occurs to me now that no-one ever read the article in English (and the nation of France really missed out when the sentence with the alliteration was lost in translation); so here, if anyone cares, it is:
Professional athlete wins trophy.
Or : ‘The art of shooting an article in one afternoon, with one roll of film’
I am sick of travelling. I mean, I like being somewhere else, but I am tired of the act of getting there. Tired of ticket queues at train stations and boarding queues at airports and headphones and inflight magazines and overpriced coffee and schedules. I hate contests, too. I never go to them any more. Three days in a stuffy hall watching contest robots do their runs ? No thanks, not any more.
But Marseille, though ; Marseille is different. For one thing, it is one of the most scenic skateparks in the world- right on a Mediterranean beach. For another, you can witness more than the usual boring skating by boring skaters on boring obstacles.
So- Marseille 2005… I couldn’t resist.
And the travelling ? Well, it’s just two more train journeys to get from London to Marseille, I told myself. Only a few hours, and think of that idyllic beach awaiting you…
Things started to go wrong when I got on the Eurostar. There were 140 school-kids on my carriage (accompanied by three inattentive teachers). They were all running about, yelling and throwing things. (Why must children have so much energy?) I tried to escape into First Class; but no sooner had I got settled into silence and Celine, than a ticket inspector booted me back into the battleground.
And then, to make matters worse, the train stopped. Why, I don’t really know, but we sat for an hour while the kids played tag and had food-fights over my head. Even my headphones couldn’t drown them. Wish somebody had.
Then, by the time we finally reached Paris, I had missed the last train to Marseille… As I said, I hate travelling now.
The following day I made it there, but needed a while to recuperate from my trials. A wander around the town and a sunset swim did their magic, and on Sunday I went to the park with a tall order: shoot a whole contest article in an afternoon.
But I was confident, because I had a cunning plan: I wouldn’t only shoot the contest. I had found Howard Cooke in the hotel and persuaded him that we should get a street photo to flesh out the article. Unfortunately, before the finals he was too hungover to skate, and afterwards he was drunk again. (While I had been shooting, he had been drinking with the crew on the hill.)
I gave up any ideas of a street photo and joined the boys and the beers with only one roll of skate photos shot. I was kind of stressed, but H wasn’t. He handed me a beer- “Fuck it, Rich- it’ll be alright. Let’s go for a swim! It’s Marseille!”. (And he was right.)
Photos and text copyright Richard Hart.