Poetic Skate: Local

A Change of Pace from your Regular Skateboard Film, Sean Slobodan Focuses Between the Tricks

‘There’s more to skating, or anything for that matter, than just the highlights or bangers,’ Utah-based filmmaker Sean Slobodan told The Plus. His unconventional skate video, Local, makes use of a variety of speeds; slowing down and quickening up to capture, in the most complimentary way possible, the jumps and landings of the skateboarders, as well as every move in between.

‘I often think that the more beautiful and impressive moments are probably found in the in-betweens. I try to show that in my work.’

Shot in locations around Utah, which include Salt Lake City, and in the Orem and Provo areas, this skateboard film is certainly more poetic than your average. ‘This was never meant to be a traditional skate piece, and I think it comes from trying to capture and show a more real side of it. ‘ Sean told us.

With a soothing original soundtrack from his friend Micah Andersen, Sean has a long list of people he is grateful to for helping him make this film, including his wife, who he told us ‘was absolutely huge in making this project possible.’ We rolled out some questions to Sean about shooting Local:

The Plus: How did you get in touch with the skateboarders? Do you skateboard yourself?
Sean Slobodan:
I do skateboard myself but I was introduced to a lot of the skaters through my good friend Weston Colton, who works with me as a stills photographer. Weston was a big help in producing this project.

TP: That gorgeous shot of the moon at the end, how did you come up with it?
It was an idea that a friend and me came up with together. I saw a similar shot in a few other places online and we just thought of how rad it would be to try something new. I’ve never done anything even remotely like that before, so I was pretty pumped on the challenge.

TP: And how did you finally achieve it?
A lot of time on Google earth, driving, late nights shooting tests, moon mapping, and then finally building a 100-foot long plywood track on the top of a dirt hill, trying to line up camera, track, and moon, and then praying that clouds didn’t get in the way. We shot three nights in a row. The shot we ended up using was from the third night.

TP: What was the hardest part of the process?
Trying to push the project through with limited funds, and resources. I ended up finding creative ways to get access to equipment in order to shoot it the way I wanted to. And I used up a lot of favors with a lot of friends without trying to ask too much of anyone. Luckily I have some rad friends who probably spent way too much time helping.