Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Santa Cruz Skateboards

This job was probably what I'll always refer to as my 'big break'. It changed everything for me. I went from working as an offset press operator in the morning (I'd heard that learning printing was a good way to get your foot in the door for design work) and still working as a cook at night. I then ventured into the 9 to 5 world of silent rooms with computers. It was a strange transition, and took a little getting used to, but I felt like I was finally getting to do what I loved.

My first assignment at SCSkate. A dealership window sticker.

The art department was about 5 of us in a modest sized office. We were in a gigantic warehouse called the 'Cannery'. SC Skates parent company NHS was housed here, and home to other brands like SC Snowboards, Creature Skateboards, Independent Trucks, etc. Just being around all of this history and artwork was amazing. The production room they screened and made all of the merchandise was a gigantic, hot room, that, at first, seemed like a huge auto factory. The guys who ran that department were like longshoremen, who I learned could not STAND us art department fartsy guys,who were from upstairs.

First wheels, made my 2nd day. Skapegoats and Tetrads.

I got a few projects in my lap the first day, and mostly some office, document layout stuff. I would rush through each job as though I was still on 'kitchen time'. I was told to slow down and 'take my time' on ideas. This took some getting used to as I literally spent the first 3 months figuring I'd get fired. I was working with folks who'd gone to art school, and I had a hard time relating sometimes. I got a few wheel design jobs which were amazing. We'd get a name on print out, and be told, make a graphic for it. It'll be on store shelves withing 2 weeks! That was always a great feeling, but, the most coveted of projects at SC Skate was the job of 'skateboard graphic'.


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