I first met Simon many years ago when he was just a little kid, he was always in the corner skating flat ground, doing every flat trick in the most worn down gear. Ever since those days he has grown up and has become a man. He still loves flat ground but he has taken some of those early low impact moves down obstacles or into slides. One thing that hasn’t changed though, he still somehow always manages to have the most worn down gear, a spectacular feat since Converse supplies him with shoes and Poetic provides him with plenty clothes and boards to wear and wear down.
Watching Simon skate has always been a treat, his style is very spontaneous, he seems to constantly operate on the limit, just barely hanging on. Mr. Källkvist is not one to stay in his comfort zone he is always pushing himself, falling down and getting up with a smile on his face! I had a chance to talk to both Simon and Markus who filmed this. Enjoy!
Interview by Tom Botwid.
Photos by Viktor Annerstål.
Editing and Filming by Markus Bengtsson.
How was the process of filming for this part? Did it “just happen” or did you create a concept?
Markus Bengtsson released a lot of Stockholm videos during this summer, one of which featured my friend Olle Kling who managed to film a full part in like 3 days, nuts!
After he released that part Markus and I started talking about doing a short film type of part.
That didn’t end up happening. We thought we would work on it for around seven days but it ended up being 3 months.
The whole thing sort of grew organically, it evolved into a longer project. We wanted to film it in downtown Stockholm to really show it for the capital that it is. Even though it’s a relatively small capital city when compared to a town like Paris it still has spots that feel like they could be in a really big metropolitan city.
Why did you opt for the VX, instead of HD, or even a phone it seems that a Sony VX is not the most user-friendly option nowadays.
First off, the Sony VX for me is still the best tool to document skating. It is like you can feel what it is like to skate when you watch VX footage. I don’t really get that same feeling when I watch things in HD. Maybe it is because I grew up watching VX filmed videos and that gives me the feeling it is the “right” way to capture skateboarding. Secondly, I like to have a project to work on. It keeps me motivated to push my boundaries and it is fun to go skate spots that maybe you wouldn’t if you weren’t filming.
Filming a full part is something I do for myself like skateboarding is supposed to be!
I don’t dislike Instagram, I watch it almost every day and it keeps me occupied but there is no commitment when I do. I am not engaged in it like I would be when I am watching a full part on a bigger screen. The difference being that I chose to actively watch that video instead of it popping up. Instagram is for quick fun, unfocused likes, a quick ego boost, but most of the times it keeps me occupied when I don’t want to wash my dishes or study. I feel like I might get a lot of hate for that one!
What does skating for Poetic Collective mean to you?
Poetic helps me, supports me and keeps me pushing myself and that to me is very motivating. They bring new point-of-views into skateboarding. It is hard for me to truly describe what the company means to me. It does keep on changing, but I love all of the people involved it is one big family!
Your skating takes me back to the early 2000s, does this era represent anything special to you?
I like the fact that videos weren’t being put out on a daily basis, it made you appreciate what you have a lot more.
The daily video releases have pushed the level of skateboarding though – monkey sees monkey do – but it also overstimulates me. It was a more simplistic time and I feel like pros skated for themselves and not for the perceived fame and fortune. It could also just be the fact that everything is filmed with a VX and that is what actually makes me love it!
So, Markus, you spend a lot of time documenting Stockholm can you describe the skate scene for us?
Stockholm is expanding continuously, new spots get built daily, but the one thing our city misses is a proper meet-up spot. Which is not ideal during the summer months. In the winter though everybody meets up at the only indoor skatepark that we have so that is good about those cold couple of months. Overall I think Stockholm is a great city to skate with a lot of outdoor parks and a plethora of street spots.
Can you take us behind the scenes of the filming for this part, how did it come about?
I was plagued by a knee injury this year so I couldn’t skate myself, instead of sitting at home I chose to film so I could still go on missions with my friends. That is how this project got started. I wanted this part to represent a raw and dirty type of skating in Stockholm.
Why do you still film VX, instead of just filming with your phone and putting it on Instagram?
Both me and Simon think that the lifespan of an internet part is longer. Instagram posts are awesome but sometimes you can just scroll past a video without really paying attention to what’s going on. But when you watch somebody’s section on the internet you usually pay more attention to the skating. You actively choose to sit down and watch a part.
You have a military background, does that help you in any way when it comes to filming?
I’ve never really thought about a connection between the two. But I guess you could say that it helps me with the mental part of filming. It allows me to always keep a positive attitude, even when I am really tired. I am able to cope and hide those factors and stick it out. When suddenly the skater makes the trick it is always worth it.
Describe Simon’s skating to us?
The way he skates is inspiring. When you watch him do tricks you can really tell that he is in love with his board. He never sticks to one particular element of skating, he tries to skate everything and does it all with passion. He is not a perfectionist but still, he manages to make everything look smooth. Even the sketchy tricks (laughs).