Mark Suciu Knows

Over 2 minutes of new Mark Suciu footage, need we say more?
Mark’s skating does all the talking in his new Knows part. Watch and go skate.

Interview

Mark Suciu Knows

Photo by Chris Robles

How has life in New York been treating you, how long have you been living there now?

New York is great. I’ve been here for three and a half years. The first two I was in school, and for the past year and a half, I’ve just been skating. It’s the perfect place for both lifestyles.

Is it a place that you see yourself staying for a while?

I want to never want to move away. People tell me they used to love New York as much as I do, never thought they’d move, but ten years later they did. So maybe I’ll become one of them. But you know, I don’t know if they really did feel about it the way I do.

Are there other cities you have on your list that you’d like to live for an extended amount of time?

When I was eighteen I wanted to spend at least two years in Paris and New York, those have been the only two cities. I lived in Paris for five months, so that’s still unfulfilled, but for the moment no plans to move back.

As always skating is progressing and evolving in a lot of different directions at the moment. As someone who has spent their life pursuing and dissecting skating what are some of the parts about skateboarding and its culture that you want to continue to live on no matter what?

Street skating, I guess, but not just in videos. Our use of Instagram has broken down the barrier between mess around stuff and serious footage, and I like that. But I don’t like how people’s profiles become archives of park footage. It makes their video parts look like a removed form of their skating, almost like they’re forced to do it.

Mark Suciu Knows

Photo by Sam Muller

As a pro skateboarder, do you feel like you play a role in preserving and advocating certain aspects of skateboarding for the future?

I feel that responsibility not as a pro skater but just as an older skater, one who’s in the industry. If I see a young friend of mine doing crook shoves, I’m going to find a gentle way to let him know he shouldn’t do them in public. It’s a form of policing, but as a skater you have to know how to work around the cops.

With all the different platforms skateboarders have now to put out there skateboarding, Instagram, solo parts, full-length videos, etc. How do you approach your various projects and balance them all?

The difference between solo parts and parts in full-length videos is just timing. If there’s a full length coming out, I film for it, if not, it’s for a solo part. But those two are the goal. If I go out to get a trick and it doesn’t happen, I’ll film something fun for Instagram and feel slightly less disappointed.

What gives a project worth to you, or gets you excited to take it on?

Since I’ve always filmed and have mostly always liked filming, I do it whether or not I’m working on a specific project. So the parts are more like a wake than a wave to swim over. But the projects I do these days are all pretty awesome anyway. My sponsors are all great and I work with inspiring people.

Are there any videos or moments in skateboarding that have stuck with you since you were a kid and heavily influenced how you want skateboarding to be represented?

Static II and III were/are favorites of mine. I just love the complexity and freedom of skating in big cities, East Coast cities too that developed over long periods of time. I love that moment in Pappalardo’s Epicly Later’d when Wenning tells about the two of them sleeping on the benches at Seaport and then waking up to skate Brooklyn Banks. That’s my childhood dream, to wake up surrounded by skate spots. It’s like a “return to the womb” fantasy but I take the spots along with me.

You and your hometown shop, Atlas have always supported each other and worked on several projects together over the years. Is there anything that Atlas has done that sticks out to you as being really important to the skateboard community or for you personally?

I really liked the Day in the Bay event they did last year with adidas. Some guys from Atlas and adidas and I met up at Sunnyvale park, my (nearly) hometown park, for a skate jam. Then we all went up the 101 for another jam at the San Mateo park, then SoMa in SF. And afterwards a bar in the Mission where I got to really catch up with everyone.

Mark Suciu Knows

Can you tell us the story behind the front nose photo from your recent Thunder ad and Half-Way Through trip. How did you come across that spot?

That spot’s in Columbus Indiana. When I told my friend Andy Kormos I’d be passing through that town on a skate trip because I’d seen it in a movie (Columbus), he asked his friend Buddy Best, who lives in Indianapolis, to show us around. Buddy was busy those days, but a few days before we got there he drove the hour from Indianapolis and sent us photos and pins of all the spots. Thank you Buddy! That bridge spot was in there—I was excited because it’s a key landmark in the movie. We went to all the spots we wanted to hit and then went to the bridge to take photos, not really to skate. But Silas and Frankie started skating it so I joined in. It’s an in-between spot, not too big but too big for something tech. The front nose wasn’t hard to do, but it was hard to do well, to stand up on and get a good slide, so I had to do it a few times.

That spot was obviously going to look really cool in video and photos, overall does the aesthetics of a spot play a role in how you approach skating it? What factors do you usually take into account?

Aesthetics do play a big role. Maybe it comes from growing up skating San Jose where you end up skating very bland spots (good ones though). I could be insecure in that way now. In any case, I want to film at spots that catch your eye—but if there’s a mini hubba or mini rail, I don’t care what it looks like, I’ll try to get something on it since the potential of those things is still so untapped. But that front nose is an exception because the backdrop is cooler than the spot, usually, I want the opposite.

What goes into those type of trips for you, do you have a pretty good idea of the spots and places you want to skate and see or do you just let the road decide?

When I go on a road trip we decide the cities based on a spot or two, then ask locals about others and search on our own. And if there’s a city we’re driving by on our route and we have time to stop we’ll always explore it.

Mark Suciu Knows

Photo by Chris Robles

You are known to be somewhat meticulous for how you want your parts to look and having a vision for the overall feel of them. With this Thunder part was there some specific inspiration you drew from or certain places you wanted to travel to skate?

The feel of this video part is almost entirely Justin Albert’s doing. I selected these tricks with him based on what we weren’t using for other projects and he went from there. He did change the song once because of me, though—I told him the first song sounded like MGMT (just an observation) and that ate away at him. I told him to leave in the firecracker after the Pyramid Ledges backside 180 nosegrind 180, there was that too. We tried to get some SF clips since it’s a Thunder edit, but other than that, no conscious location cultivation.

You and Justin Albert have worked on a lot of videos together. How far do you two go back?

Yeah, so far we’ve done four video parts together. We first met in 2010 and started skating together in 2011. He lived in downtown San Jose, and I was still living at my parents’, not far away. That was when I first started drinking. We’d skate during the day, skate downtown at night, then meet up with friends at a house party. I remember hanging out with Ben Raemers and Barney Page a lot, also my good friends Joey Guevara and Brandon Nguyen. Downtown Aaron Brown got his nickname back then. Peter Raffin and Jon Nguyen sightings. Pretty often we ended up at Jerry Hsu’s house, but he wasn’t living there anymore, he just owned it. So we’d ramble around until late, wake up late and skate again. Maybe that was mostly a weekend thing, since I remember waking up very often to Justin playing “Sunday Morning” on his speakers. He lived in the Yellow House back then. A good house.

What was your first full project together?

We were getting a lot of downtown camera light footage before going out at night, so we decided to keep it going and make an all downtown, all nighttime part. We were really into Beach House then, so Justin used a Beach House song. The part was called Cityscape.

Are you guys working on any other upcoming projects together?

We have a Thrasher solo part coming out soon. We’ve been working on it for a year and a half, it’s all done except for four tricks. But those are gonna be very hard so we’ll see if soon really is soon.

Anything else you are looking forward to in 2019 and the near future?

Really looking forward to being done with the Thrasher part. And to summertime.

Thanks Mark!



Check out Mark’s Pro Hollow Lights in skateshops now.

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