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Gilbert Crockett – ‘Footage Feast’

(Featured: Sidewalk Magazine, 16th May 2015.)

Gilbert Crockett

Say the name Gilbert Crockett to any skateboarder and the expression returned may resemble one similar to those in days of old when asked about some legendary gunslinger; a subtle nod that says it all. Hailing from cowboy country Virginia, this is a fairly apt comparison for the amount of respect Gilbert receives: at only 26 he’s one of the most interesting skateboarders of today and set to be remembered when it comes to ‘best styles of the 21st century.’
Having served The Sovereign Sect until its demise last summer managed to draw more attention to Gilbert, with him spending the majority of the last twelve months in board sponsor limbo until recently being unveiled as part of Mother Collective. Perhaps it’s his frequent attire of a plain white t-shirt and blue jeans but there is something almost ‘everyman’ in his appeal. His eye for that which is not obvious, but not pointlessly obscure, tricks that are remarkably simple, yet look achievable. All coupled with a style completely inimitable.
It could be argued that the greatest skateboarders are those who you could distinguish from a silhouette; the Ginos, Heath Kircharts and Marc Johnsons of the world and this is a category that Crockett definitely falls into.
Propeller proved that Gilbert is never one to disappoint. Despite filming for Alien Workshop and releasing online parts throughout last year, his footage in the Vans video was worthy of ender status. I’d say I’m almost jealous of anyone yet to see it as they get to experience it for the first time again; however that part (and the whole video) gets better with every viewing so it isn’t the case. So without further ado, this week’s Footage Feast goes to Gilbert Crockett.
Fallen Footwear – Ride The Sky
First up we have a very, very different Gilbert Crockett in his breakout part from Fallen Footwear’s Ride The Sky (if the name doesn’t ring a bell it’s that one where Chris Cole goes fucking mental for seven minutes at the end). When looking at Gilbert now it’d be easy to mistake him for a completely different skater as his trick book is a little more tech than in future sections. However the precision and trademark flick of those kickflips is already matured, perfectly evident by the flip frontside 5050 at 1:11 along with everything ensuing from 1:43 until the end of the part. The double set Cab flip and stretched backside flip ender also showcases the early days of the less is more and all powerhouse Gilbert would grow into a little down the line.
Brent O’Donnell – CELLOUT
As far as bro-cam videos go, the Cellout videos are great. Hip Hop and Gilbert’s skating are hardly something that would seem fitting but the overall light-hearted nature of this part, aided by the fact it’s all filmed on a phone, make it work. Such as the bit where just after blasting a curb cut gap, the second angle reveals of the filmers rolling past, iPhone wielded like a budget VX. There are some real bangers in here though, such as the kickflip backside 5050 to flatspot inducing hill bomb. But also a few confusing moments like tailpop flipping into nose manual nollie flip out in all of three seconds time span and the fantastic ‘slam dunk swing around’…
 

Alien Workshop – Life Splicing 

‘Life Splicing’ was Alien Workshop’s ongoing series of short films focusing around the revamped company. With AVE and Dill in charge and sky worshippers removed from their roster, the videos allowed the Workshop to broadcast their message in the post Mind Field days. From art direction to Heath Kirchart’s retirement, the small glimpses into the Workshop at the time were always well received and also a place to showcase the newer members of the roster such as Nick Boserio (before moving to Zero), John Fitzgerald (moving from Zero) and of course, Gilbert Crockett.

Whilst arguably the best of the series, Life In A Box, saw him and other young guns Omar Salazar, Tyler Bledsoe, Kevin Terpening shredding their personal TF along with the Godfathers of the Workshop, AVE and Dill. As hard as it can be to get hyped on skate park footage, this raw three minutes does the job nicely.

The last entry to the series, TOUROHIO, saw him and the remaining team at the time visit the Workshop’s birthplace shortly before Grant Taylor made his way to soar with the eagle.

Gilbert’s solo Life Splicing clip featured him going hard and fast and proved him a different yet incredibly fitting member of the Sect. If you’ve yet to witness the raw footage filmed by Will Rosenstock also, educate yourself now. The slams on the gap bench to stair gap are ‘Gino’s push’ level of rad.

Alien Workshop – The Cinematographer Project

Memory Screen, Time Code, Photosynthesis, Mind Field.

Arguably four of the greatest skateboarding videos ever made in their corresponding epoch. However, when considering the Workshop’s audio visual output over its twenty plus year lifespan, the Benny Maglinao produced section from Transworld’s Cinematographer Project definitely should not be ignored. Perhaps this is the equivalent to their 411 Industry Section for the Instagram generation.

Contrasting with Greg Hunt’s emotional, sometimes calm and always precise cinematography from Mind Field. This section always seems to reel of the ‘schizophrenic’ art direction the company has prided itself on. It’s been said time and time again but it really is hard to consider that this is the same company that would crumble two years after this parts release as the AVE, Dill accompanied by Dylan Rieder, Tyler Bledsoe, Donovon Piscopo and more all power through, suggesting the then revamped Workshop was as strong as it would ever be.

This section also marked Gilbert and Jake Johnson’s pro debut for Alien Workshop with the part focusing on them both for the final couple of minutes. Both compliment each other’s skating incredibly well with them displaying power, creativity and all out going for it as Sirius Alpha by Apparat Organ Quartet ramps up. This section is nothing short of epic and if this is a signifier of what Mother Collective’s video output may give way to in terms of skateboarding ability from Crockett, Johnson and Bledsoe, there’s no reason not to be stoked.

Venue Skate Shop – Old Dominion

Anyone that’s followed Gilbert closely is probably aware of his hometown shop sponsor, Venue Skateboards. This part from their 2013 video Old Dominion (available from the most pretentious online skate store, if you’d like one a copy) is by far one of Gilbert’s best parts to date. Don’t take that as a disservice to any of his others, however the tranquil soundtrack, night footage and shots of his hometown make this fairly definitive Crockett in my opinion (with the exception of Propeller). It’s also the subtleties that make this part, with notable moments being opening line’s Nollie Flip with a cheeky shifty, the lean back from a Switch 5050 Frontside 180 Out as Gilbert’s stunned posture echoes the same sense of surprise the viewer has at the unexpected 180 Out.

Vans – Crockett Pro Commercial

Thanks to spending a lot of time filming with his hometown friend Will Rosenstock, a majority of Gilbert’s footage can also be found in raw form with this being no exception. Though only a short commercial for his shoe, the skating is still to his usual standard with the double road gap absolutely baffling me at the speed, length and quick feet required not to stack it doing so.

Venue Skate Shop – Darlin’ Please

Family Guy and Seth McFarlane’s nonsensical genius has enriched my generation. With this in mind, I find it incredibly hard to watch this part without thinking of any of the moments where Conway Twitty’s musical talents have cropped up in the series.

Short and sweet, this clip for Venue Skateboards features some serious power with the line at 0:40 being enough to make most skateboarders crumble after the first Ollie. The previous sofa Backside Kickflip is also pretty spectacular as is navigating a skate stopped rail at the end.

Bust Crew – Sponcer Me

A collection of mostly raw and unused footage, again filmed by Will Rosenstock. This was released during last summer when speculation was rife of whether it would be Fucking Awesome, Krooked, Real or re-born Workshop, if it was ever to happen, that Gilbert would call home. Instead, he called mom

Greg Hunt & Will Rosenstock – Propeller Raw Files

First I’ll make this clear, Gilbert’s part in Propeller was not lacking, I’d have liked to have seen a few more lines rather than single tricks, but it was brimming with style and substance. While the whole video is amazing, of which AVE is the pinnacle. Few people in it could contend for the ender despite the overall amazing effort put in by everyone on Vans. Gilbert however, is one of those few. If you’re yet to see the Vans video, then after viewing this you’ll have some idea of the treat you’re in for. If you’ve already seen the Vans video, then like me you’ll probably be very surprised this footage wasn’t left in for a three song long ender part – as it would have been more than worthy. Kick off your boots and hang up your Stetson Gil, you’ve earned a rest.

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