Why be bored in school? Go to a Skateboard School!

This Toronto District School Board alternative school design program, where students earn high school credits by creating their own brand and running a skateboard business / professional design studio, now offers even more SK8 Entrepreneurship Opportunities & New Courses including SK8 & Art Co-ops, Native SK8 Studies, Physical Arts & Mindful Living...

APPLY NOW for Semester 2/February Start!!! (*Info Sessions are held every Wednesday at 9AM in the OSF Classroom during the school year.)


Saturday, March 23, 2013

CHANGE


Imagine a girl that lived in paradise randomly decided to move to a country that has winter 11 months of the year (Canadian Bacon movie reference), just so she could have the normal high school experience,  and then ends up not fitting in what so ever.  I’m from St.Thomas Virgin Islands where I learned how to surf, swim, and live the life people dream about.
When I came to Canada I had the intentions of grasping opportunities that the islands couldn’t offer, like working at a Hot Topic or even just plain meeting people. Even though paradise is a pretty awesome place, it really limited how much you can grow by gaining experiences that they couldn’t offer. OAsis Skateboard Factory has really changed my life; it gave me the opportunities that I originally came to Canada for and incorporates my childhood dream to make and design boards...just instead they’re skateboards and not surfboards.

At my old school I was never motivated. I just never took it seriously; I realized that I didn’t believe in the school, I didn’t feel like it was getting me anywhere. How does this tie into my board? Well, to start off, the design on my board is a direct copy of this Loteria card I found underneath my bed during the time I was at my old school. The card was in perfect condition and I had never seen it before in my life. My mom had no clue as to what Loteria cards were, so it was improbable that she had put it there to mess with me. The card is the death card La Muerte, which gave me mad spooks. At the time I had a bit of an addiction that made me super depressed and unhappy with my life, and as silly as it sounds, finding that card was kind of a wake up call. I thought I was going to die, seriously, until one day in Kensington Park I met a card reader. Conveniently I had been carrying the death card around with me, so I was able to show and explain to him what happened. He told me the card could mean death or change, and then I wasn’t really scared anymore. I knew I had to make a major turn in my life, but I didn’t know where. This all happened last year, and I still carry that card around with me in my moleskin.

I would have never thought that Oasis Skateboard Factory was the turn in my life I was looking for.  I had no motivation, and hardly dedication to my own hobbies, and at OSF I have that and try to use my full potential daily. My board shows what I can do and has that untold story behind it. I chose to wood burn because I feel it gives the wood importance and depth. At first, wood burning seemed pretty scary, on top of the possibility of screwing up permanently, and it also came with potential electrocution and severe burning. It was definitely worth the risk; I never would have thought I liked using it so much! In order to not mess up, I was able to practice on a giant piece of wood so I could teach myself things like shading techniques and getting them straight lines without burning too much of the wood. Even though I didn’t use it in my design, I learned a dotting effect that added a really cool look, and what I did use in my design was small and close lines that gave it a grim look (you can see it in the skeletons scythe).  After finishing the La Muerte card on my board, figuring out what would go around it was my biggest dilemma. I decided to go with a very bright and electric look because it simply just looked really cool. Most of the process was the wood burning design, and the nose and tail are misted with a bamboo color that you can only really see in the light. The bright green is just to frame the centerpiece, which is where most of the work went into anyways.  

What really inspired me, on top of the fact the card looked cool, was what I went through to get where I am today and what other kids like me have to go through to overcome problems they don’t deserve to face. My board is called CHANGE because that’s what a lot of so-called “delinquent” youth want, and my board shows people what you can do when that change in your life makes you the person you wanted to be.