Index/Visual Art/Music/Writing

Drawings of Flipping Skateboards

Drawings identified for regular stance.
R=Regular, S=Switch Stance, N=Nollie, F=Fakie

The Kick Flip                                                                                                                                             
360º counter clockwise (vertical) flip

The Heel Flip

360º clockwise flip  

The Varial Kick flip
360º counter clockwise flip & 180º clockwise (horizontal) spin

The Hard flip

360º counter clockwise flip & 180º counter clockwise spin

The 360º Kick flip
360º c
ounter clockwise flip &
360º clockwise spin

Shuv-it (in Motion)
180º counter clockwise horizontal spin

The 360
º Shuv-it
(in Motion)
360º counter clockwise horizontal spin

The 540º Shuv-it (Standing Still)
540º counter clockwise horizontal spin

Images: Rapidograph pen drawings .5 & .35 mm, ink on bleed proof paper. variable dimensions, approximately actual size (cropped)
March-June 2014.   

Orientation Entanglement Drawings of Flipping Skateboards

        The purpose of these drawings it to trace the path of a spinning and flipping board. Each particular kind of flip drawing has its own unique rules as to how the two sides and two edges can fit together to create the proper orientations. It is important that each completed flip drawing returns the board back to an upright position. The angular momentum should remain the same more or less throughout its flight through space. However it also must move through space along a path that doesn't overlap with itself, and hide its orientations. These drawings are intended to be read quickly like a sign or schematic diagram. This helps reveal the structure and it shows if mistakes are present. Another way to use these drawings is to imagine that the board is elastic, and stretched under tension into a particular twist. Then, if the foot that pops the board is released (in the mind), the twisted board will appear to snap back into a flat untwisted position in the imagination.

        These drawings are a type of Mobius strip; however, a Mobius strip contains a particular flip not listed here. Also, mobius strip connects back onto itself into a loop. The goal of my drawings here is to make visible the distinct twisting actions of different geometrical rotations. The viewer is intended to visualize the board flipping and stretching, eventually returning to the original direction. These drawings are reminiscent of scroll design, however I don't know of any other artists who ever flipped their ribbons exactly like the ones listed and described below. My intentions were closer to that of the photographer Muybridge who wanted to show motions that could not be seen otherwise. These drawing are more related to open shutter night photographs of skateboarding; yet, I want to take this where the camera cannot follow and illustrate the folds more coherently. Most of these tricks were invented by Rodney Mullen and are now considered the standard ways to flip the board.              

        These drawings were made possible with experiments in many mediums, geometrical drawing, sculpture, performance, photography, and mirrors rather than with purely numerical or digital visualizations. The drawings themselves have now become a type of graphic notation for skateboarding flip tricks. No written words should be necessary to read the twist. The footprints help indicate stance, foot positions on the board, and rotations of the body. I hope these drawings help contribute to the visual mathematics of skateboarding and graphic art in general. Each drawing One benefit I noticed is that; if I draw these forms on the ground and roll over them just as I flip the board, it helps me visualize the path through space the board should follow to create a particular flip of the board. The ultimate goal is to use two dimensional art to enhance ones awareness of motion and to improve spatial reasoning.

J.P. Axelrod, March 2014, work in progress...