Everybody knows he has one of the best styles in skateboarding. Everything he does is just so effortless, you see him doing a flat ground kickflip and its just unreal. The way Jin skates is definitely individual but not in a typical arty way, he does things that not many people would even think about. Not only is Jin ridiculous at skateboarding he’s also one of the nicest people, you never hear a bad word come out of his mouth. His part in the video is gunna be next level so you better watch out for Jinsamu!
You were born in Japan, right? Does visiting the cities there alter your view of London at all?
Yea completely, it’s a real culture shock. People you meet there are so polite and courteous; not saying that that doesn’t exist in London! It’s just a different mentality. I think they concentrate a lot on doing things efficiently, so things work well there, trains are never a second late.
How do you think growing up skating London has changed the way you skate?
It makes you think about skating a lot more; it is a bit cliché but spots in the UK and London are never perfect, so there’s less of a training ground mentality I suppose, trying to do the biggest flip down the biggest gap. You have to work out how to utilise the spot in the best way, or what to hit in order to do a good line.
Do you remember your first time in Slam?
No I don’t remember it actually! Though I distinctively remember Jake’s ‘over-it’ face when a Scream-o band was performing live downstairs back when it was Rough Trade; that is a pretty early Slam memory.
How do you personally explore the city and find new spots?
Mmm… This is quite hard now because London is so rinsed. As Casper said Hold Tight has pretty much covered everywhere via street view; we went skating in Barking! Sometimes finding a spot occurs naturally when your skating in the city though, like we found a couple of spots when we were skating towards other spots, a hole in the floor, and also four of those red and white barriers in a row. That’s kind of sick because you know that they probably won’t be there next week. Other than that if I’m in a new area sometimes I decide to take the bus rather than the tube home just in case I see something new.
Do you think much has changed skating-wise in London, in the last 5 years?
Yea loads and loads of skateparks have popped up all over. This means more kids are doing it and are getting good fast! There are so many different crews of kids I see about at South Bank or exploring the city, it’s really good.
What do you enjoy about filming? Do you approach filming a section any differently now, compared to when you were filming for Writer’s Block, or Horizons?
I am stoked to be involved in such a sick project. I enjoy slowly building up something trick by trick and ending up with something concrete that is going to be part of a big video. This isn’t to say filming ain’t stressful at times! With my previous parts it was more like I’d get taken to spots in a group and we’d session them. That still happens but this time I thought more about spots and tricks to do there. As you grow older you know more spots and what possibilities there are at them. Also I have been skating and filming with Henry for so long now, maybe something like 7 or 8 years. He has this relationship with a lot of skater’s but he can suggest tricks to do at spots because he knows your skating inside out. I think these factors helped a lot when filming for this part.
Riding for Adidas, what do you think about the whole ‘skate brand vs. sports brand’ thing?
Personally, the people who have sorted me out with adidas are legit people who know what’s up and what they’re doing in skating – Ches and Lev; and for the Euro team it’s Jascha so I don’t see anything wrong with that. They make good shoes and help skateboarders do what they like for a living. You can’t front on Busenitz or Chewy.
And your top 3 London heroes?
Snowy and Jensen are who I look up too in my generation as typical London skateboarders, but there are too many to mention. Hold Tight Henry for going through hell and back for this video!
Jin rides for: Landscape Skateboards, Adidas, Stella Supply Co., Hélas and Slam City Skates
* Portrait Photo by Sam Ashley
** Video by Hold Tight Henry