From Sidewalk 197 – February 2013
If you’re skating with Mark you can never be sure what you’re going to get. Sometimes he is so focussed on skating that he’ll be in his own weird world for hours without a word – whilst on other days he’s like a non-medicated ADHD kid that won’t shut up, continually freestying about everything going on around him. Whichever extreme you get, be sure to get a beer down Mark’s neck, as his brilliance really shines when he’s drunk!
These two extremes are evident in Mark’s skating – with a Dad from New York, the hyperactive personality is channelled into true East Coast style – bombing around, wheels screeching, riding up walls etc. Whilst at the same time every movement is precisely calculated and executed – let’s not forget that Mark has spent most of his skating years with Milton Keynes on his doorstep, and believe me, this environment and the influence of the likes of Rob Selley and Sean Smith (to name a couple) has not been wasted on him – there’s some serious technical abilities in this boy. Like all of us, Mark’s creativity doesn’t solely lie in skateboarding – he has an active appreciation for analogue photography; a keen eye for filming and editing (long live the VX1) and he makes his passion for music his own by putting together his own House/Techno compositions.
In conclusion, Mark’s a rad guy – Big up.
Photography by Jamie ‘Swampy’ Harold
Mark Stern is a funny guy and a good friend of mine; he is fully committed to skateboarding, which always gets me hyped when I skate with him. Mark used to predominantly skate ledges, but after a serious injury to his ever-more-frequently visible ankles, his skating has become less about flip grinds and more about his quick feet. I feel he has really come into his own in his skateboarding now, and has developed a style that suits him perfectly. Fully stoked you got this man, keep your eyes peeled for more from Mark and his beautiful ankles everybody! They kill it.
The first time I met Mark it was a cold dark winter night session down ‘church 8’ in the early days of 2009. I kept switching my light off when he went to skate the stairs thinking: “Who is this guy? I’m not wasting my lights battery filming him”.
To my surprise, he carried on trying to fs-shuv down these cheese grater stairs in the pitch black. A few attempts later I thought, damn he’s getting close; I better switch my light back on. He did it a few tries later. I got to know Mark better as I sold my VX1000/MK1 to him; this started the on-going filming missions, which still go on to this day. Even when it rained we used to sit in his car at spots waiting for them to dry.
I can’t recall how many times I’ve been sat in his car, listening to him rap (non-stop) about whatever peculiar things come into his warped mind. Ash Seck (Ntown local) sometimes messages me on Facebook to tell me Mark is being unbearably annoying. Ash sponsored Mark for his skate shop Skate Attic, be sure to check that out if you’re in Northampton!