I’m going to avoid making any predictions myself so nobody can dig this issue out of their parents’ garage in 20 years and rub this intro in my middle-aged face. I’m going to let the guys at the magazine do it.
The thing about predicting the future is that the big thing in 20 years might not exist yet, or maybe the person everyone’s banking on blowing up will make a sudden career switch, get fucked up and get arrested for masturbating on the hood of some poor stranger’s car in the middle of the day.
The 10 year anniversary issue of Manual was the first skate mag I ever laid eyes on. I got it with a Golden Dragon complete for my birthday and read it until the binding came undone. A lot has changed in those ten years. I’ve grown pubes, people stopped using instrumentals in videos, and the crew at Manual is completely different.
Considering how much has changed in the last ten years, I’ve got to slow down to think about the last 20. I was 2 when the magazine started, which is going to make some people feel really old.
The guys at the Manual office could have just sat back and relived the last 20 years for the whole issue, but instead they’re looking forward to pick out 20 people that are going to shape the next 20 years.
I’m writing this without knowing which people Manual have chosen, and I’m not trying to jinx anybody, but I know this article is about people who are relatively new to the game, but who have already made a significant impact. In the next 20 years some of these people might grow up and not have time to make music, some of these people might get on the crack and sell their camera equipment, or stop skateboarding.
Whether or not any of the above happens is irrelevant because what these people have already achieved will have a lasting effect.
Photo by Cade Wilson-Russ.
Isaac Matz (@isaacmatz)
Isaac Matz is doing everything correct. He’s an extremely talented photographer that has been rapidly improving over the past few years, mastering his style and lighting. Although he might not have the best camera equipment at the moment, you know for damn sure he’s shooting some of the best photos! Isaac has built his reputation up skating and shooting photos with the WeAotea boys before migrating over to Melbourne to see what it had to offer. One year on, he’s just shot his first cover for Slam magazine and had a full length article in Transworld and he’s still only 20 years old. He’s just getting started and it’s only becoming more apparent that Isaac is going to be on the frontline of skateboarding media for years to come! Cheers Dox! | Jake Darwen
Photo by Kristian Philipp
Izy Mutu (@izymo)
The skater’s favourite skater. She’s a demon on the board with a style like no other. This skate rat is always down for the session and always brings the good vibes. ‘Have fun or don’t come’. Christchurch born and bred, Pizzey till ya dead! | Kristian Philipp
Photo by Nick Holder.
Luke Browne (@stickersbrowne)
A man of few, indiscernible words, Stickers’ actions speak loudly for him. Skateboarder, businessman, filmer, photographer, graphic designer, bookmaker, cat whisperer; he does it all. This does mean he’s always at least two hours late to any arrangements, and his videos come out approximately a year after the initial release dates, but you can’t be mad about it. When he’s not at the local Warehouse Stationery he can be found in the streets, filming people who are often far worse skateboarders than him, just to promote the local scene and keep everyone hyped. He’s put a lot of New Zealand skaters on the map and tirelessly promotes our culture in his art and curation and will continue to be a linchpin of skateboarding here and abroad for many years to come. He’s not even originally from New Zealand but is most definitely a Kiwi. | Nick Holder
Photo by Vaughan Brookfield.
JJ Rayward (@_slipperygypsy)
JJ is a rider who is extremely exciting to watch. I think this is a key trait in any upcoming rider, future rider or legend. He’s a face that’s been familiar at Cardrona for a number of years now and has been through the realms of being coached himself, to entering the competition, coaching others and now taking his depth of skills to screens. JJ seems to love making style a priority and making sure the footage he gets will be remembered for its timelessness. Being adaptable, productive and a stickler for getting the shot properly, JJ is poised to make a huge mark on the international and local snowboarding world and definitely won’t be forgotten 20 years from now. | Nick Hyne
Ken Griffen (@kengriffen)
Ken’s work has long been an enigma to me. His apparent flippancy with a pencil or a brush is completely defied by the considered work he continually produces. One minute he’s absent-mindedly doodling in his sketch book, the next I see the same picture refined, hanging in a gallery, and tattooed on my back. Whether he puts his hand to painting, drawing, sculpting, or installation, Ken’s work is the kind that appears effortless, but at the same time, is so clearly informed by years of toil that it makes you want to work harder. With his recent move to NYC, it’s hard to know what exactly will come next. The only thing for sure is that any shaping of our world that Ken does will be consistent with how he sculpts—with a blowtorch and a deft touch | Joe Dowling