Tell us a little bit about yourself, Richard. Where you are originally from, your age, and how came to live in NY and film some of the best skateboarders in the world on a daily basis?
I’m 23 years old and was born and raised in Miami, FL. I moved to New York in the summer of 2007 to attend The School of Visual Arts. Early 2009 I got the opportunity to work at Vice. From then on I’ve continued to work freelance and have had the privilege of working with several of my favorite companies in skateboarding.
When did you know you wanted to be behind the camera rather than in front of one?
Filming your friends is part of skating from day one. Every skateboarder is behind the camera at some point. I guess I realized I enjoyed telling the story of how it happened and translating it on to a screen for other people to watch more than my friends around the end of high school. I think above anything else, a skateboarder is the most interesting subject you can document, from their ability to their personality. On a side note, I’m strong believer that filmers/photographers should be skating with everyone else while not behind the camera, not just sitting around waiting for something to go down. Everyone involved in the process should be a skateboarder first and foremost. (In my opinion the best ones always are.)
Who do you skate with on a normal day in New York?
Skating in New York is different everyday. People are busy and always have their own agenda, so I don’t think I have a crew in particular. It’s always good to skate with the DQM family, Bronze/Twomanji homies, Joey Pepper, Anthony Pappalardo, really whoever is down to go out that day I’m down to roll with.
What works of yours are you most proud of and why?
In no particular order:
Menace - Epicly Later’d - I got the chance to go to Eric Pupecki’s house, go through his old boards, see his City Stars medallion, and hear stories from back in the day. That was one for the books. I also got to log the Fabian Alomar interview tapes and hear the un-cut versions of all those stories. Crazy stuff.
Supra - Oz Man Out - This was the first skate tour I’d ever been on. It was surreal being able to shoot with some of my favorite skaters I had admired since I was a kid and skate spots I had only seen in videos for years. A tour with Lizard King will never not be interesting.
Supra - “The Ellington” Ad - Getting to cruise around New York City with Ellington was dope enough, but witnessing and getting to film him drop the most “textbook” switch frontside flip down D7 was jaw dropping.
HUF - Summer 2011 Lookbook - I had filmed some HUF commercials before the lookbook, but this was the first time I met Keith. We had a great crew rolling out that day, Billy Mcfeely, Adrian Vega, Aaron Herrington, and Keith Hufnagel. That combination will make for some good footage and times.
IM - Welcomes Joey Pepper - We shot this all in a day. It was also the first day I had ever skated with Joey Pepper and Curtis Rapp. We just shot everything that happened as the day went along. It was a pretty natural process, nothing too planned. And the last trick was a spot that I had my eye on since it was built and I guess Joey did too. It’s one of my favorite tricks I’ve ever filmed.
How did you become part of the DQM crew and what can we expect to see in the future?
William Strobeck recommended me to shoot the Girl/Dqm demo with Aaron Meza. I was contacted again by Chris Keeffe when Cliche/Dqm were collaborating and had plans on putting out a video about the weekend. There are more projects in the works including individual videos for the team riders and for signature lines soon to be released. My friends Bradley Cushing, John Valenti, and I are also working on a full-length video to be released March 2013 featuring skaters from Florida and New York.