Lucy Adams – A Metre Of Air

08/03/2021

To celebrate International Women’s Day we have released a video documentary (and skate part) by Andy Evans with one of the raddest of all: Lucy Adams. We’re honoured to host this one, Lucy has killed it for as long as we can remember and has been and still is a huge inspiration in the UK scene. We interviewed Lucy and Andy on the making of this brilliant piece which you can read in full below. We talk to this dynamic duo about the filming process, Lucy’s favourites, her family, Girl Skate UK, stand out moments while filming this documentary and much more! The video was filmed over two years between 2018 – 2020 in and around West Sussex with archival footage used from 2000 onwards. It features interviews with Lucy’s Mum Wendy, Lucy’s wife Emily, Lovenskate’s Stuart Smith, Lucy’s bestie Lex Kembery and the OG Crawley hero Trev Wedd. Big up to Andy Evans’ for putting this all together too!

Interview by: Guy Jones

Photography by: John Cyruss, Andy Pickard & Jenna Selby

Videography by: Andy Evans

Lucy Adams – Backside 50-50 Grind ~ Photo by: John Cyruss

Hi Lucy, how’s it going? And congratulations to you and Emily on your beautiful newborn! Sonny looks so steeze already!

Hey Guy, all is good in the Rafferty Adams Hood, thank you! Sonny is a total babe, a proper happy little chappy who’s made our world complete! Trying to pop him as much camo and leopard¬†print as poss ūüėČ

 

Are your baba and pooch getting on?

Penny the whippet is such a gentle soul but she’s kind of put out of joint that all of the attention isn’t solely on her. She is really intrigued by him and does like to often lie as physically¬†close as poss without laying on him! He’s just started to properly see her too now. Watching her tail wag etc. I think they will be the best of friends once he starts chucking food down from the high chair! When we first started taking him out into the world in the carrier she used to jump up quite a lot and as an older dog now she hadn’t done that for year – she very protective.

 

This new documentary about yourself was made by Andy Evans, do you remember the first time you met and how you both became as close as you are today, unless you both secretly hate each other but realised you work really well together?

Lucy Adams: Well ‘This n That’, ‘Straight¬†to Video’ and ‘As If’ were all a significant part of my early skate years. My ultimate skate hero ‘Trev Wedd’ featured in ‘As If’ and ‘This n That’ so needless to say they were on repeat amongst all the Crawley Crew, therefore I was very aware of Andy’s work. I used to see him at events up and down the country during that wicked period when the calendar was packed but thought he was far too famous to talk to – I mean I was confident but not forward enough to just strike up a convo with a BAFTA Award winning filmer – haha.¬†

 

Andy Evans: I was actually aware of Lucy since 1999 when I saw her stressing out trying to carve over the quarter pipe vert wall thing at Bay 66. We used to nod politely at each other for years but it was 2015 when we actually met when she asked me to film a girls Go Skate Day event. Soon after we started to work together. 

 

LA: Yeah, eventually after seeing him about a bit more once the Level got rebuilt in Brighton, I built up the courage to ask him to film an event that Danni Gallacher¬†(of Girl Skate UK) and I were organising called Push The Prom in 2015. I contacted him via LinkedIn – a total punt – because I didn’t have Facebook and he wasn’t on Instagram (and we’re still the same today – I’ll get him to come around at some point!). Anyway, he filmed the event and it is his most¬†viewed clip on his Youtube Channel – like and subscribe – Yamaaaar!!! Haha…and after that we soon started meeting for skates at the Lagoon and I talked him into filming a few bits of me for Jenna Selby’s ‘Days Like These’ video. He also used some clips for his most recent vid ‘Just in Time’.¬†

 

AE: Lucy said that working with a minority in skating was a good way for me to re-boost my profile and it had worked well for others. Foolishly I believed her and as it turns out Lucy was very ‘off brand’ as a minority in the skate world, it didn‚Äôt provide the promised career boost and in retrospect I would have been better going with someone else but unfortunately, I‚Äôm stuck with her now. Joking aside, I must admit I did wonder where Lucy has been all my life – it turns out we have so much in common, loads of mutual friend references for humour and we think really similarly about skating. It seemed really easy to get to know her and bar the odd stress attack whilst filming with her has been a delight. It does help that I have deep respect for someone who has the audacity to love beni finger flips and is still upset about not getting those Ghetto Child trousers from my friend Neil in 1997.

 

LA: I needed those trackies so bad to go with my Ghetto Child Wheels, my friend Ben bought them out of the back of Neil‚Äôs car boot as I didn‚Äôt have enough cash on me at the time ‚Äď so snide.¬†

But yeah, I sold it to Andy that I was instrumental in getting him back to the forefront, stick with me and champion the minorities and I’ll get you 10k+ views easy peasy Evans! Nah but seriously, we learned that we had a lot in common – not drinking, liking eccentric tricks, not being overly fussed on the weed smoking, boozy, party vibes that often gets pushed forward within the skate community… we basically get on like a house on fire. In 2017 we filmed together a lot as I was trying to put together a clip for Lovenskate and to accompany my Grey interview. Andy’s rad because he literally has the most patience in the world and he also throws little tips and hints out that can really rile me up when I’m having a total breakdown over¬†a trick haha….

Andy Evans + Lucy Adams

Obviously this progressed to numerous projects and increased friendship. Do you both have either a favourite project or particular moment filming or otherwise together?

LA: I think filming this clip was the best times we’ve had!¬†

We mainly¬†stayed local – missions around Crawley, Brighton etc but we did this one trip down to West Country and tied it in with NASS. NASS is literally¬†my least fave place to go however in order to support the scene, and especially¬†Danni / GSUK who’s been instrumental¬†in organising the women’s skate event, I wanted to pop by. So me and Andy travelled down via Portsmouth and skated and filmed a couple of clips at the famous law courts, then treated ourselves to a lovely meal out and carried on down to a Travelodge near the festival site. Andy wasn’t keen on going into the rave up either but I told him he could hang with the lads i.e. Churchill and Habgood! Now, Andy isn’t an early riser, and I am, this is the trickiest part of our relationship! I’ve often thought we could’ve smashed out three more projects if he would just get in my time zone but no, 11am is the earliest he’ll do and a cafe breakfast comes before anything! So, on this particular trip, after a lovely night’s kip in the finest Travelodge, I hit Glasto skatepark at 7am and had a three hour skate before he even stirred! We then spent an hour trying to film a backside nosegrind shuv on the ledge and I blame the fact I was thoroughly¬†worn out and if he’d just got up an hour earlier that trick would’ve made the clip! Then we popped along to NASS for no more than 2 hours and got the hell out of there. It was a great two days!¬†

 

AE: I think this one has been my favourite and, even though it‚Äôs been a bit problematic to get it out there, sharing the ups and downs of that was an interesting and friendship solidifying journey in itself.¬† There were loads of good moments in filming this but if I had to pick a favourite it, it would be the noseslide on the hubba. It had everything… the heady adventure of sourcing a dodgy pallet for the run up, the drama of Lucy having a heavy slam warming up at the skate park in the morning, her amusement at making me leave the house at 8am to film it, and Lucy overcoming her self-doubts to make it relatively easily in some excellent camo. It was a beautiful moment.

 

LA: Hahaha‚Ķ Again, another time when I had to kick about waiting for Andy… I hit Worthing¬†Skatepark at 7am and got straight¬†to it nosesliding¬†down the hubba. I already had a bad ankle from a recent roll but the stars were aligning because Jenna was down visiting her other half’s parents in Bognor so I knew she’d be up for coming along the coast to shoot a photo. Well, I slammed so hard at the skatepark I literally wanted to drive home and cry, but I knew Jenna was on her way and Andy had managed to get himself up at 8am – extraordinary! Andy and I had drove about Worthing industrial estates the day before and managed to find what I considered¬†a perfect pallet which would fill the gap in the top step on the spot. Jenna, Andy and I met at the spot around 9am and dog walkers were proper already up and at it. I dragged the pallet down to the spot with my now dodgy ankle, hip and knee and felt sick because I’d claimed this so bad and didn’t feel that I could do it. Anyway, things¬†worked out and after about half an hour¬†we came away with the trick, clip and photo – it was rad! Then all went for a celebratory breakfast at a lovely little coastal cafe and I remember¬†just feeling proper stoked!

Andy Evans + Lucy Adams

I was speaking to the absolute don that is Lovenskate Stu (Smith) about this interview and he gave me some prompts that include¬†“It always makes me laugh when we do new coloured socks and she panics about what wash setting she‚Äôs gonna have to choose. ‚ÄėThey‚Äôre a washing nightmare Stu!” I actually witnessed this first hand when I was working at Slam haha. Does this transfer to other characteristics of Lucy, Andy and did this attention to detail come across whilst filming the documentary or anything for that matter?

LA: It is a total washing nightmare. I take so much pride in how white my white T-shirts are and I love doing the washing¬†and ironing¬†to a very high standard! Then Stu goes and makes socks that are red, white and blue…. The red is obviously gonna run into the white and what wash do you even put them in in the first place. Total nause.¬†

 

AE: That is true Lucy does have an element of control that runs deep and it’s idiots like me throwing a spanner in the works that I‚Äôm sure can be quite stressful for her at times. I have noticed she likes things to be a certain way for sure but she‚Äôs not without flexibility and really has a sense of humour about it. She actually said one of my ideas was good once… I almost fainted. But on the negative side she has refused to address me using my middle name or refer to me as a “Seminal Lensman” in interviews but you can’t have it all. But a good bit of advice when dealing with Lucy is keep vinegar away from her. Consider yourself warned!

Andy Evans

How did you get involved with the most righteous CHPO¬†brand and how does it feel having sponsored¬†which do so much more for the community, Lovenskate are incredible¬†and I’m so stoked Viktor from CHPO surprised Stu with the pro watch,¬†sunnies and mug!

LA: Wow, I can’t remember¬†the exact time, but it was well early on, I think the UK distro at the time got in touch with me via Insta DM. They sent me a few products and I was stoked… then Viktor just hit me up and started sorting me direct. Soon after the distros changed and Woody /¬†Spiv Agency were involved so that made it even sicker. Viktor explained he was down to give riders pro products to help support them and it was in 2016 I think, with the help of Stu, we designed a very dope Camo watch! Fast forward a few years and Viktor mentioned CHPO would like to turn Lovenskate ‘Pro’ which basically means they’d do a collab product. So, the mug and shades were produced and we threw a surprise¬†party for Stu in a pub in London! I feel really lucky to be backed by those two brands. Lovenskate is literally the best thing in the world – I love it all, the name, the graphics, the boss, the team. Same with CHPO, the people involved are proper good eggs and that’s what makes it.

 

Got a fave Lovenskate, CHPO and Vans product?

LA: I think my fave LNS shirt is the ‘Christ Lives’ one or the ‘Good thing Comes to Those Who Skate’‚Ķ I still think the best board graphic was ‚ÄėStorm in a Teacup‚Äô by James Callaghan. My fave CHPO¬†product is the Lara watch at the moment, very clean. When it comes to Vans, nothing beats the Half Cab. If I was just sent white Half Cabs for the rest of time that would be more than enough.¬†

Lucy Adams – Hippy Jump ~ Photo by: Andy Pickard

Please tell us the secret of productivity. I was thinking with the birth of your child and going skating with Mason and the multitude of work you do, how in the hell do you do it? 

LA: I think it comes down to just wanting to do a lot all of the time and just trying desperately to make it all happen. And the key to it all really is to try and start your day at 6:30am! That way¬†you can have a really decent skate by 9am and still have time for all the things you have to do like work, lunch and dinner! Then you can spend the evening chilling with friends and fam or if you’re lucky another little skate! I also just despise rudeness like when people don’t email back or don’t do something they said they would. I remember going on a course for work or something once and learned DWYSYWD – ‘Do What You Said You Would Do‚Äô¬†and thought, yep that’s a motto to live by…. but to be honest sometimes I do totally burn out… it’s crazy how many podcasts / dissertations interviews I do. I was just saying to¬†Andy the other day, I might pre-record a podcast and just send it out when people slide into my DMs with a¬†request!¬†

 

I was so stoked that you and Joe Gavin discussed your adoration for camo, could you please tell us some of the numerous benefits of this steeze pattern and Andy did filming in rural areas become quite difficult?

LA: Yes, I was stoked J-Gav asked about that too, I really love patterns and colours. I remember as a kid wanting some midnight camo cargos from the local army surplus shop but mum said I couldn’t have them as only weirdos or soldiers walk around in camo – which in 1998 was probably kinda true! So I was only allowed the plain khaki green ones, but then I guess when I was old enough to move away and was doing my thing, I just immersed myself in all the camo wears!¬†

 

AE: Being considered the UK’s best dressed skater Lucy does have an enviable collection of camo. Probably enough to clothe a battalion of soldiers. I actually never had any trouble with her blending into the background during filming as she‚Äôs quite serious about the correct colour pallet in her outfits for the spot. This is meticulously crafted by her stylist Toan Nguyen who travels to every spot in advance, takes Polaroids, studies weather reports and constructs a mood board culminating in him selecting five complete ensembles which he lays out for Lucy to choose from in the morning. You don‚Äôt become a style icon by cutting corners, is what Lucy‚Äôs always told me.

 

Your mum features in the documentary and you can definitely tell some similarities. She seemed super supportive of all your endeavours, do you remember when she realised skating would be the extent it became and what were your interactions like with ‘the mother’ for yourself Andy? I heard you actually became¬†better friends with her than with Lucy!

LA: Big ups to Wendy! Well it was Dad who was a lot more into it than mum… he would take me to different skateparks across the county and then often to events up and down the country. He just really liked watching, especially comps. He used to always want to have a bet on the finals, he’d back Churchill hard at the Urban Games / Board X etc hahah. Mum was a little bit more fearful of what I was doing – like I remember the day I learned to go over the spine at Crawley. I went for it all day and came back black and blue with both knees of my jeans ripped – she was just like ‘Jesus Luce, have you been hit by a car? You can’t keep hurting yourself like this!” Once a few years had gone by though, she obviously realised I was well down for this skating lark and so she was happy I was out most of the day, with friends doing something positive. I think once I started working for Crawley Borough¬†Council as Extreme Sports Development¬†Officer (yeah well good job!) a little after Uni, she was completely sold.

 

AE: It’s true Lucy‚Äôs mum is a straight up Legend and it was really quite a glimpse into were Lucy gets some of her tenacious qualities from after meeting the Sussex stooball (look it up!) legend. Also, Lucy has inherited her no-nonsense attitude which was beautifully illustrated one day when we were going spot near Lucy‚Äôs mums house (amusingly named platform 5 by Lucy as it‚Äôs so near the station) Her mum came along and said you‚Äôre not skating here I hate the noise. As she went off I assumed she was joking but Lucy assured me she was quite serious. Kicked of the spot by your Mum… A brilliant anecdotal story.

Lucy Adams – Bin Wallie ~ Photo by: John Cyruss

I think one of the best adverts for Thunder Trucks is you skating that beyond crusty downhill curb (which is more of a ledge if we’re honest just with a far less smooth finish), what is it about this righteous brand that has kept you loyal?

LA: My curb! That spot has been there in my little town of Horsham since the beginning. I’ll not go there for months, even years and then I revisit, realise it’s rough as hell but love it all the same. If you get anything¬†on it, it’s amazing because the noise is like nothing else. Raw! And Thunder…. well it’s just the best. When I started getting flowed by Shiner, up until then I had ridden Indy for years but Steamer was on Thunder¬†so I had no problems with¬†switching. Then over the years I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Jim T and getting to know the TM Nate and they’re just really supportive. They keep in touch, back and promote what I do and are constantly trying to make skateboarding better for everyone – so much respect for that.¬†

 

What would both of you like our divine readers to know?

LA: I‚Äôd just like to say how happy I am that you guys were stoked on taking the clip and putting it out for us. For me, the skate section was probably the part I‚Äôve worked the hardest to make happen and I know how much effort Andy put in to do the interviews, editing etc‚Ķ. however, for some reason we hit so many walls trying to get it out. Three false starts with various platforms / brands and a lot of stress meant that it‚Äôs a bit old now and therefore some things are a bit out of date. I should acknowledge that I‚Äôm no longer Chair of Skateboard England and Skateboard GB ‚Äď I stepped down last July. I‚Äôve still been working alongside them to inform the strategy and complete the bid to UK Sport and good news is they got awarded funding to support talented British skateboarders in their quest to go to Paris 2024. There‚Äôll be investment for jobs, parks, upskilling ‚Äď it’s pretty exciting.¬†

Also, just to say thanks to Andrew James Evans for persevering and giving me a much needed push when I‚Äôm about to strop off and go home. And, for going out to prep the spot for me before I get there ‚Äď Andy charges ¬£10 for a pre-sweep and he‚Äôll wax it for the absolute bargain of an extra ¬£5!

 

AE: I think I’d probably like them to know that this was a thoroughly enjoyable video type thing to make. It was a great way to get to know much more about Lucy’s back story.  Going through all the archives was so interesting and showed me Lucy really had done rather a lot with herself in her 23 years on the skateboard, although strangely still can’t 360 flip much to her own annoyance (she will obviously learn them now, I know how she works).

Also, it was extremely amusing to interview her friends and family and the stories and insights into Lucy’s personality they came out with really were an absolute hoot. I have gleaned over time it’s often the quirks and oddities that make someone a really interesting personality and Lucy has these in abundance.  They range from only eating spaghetti hoops on a Friday to a militant hard line on never wearing all black shoes, but she actually has a great sense of humour about them and it’s obvious she’s held in great affection by everyone I interviewed and also in the skate scene at large. 

I also discovered Lucy is really quite an impressive human, I‚Äôd probably need a time machine to fit in as much as she does in a day, I think Stu from Lovenskate says it best when he noted ‚Äúshe makes me feel so lazy‚ÄĚ when referring to Lucy‚Äôs enviable work ethic. That willingness she has to push on also came very much in handy while trying to get this project out, which as Lucy said was rather delayed due to all sorts of wrangling with interested parties who then for one reason or another decided against running it. But we weren‚Äôt put off and we are very grateful for all at Vague for giving it a platform to go out on, we can only hope you enjoy it as much as we did making it.

Lucy Adams – A Metre Of Air

Filmed + Edited by: Andy Evans

Supported by: Lovenskate, CHPO Brand + Thunder Trucks