A Pictorial Journey Behind the Scenes of New Balance Numeric’s A Place in the Sun

With the release of A Place in the Sun New Balance Numeric also announced that they’ll be adding Toy Machine’s buff & tight Jordan Taylor and Sk8Mafia powerhouse Tyler Surrey to the team. This turn of events does a great service to skateboarding as these are two of the truest rulers in existence and they deserve all the encouragement we can collectively raise. You can see more from them in the full-on, alternate-angles/behind-the-scenes video extravaganza that I’ll hopefully have finished by next week.
In the meantime, below is a 7 part review of the recent past that includes the trailer for aforementioned video extravaganza and a photo essay covering a small portion of the making of A Place in the Sun.

1) New Talent on New Balance

2) Breakfast of Champions
Hollywood! The home of cinema, celebrity and breakfast burritos a la Surrey, Taylor, Brown and Rattray!
Dudes about to eat breakfast burritos

The first thing we did after breakfast was stop by the clinic so Tyler could back tail this small ledge. As you can see there’s a sweet leaf sign with an arrow pointing at him.

Surrey back tails outside the clinic

Pretty soon Russell was standing on top of his truck uncertain as to whether he feels mildly anxious about this project or if he’s just getting hungry again.

russell stands on the van to film Tom

Arto the documentarian would generally stroll around the location contorting himself into ludicrous positions. I sometimes think he’s attempting to actually climb inside his X-Pan. That viewfinder is like a womb to him.

Arto photo style

Dudes sit waiting on the cracked, dusty, sun-battered sidewalks.

dudes sitting while tom skates

Men, claiming to be hobo sexual, glide through the scene, yelling stuff.
a man holds a sign that reads I am a hobo sexual

There is often a ball floating somewhere in the vicinity.
Levi and Jordan play ball

3) Close Up and Personal with the Ballsy Young Director
Russell Houghten is not a man to be trifled with. When he gets into full skate-filmer mode it is a sight to behold.

Russell weilds his Sony FS700

Russell films Jordan Taylor in South Central

Taylor and Houghten from behind

The level of concentration required to be Russell Houghten is immense. If a team rider is feeling frisky then Russell is on it.

Russell films PJ at Lincoln Park

He gets hot.

Russell removed his shirt in the heat

While others remain cool.

Mr Butrz license plate

4) The Crumbling Hinterlands
The wasteland down by the train tracks is prime crotch rocket testing territory. It was here we found Amber Grace, Ducati lover. She was very accommodating and helped conserve Arto’s pushing leg for the more important stuff in the days ahead.
This is also close to the spot where Tyler did the nose manual nollie nose slide on the loading dock rail.
And it’s a fact, Price and Brown are connected by Arizona childhoods and great attitudes in general.

5) The Boot and The Hunt
We definitely skated some empty school yards during our time around Hollywood but Talib Kweli’s parking lot attendant was very adamant that PJ Ladd should not film a line at Gardner Street Elementary so we left to explore more of LA.

talibkweli parking lot attendants

Tom was incensed, enraged and also angered by the rapper’s lack of appreciation for technical ledge skating. He set about the streets of LA and venting his aggressive feelings on any available surface.



When you don’t have a specific spot you’re heading for you must go on The Hunt. It didn’t take too long to discover this alley on a hill in Echo Park. Storm clouds gathered, looming and darkening while alley cats ominously chilled as Levi shiftied over a barricade.

Clouds over Los Angeles

Levi Brown shifties in an allie

Allie Cat

6) On Location at 7am
On Hollywood Boulevard early one morning a young man trains his dog to be at ease with skateboards. Perhaps he felt comfortable asking for assistance from our grizzly 200lb photographer because of the subtle psychic connection provided by their discerning choice in footwear.
A young man attempts to train his dog to be at ease with skateboards

Artos hassleblad xpan

A few minutes before I took this photo Spiderman asked me, “Yo, is that PJ Ladd from The Berrics?”

PJ Ladd from The Berrics

7) The Edge of the Western World
By the time he got to Venice, Arto’s energy was diminishing.
“Dear God, why hast thou forsaken us?” he muttered as he stared along the promenade.

That said, people at Venice Beach are friendly, in a way. They are very quick to offer their services.
A man contorts his face at venice beach
All manner of video production is going on at any given moment in Venice.
Then, the call to arms.

venice gull gang in flight


venice longboard chick

Gull in flight above Venice Beach California

A Gull flies above a lady longboarder at venice beach


After the madness of the beach we retreated to the serenity of the canals.

Arto 5050s one of the bridges in venice
To be continued?

15 thoughts on “A Pictorial Journey Behind the Scenes of New Balance Numeric’s A Place in the Sun”

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