Contenders: Kevin Love


text_TEMPLETON ELLIOT photography_BEN CLEMENS

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     Kevin Love is living the dream. Well, the beginning of it—the part where you have no money and live on a friend’s floor while you skate your face off just to get noticed. And having the last part in The Kinship Video and landing this Contenders are just the next couple steps in the long dream of making a life in skateboarding. —Paul Zitzer

You’re from Virginia Beach, right? How do you think that area has produced so many good skaters?
     Yeah I am! Damn that place is just a breeding ground for skaters. We have hardly any good spots, but the parks … you can learn anything there. Best parks in my opinion.

When did you move to North Carolina? Why did you go there? What was that like?
     I moved to NC like in 2010 or 2011—I don’t really remember—with my best friend Collin. We used to take trips while filming for videos to meet up with another filmer, John Evans, who showed us all the spots. After awhile we were just like, “Screw it, let’s move there.” It was so worth it. I met so many people, skated so many great spots, and had a lot of awesome times. I’ll never forget those days.

Why did you move to LA?
     I moved to LA last year just to skate—no intentions of doing anything else. Been here for a year, still no job. I’ve survived because of food stamps. It sounds bad, but it’s well worth it. The homies I live with now let me crash on an air mattress for free. I just try to help out as much as I can.

How do people react when they find out you are on food stamps?
     I’ve had a few different reactions. Some good, some bad, but it’s my life. I have to take control. My parents were hyped ’cause they don’t have to help me out anymore [laughing].

The first time I saw your name was on your old website and I just thought you where a filmer, but it turns out you were a better skater than most of the people you were filming. Do you still film? Do you ever direct your filmers about how you want your tricks filmed?
     Oh man, yeah, I filmed for a while. I loved it. I filmed a few tricks in The Kinship Video that you’ll see maybe in the bonus. I usually just film on my iPhone now. I’ve always suggested angles or said, “Oh, that’ll be cool looking,” to my friends who film, but they’re in control, not me. They always end up crushing the angles, though.

So is there a Kevin Love iPhone video in the works?
     Once I get a Mophie case and a fisheye for my phone, it’ll happen.

So The Kinship Video just came out and you have last part. How did that video come about?
     It came out amazing. Editing and the filming were so rad. Everyone in that video killed themselves the last six months. I’m hyped the way it turned out.

Tell me more about The Kinship Video: Who’s in it, how the crew came together.
     I was skating The Berrics and Mikey [Taylor] invited me to go skate the next day. Unfortunately I had no car to get where they were skating, but he said he had some friends coming from Hollywood. He hit them up and asked if I could ride with them. Next day at 9:00 a.m., met up with them and skated all day. And just from then on we skated every day. I met more and more of the kids in the video after that. Some of them still live in Ohio. They’re the best dudes. They are all so rad. Thanks, Mikey, for introducing me.

Do you like filming?
     I love filming. A bit hard sometimes but always down.

How was it getting a mention on Skateline?
     I still get joked about it to this day. It’s a cool feeling, I guess. Thanks, Gary Rogers, for not making me look like an idiot on there.

How is skating in LA compared to back east?
     Hard. You think you find a new spot and it turns out ten years ago someone did something gnarly on it. Then most spots are blown out. Challenging for sure.

So why live in LA if it is so hard?
     It’s the best place. Weather, food, friends, a new life pretty much.

Did I hear that Guy Mariano was giving you boards?
     Yeah for a bit. Just skated with him a couple times, and I guess he was stoked on me. I didn’t know how to react, honestly. I’m still blown away about it to this day.

What is your sponsorship situation right now?
     Currently I’m getting Alien Workshop boards, Huf shoes, Thunders, Spitfires, and Stance socks.

What’s next for you?
     Just skate, and enjoy the beautiful weather California has to offer.