Cort Watt - Welcome to Goodnews

Story by Cort Watt

Photos by Matt MacLeod

In early March, right around the time Covid was starting to really hit, I found myself sitting in my house reflecting on my time in skateboarding and all the years of filming videos and shooting photos. Skateboarding is a funny thing. It’s a pursuit of expression and perfection that although great, is absolutely endless. Being 33 years old now, I started thinking, “Man, I guess I probably won't ever have another video part.” I wasn't necessarily bumming on that fact, but it was just a huge part of my skateboarding for so long and it seemed to be a strange realization that maybe that it may be over. 

A week or two later suddenly the whole city and world went into lockdown and I (as well as most skaters) couldn't help but think this was a once in a lifetime opportunity to skate the city uninterrupted. That’s when I got in contact with my homie and local photographer Matt MacLeod and my friend Masaki Maekawa, the Victoria legend who is an excellent filmer and skater, about hitting the streets and taking advantage of this rare opportunity. After getting a clip and photo that I was stoked on the first time we went out, I got home, sat down and thought, “Why can’t I film another video part? Fuck it. I'm doing another part.” 

As everyone who's filmed a video part knows, they can be a huge undertaking and require a ton of time and focus even just to come out with 3 minutes of footy, but it meant enough to me to give it another shot and commit. I pitched the idea to Masa and he was down to work with me on it, so from that point it on I directed all of my focus to it and we started going out filming any and all chances that we got. 

At this point in skating for me, without sounding pretentious, I feel I have to be inspired by a spot or trick to make me want to go film it. I guess in short, I'm more picky these days. So, I decided that I wanted the part to be made up of a lot of spots that either haven't ever been skated or skate the spot in a sort of different way than it had been before. The problem with this is it requires a TON of time, work and fucking around just to get the spot skateable usually, never mind doing the actual trick. Masa is a family man with a wife and 2 kids so I knew that the time we had to go film was precious. I wanted to be sure that I did everything I could to make the filming days as efficient as I was able to, so that by the time him and I went there all there was left to do was skate the spot and try the trick. I spent night after night out alone scouting spots, sweeping spots, shovelling debris off spots, rub bricking, waxing, checking for security and sometimes even just driving there to visualize it and see if it was actually feasible. Although I wasn't able to achieve the goal of having every spot fall under the “never skated or skate in a different way” umbrella, I’m happy with how much it actually did work out that way and that the hard work actually paid off. 

In the end, this was an awesome, unique, and at times, maddening journey that Masa and myself went on. I’ve never done a video part where almost every session was just myself and the filmer, with no other skaters, but I'm grateful to be able to have done it. Masa has such an incredible attention to detail and was so committed that it was inspiring, and it made me want to do the same with my skating. He spent countless hours with me giving me advice to help with the trick that I wasn't seeing, listened and endured my madness of trying to navigate the mind during a session without other skaters around, and pushed me to skate to the best of my abilities. It was also his idea to include my boxing as part of the project because that’s my other passion in life. He said it would represent me better and would make it more interesting. When I saw the final edit, I was happy we included it. 

While filming for this part an opportunity came up to ride for Goodnews Skateshop from my homie and the shop manager, Jayden Prescott. I had been skating for Coastline, a long-time local shop, for about 15 years. Growing up, they supported and treated me really well for a long time. As the process of filming and shooting photos ramped up, I felt as though it was time for a change. Goodnews opened a little over 2 years ago and is entirely focused on skateboarding. They’re heavily involved with the local scene and with a lot of my friends being involved with the new shop it just felt like the right move. I couldn't be more stoked to be a part of Goodnews and what they represent!

I hope you like the part and don't sleep on Victoria! There are so many incredible skateboarders here that all bring something unique the table and the scene is thriving. Never stop street skating and stop by Goodnews when you’re in town! Also, Trox Trucks baby. Peace.

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