BOWL SHREDDING, TRICKS BLAZING AND COPING CRUSHING - LIZZIE RIPS IN GOOD SPIRITS. AFTER A LATE MORNING START WE COULD COVER DELIGHTFUL THEMES FROM KNOCKING TEETH OUT TO GROWING YOUR OWN AVOCADO TREES.
. HOW DO YOU USUALLY START YOUR DAY?
If I’m home, I’ll make sure to have a legit breakfast and eat outside.
. DO YOU DO RECREATIONAL SPORTS?
Not really. Two to three times a week I go to a workout and do bunch of preventive exercises. There are a lot shoulder and ankle workouts, so I don’t mess myself up.
. WHAT ARE YOUR ESSENTIAL ITEMS TO TRAVEL WITH?
Phone, computer and skateboard.
. WHAT WAS YOUR FAVOURITE DESTINATION SO FAR?
Culturally I love Japan and for skateboarding I feel in California we got a good mix of parks right now.
. FAVORITE PLACE TO SKATE?
Potrero, that’s my favorite bowl in San Francisco. This one makes me feel like I’m a much better skateboarder than I am.
. WHAT IS IT ABOUT?
The deep end is just made so good. I really love that one.
. THE VANS DIY PROJECT WITH ATITA IN INDIA LOOKED AWESOME.. HOW DID THAT COME TOGEHTER?
That was amazing and happened a couple months ago. India was definitely the furthest place I’ve been. I came down for the workshop and jumped right into things. Atita is sick, she does a lot for the women’s scene out there. She is really easy to get along with and you can tell, that she loves what she does. She likes to share her passion, which I can relate to.
. HOW WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH THE KIDS IN INDIA?
Amazing. All of them had so much energy. Even though we didn’t know anything about each other, we clicked the second we were skating together. All the little girls had so much fun and really good energy. They all picked tricks, which they wanted to learn and almost everyone got them. One of the standout experiences was meeting this one little girl, which was the youngest out of all of them and she just had this “Go For It” Attitude. It gets busy in that park and there is a certain way of navigating through the session and she got it without any fear. She is an epitome of a skateboarder. You could she see that she had the fire.
. WHAT WAS YOUR SKATEBOARDING BEGINNING LIKE?
I started skating because of my brother. There was more of a competition at this point, because he is younger than me. Anything he could do, I could do too as his older sister. We’re really close, even to this day. What kept me going was going to my home park in Santa Monica (The Cove) and seeing these guys skating. Watching them flow looked so effortless and I fully understood it. I knew at this point, If I’m keep on doing it, it will be that easy. I wanted to feel how they feel.
. YOU'VE BEEN SKATING TRANSITION WITH SOME OLD DOGS.. AND CONSIDERING JEFF GROSSO A FRIEND, CAN YOU SHARE A FUN STORY WITH HIM?
At some point I started to skate other parks and went more often to the Combi Pool in the Orange County Vans Skate Park. There were really good sessions and I learnt how to skate properly. That’s the cool thing about skateboarding, you can become friends with all kinds of people just based on your personality. You can have a range of friends from a tiny kid to people double or triple your age. Jeff loves the Combi. Over the years we became friends and he helped me out. I remember long time ago I was trying to learn a “Weinert”. I was scared, because you have to look away from the bowl and become blind for a second. Jeff was doing them and so I asked him what I was doing wrong. He replied: ”You have to stick your tits out”. I knew exactly what he meant, but if anybody else would have said it, it would have come off very different. It basically means you have to stick your chest out so you can open up. You don’t turn, if you’re crunched up.
. WHAT DID SKATEBOARDING TEACH YPU? DOES IT EFFECT HOW YOU APPROACH THINGS IN YOUR LIFE?
Absolutely. I feel there are so many lessons I learnt indirectly from it. With any task I approach, I know, that I might not get it first try, but I’ll keep going at it eventually I will figure it out. Even in school you get taught, if you’re not getting it right you’re wrong. But that’s not really the case, because you’re learning if you don’t get it right. Every skateboarder can relate to that.
. WICH ONES WERE YOUR FIRST TRICKS?
I really had to work for a lot. There was a period of time, when I was really sketchy and would just go for stuff way beyond my ability. Before I could do axle stalls or a rock to fake, I was just trying all kinds of tricks and couldn’t really do any of them. At one point I figured out the first basic trick and the others came right afterwards.
. DID YOU DO PUSH UPS TO LEARN INVERTS?
No, even to this day I don’t have that upper body strength. Inverts are all momentum. Unless you’re doing Gym Plants or any plant standing on the deck for more than two seconds, you don’t need that much upper body strength. You just use the arms to guide you. I haven’t even done a street plant, but I’ll get there.
. WHAT WAS THE HARDEST SLAM YOU'VE TAKEN SO FAR?
A couple years ago I was checking out the new San Pedro park. I’m not a morning person and it was quite early.. I did a couple rounds, I didn’t look at the deck and got locked up in the deathbox. In the next moment I was falling into the deep end really fast. I didn’t realized what happened until I sat up at the bottom of the bowl and thought “yep, that was the deathbox”. It was like when you’re expecting to drop in and in the next moment you’re on the ground. You just feel your stomach jump up and then that’s it.
. YOU ALSO KNOCKED YOUR TEETH OUT ONCE, RIGHT?
I did in 2011. I was skating the Combi, went too far off the wall and landed really low and I slammed. I cut my lip open, which actually hurt worse than knocking the teeth out. I was bleeding a lot while my teeth and my gums were really tender. It was such a scary thing. It’s one thing when you’re scraping yourself and your visually not good, but it’s a whole other thing if you’re teeth are fucked up. You are looking in the mirror and asking yourself “who is that?”. It’s just one side of your face, but you need the teeth to eat. Physically it was just scary looking and didn’t hurt that much, but mentally it was really traumatic. I got them fixed the next day, but the cloud that came with it was really difficult to get over. I kinda lost my confidence after that and it took some work to get it back.
. DID YOU EXPERIENCE ANY BAD COINCIDENCES BEING A FEMALE SKATER ON THE SPOT?
For the most part my experiences with skateboarding are really positive. It changed, but even up to a couple years ago people would look at me and be surprised when I would actually skate. The only people who are negative or talking shit about it are just cops. Skateboarders to me are really forward thinking people for the most part.
. BESIDES YOU, WHO SHOULD WE LOOK OUT FOR IN THE FUTURE AS A RIPPING FEMALE SAKTER?
Brighton (Zeuner) is coming up as the foremost younger kid of the pack. Stella Reynolds (Drews daughter), Bryce Wettstein and Grace Marhoefer are ripping.
. YOU ACQUIRED A HUGE FOLLOWING.. DO YOU HAVE A CERTAIN INSTAGRAM PLAN?
No, there are timelines you have to follow for campaigns, but for personal stuff I just kinda post when I feel like it or events come up.
. WHAT WAS THE WEIRDEST DM YOU RECEIVED?
I definitely get weird ones. Most of it is just spam or strange product things I get hit up for. Sometimes people want me in their music video and just send me their soundcloud link. Or people are like: “Hey do you remember me?” and most of the time I don’t. The internet is awesome and gets us connected worldwide, but it’s such a weird place at the same time when people pretend to be other things than they are. Social media has been such a great tool for me and kind of a reason why I have a job. All these companies partner with you, because of your connections with people essentially.
. HOW'S YOUT PHOTOGRAPHY?
I enjoy taking photos and like to capture memories, but I don’t have a fancy camera. I take photos with my phone or disposable cameras. The other day I got the photos from four cameras developed, which was really cool. I just looked at the overview sheets and there were photos from China, India, Iceland and Belgium.
. SPEAKING OF BELGIUM, HOW IS IT GOING WITH AXEL (CRUYSBERGHS)?
We both have really hectic schedules, but we make it work. He’s really sweet and one of the best people I know. It’s definitely a balance and we try to meet in the middle. But then that’s how it’s supposed to be I think. We’re kinda living parallel, doing the same stuff but in different circles with different sponsors. It works!
. IS THERE ANY TRICK YOU WOULD LIKE TO TRADE WITH HIM?
Yeah, it would be worth to give up inverts to have the insides to rail tricks and being able to jump on a rail.
. WHICH TEAMMATES HYPE YOU UP?
The energy that we have all together gets me really hyped when I’m in the Birdhouse van. It’s such a good feeling to skate and be with all of them. Even if it’s one on one, like this afternoon I’m gonna go skate with Tony.. Everyone has a different energy when they skate. I love all the Birdhouse guys so much and whenever I get to go skate with them it’s like a fun family get together. Everyone compliments each other really well.
. HOW'S TONY AS A CAPTAIN?
Tony is like a dad, but he’s cool and will go out too when we’re on tour.
. WHAT IS YOUR SPIRIT ANIMAL?
I think my spirit animal is an octopus. I feel like I get it when I see them. Not that I’m the most intelligent person ever, but they are really intelligent and always adapt to situations. There is a lot more we don’t know about them. I don’t think I’m super complicated, but it’s not that simple either. There is so much going on around them and I can definitely relate to that.
. PICK A SUPERPOWER
Teleportation for sure! Traffic, transportation and airports are getting more and more chaotic. It would be so cool to see my family and friends in an instant.
. WHAT DO YOU THINK OF THE CUSTOM BIKE SCENE ?
I’m not super familiar with it, but I think it’s cool and I get it. It’s kinda similar to me putting my board together. There is no way I’d ride a complete. Making your own becomes natural, when you have a passion for it,
. WHATS COMING UP NEXT?
I can’t wait to share with everyone how my shoe colorway came out. It was really cool to be involved in the design process. I picked the Sk8 Hi, because I love skating in those. But then you’re working so far in advance and I’m already excited for next year. I could pick two shoes. It’s gonna be a surprise, but they’re really cool. I’m about to leave to New York & Chicago this weekend to do more with the India campaign. I know, we’re gonna have a really good time at the House Of Vans. Then I’m gonna bounce around, going to Europe and I’m excited to go to Cambodia afterwards.
photos: Anthony Acosta