Michael Sieben is an artist, managing editor of Thrasher Magazine and co-owner of Roger
I run Roger, make art, skate, hang out with my family and friends, go swimming and read novels. I also enjoy eating breakfast tacos and quietly weeping when nobody is looking.
Skateboarding, the activity in itself, doesn’t really tie into my creative process, but it does clear my head and allow my brain to work better.
But the act of making skateboarding graphics, and other commercial art practices, definitely influences my fine art practice. Most of what I end up creating begins as a crude drawing in a sketchbook, whether that be something for a graphic or a painting or a sculpture. They all live together in their infancy.
Early on I was super into Jimbo Phillips, VCJ aka Vernon Courtlandt Johnson and Pushead so Santa Cruz Skateboards, Powell-Peralta and Zorlac respectively.
Skater-wise, I really dug Neil Blender’s and Tod Swank’s drawings.
Later on, Marc McKee and Sean Cliver were my board-graphic heroes.
But as far as contemporary stuff goes, I also get pretty jazzed up by Polar Skate‘s graphics, especially Jacob Ovgren and Stefan Narancic’s contributions to the Polar brand.
But, honestly, I’m inspired by the entire deck wall at my local shop. Even the graphics I hate inspire me to make stuff.
I think The No Comply Network is a great idea but I’m also a fan of being a weird loner.
Plans for the future? Absolutely.
We’re currently dragging the corpse of Roger Skateboards from his shallow grave and resurrecting him to his former status as a barely-heard-of board brand. It’s going to be tight.