Talking about your own skateboarding has always been a tough one. The golden rule of Julien Strangerdom is generally that we aren't supposed to. But then what of the classic magazine interview? That one small window—pre-social media—where the broader audience could get a feel for their heros' day-to-day lives? Hell, even Julien did that one back in the day. I have more or less been conducting those very interviews for a living for the past 17 years. And here's the thing, they are almost always like pulling teeth. And if they're not like pulling teeth, that's usually a bad sign. The people that won't stop talking about themselves are usually the last people you really want to hear from. As such, when I hit up Dane back in June to get started on this interview, he quickly made it known that the process would absolutely be like pulling teeth. He had already had his standard Q&A in the Am Issue he argued. "Can't we just have no words?" after my initial attempts at a phone interview began to look futile, we shifted gears. Maybe we could just have Dane talk about other people. I asked him if he would write some text about each of his Polar teammates. This sounded promising for a few short seconds, before Dane rightly realized all the photos were only of him. It didn't really make sense to have a bunch of text about other people. Next, we thought maybe his friend Emile Laurent might handwrite some captions. Then maybe fill the rest of the space with his drawings. That also seemed promising, perhaps only out of desperation, until we realized it still didn't really match the incredible photos Matt Price shot, nor did it truly give any more insight into Dane and his skating. In a last-ditch effort, two days past deadline, we reached out to Herr Pontus, surely he could write some text about Dane being his team captain and all. But it still wouldn't really be Dane's interview, the way Dane wanted it. As it turned out the hand of fate agreed, because we then quickly discovered that Pontus was halfway through a week-long camping trip in the Swedish wilderness with no access to email. So, after two months of swings, and two months of misses, please enjoy the following interview exactly the way Dane Brady wanted it. With no words. Silence is golden. And just this once, silence (along with some damn fine photos) says more about Dane than anything else really could.‑Mackenzie Eisenhour
Photography by Matt Price
Title & Illustrations by Emile Laurent
Shot in Portland, OR.