Yanek Blaszczyk Interview
Anyone who knows Yanek is all too aware that he’s gnarly on a board, skates fast, destroys all terrain and doesn’t hesitate or stay in one place too long.
We managed to get his attention long enough for this interview and kept up with him just enough to shoot a few photos.
Read on to find out what this beast of a skateboarder has been up to.
LETS JUST GET THIS OUT OF THE WAY, WHERE DOES YOUR NAME COME FROM?
It comes from Poland
DO YOU GET SOME INTERESTING MISPRONUNCIATIONS FROM TIME TO TIME?
Yeah I guess so, when people see my last name written down they freak out. It’s pronounced “blas-ick”.
HAVE YOU EVER BEEN TO POLAND? EVER PLAN ON GOING?
My family all immigrated to France, I go there to visit. But I want to go to check out Poland.
I THINK I FIRST MET YOU ABOUT 15 YEARS AGO AT DARLINGTON SKATEPARK? DO YOU REMEMBER THAT?
More like 12 years I reckon I was 8 or something. Yeah I remember didn’t we live in the same suburb?
YEP WE DID. GOOD OLD DARLINGTON. DID YOU HAVE A SKATE CREW BACK THEN? WHO WERE THE YOUR FIRST INFLUENCES TO START SKATING?
I used to skate with some crew at Leederville Skate Park when that first opened like Callum Pinner and Ollie Smith. We were pretty young and used to lookup to the older skaters like Harry “Potter” Clark, Andy Watson, Barry Mansfield and Aaron Nannup
IS THAT WHEN YOU FIRST STARTED SKATING?
Possibly, maybe earlier I was pretty young.
Gap up to bs nose grind pop in
Fs ollie, photo by Aidan White
WHAT MADE YOU WANT TO START SKATING IN THE FIRST PLACE?
I might have got given a target board for Christmas, I remember going to that tiny weird park next to Vick park bowl for the first time and being pretty stoked.
DO YOU HAVE ANY SPONSORS?
Momentum Skateshop is hooking me up.
YOU OFTEN SEEM TO BE GOING OFF ON ADVENTURES, WHERE DO YOU GO?
There are so many places I want to check out. I go to Europe a bunch I have friends and family over there, and Indonesia is pretty nice to surf I go there sometimes to.
TELL US ABOUT SURFING BRAH.
I’ve been surfing for a couple of years at east. I’ll surf with who ever is driving. I go through phases of doing it. It hurts less than skating.
Switch pole jam, photo by Aidan White
WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVOURITE PLACES THAT YOU HAVE BEEN?
Maybe Hamburg Germany, It had a sick DIY bowl, good cheap beer and good locals. This one-day Grant Taylor, Peter Hewitt and Tony Trujillo just rocked up and skated for a few hours that was good to watch.
WHAT MOTIVATES YOU TO TRAVEL TO ALL THESE PLACES?
I don’t know, I guess I don’t like being somewhere for too long. Winter is a good excuse to go somewhere else.
WOULD YOU SAY YOUR AN OUTDOORSY KIND OF GUY?
For sure, you got to get out of the city every now and then even if its just for the day. A few weeks ago my friends and I went up to John Forrest National park in the Perth hills and got drunk at the Tavern there, a dope place to go swimming and drink Coopers red.
WHAT OTHER HOBBIES DO YOU HAVE?
I’m down for surfing, that shit is fun. I like taking photos and playing music too. Sometimes go hiking, bike riding or fishing whatever seems fun at the time.
Yanek and Bill fishing at one of their local spots
HOW LONG YOU BEEN SHOOTING PHOTOS FOR? ANYWHERE ONLINE WE CAN CHECK THEM OUT?
I got my first camera when I was 13 my mum gave me her old film camera. Most of my photos are just stored on my computer, but I upload a few to instagram.com/yblasz
TELL US ABOUT THAT STIRLING RANGES TRIP. WHAT DID YOU DO?
My friends Leo, Pablo and I walked through the Stirling Ranges 1000m above sea level. We were camped in all these different caves. One morning we woke up and it was completely clouded out by this storm, we couldn’t do much but sit in the cave and smoke weed. It was a good trip.
DO YOU THINK THESE OTHER HOBBIES INFLUENCE YOUR SKATING?
I think skating influences my other hobbies like playing music
DO YOU PREFER STREET SKATING OR TRANSITION SKATING?
I’m down for both
Étretat france photo by Yanek Blaszczyk
Stirling Ranges, photo by Yanek
Bs power slide to start the hill bomb. It was a long trip down with bs then fs power slides the whole way down. It would be suicide to bomb it in a straight line with that wall at the bottom.
WHAT MADE YOU WANT TO SKATE DOWN THAT DAM SPILLWAY?
Um I think a bunch of us went up there to skate that bank at the bottom, and a few of us did some power slides down it.
WHAT WAS GOING THROUGH YOUR HEAD DURING THE LONG TRIP TO THE BOTTOM?
I guess trying to avoid that skin contact.
EVER BEEN MORE SCARED THEN THAT?
It didn’t seem that gnarly at the time. When Tony Abbot got elected, that was pretty scary.
IF YOU COULD GO ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD, WHERE AND WHY?
The Americas seem to have it all I wouldn’t mind checking that out.
ANY TRICKS YOUR WORKING ON AT THE MOMENT?
Yeah trying to get wheelies down on my bicycle. Its just an old racing bike, I don’t have a license so I ride my bike. Wheelie-ing uphill works the best I found.
WHAT BROUGHT ON THE MOVE TO MELBOURNE?
Just felt like the right thing to do, I have some friends that live there. Always wanted to spend time in Melbourne over the years from going on skate trips and stuff. It’s a dope city.
WHEN ARE YOU COMING BACK TO SKATE IN W.A?
2015 I’ll be back sometime.
Fs powerslide part of the way down
Ollie out of a tiny little bump and over the fence
IF YOU FOUND $50 WHAT WOULD YOU SPEND IT ON?
Drinking with the homies
WHAT INSTRUMENT DO YOU PLAY?
Drums, we have some guitars to. I usually just play with friends and whoever is down. I’ve been playing drums for a few months. My room mate and I went halves in the kit.
WHATS YOUR FAVOURITE MUSIC TO LISTEN TO?
Hip hop, Metal, Jazz
HAVE YOU EVER SERENADED A GIRL WITH A SONG?
Usually they just run away because it’s really loud.
IS IT A DELIBERATE DECISION TO DO ALL YOUR TRICKS SKATING FAST?
There’s a time to go fast and thats all the time.
WHAT GETS YOU STOKED?
Fresh socks and coffee
Old socks and Nescafé.
High speed pole jam
Bs tailslide on some rough ass concrete
Interview and photos by Luke Thompson unless specified otherwise.