Old School Skateboard Griptape Art

Old School 80s Skateboard Griptate Art
Before and after griptape art on the Rob Roskopp reissue deck

I keep an old school Santa Cruz Rob Roskopp Face skateboard at my parent’s house in Ohio so I’ve always got something to skate when I go back to visit. I originally bought this as a complete setup from good ol’ Zumiez in the mall. I upgraded the wheels from Slimeballs to Spitfire Classics, but otherwise it’s “factory stock.” The board rides fine, but the factory griptape always looked kind of cheap and crappy. The last time I was visiting I had some free time on my hands, so I decided to upgrade it with an old school 80s griptape job.

To accomplish this, I purchased two sheets of griptape – a regular sheet of black Mob Grip and a green colored sheet of Rick and Morty Pickle griptape. I’ve never watched Rick and Morty and really have no idea who the pickle guy is, but the green tape matched the colorway of the board.

I didn’t have much of a plan when I started creating the design, other than I wanted the angles to generally be either 90 or 45 degrees. I started with the green and black strips that extend from the tail across the rear bolts. After that, I just started filling things in. I cut everything with an old pair of scissors and a razor blade. I originally didn’t cover the section across the middle, but I ended up going back and filling it in with the pickle character’s white eyeballs. I cut each eyeball in half and they kind of look like sliced apples now. I call this the green apple board. It kind of has an 80s art deco feel to it, if such a thing exists. Griptape art feels like a lost art form, but I’m here to bring it back.

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