Mike Carroll - Skull of Fame Deck
8.125" x 31.63"
Artwork by Sean Cliver.
You entered a contest and won a job to be a designer. Would you want a doctor performing surgery on you that won a contest to be a surgeon?
Funny you should ask, because I sprained the pinky on my drawing hand this past August and it still hasnäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__t healed properly. I canäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__t make heads or tails of health insurance these days, much less afford it, so IäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__d gladly be a guinea pig if anyone needs one for use in a medical contest.
Are you proud to be from Wisconsin?
’‚??Sure, why not. I believe itäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__s my Midwestern naivetí«íŸíëí¢?í«Œ© thatäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__s enabled me to survive as long as I haveäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_í«íŸ_and thatäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__s saying a lot because my survival instincts are virtually nil. For example, I once accidentally rode a jet ski from Redondo Beach King Harbor to Catalina Island all by myself in 1992. I had no concept of the ocean, distance, or any other life-threatening variable at play in the channel, which pretty much enabled me to make the 30-mile solo jaunt without a hitch or pause for concern. Bravery through ignorance.
Do you think Wisconsin is proud of you? YouäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__ve drawn a lot of offensive things and were a part of a lot of shit antics in jackass. Is that what a state really wants in an ambassador?
ItäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__s a state primarily known for people who proudly wear foam cheese wedges on their head. You be the judge.
Rocco, great boss or greatest boss ever?
The greatestäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_í«íŸ_at least from 1991äóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_í«íŸ_1993. Those are still some of the most ridiculous times of my life as an artist in the skateboard industry. So much fun. Except for that one New YearäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__s Eve night in 1991 when he was trying to teach me how to ride a motorbike, but even that was funny and fortuitous in its own way.
WhatäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__s your favorite graphic?
Today I feel like itäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__s the Zorlac John Gibson cow skull by Pushead. Not only am I a sucker for a good, strong, clean central image, but IäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__m a product of the äóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__80s and this is one of those graphics that initially grabbed my impressionable eye in the skate shop then. But the Plan B Rick Howard äóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_í«íŸíëí_The DuckäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_äóÁ—çíëí?íë_ follow-up graphic would definitely be a close second.
What graphic that youäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__ve drawn has sold for the most on Ebay?
Not exactly sure, but there was a NOS Powell-Peralta Frankie Hill äóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_í«íŸíëí_EastwoodäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_äóÁ—çíëí?íë_ deck that sold for nearly three thousand? Probably shouldäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__ve kept a betteräóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_í«íŸ_and deeperäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_í«íŸ_archive of my old decks from that time period.
Why did you roll your car? Please donäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__t say because of a bumblebee.
ThatäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__s not what I told the CHP officer. I said it was a wasp. But in reality it was the dead, dried-up husk of a crane fly fluttering on my dashboard that I at first mistook for a spider. Next thing I knew, IäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__d jumped a curb, snapped my front axle, tore through 30-feet of chain link fence, and came to a perpendicular halt just before careening into the 101 Freeway. I used to have serious insect issues, but a stint in Costa Rica made short work of all that phobic nonsense. IäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__ll take down a tarantula with a flip-flop now. I donäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__t give a fuck.
In your natural state, on a scale of 1-10, 1 being fairly comfortable and 10 being a social freak, how uncomfortable are you in your own skin?
This one goes to 11, to rip an old Spinal Tap quip.
What graphic have you done that you like the least?
Fortunately it just so happens to be one for Tony HawkäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_í«íŸ_the äóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_í«íŸíëí_Toe Knee HawkäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_äóÁ—çíëí?í‚í_í_í?í«íŸí«_í«íŸ_when he rode for Powell-Peralta, so itäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__s not like that one wonäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__t come back to haunt me every day for the rest of my life. I just wasnäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__t that into the idea then, and my final execution was an adequate reflection of that. WasnäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__t really thinking about any long-term ramifications at the time.
How many Templeton art pieces do you own?
Two, though IäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__m kind of upset I didnäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__t keep the painting of his that Jeff Tremaine and I had while living together back in the äóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__90s. It was this super awkward nude self-portrait, and through some slap of fate it just happened to fit the exact dimensions of TremaineäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__s coffee table so we placed it under the glass. IäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__m not sure where that painting is now, but I hope Tremaine had the good sense to save it.
Do you think many people know you illustrated a book on foot surgery?
No, but then most people wouldnäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__t know I once totaled my car over a dead bug either, had you not mentioned it.
Would the foot surgery book be the only thing youäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__ve done creatively that [your parents?] arenäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__t ashamed of?
Quite possibly, though they still claim itäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__s all good.
Lastly, do you want a job here? We have a vending machine and an annual softball game. ItäóÁ—çí_í?í«íŸí«_íë__s like a real company.’‚??
If I thought you were serious I might take you up on that, if only because it might be the only way to see you on a more regular basis.