“The best part about Game of Skate is getting the community together for a fun day of skateboarding”.
– Stormy Pruett
Yep. That’s what Game of Skate is all about. Twenty-one times we have amassed the local skate scene into the Ambush parking lot in an effort to bring everyone together for a friendly competition. Sure, this one was a little smaller than some of the other Games of Skate in the past. But, the vibe was one of the best. Those that came were there for the skateboarding, camaraderie, and, of course, to see who can dominate the flat ground. And, the one thing that was proven throughout the day is that everyone has been getting really, really good at skateboarding.
Congrats to our winners:
GOS 21 Beginner Division: 1st Place: Stanley Jackson 2nd Place: Gilberto Flores 3rd Place: Austin Bayne
GOS 21 Intermediate Division: 1st Place: Tito Lara 2nd Place: Anthony Brown 3rd Place: Will Carlan
Skateboarding, tattoos, and art have been culturally forged together through decades of avant garde contrarianism, a blunt questioning of societal norms, and a passion for personal expression. The relationship between skateboarding and tattoos can be seen everywhere from board graphics to the amount of ink on the archetypal skater’s body. As skateboarding, art, and tattoos weave in and out of each other’s existence they leave lasting impressions on one another. In Atlanta, none have done that more than Ambush Board Co., Craig Foster, Jules Woods, and Skinwerks Tattoo.
Craig Foster has been in and around skateboarding since 1983. As a young skateboarder growing up, Craig became enamored with the art that adorned the bottoms of skate decks in the 1980s. He still remembers his first few boards: a Schmitt Stix Lucero, Schmitt Stix Grosso, and a Vision Gator. To this day, Craig still drops by the shop regularly to take mental inventory of the latest graphics. The parallels between skateboarding and tattoo artists are apparent though they may not be obvious. Skateboarding has always been about the skater, his board, and what he does with that board. Creativity, style, aggression, and personal expression are hallmarks of a great skateboarder. It’s what sets skateboarders apart and makes you watch the latest web clip over and over again. The same can be said for a tattoo artist and his tattoo gun. A great tattoo artist can put all of his emotions into a design that is inspired by all of yours.
Craig’s personal love affair with art and skateboarding hit a crossroads in 1995 when he started tattooing full time. With a family to support and his only means of making a living laying in his ability to use his hands, Craig put down the skateboard and started focusing on his craft. When you’re a tattoo artist, a broken wrist can put you in the bread lines. It was this unescapable fact that motivated Craig to push his art to greater heights. It was then that Craig began to make a name for himself in the Atlanta tattoo scene.
Ambush and Craig first crossed paths in 1997 when Craig inked up Ambush shop rat and team rider, Chris Delarm. Craig drew a more realist adaptation of Mike Vallely’s Elephant design on the back of Chris’ shoulder. He quickly became known as THE guy to get a tattoo from by nearly all those affiliated with Ambush. Over the years, Ambush employees Brent Houle, Paul Lizon, Charles Chatov, Alecia Sundberg, Cameron McLane, and John Turnbull have all had work done by Craig.
Jules Woods got his first tattoo at the age of eighteen by an artist named John Mihalic. As so often happens in the intimate setting of getting a tattoo, John and Jules became friends. Jules was making art on his own when John asked him to learn the tattoo trade and apprentice under him. Jules’ skills developed quickly and within four months of graduating high school, and less than a year after getting his first tattoo, Jules began tattooing full time.
Jules bounced around tattooing in shops in Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Virginia, and Tennessee before making his way to West Georgia. In his thirteen years as a professional tattoo artist, Jules has worked in twelve shops picking up influences along the way. Craig and Jules met through a mutual friend named Josh Prentice before he passed away in 2007. Craig and Jules became close while working at a tattoo convention in Richmond, VA shortly after. The shop Jules worked in at the time put on the convention. Their budding friendship became a professional partnership when Jules moved down to Carrollton and became part of the Skinwerks team in February of 2010.
Whereas Craig’s tattoo style in undeniably new school, Jules’ work is more neo-traditional. Jules likes to stylize conventional tattoos with more realistic characteristics. Ask Craig to ink you up with a old-style pirate ship and he will flat out refuse. Request that from Jules, and you’ll get a more realistic and detailed version of a grimy, haunted clipper.
Jules’ philosophy is simple: make art that would look good as a tattoo and make tattoos that would look good as art. After walking around Jules’ workspace, it’s easy to see how he blurs the lines between a living room piece and a chest piece. Craig may be the innovator, but Jules definitely has the talent of a classical artist with a penchant for the gritty.
Craig’s art is a modern nod to a simpler time when tattoos didn’t necessarily have to mean anything. It’s great for tattoos to tell a story, but only if that story isn’t chock full of BS just to pick up chicks. Craig’s tatts incorporate “whimsical characters” that “laugh with a bit of sarcasm”, bold colors, and a strong light source. If you know Craig’s work, you can spot it on a swath of skin from across the room.
It was Craig’s memorable style, ability to perform under pressure, and a recommendation from Jesse Smith (Inkmaster Season 2) that landed Craig a spot on Inkmaster Season 3. Craig’s dichotomous experience on Inkmaster was replete with both Yin and Yang. As you might expect, reality TV is not exactly real. If a producer needed Craig to have a bad day, they would send in a client to intentionally push him to madness. The producers sculpted reality into the outcomes that they felt would make for good TV through editing and creating situations from nothing. Craig’s goal in agreeing to do the show was to open viewers’ eyes to what a genuine tattoo artist was actually like. Knowing from watching the previous season, Inkmaster was, either inadvertently or by design, portraying tattoo artists as obnoxious, cocky, hot headed, Jersey Shore types. Craig wanted to show America and beyond that this was not the way he viewed the tattoo industry and wanted you to experience his world through his actions on the show. The producers eventually saw the wisdom in his approach and let him do his thing.
Since Inkmaster, Craig has been continuously bombarded with appointment requests. In the months after the show aired, his waiting list exceeded 200 people. At one point, Craig had to stop taking on new customers.
Craig had always had a creative itch that seemed like it may never be scratched. It’s not often that clients offer up their skin to your personal ambitions. Most customers micro manage the tattoo process to the point of nausea for the artist. Craig needed an outlet to do something fun and on his own terms. What came out of it was Snactoos. Snactoos is a playful mix of junk food and comic book characters. In Craig’s mind, sushi is always possessed, ice cream and corn dogs are maniacal, and doughnuts want to be your best friend. And those quirky Snactoos characters have caught on making a nice little side business for the Inkmaster. He has even put a few on some people’s skin.
Craig & Lee
So, in celebration of our two distinct yet congruent brands moving in harmony with one another over the years, we announce the Ambush x Skinwerks collaboration. Craig Foster has created a signature Ambush Board Co. Snactoo to go along with his Mr. Yellow Tail design. Both are featured on a pair of Ambush skateboard decks and matching tee shirts. Jules laid out his Torch art on a baseball tee and his Skull piece on a tee shirt. Both have complimenting decks as well.
We hope you enjoy them as much as we enjoyed bringing them to you. LTD Shirts available online NOW!
What hasn’t Scott Byerly contributed to wake sports? Everyone knows Byerly as the “Godfather of Wakeboarding” and one of the earliest pioneers of wakeskating. But, did you know that Byerly also invented wake surfing? (As it currently exists. People have been tanker surfing off the coast of Galveston, TX since the 1950s).
Wakesurfing was first brought to the public eye in a largely ignored video by the now defunct brand Badass Bindings. The video showed Byerly and Bruce Clem paddling in to massive wakes thrown up by the first Super Air Nautique in the summer of 2001. Since then, wakesurfing has become one of the most important niches in water sports.
Now that waksurfing has blown up, we at Ambush have fully embraced it as a competitive sport. Last weekend’s G-Series Wakesurf Contest was the first wakesurf specific contest that we have put on. And, the contest was a blast.
The competition was pretty intense given the friendly, grassroots vibe of the event. Friends, siblings, and co-workers battled it out for wake-slashing supremacy. The new Nautique G-21 wake served as a huge canvas for wakesurfing artistry and the riders did not disappoint. Surfers were boosting airs, blowing out their tails, and doing surface spins that would rival some of the pros. Check the montage of the event and the contest results.
The Nautique G-Series are undoubtedly the best boats in the world to wakesurf behind. The perfect manage-a-trios of a super deep hull, massive wake, the new all new NSS make this boat churn our a wave that looks like a mini version of Kirra on a perfect East swell.
In celebration of this incredible line of boats, Ambush is throwing the G-Series Wakesurf Contest on Saturday, July 12th at Lake Arrowhead.
Registration is open now at Ambush. The cost is $45 which includes rider insurance and a contest tee shirt. You can register in any of the 6 divisions (beginner women, beginner men, advanced women skim, advanced women surf, advanced men skim, advanced men surf) where you will be subjectively judged based on style, technical skill, variety, and intensity.
A $100 cash prize will be awarded to the winners of each advanced division. Register now to secure your spot in the contest.
For more info, email email@example.com or call 770-420-9111.
The Ambush G-Series Wakesurf Contest is sponsored by Nautique, Marine Max, Hyperlite, Byerly, Spy, Billabong, Ronix, Liquid Force, Slingshot, Accurate, Reef, Body Glove, and Jet Pilot.
Grassroots wakeboard contests are the backbone of our sport. They cultivate the next generation of wakeboarders, push riders to improve their skills through friendly competition, and bring together the local wake scene. Yeah, the Pro Wakeboard Tour is important. The level of riding is insane. Sponsors infuse money into the sport. Legacies are cemented. But, without grassroots events like the Ambush Wake Classic, the Pro Tour would be dead in less time than it takes to de-winterize your boat.
And, not to get all sappy sentimental on you. But, the wakeboard community needs you, the rider, to keep these grassroots events alive. So give yourself a huge pat on the back for playing a part in the survival and progression of wakeboarding. And, after you’ve congratulated yourself on your contribution to the sport you love, check out the video, pics, and results from the day.
Big thanks to our sponsors for making this event happen: Nautique, Marine Max, Hyperlite, Lake Acworth, Slingshot, Remote, Spy, Ronix, CWB, Billabong, Liquid Force, Reef, Jet Pilot, O’Neill, Quiksilver, and Body Glove.
The Nautique G-23 Wake was Perfect
Wakesurfing Took Over the Ambush Wake Classic. With Moves Like This, We are Happy it Did.
Alex Graydon Giving Slingshot a Plug
Women Have Brought Grace and Elegance to Grassroots Wakeboarding
Kline has Brought Grace and Elegance to Nothing
Quinn Silvernale Can Ride Behind the Boat Too. As Long as it is a G-23
Justin Lee Grabbed 2nd Place in Open Wakeboard
You Didn’t Have to Win to Win. Shariyn (sorry if I botched your name) Won a Slingshot x Shredtown x Ambush Board
Josh Zentmeyer took Am of the Year honors with his work in Good Ratio, Fun Razor, and the Remote Philippines Trip video. Plus, his invention of “The Sweeper” made him a lock for the award.
Josh Zentmeyer – Am of the Year
Ben Horan earned his second Coolest Tool award with the “U-Turn”, a web of rope that makes a complete u-turn possible while winching. And, not to be outdone by his own contraptions, Ben also won Video Part of the Year with his epic section in Good Ratio.
Ben Horan U-Turn
Ben Horan – Video Part of the Year
Finally, your homies here at Ambush Board Co. won Shop of the Year. Thanks for the love, Wakeskate Magazine.
We’ve all experienced it. You’re at the top of the mountain with all of your buddies when someone yells out “Hey! Let’s all race to the bottom!”. All of you start talking trash about who is going to be first down the mountain as you line up and get ready for take off. Soon after, you realize it won’t be you that comes in first.
Don’t be that guy. Blow past your friends by keeping your board waxed and tuned to perfection. You know what they say; fresh wax leads to better tracks. Or, a smooth base wins the race. Or, an edge like a razor cuts like a laser. Actually, nobody says that crap. But, everyone agrees that a good wax and tune goes a long way towards making your day on the mountain rad.
We at Ambush have a killer back shop that can take care of all of your waxing and tuning needs. And, we can dial in your board while you wait in most cases. Come check us out before your next trip.
Ambush has the Best Waxing/Tuning in the Southeast
Snowboarding can take place in some of the gnarliest conditions on the planet. If you want to ride for hours on end in high altitudes, extreme cold, wind, snow, sleet, or rain, you gotta have the gear to go with it. Even on good weather, blue bird days, its imperative that you have outerwear that will keep you warm and dry. In most cases, the fun you have on the mountain depends on it.
Let’s face it; outerwear is confusing. I constantly hear questions like “what size should I wear”, “what waterproofing rating do I need?”, “what does breathability mean?”, “is this really going to keep me warm”, or my favorite “can’t I just Scotchguard my jeans or wear my jogging pants?”.
All of these questions are valid and need to be addressed in order to outfit your body correctly for the mountain. So, we at Ambush created this nice little outerwear tech sheet just for you. Peep the info:
Mens Outerwear Tech Guide
Women’s and Kid’s Outerwear Tech Guide
We are committed to answering all of your snowboarding questions. If you don’t find the answers here, or if you would like further explanation, simply call us at 800-408-9945 or drop by the shop.
Nike Snowboarding rolled out the red carpet last night for the Southeast premiere of Never Not. The shop took on a movie theater like vibe complete with a popcorn machine, candy, and of course, Never Not.
The two part feature film from was an epic journey through all things snowboarding. Part One focused on the gnarly. Nike snowboarding riders Jed Anderson, Sage Kotsenburg, Halldor Helgason, Nicolas Muller, Justin Benee, and about a half dozen more melted snow with some of the most intense backcountry, street, and park riding ever caught on camera. Part Two illustrated the dichotomy between contest riding and free riding. The former being a training intensive, injury riddled voyage to the deepest emotions victory and defeat can conjure up. The latter presenting snowboarding as a soulful pursuit of ultimate happiness. Simply put, Never Not is snowboarding and snowboarding is exactly what you want it to be.
I won’t put any footage of the video in here, but I strongly urge you to download both Part 1 and Part 2 now. Your life will be better for it. Instead, check the photos from last night’s party.
One for One. For each purchase of pair of Toms shoes or sunglasses, Toms donates another pair to a person in need. Currently, Toms gives shoes in over 60 countries and helps restore eyesight in 13.
Here at Ambush, the Toms Style Your Sole Event donated artists to create a unique pair of shoes just for you. Artists Jonny Warren, Jennifer Utterback, and Olive 47 crafted custom pairs of Toms shoes. Each shoe was hand painted with original art made to each individual’s specifications. And, the shoes came out great.
Toms Artist at Work
Kayla’s Custom Pair
Darah’s Fresh Pair
Koi Fish Art
Custom Painted Toms
Thank you Toms for coming out and producing one-of-a-kind shoes and, in turn, donating to children in need. One for one.
Ambush Board Co. is a universally recognized global leader in Board Sports retail. Founded in 1997 in Kennesaw, Georgia, Ambush is owned and operated by a core group of devoted skaters, wakeboarders, and snowboarders who are deeply invested in the Board Sports community, and has evolved by staying true to their essential principles of Service, Knowledge, Integrity, Commitment, and Passion. Ambush always has been and always will be unyielding in their collective efforts to push the progression of Board Sports retail.
Ambush Board Co.
2555 Cobb Place Ln, Kennesaw, GA 30144
Phone: (770) 420-9111
Business/Creative Office: 1690 Roberts Blvd, Ste 105, Kennesaw, GA 30144 | (800) 408-9945 or (770) 406-6568
Warehouse/Distribution Center: 2750 Barrett Lakes Blvd, Kennesaw, GA 30144