Work and Progress

May 30, 2011

Rolling City A Graphic Short in Block Prints VOL.5

Filed under: 1. Rolling City: A Graphic Short in Block Prints — Tags: , , — Work and Progress @ 4:43 pm

Hey! Hey! You o.k?!

 I think he’s dead…. No, he’s opening his eyes. Hey!

He’s out of it man.

At twelve yrs. old, VCR’s and Cable TV gave me my favorite genre of movies at home. I got to see a slew of gang and gangster flicks that influenced teens the world over.

1979 cult film by Walter Hill

Films that glorified the adolescent and apocalyptic gang theory, movies like: the Outsiders, The Warriors, The Bronx Warriors, the Wanderers, Escape from New York, and MAD MAX!

Skateboarding had a similar sensibility to these cult pictures. Both were based on the ideas of existential freedom and a bit of rebellion.

25 yrs ago street skating was on the rise, though nowhere near the mainstream success it is today.

Things like skate parks existed exclusively in communities that were out of our reach. Where I grew up, skaters were a rare breed, let alone parks just for skating. A kid in a working class neighborhood with a skateboard was an easy target for the local street gangs.

80’s skateboard companies sponsored premiere skateboarders that were also clustered into skate groups to promote company merchandise and skate culture to kids like myself. Groups like The Bones Brigade and Vision Skate team caused a raucus in the attitudes and minds of adolescent skateboard enthusiasts. These popular skate teams made videos, were featured in magazines, and traveled across the U. S., promoting the subculture.

Copy-cat groups emerged all over the country and skate crews began to form and run together, fusing the wolf pack mentality with skate-culture.

Morphing into pseudo skate gangs like:

“The East-Side Cholo Dickies (C.D.’s)”

“The Soccer Shirts”

and  “Team Creeps”

Team 3 Star was a  skate crew that manifested some time in the mid 1980’s in Commerce, Ca . Devised by the founding members who habitually wore duct-taped “Chuck Taylor’s”.

On a weekend they could be seen skating in a pack 10-12 deep. Shooting through the streets like cannonballs, blazing up and down inner-city sidewalks and bicycle lanes, causing pedestrians to scamper and hide behind architecture.

Heavy duty, vertical style boards raged under their feet and onto black top pavement, forcing the urethane wheels sing and hiss.

They could be heard for blocks…..

Text and original block-print Images © by Sergio Teran

Rolling City Vol.1

Rolling City Vol. 2

Rolling City vol.3

Rolling City Vol. 4

Rolling City Vol.5

Rolling City Vol.6

Rolling City Vol 6.5


  1. Those were the days brother! I often look back on those days as the happiest days in my life. We need to have a team 3 star reunion.

    Comment by Paul B — May 31, 2011 @ 2:19 am

    • Yeah bro. We were all from such different parts of town and wouldn’t other wise have found each other if it wasn’t for skateboarding. It was also a major outlet for some of us who needed a break from the reality of our otherwise mundane home-life.
      I wouldn’t trade those times. I’m down for a reunion. I wanna put a show together of the work sometime in the near future and I hope all of you can make it.


      Comment by Work and Progress — May 31, 2011 @ 3:06 am

  2. Hey Sergio,

    I wanted to extend a belated thanks for the class observation and discussion from the other day.

    Man, I really love the work here! I checked out the sketchbooks and other work, but I really dig these woodblock prints the most. In those broad and clunky marks, you manage to make so much happen in one image, and then you have the sharp, slender stabs that slice through the white spaces, like things almost beyond the eyes, like wisps of wind or the wakes of tiny insects. They come together in a mosaic of dynamic angles from around the city, with cars going on and off ramps, tall palms in the backgrounds. Really powerful stuff.

    See you at ELAC, and keep them coming.


    Comment by Rey Armenteros — June 7, 2011 @ 5:38 am

    • Rey

      Any time. it was great talking with you, we got to do it again. Thanks for giving RC a look Its always great to get feedback and I appreciate your positive input.


      Comment by Work and Progress — June 7, 2011 @ 7:37 pm

  3. I love your meaty lines in these prints. Theyre a nice counterbalance to the fine finish in your painting style. I feel like these prints have the immediacy and motion of photos. I love yr skullheads. I just like these prints, period.

    Comment by kongsavage — August 14, 2011 @ 2:37 am

    • Colleen

      Thanks for your inspiring words! and thanks for noticing the opposing approaches in the mediums….I think I love block print process because it forces me to deal with a simplified aesthetic .Incidentally, Mike Radar turned me on to it (wood carving) in the basement of NYCentral, (during a break of course).


      Comment by Work and Progress — August 14, 2011 @ 5:45 am

  4. Go Team III Star! The original members were, Jeremy, Sal and myself (hence the, three in the name) — then Jeremy went on a recruiting spree and the ranks grew from there… Seriously, we would skate into new cities and there would be other members of Team III Star that we had never meet…

    Comment by David Gonzalez — October 4, 2011 @ 12:57 am

    • David

      I recall that he was that way infact long after I stopped skating I saw the logo on skateboards. Jeremy was so guilty bartering 3-star membership for almost anything.

      Comment by Work and Progress — October 4, 2011 @ 5:31 am

  5. absolutely looking forward to future editions. i’ve been thinking of taking an woodblock class but am hesitant because it appears it requires so much perfection since i assume one cannot correct inncorrect lines.

    it is actually refreshing to see something skater with a latin touch. i totally can see tshirts with these designs selling on greenleaf or places where skaters gather. i just love the designs and detail. now that i have read the whole work i am looking forward to looking back at the art to further appreciate it! i purchased my first speedball and your stuff is inspiring me to look at your work and put it to use. i’m not taking any art classes so i have no idea where to begin as to where to start drawing and studying… however, i do feel the desire to touch my pen to ink looking at your work… and i just may have to.

    please *definitely* let me know when you put something new up. i would love to see it!


    Comment by Bridget Hernandez — October 4, 2011 @ 4:19 am

    • Bridget good to hear from you and I hope you are well. Thanks for the kind words about RC. The format is very loose I don’t treat it like a comic or a book but I’m conscious of the blog scroll approach and interface, activity is important to the experience as well. Rolling City, for me is approached as a portrait of my experiences as kid.

      Comment by Work and Progress — October 4, 2011 @ 5:41 am

  6. …speaking of definitely letting me know when you put something new up… i am not subscribed… and i am going to suggest your site to a few friends.

    Comment by Bridget Hernandez — October 4, 2011 @ 4:33 am

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