Lodge PRO Jesse Fritsch
Name: Jesse Fritsch
Current: Job / school: I have a creative agency called The Anton Eye
Where are you from? State College, PA
Where do you currently live? Encinitas, CA
Family status: Married
Sponsors: Mike Sinclair and other various friends that are nice enough to hook me up
Years of skateboarding: 30 years
Board size: 8.25
Wheel size: 58mm
Trucks: Indy 136 I think
I change set up every: Probably every six months or so
Current Board trend: free boards
When I chill, I chill with, – My wife and my two daughters
Lately I have been working on- Building the agency and talking care of my family
What’s your company about?
-It’s called The Anton Eye. We’re a creative agency with a focus on media production and distribution. I started it with a good friend, Josh Vargo, whom I grew up playing music and skating with. We’re fortunate to have a lot of great clients both in and out of the skate industry. Funny thing about the name is that it came from a photographer in Europe named, Anton. I don’t even know his last name, but I was on a Birdhouse trip and he was there for Quiksilver. We were filming and he was taking photos. Every time he would just nail the angle first try and we were moving all around. It became a joke to my friend Jared and I that we just needed “The Anton Eye”. I told him if I ever started an agency that I would call it that with a goal of finding the right angles on all projects.
How was the transition from being pro to not, and making your own way?
-It was pretty gradual, and to be honest I’m not sure I knew it was really happening. Around 2000, Es got sued for music rights in Menikmati. I guess skateboarding had gotten big enough that bands and labels were taking notice and brands were getting nervous. I was skating for etnies at the time, and asked Mike Manzoori if Josh and I could make some music for them. Fast forward a few years later, and we had made hundreds of tracks for brands from commercials to videos parts. That introduced me to the world of actually creating media and being a part of the process. From there I got more involved in putting media together through filming, editing, layouts etc… At that time I was traveling a lot with Tony Hawk doing demos and we also did a weekly radioshow together. He was starting a new website called ShredOrDie.com and needed a skate producer to help develop content. I really didn’t have the experience to do it, but Tony gave me a shot and I ran with it learning everything I could. I had also just thrown my back out and needed two surgeries. That said the writing was on the wall that skateboarding for a living may be coming to an end. From there we pitched and launched RIDE Channel, which was really where I learned how to create a lot of media and distribute it in an effective way. After three years of that, Josh and I decided to start our own agency and see if we could make it on our own. We’ve been lucky so far.
Any advice for skateboarders for when the time comes to not being pro?
-Yes to pay attention. Skateboarding is like school if you watch closely. If you’re sponsored or pro, you have access to learn so much. Production, design, media, marketing, sales etc…The list goes on and on. When you’re at one of your sponsors, ask questions. What are they doing, why are they doing it that way, how can you help? This will help you not only after you’re done skating and have this vast general knowledge of business, but also while you’re skating. If you know what a company needs to be successful, you can help support that as a sponsored am or pro which helps your career. So yeah, if I have any advice it is to pay attention. You can stay in skateboarding and gets most all the perks, just by watching what goes on around you.
Best travel memory you want to share? This isn’t the best but it’s entertaining. I went to the UAE to skate a demo with T. Hawk. We were one block outside of our hotel when my friend Jared to a picture of what he thought was an outhouse bathroom. It turned out it was a guard station and that you were not allowed to take photos there. We got arrested and taken to jail. After around 15 hours they let us go but took our passports while they did an “investigation”. Looking online we saw that these investigations could take months and that we could easily go to jail for over a year for a photo. I was tripping so hard! A year before I had met the prince of Qatar randomly on the Gumball Rally. I knew his family had pull and lived art time in Dubai. I don’t know if he did anything or not, but after 3 days we got a call at night saying to get our passports…we went so fast to grab them and to the airport for the first flight out! Definitely the scariest thing that ever happened to me.
I’m have been on a mission lately in (with) –I’m on a mission with my back to get it working again. I haven’t skated in 6months.
Dream session is – Dove, Frazier, Zitzer, Howard, Tom Boyle. These were pretty normal in the late nineties, but damn man, I would love to have one of those sessions again now.
When I was little I would like to – same as today. Ride my skateboard, play music, and spend time with my family.
When im home I like to – Relax, but that doesn’t happen too much with kids.
I normally call my homies for – Just to check in and bullshit
Your homies are, The skate homies are Dove, Hawk, Frazier, Staab, Brian Howard, and Mike Sinclair
I enjoy going to – The casino. I have a problem
Favorite drink is – Coffee
Favorite food is – Cereal
Favorite drug- Caffeine
Favorite music – That’s a tough one. All of these were game changers for me in this order. Metallica, Fugazi, Drive Like Jehu, The Cure, Radiohead
Favorite film – I have no idea.
Favorite skateboarders – Mike Frazier, Ricky Oyola, Andrew Reynolds
Favorite skate film – Eastern Exposure
Favorite skatepark – Not a clue. Too many good ones these days.
Favorite spot – I like T. Hawk’s ramp.
Favorite woman / men (blond, fat, thin, big, small) – My wife. Tall and thin
When I cook, I cook – breakfast.
To go to resturant is – Sushi Brothers in Encinitas, CA
To go to trick is – Anything to fakie
To go to trick when you are farked is – What is farked?
To go to trick when you are winning is – hardflip fakie
TOP 3 Cities – San Diego, Tampa, Melbourne
When I travel, I always bring – Pepto Bismol
Best travel advice I can give is – Do it as much as you can…especially if someone else is willing to lay for it!
When I do not skateboard I – work, family, work, family
My fitness program is – non existent
When I get old I want to – be able to retire and relax
That one time where I was in jail because of – see above
I should do more of – skateboarding
My future looks like – good I hope. It’s crazy times right now in the world
The book I currently read is – Agency. It’s about starting your own creative agency
The best travel I have been on – Always Australia. I love it there
The worst travel(s) I have been on was – Not sure I understand the question. I’ve been very lucky though to get a chance to see the world thanks to skateboarding.
On Netflix I watch – Documentaries
If I could change the world I would – ban religion
Everybody should own a – instrument
The hobby I have, no one knows about is – I wish my poker habit was more a secret
I will never get rid of – my guitars
I would love to be in a movie with – Bill Murray
I currently follow (social media, instagram twitter, Facebook) – Too many things. I’ve been trying to disconnect more lately because social media is stressing me out…especially with this shit election going on!
Life advise so far? – It sounds cliché, but things happen for a reason. I truly believe that. Take the good and that bad as opportunities.
Anything else – Thanks for the interview Thomas! I miss you my dude and hope to skate with you soon. And thanks to anyone that gives a shit to read this.
Thanks to Jessse F for supporting the lodge !