“On” Deck in the Streets for The Uninvited
Kennedi Deck has explosive talent. Her first video part, in SRD’s Twist, was a concise introduction to the Saskatchewan-born, Calgary local–her preference for dropping into consequential spots, her tenacious approach to stacking clips, and her humble demeanor in light of her natural skill. Even more, Kennedi is the kind of snowboarder who continually raises the bar not only for herself, but for those she rides with; she’s a person who wants others around her to succeed and over the course of the past season, while she has been logging time in Canada’s urban centers filming for The Uninvited, stories have been circulating about the tricks she has landed, but also about how her motivation has been an integral spark in her crew. This combination of ability and resolve is just one of the reasons that Kennedi is high on the list of individuals to watch when movies drop this fall. She’s poised to blow minds, which is why we thought we’d tap into hers and see how the past season went for the rising rider. – Mary Walsh
When did you first snowboard? How did you get into it?
My family has gone on an annual ski trip since I was three. Skied for a bit, then when I was five, I took a snowboard lesson and was hooked.
You live in Calgary with COP a stone's throw away and Banff National Park just a few hours up the highway. Where did you grow up riding? Where do you ride mostly nowadays?
I actually grew up in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. Then my family moved to Grande Prairie, Alberta when I started high school. When I started getting into boarding more, I moved down to Calgary. In grade 11. When I'm home, I usually board COP just 'cause it's super cheap and like twenty minutes from my house. The mountains are a treat though, for sure. Super close.
When did snowboarding go from being something you did at the resort mainly to something you did in the streets, also?
Pretty much when I joined Riders on Board when I was thirteen or fourteen. I was doing contests for a few years and then last year, decided I wanted to film and was able to link up with everyone for Twist.
What was the first street spot you hit?
First spot I ever hit was a school bike rack with my dad. He pulled bungee for me all night, haha.
How did you meet Finn and JJ Westbury and the SRD crew?
Most of us actually met in Riders on Board!
Who were snowboarders that you looked up to growing up?
Always looked up to Raewyn Reid and the Peep Show crew.
Who are snowboarders you look up to/that influence you now?
Too many people to list. Lots of good boarders out there.
Twist was your first time filming a video part, yes? How was working on that project?
Yeah, first time filming a part. It was awesome. Everyone on the crew is good friends, so that makes everything run smoothly. Good flow with picking spots and taking turns filming and all that.
How did you get involved in filming for The Uninvited?
I basically just hit up The Uninvited Instagram. Jess [Kimura] was running it. I sent over my footage at the time and she was hyped and invited me out to catch the tail end of the Quebec trip. Then it ended up working out being a two-year project, so I was able to put out my Twist part with SRD and then film this year for The Uninvited.
You've filmed with all-guy crews and with all-chick crews—what are the similarities and differences of shooting with each?
Honestly, I don't think that there is a difference between girl crews or guy crews. I think it's maybe more about the dynamic of the people. I've know the SRD boys for a few years. I hadn't met anyone who was filming for The Uninvited before last year, so obviously that'll make things different.
How do you think an all-women's movie like The Uninvited fits into the current snowboarding landscape? Why do you feel it's important to have a project like this?
I think an all-women's project is super important. If you look around, not a lot of women are included in a lot of video projects. Obviously, I would like that to change, so I think that The Uninvited is kind of acting as a stepping stone to show the industry what we can do, and that we want to be a part of other things, too. Also, I think it's awesome for other girls coming up to see a more serious women's street movie, compared to some of the other stuff out there right now.
Who have you mainly been riding with this year while filming?
Been riding with most of The Uninvited crew—Taylor, Maria, Ivika, Darrah, Alexa, Troy, but Calgary had really good snow this year, so I filmed some stuff with Finn, JJ, Tom, Lucio, Jack, Andy and Matt. They are always fun.
What was your favorite trip you went on and why was it your favorite?
Oh man, they all start to blend together. This year as a whole was super fun! Lots of good times.
Best story from filming this year?
That would have to be in Vernon. Our filmer Troy—his homie, Noah pimped us out the whole trip, staying at his parents' up the mountain. One night he brought out his old boat of car and let us hit it in a line. Haha, super fun.
What do you look for in a spot that you would like to hit? What kind of features are you stoked on currently?
I just like to board on stuff that looks aesthetically pleasing, haha. Natty spots or stuff that films bigger than it is, haha, that's nice too.
Best thing about filming in the streets?
Best thing would have to be the fact that you can just do whatever you want. Total creative freedom.
Most challenging thing about filming in the streets?
Getting into battles. Also, getting kicked out.
What do you think makes for a quality video part? What are some of your favorite parts you have seen?
Besides from the obvious like spot section, tricks, and style, I think that a good song, editing, and filler is really important–makes a part feel more unique and individualistic.
Whose part from The Uninvited are you most excited to see this fall?
I think I'm just excited to see the movie as a whole.
Who are some of the up and coming snowboarders you're stoked on right now? Anyone we should be on the lookout for in Alberta?
Some sweet Alberta dorks would be Josh Lebrun and Taylor Davis. Someone get those kids in the streets!
You spend some of your free time drawing and painting. What kinds of things/people/art/artists inspire your paintings?
Lots of my friends paint and stuff, so I get a lot of inspiration from them. I just like to paint whatever I'm feeling, kind of hard to explain.
What are your plans for summer?
Work, work, work. Skate and hang out with friends and family.
And your plans going into next season?
No plans yet. Hopefully film for another project! Learn some new tricks and meet some new people! :-)