Skateboard designs are an art form unto themselves. And even though "coolest designs" can be pretty subjective, I think you'll agree that these skateboard deck designs are objectively cool--especially with a diverse group of designers from all over the world!
Tania is a creative director from Beirut, Lebanon, and this skateboard design is a killer blend of tough, surreal, and lyrical. Check out that rainbow hair! Look at the bizarre proportions! The intricate tattoos! The lovely line work! Also, the contrast between the super-detailed hands and feet and the overly-simplistic face is visually really interesting.
This board from Igor of Warsaw, Poland really embraces the digital world--and whimsicality. While a ton of skateboard designs tend to be rooted in more traditional forms of illustration--hand-drawn, realistic, edgy--this sweet blinky pen totally upends that, with great results. Plus, the colors are hopelessly cheerful. I dare you to do a kick flip on this board and not smile at all.
An illustrator out of France, Belajew's skateboard design is simultaneously metallic and bright. This hand-drawn glowing figure truly looks like it could jump off the board, and its more non-traditional imagery is exciting and interesting.
Giap is from Hải Phòng, Vietnam, and he has a particular story behind this deck design series: "The purpose of the project is to make people change their opinion about this street art," he says. "The characters I draw are the workers, the police, etc., who must shoulder the burden of the work...I want to send a message that is: Let's overcome the barriers of the mind...liberate yourself and enjoy life."
Miranda Meeks is an illustrator out of Utah, and her "Skate or Die" series perfectly captures the double-edged fear of skateboarding--not only the fear of executing a dangerous trick, but also the fear of not skateboarding. Also--what lovely, subtle colors.
This Cape Town designer's skateboard deck looks like something you might find in Miami or on an LA Boardwalk--but something about the pink and teal (and sunglasses?) take this line-drawn Neptune-and-giant-squid to wonderful heights.
Iulia designs from Ontario, Canada, and if you're anything like me, you'll probably spend several minutes staring at this board in wonder, and trying to figure out if it's colored pencil or an incredible digital imitation of colored pencil. In any case, her commitment to geometric shapes and the fiery color palette set this board apart from other skateboard deck designs, making this one truly a work of art.
Skaters--which one do you like best? Let us know in the comments!