Stu Graham is a beast on a skateboard. With a burly style and an even burlier personality to match, I’ve watched him punish pools, parks and the street with his heavy bag of tricks. Hailing from Scotland, he popped up on the American scene with an approach to skating that is both refreshing and welcomed. I was surprised to learn that Stu was not only a wildly dedicated skateboarder, but a thoughtful husband and very active father to three that have all motivated him to become the person he is today. It’s awesome to see what a little motivation of family can do. In a short time Stu has made a very big name for himself, and we were glad to get a chance to talk to him. Meet Stu!
1. Tell us about what you do, who you are, and how you balance your career with being a dad?
Hi there! My name is Stu Graham. I’m a professional skateboarder from a small town in Scotland called Livingston. I thank my wife and kids everyday for being so understanding, we’ve all been through a lot but skateboarding keeps us all together.
2. What does being a modern-day dad mean to you?
I think being a dad in this day is hard. There’s a lot to cover, let alone a modern day dad. I feel privileged to have got the chance to do this interview just because I look up to a lot a parents out there on a daily basis. Being a modern day dad to me is just going and getting some! Letting them play in the mud or skate down the hill bare foot. My parents were both pushing me in sports as a kid, I can only try and push my kids.
3. How did becoming a father change your life?
When we had our first daughter Roxanne, it was right around when I turned pro, so it was hectic I was traveling all over the country trying to get us money, entering contests, going to signings. I had know idea how much my life was changing. I’d only lived in San Diego for a few years now, I’m a dad to a lovely wee lassie, few weeks later I turned pro. I’m not sure how different my life would have been without Roxanne being born. With my wife Chelsea, and Roxanne with as my inspiration I got pretty far in a short period of time.
4. Whats the greatest part about being a dad?
Just watching them grow and learn, they’re amazing little beings. Being able to go to the skate park or the softball field or the beach, and watching them tear around, loving life. As they learn, they glow. All three of my girls make me the happiest dad ever.
5. Can you share a funny story about being a father?
All my girls have grown up around skateboarding and the beach, since I had always had boards laying around they’ve just adapted to them. Roxanne and Olivia were born 10 months apart so the teething period was pretty harsh. I’ll always remember them gnawing on un-gripped decks. They would lay on their front and seriously drool all over it gnawing their little gums into the wood.
6. What advice can you give any new father out there?
Start by not listening to what anyone else tells you to do, listen to your kids, they’re smart, they can help you as much as you them. Kids of all ages are often misunderstood just by the way adults think. Think like a kid…get a skate board…don’t grow up! Have fun with your kids everyday, go to the beach or the park.
7. Anything else you want to say?
Now I’m back in San Diego after a brief Scottish suffer mission, I’ve started my brand “LiviScum”, and I should have my website up and running soon, liviscum.com. I play a lot of banjo and guitar the site will have some music content, and a lot of art from various skateboarders and myself. I’ve also been messing around with some t-shirt prints.
I’d also really like to take a sec and thank everyone who has helped support me through til now, you guys all rip. Creature Lee and everyone at NHS dist., all the guys at deluxe, converse shoes, everyone at diamond supply, and rev’d energy bars, huge thanks to all you guys.
Thanks so much Stu! It was awesome getting to know you, and we wish you continued success. You are an inspiration on and off board, and truly a “rad dad!”
Let Stu know how much you liked reading about him on his instagram here: http://instagram.com/instugraham