Heelflip. Photo Nikwen
Interview Henry Kingsford
How are you Flo? What are you up to at the moment?
I’m fine thanks, just chilling with my friend at home after the session.
Tell us about the Bon Voyage premiere in Lyon?
It was sick! A lot of people came. It was at the skatepark and there was a session for the kids before the premiere. There was a really good atmosphere and most of the team came too: Lucas (Puig), Lem (Villemin), Pete (Eldridge), Kyron (Davis), Adrien (Coillard), Max (Geronzi)… Then there was a party at Le Voxx (a bar in Lyon). So it was a really good night; everybody was stoked!
Was it a complete surprise to turn pro after the premiere?
Yes! I had no idea about that. They surprised me at the bar and I was kind of lost. I want to thanks everybody for that. They did the same to Spinach (Daniel Espinoza) in LA. Congratulation to him, he deserves it.
Was it always your ambition to turn pro?
Not really. I was not really thinking about that when I joined Cliché. I was just happy about what I was getting at that point. It wasn’t really like I was thinking: “OK, it’s the first step to becoming pro, right now next…” I would be lying if I told you I didn’t ever think about turning pro one day, but I only started thinking about that recently.
What does turning pro mean to you?
More travelling, I guess. I think I will go to the US more often. More marketing haha…
Tell us about filming for Bon Voyage. How did this compare to previous Cliché videos?
Filming for the video was really fun, Boris (Proust) did a really good job. Bon Voyage is all about tours, so we tried to go on trips as much as possible. For Clé (the last Cliché video), I only went on one trip with the team, whereas most of Bon Voyage was filmed on trips… in the US, China, Israel, all over Europe. That was the main difference for me.
How about working with Boris rather than Fred (Mortagne)? How do their approaches differ?
I feel I did really different stuff with Boris and Fred. With Boris, it was really about filming for a full part, whereas with Fred it was more about working on smaller projects like the Cliché commercial or “Le skate, c’est nul” for Megamix. Sometimes he came on tour with us, but as photographer rather than filmer. I also think that I’ve never filmed any fisheye tricks with Fred. But they both work the same way: when you try something, you can see they are practicing their filming too!
What do you like/dislike about your part?
I like the fact that Boris and I worked together on things like the edit and the song choice. You’re never fully satisfied. There is always something you wanted to do and you didn’t get, but you can save those tricks for the next video!
Who has your favourite part in Bon Voyage? Why?
It’s hard to pick only one as everybody killed it, but I’d have to say Lucas. His part is mind-blowing. He filmed that part really quickly, and it came out so good. He definitely created his own style.
You recently switched from Supra back to DVS. What was the story there?
About a year ago Supra approached me and Lucien (Clarke) and I ended up going on tour with them. I think it just didn’t work between us; the feeling was not there. Not long after the tour, Paul Shier called me to say DVS was up and running again, and asked me if I was down to skate for the company. I was stoked, especially because Shier was the new team manager.
How do you find the new DVS team?
The new team is sick. It’s a good mix of the OGs and the young wolves.
How is it having your old teammate Paul Shier as your team manager?
I’m stoked for him. He’s ridden for DVS for a long time so he knows what he’s doing… and he’s still shredding. I used to watch him when I was kid, then I skated with him for the same company and now he’s the team manager. I feel more confident, because I’ve known him for a while now. I met him on the first DVS tour I did in 2007 or 2008.
How is the scene in Lyon at the moment? Is Hotel de Ville still popular?
Yes, Hotel de Ville is still the spot. There are cracks everywhere and the ledges are really fucked up, but it’s still the place to meet, for sure. We usually start there and then try to go to some other spots. There are some good crews here (in Lyon). The kids I saw starting four or five years ago are getting really good now. People are motivated.
Who should we look out for from Lyon?
Adrien Coillard, for sure. This kid rips! He skates everything so effortlessly.
I see from Instragram you have been shooting photos with Fred Mortagne recently with a special camera. Can you tell us about the project?
Yes, Fred is doing a photo contest right now (the Red Bull Illume contest). The deadline is at the end of the month (April). He won it couple of years ago, so they sent him a Leica Monochrom to shoot with. The camera is crazy, it shoots only black and white photos. And you know with French Fred it’s more about the concept or the ambiance of the picture than the tricks, so it’s pretty relaxed to work on!
What is next for Flo Mirtain? Are there any trips or video parts coming up in the near future?
I’m going to the US for two months this summer to try to do some stuff over there with DVS and maybe work on a little clip for Venture too. And I’m going to try to get my driving license too, hopefully before the end of the year!