Get Familiar: Tjerk Oosting
Seeing your homies living from doing something that they love is something that over here at Team Patta that we love to see. Being a small, independent brand, we came up because of our community and in the last decade we have seen several creatives create their own circles and brands. One of those brands is Valuta, an Amsterdam based print studio that has been hand screening apparel, creating videos and campaigns with an in house team of mutli-faceted skateboarders. One of those members is Vans-rider Tjerk Oosting and with the brand new Vault by Vans x Patta 'Mean Eyed Cats' Pack coming out on Friday 16th of July, it was the perfect time to catch up with Tjerk and see what's been keeping him busy.
Wha gwan Tjerk, it's good to see you, lockdown just loosened up and we get to this in person which is a blessing. How has the lockdown been for you?
As a skater this was a special time to be in Amsterdam. Without the tourists in the city, a lot of spaces opened up that were full of selfie sticks and suitcases before. We've been skating the ledges at Rembrandtplein and loads more spots around the city. Just really embracing filming spots that seemed inaccessible before.
And I see you guys have been real busy, this latest edit from you guys really shows the Netherlands in a different light. Also that soundtrack...
Thanks! That track's from Skee Mask. The video from Mitchel and I was super fun to work on. Especially with the way that we make our edits, it was really nice to share a video part. We are aware that content is getting shorter. We're not in the DVD days right now so this format really works for us. Allows us to make more videos throughout the year.
This was a promotional video for your Ultimate Cotton collection right?
Yeah, we decided to make our first tracksuit this year. Embroidery on the pants was a big expansion for us. We have been working with it for a while, trying to make beanies, caps and now we are really starting to get it. Okay maybe not so far with the hats but that's a work in progress for us, we don't wanna release something we're not happy with.
Damn bro you've come a long way, just to provide some context, one day in 2018, on a Sunday after finishing up a day at our then part-time jobs, Tjerk and I went to a print studio after hours with a pdf full of graphics, 10-15 blank T-shirts, a six-pack of beers and the dreams of screen printing before the morning.
That was the craziest thing. That day was dope. We exposed our this screen, this girl who was on an artist residency showed us the ropes. Then we hosed it down and got set up. After a couple test runs, we worked out a little manufacturing process. One of us had clean hands the out had dirty hands so we started pumping them out.
But those first Valuta items were so fun to make! After that it seemed like you guys just developed the formula and made it into something beautiful
Yeah for me too it was super fun and I still have a crewneck we made that day. with the crying Bart Simpson graphic.
I guess in some way the Ultimate Cotton range is a call back to those days. When we were still trying to work out which blanks to gets, find suppliers, equipment and inks as well as finding a work space to do Valuta.
Who are you doing Vaulta with?
I am doing the business with Federico Dafies. We started in 2019 with a team of three. Me, Mitchel And Federico. But these days we are working with a lot more sick people like photographer Frederick Walker. And all the skaters that roll with us.
So when do you guys find time to skate when your not working on the brand?
If the weather is good, we usually go skate, film and take photos. We got the keys to the place so we can work any day of the week. But when the weather not great or were feeling a bit hurt, we can just come here, edit our videos, work on graphics, print some clothes, work on the ecommerce side of things. We also make shop displays here sometime too.
And where does the motivation come from?
Valuta has grown, we got some peers but also some young guns who are part of the gang now so we just wanna keep creating but above all keep skating. Valuta came from skateboarding and at its core that what brought us together in the first place so it's easy to stay motivated.
Amsterdam has gone through an almost renaissance preiod over the last 10 years with Skate brands. With Pop Trading Company, Booticelliboys and Skatepark NOORD just to name a few, how do you guys coexist?
It's all love, it's all family you know. Some people even rider for a couple of the brands that you just mentioned, some guys just ride for one. We dont step on each others toes. And even sometimes we will be filming for a Valuta project but one of the boys from Pop will be there, we just film the tricks and send it over to the Pop guys and vica versa. Like it feels like the scene here is quite supportive of each other.
Who else are you riding for at the moment?
Right now I'm skating for Ben-G, the skateshop at the original Patta location in Amsterdam as well as Krooked, Valuta and Vans
How did the Vans thing come around?
They gave me shome shoes and asked me to go on a trip. I was down! It was with Vans NL. We did Amsterdam for a week and it was a real dope time. In fact the video I'm working on now comes out next month on Vans
What you think of the new Vault by Vans x Patta?
Really special project. Think it's really sick!