All photos by Wes McGrath
Over the years, we’ve been able to meet a lot of talented people who are out there creating content and doing what they can to help grow their scene. One guy who we have constantly seen good things from in that time is Mario Carrasco. Between different events and countless videos that he has produced, we have been able to keep in contact and see what he has been up to.
For those of you who keep up with our Daily Section, there’s no doubt that you have seen one of his videos. As of late, Mario has been producing videos under the ABQ DNV title and needless to say, it’s been nothing short of great.
After all the hard work on both sides of the lens, there was no way we couldn’t get ahold of him to find out just where his love for filming, editing and BMX came from. So today, we’re stoked to present to you an interview with Mario to talk about just that. Let’s see what he had to say!
Name: Mario Carrasco
Location: From Los Lunas, New Mexico. It’s a bit south of Albuquerque, but I currently reside in downtown Denver, Colorado.
Sponsors / Hook Ups: Animal Bikes
Years riding: Roughly 15 or so with racing
Years filming and editing:
I would say more seriously the past few years because of our Double Ditch mix tapes we have done with our good friends from just double ditch to hate bike vids. All together though most of my BMX career with nothing too serious.
What was it that first got you into BMX? Any early memories come to mind?
The BMX track for sure and my dad for buying me my first real BMX bike. That was fun while it lasted but racing was just not my scene, so I started riding the skatepark and streets of Lunas doing the “loop” as we called it around my house. Always with the homies Alex G., Justin B., Andy B., Joe P. and Mario G. not knowing a damn thing of what we were doing but having a blast and spending way too much time in my garage.
What about with filming and editing? I’d imagine it was because of BMX?
Yeah, filming and editing most definitely came from BMX. My mom had this old Sony Hi-8 camera that we first started messing around with, with this little crew thing we started called “Red Star” many moons ago, those videos however never really saw the light of day, haha.
My first real camera was a JVC Mini DV camera. It had a sketchy fisheye for it and filmed everything we did. I still have that camera as well. I use it as a capture cam whenever we have DV tapes.
What is your current setup looking like?
As of right now, I have a few Canon DSLR’s that I run around with. Nothing too serious. I have a couple zoom lenses, a 50mm 1.4 and 1.8, 15mm fisheye and a 8mm fisheye, a few external mic’s because the dslr ones are garbage for sound without it, camera lights and a few basic tripods. I try to keep my bag pretty light for the most part because if you ride around with one all day, you know that it can kill you. I also own a few Sony VX’s if needed with Death lenses.
Who were some of the first people you filmed with?
All the Lunas boys for sure. I’m still pretty lucky that a few of those guys still ride and kill it today like Joe P. and Alex G. Other than them, all the boys up in Albuquerque. Whoever was down to let me point a camera at them really like a younger Nate Richter, Vidal Vigil, Gilbert Montoya, Matt Gannon, Justin Allen to name a few off the top of my head.
Who are some of the guys you find yourself filming with now days? Any in particular you can always count on to come through with clips?
Now days up here in Denver, Co. there are so many amazing riders that you can film with that are outrageous to say the least. The main guys we have been filming with as of late are Dustin Arp, who is a boss, go watch “GOOD DAY BAD DAY” if you have not seen it yet. Nate Richter, can always count on him to come up with something out of the box that’s a bit wild. Tremaine Stewart who is a machine! The same with Josh Dunn and Adrian Vigil. Anytime I’m back in Albuquerque, New Mexico, I have some hungry young guns as well as greta homies who can lay it down.
As of late we have been able to count on you to come through with a new ABQ DNV video pretty much every Friday. What’s ABQ DNV all about and how did it get started?
Yeah for the most part, haha. Sometimes things to don’t go to well or we can’t get the proper music and just wait it out. You can’t force it. You have to let it happen naturally or I feel it looks like crap. I feel the videos have been getting better and better and telling better stories of what was going on at those times and moments. It can be kind of rough at times trying to put something out on a weekly basis that you are comfortable with. Especially being that I am really the only person doing all the work. I’m lucky now to have some great friends who are helping me film more from New Mexico (Alex Gonzales, Derek Dorame), and putting projects together that are looking really great.
As far as the ABQDNV thing it just kind of came to be and is still a constant learning and growing process. I’m aiming for building it up and letting it grow organically. We are constantly pushing and striving to build something that we can say is our own while pretending we know what we’re doing, haha. I travel a lot back and forth between Albuquerque and Denver so it just kind of became its own thing. We have so many people and friends to film with, so it’s a good outlet to create for.
Although they’re fairly close together I’d imagine there are a lot of miles clocked between the two places. Where do you spend most of your time these days?
Yeah, as I was just saying it can be crazy at time because I would love to spend more time in Albuquerque to film more and be down there with all my homies who are getting better and better and build more projects. Currently though, most my time is spent up in Denver working on some new projects and growing some of the current ideas on the table.
I’d imagine with so many people always coming through your area you have had the chance to film with a lot of pros and what not. Care to name drop a few of the guys you have had the chance to film with in the past?
I enjoy filming with anyone at any real skill level as long as we are having a good time. Some people stress super hard and lose sight of what we are doing here; we ride little kid bikes. As far as name dropping though recently would be Tammy, that dude is a killer, Nate Richter, Vidal Vigil, as well few others but nothing to serious.
Who are a few you haven’t had the chance but would like to someday?
I would love to film with my good friend Albert Mercado. That dude is a serious shredder and we have been friends for a long time now! Others would be Connor lodes, another homie, he has been so good for so long and it great to see him killing it and finally making it happen.
I know you’re always working on something new. What are some of the projects you’re currently working on? Any plans of a full-length or doing some sort of trips out of the ABQ DNV?
As of right now Nate Richter and I are currently filming a part for him. Nate has never really had a full part and if you have ever seen him ride in person, he is so damn good and a lot of people don’t really know what he is capable of. I am also filming for an upcoming Animal project with Gilbert Montoya and myself with the help of Alex Gonzales.
As far as full-length, I have a few ideas, but we will see what happens with some trips. I have a few planned down to ABQ and El Paso as well as Arizona. Those should be fun and I have some good guys planned that, that I have worked with before and even some new homies.
Do you find much time to get away from the camera to ride or even get in front of the camera to film some clips?
Yeah, you have to take that time or I know that I personally would lose it. I’m a pretty easy going guy, but If I do not have some type of outlet I can go off the deep end, haha.
All photos by Wes McGrath
Did you go to school for film or anything? How important do you feel school is for a field like this?
I did not go to school for any type of film work or anything like that. I learned a lot through trial and error along with reading, reading, and then a bit more reading. I did however go to school and finished with a bachelors of fine arts from the University of New Mexico and a few other things, but nothing really pertaining to what I do now. It’s funny how that works out. I loved school. It was easy and I feel it is very important, though it is not for everyone. If you have the chance, I’d say do it.
Do you work at all outside of filming or are you making a living out of this?
I do some freelance graphic work among other design stuff, but primarily it’s all the video work I’m doing at the moment. I’m not mad to say the least, haha.
Have you done any work for brands or projects outside of BMX at all? I hear weddings pay real good…
Yeah, I have, I was lucky enough to help out on “King Of The Road” stuff with the Birdhouse team not that long ago. Stranger’s Wes McGrath through you guys, The Union. I think I have done work though for pretty much every Major US website. I have been pretty lucky when it comes to all of that.
As far as weddings I have heard great things as well, its been an idea but have yet to really pursue it but spring will be upon us soon enough so see what happens!
Who are some of the filmers and editors that really influence your work?
Will Stroud kills it! I love his work and the cool colors he can create. Mike Manzoori is another that guy is an amazing skate filmer and recently has been helping with a lot of the Etnies projects. I’m excited for more of that. I would also have to say Christian Rigal, he is a good friend and the guy kills on both sides of lens. This list could go on forever but i would have to put in Stew Johnson and Rich Hirch, those two guys have been killing it for so long and their work is classic.
Where do you hope to take things as time goes on?
I plan to keep doing the ABQDNV thing for as long as we can and see where it all takes us as well as filming. I enjoy documenting my friend and our travels, you never know what your going to see and where life will take you. I have a few things lined up to drop soon as well through ABQDNV, but we will have to wait to see that. I’m trying to take that stuff to the next level while continuing to progress and learning as much as possible.
Do you have any shout outs or thanks?
Thanks to anyone who has ever let me film you or shoot the shit and pick your brain. My girlfriend for putting up with my crazy schedule. My parents for backing every crazy idea I have ever had and supporting me no matter what. Nick B. at Animal for keeping me rolling and letting me a part of the Animal bikes brand. All my Albuquerque boys Alex, Wes, Faze, Gil, Dom, Little Johnny, Marcial, Danimal, Joe P, Derek D up in the Fe and the Denver homies Dustin Arp, Ken, Joe, Austin, Derek D, and anyone else I forgot you. Those guys keep me grounded and more real than anything I could ever ask for. As well anyone who has ever answered an email from my ass for me asking for stuff to support some jam or idea I have or working on for the scene. Lastly you, Kurt, for the interview, thank you my friend and thank you all for the support and help. It means the world.
Anything else you want to say?
Do you, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Fuck it, always say yes you never know what kind of situation you’ll find yourself in.