052. Steve Zavitz: Freelancing, artistic process, and parkour culture

Episode summary


Steve Zavitz shares his passion for parkour photography and film: from his transition to freelancing, his process, and what he likes to create. He discusses the changing style and culture around parkour videos, and the impact social media has had. Steve reflects on the evolving culture, audience, and growth of parkour, and what that means for communities today.

3 words

(Interactive content will replace this message when viewed in the Forum.)
Craig: And of course, the final question, three words to describe your practice.

Steve: I thought about this before, because I was listening to your podcast and-

Craig: It’s become a thing.

Steve: … I was like, “What am I going to say for this?” Going around our entire conversation, especially around the culture of struggle and effort, I think what I would say for my three words is embrace the suck. Not in like a dirty way, in like a just lean into being bad at something because you’re not going to be good at everything you try the first time. I certainly wasn’t for parkour or for photos or video or anything. It took a lot of time for me to get good. I think you just need to embrace that and enjoy it. I mean, it’s going to be frustrating. It’s going to be terrible. You’re going to hate doing parkour. You’re going to hate other athletes. You’re going to hate the obstacles. You’re going to blame other people and other things and it’s slippery or I’m tired or I’m sore. But you should really just embrace it because it’s part of the process. I think part of the reason why I love parkour so much is because I have sweat and blood and tears to prove that it’s been an 11-year-long journey of me just struggling my way through this and being happy with some movements and being unhappy with others.

Steve: But I wouldn’t trade it for anything. I have some of the best friends of my life through this movement. I’ve seen things and traveled places I never would have gone had I not been connected to these amazing individuals and amazing athletes. I think just really … You can’t skip that part of the process. There’s no shortcuts, really. You have to embrace it and you have to work through it. Eventually, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel where you’re going to be satisfied with your movement but there’s still going to be days, even the best of athletes at the top level are going to have off days where they feel terrible but the beauty of parkour is just figuring out the process to get through that and find a way to be happy with your movement.

Craig: Thank you very much, Steve. It’s been a pleasure to talk to you.