PRINT MATTERS - Nothing's Wrong

"I’ll always be content looking over fences and admiring gutters."

20 Jan 2020

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An interview with Greg Barnes

To help celebrate the print launch issue 8 of Australia's 'Nothing's Wrong' 140 page magazine, we caught up with the man behind it all Greg Barnes and started by asking him about the motivation behind continuing to produce print projects in a digital age...

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Magazines are a lot of work. What inspires you to do this?

Must be masochistic! I choose not to calculate the hours/weeks/months/years that go into a project like this.

It goes without saying that photos are given more justice in print. The medium opens opportunities for unique layouts and storytelling. Developing continuity in the colour pallet and art direction was an enjoyable aspect of working on a book again. The cover and each chapter has curated artworks designed by UK creative Mat Waudby.

Another benefit of creating a book, mag or zine is the opportunity to publish different voices and writing styles too. Authors in this issue include Sean Burns, Dirty Dan Bogard, Jack ‘Techy’ Murnane and I. All unique in their approach and perspective on the BMX experience.

I really got a kick out of saving the best photos I’d shot (or been sent from contributors) over the last few years for a special outcome, rather than flinging them straight onto social media. Images of Ratty Maty, Burns and Techie blasting out of a pool with raging forest fires and smoke in the background don’t happen every day, so I felt they needed honourable treatment.

In a world of Vlogs, Instagram, short attention spans and over-sharing on social media, where do you think prints fit in?

Hands on tangibility. There are still people who enjoy owning hard copies of creative works. Vinyl is still the nicest way to own music. Print is still the best way to enjoy photos. Underground DVD/VHS’ make for some of the best videos ever created (West Australia alone produced ‘How hard is it’ and ‘Sewerside’, which are absolute bangers). It’s an excuse to invite your friends around, socialise and see something you can’t just repost. Quality over quantity.

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"There are still people who enjoy owning hard copies of creative works. Vinyl is still the nicest way to own music. Print is still the best way to enjoy photos." - Greg Barnes

What’s your take on BMX going into 2020? What would you like to see more and less of?

Freestyle’s Olympic status this year will help pave the way for more facilities and funding for our ‘sport’, it’s hard not to be happy about that. However, as someone who appreciates BMX as a culture, thus enjoying the search for grimy spots and empty pools, it could still be 1999 for me. I’ll always be content looking over fences and admiring gutters.

In terms of community action, I’d like to see more support for those in lower socio-economic groups to have more equitable opportunities to shine. I’m currently based in the Australian central desert, where the class divide between indigenous peoples and colonial Australia is overwhelmingly vast. It’s one of the richest economies in the world that knowingly harbours unacceptable levels of poverty, institutional racism and systemic violence. Many of these young people have incredible skill sets (especially when applied to riding) but owning a pair of shoes and a BMX is a big enough hurdle for most, never mind three square meals. Barefoot shredding on borrowed bikes is a thing I’m witnessing first-hand, so for me, I’m setting sights on 2020 being the year of underdog uprising. I want to see more young people given an opportunity to express themselves on an equal platform and less complacency.

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Tell us what's in the new issue:

One hundred and forty pages of perfect bound, full colour photos with our DRAIN BRAIN iron-on patch and Nothing’s Wrong stickers included (see below).

This book is divided into three chapters, shot in three different continents (USA, Australia & Nepal). Countries separated by economic hierarchy, yet all sharing a BMX scene. It’s a privilege to be able to experience and report back from these corners of the globe.

Articles include a pool riding trip across America that we did with the Bone Deth team. An in-depth look at the land down-under’s most unique backyard ramp house ‘Darling Street’ and a Nepalese BMX and punk scene report.

How can people get a hold of a copy?

Hit the web store for international orders. Any stores interested in stocking copies can message us through the web store or Instagram/Facebook @nothingswrongbmx.

For those in Australia, contact us or roll to your local rider-run BMX store (The Anchor, Little Black Bike, Local, Backbone, Lux, Hell on Wheels or Rampfest) to pick up a copy and while you’re there, thank them for everything they do to support the scene.

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