Its not often that we stumble upon the archives of famous designers, TM’s and other personalities in skateboarding. The few times we have, we’ve either been sworn to secrecy after laying eyes on the unspeakable or have been so speechless to not say anything at all. The point is, these moments are a dime a dozen and today we’re glad to bring you one of these rare occasions.
Above is what would’ve been Brian Wenning’s 2nd DC Pro model. Regardless of the details as to why it never made production, we’re simply left wondering how history would’ve changed in skateboarding had this pro model come out. As many of you may or may not know, every skate shoe (past or present) has always had an influence of some sort outside of skateboarding. Whether it be the Jordan-inspired Koston eS shoes or hiking-inspired Silas Baxter-Neal shoes, everything is directly inspired by what your favorite pro’s grew up skating/idolizing. If you, for a second, can entertain the idea of this shoe being a huge hit in the past, you can only imagine what off-spring(s) this shoe would’ve created. More so, the effects it could’ve had on Brian Wenning’s career trajectory.
After watching the video above, it becomes painstakingly difficult to digest what he said in comparison to Brian’s actions today. There’s no denying that he’s a legend throughout all of skateboarding but it’s hard to say that he’s been willing to pass the torch gracefully.
When speaking to his close teenage friend, fellow NJ’er & designer of this mock-up, Antonio K. Ciongoli had this to say concerning the design:
“I created the shoe designs you saw on my instagram for Brian Wenning back while I was still in college due to his friendship with my good friend Brian Atlas (Now the president of Street League). I met Atlas during my junior year at USC while skating at the blocks. Between our mutual admiration for the Lynx and both of us being from the east coast, we became fast friends. Atlas grew up in NJ skating with Wenning, Fred Gall and a few other amazing characters known as the NJ SCUMS. They all used to visit LA a fair amount so naturally I was lucky enough to log a few hours with them. Around the time Wenning left Habitat for Plan B, he came out west to promote the video he put out with Ian Reid. We were all down in San Diego hanging out when we first saw Wenning’s pro shoe. Though it hadn’t yet been released to the public, Wenning was wearing protos and had photos of all the different colorways. I remember being so hyped about it because it was basically a mash up of my favorite DCs – The revised Lynx upper with the same super grippy rubber sole that the Howard 1 and 2s had. It got me thinking that should he get a second shoe, it should be a more literal mixture of the two so on my own I sketched some colorways for him. If I remember correctly, Wenning liked the idea but was unsure about a midtop with an ankle strap (like the Howard 2) because the market was already moving to slimmer, lower profile vulcanized designs. Either way, I didn’t try to push it too hard because I was afraid DC would run the design without compensating me in some way. As a college senior, what I was really hoping for was that it would lead to an introduction to their design team but it never happened…
…Looking back now, I wish I had given Wenning the sketches and just told him to take them, that way the shoe might have actually been made! Anyway, that’s the long and short of my career as a skate shoe designer.”
While aimlessly looking through Instagram, we were lucky enough to find Antonio’s creation. Since stumbling upon this mock-up, its made us hunger for more and more of these projects that never saw the light of day- let alone the production line. In other words, a Rarities without having been produced. If you guys know of anymore gems, please email us.
Today, rather than catering to the needs of skateboarding footwear, Antonio took his design background and entered the world of Men’s high end fashion. He’s currently the Creative Director at Eidos Napoli. If you need to look sharp, check them out. – @EidosNapoli