Running up an impressive client list since he burst onto the scene a few years ago, Luis Medearis AKA “Cuban Lu” has already filmed for the U.S. Team, Red Bull, Burton, Oakley, Ikon Pass, Columbia, Woodward, JBL, Anon Optics, DB and plenty more. With a resume like that, it is even more impressive when you account for Lu learning how to snowboard and film at the same time just back in 2020. The California-born former college shooting guard gave up basketball, had a chance encounter, and started shooting on snow full time. Now a regular on the knuckle of jumps all over the world, we caught up with Lu on his latest venture, Technically Doing It, the new edit, and his upcoming plans.
Alright, where you at right now?
I’m at home, rolling a joint and my wife is heading to work rn.
Sacramento is home but I grew up in LA, South Central. During the winter I live in Kings Beach in North Lake Tahoe.
How did you get the nickname Cuban Lu? I’m Cuban and Black. My name is Luis and my middle name is Ramon. As soon as I changed it to my instagram name like 10 years ago, people don’t be knowing my name. They think it’s Luke because everyone calls be “CubanLu” on hill.
When/how did you get into snowboarding and filming? I remember you telling me you were inspired by @koolmac at one point?
I got into filming and snowboarding at the same time. 2020, COVID happens–which ended my college basketball senior season, which sucked. I just was named an All American two weeks before. But once basketball was over and the world stopped, I had nothing to do like everyone else. We happened to be in Tahoe and I had just bought a $600 Canon camera (which I thought was way too expensive for a camera, lol). It was early season, barely any snow on the ground or at the resort, but I went to Diamond Peak (didn’t know what it was at the time), just driving around to try and use my new camera. Skyler Gallardo and his dad, Chris Gallardo, where skimming a puddle and I asked them if I could film them and they said, “Yeah.” lol. I didn’t even know how to use my camera at all. It was the first time it left the box and I’ve filmed snowboarding every day since. It’s been about two-and-a-half years.
And in those two-and-a-half years, you have already traveled around the US and Europe for work filming.
Haha. I would say it’s been pretty magical ride to getting jobs, meeting people, and traveling the world. It’s been a real grind, but also things have fallen into place so magically that it feels so right being in the community. I’m super blessed with everything that has happened, for sure. Shit’s pretty crazy. I shoot stuff for DB and they are also one of my sponsors. We have a signature series of bags I’m designing, coming out probably next year.
TDI [editor’s note: @technicallydoingit on Instagram] is a snowboard crew I started that is made up of mainly all the Black professional snowboarders in the world. The crew is not all Black riders but about 98% of the crew is Black or Brown. The short term goal is to do dope shit–movies, events, dope collaborations, drop merch, and live in the moment with crew. We are all only this age so long, so having fun and just letting our culture influence snowboarding is a goal we know will just happen over time here and there. For the long term, we want to create a long-term culture for the Black and Brown riders who are coming up and for the sport itself. I think in snowboarding, a lot of brands/companys want to figure out the diversity issues and create public solutions, and one of our goals is for these brands/companys to come to us for these different things. Positive vibes and teaching each other what the worth is of being who they are and also what they are worth, looking at themselves as a business
How did Technically Doing It come about?
TDI came about one day at home with my wifey’s sister. I said I wanted to start something for riders I hang with the most, that also gives us something that has longevity that will give our Black and Brown riders ownership in something related to the culture. She started writing stuff down for me and I planned for a long time before reaching out to everyone. So after about six months of talking to everyone and planing out the attack of how are we going to be a crew, we launched it! Everyone was pretty pumped when I asked them individually. I just wanted to help my homies in this journey we are in and have a space where we can talk and build as individuals, but also as a collective, being the majority of professional representation around the world in our space.
Who’s all involved so far?
LJ Henriquez, Zeb Powell, Rob Roethler, Brolin Mawejje, Keir Dillion, Stevie Bell, Brian Rice, Adro Mitchell, Irie Jefferson, Michael McDaniel, Kody Williams, David Djité, Kevin Ignacia, Yanneck Kando.
Squad is deep, which is crazy because I just met all these homies within the last two years and we have all gotten crazy close. We’ve already gotten to do two trips together, one in February to Taos and then another at the end of May to Palisades.
What does it mean to the crew to get together on those trips?
The trips went insane. Taos was pretty loose. Everyone got pretty lit, but that was expected on our first trip together. Bonds we’re definitely formed and the crew that went definitely got to build and connect together, which means a lot when you’re building a family.
Palisades was a way bigger group. Toss maybe like ten-to-eleven of us total and that was great being at home with the crew and the weather was great. We just had a good time riding around as a Black blob through the park. You don’t see that shit every day, lol. I think for the guys, it means a lot when you can look left and right and know that it’s a very open space. You can say what’s on your mind about anything. You get to be your true self in a space where usually you’re the only Black rider in the group. Every time we get together, the feelings are new and different, but the shit is lit–a lot of shit talking going on, lol.
It means a lot. It’s cool to start a crew and just bring homies together, but I think I’m thankful for the times we have already shared and excited for the time we will share later on. Being able to be around them on the road and stuff–you can’t make that shit up–and then thinking about what it’ll be like when we add new riders who maybe will grow up watching us grow as a group… I think the future means a lot to me because the hard part happened. We started.
What’s the next project?
This weekend! We got the Halo Halo event that we partnered with Snowboy to make happen, which is going to be sick. About 80-plus BIPOC and also just diverse group of people on the mountain. There’s going to be Asian people and Indigenous people there and it’s going to be fucking lit. Can’t wait, been talking about this for about two-and-a-half and it’s sick to have TDI a part of it. But the next project we are working on is a Euro TDI event in Europe with Pleasure Mag and Db and maybe some others next spring.
I’m also going to try and get a good amount of the squad to Europe before that, maybe January or during glacier season. It would be crazy to have fifteen black boarders pulling up to Hintertux or Laax mid-season–shit would be vibes.
Looking forward to it!
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