Adriano Gets After It

About a year and a half ago I found myself heading to Indonesia once again, however this trip was a bit different. Usually when I go to Indo it is aboard the Pelagic, on trips that I have put together. This time, though, I was heading out on a Red Bull trip aboard the Indies IV, the luxery surf yacht of all luxery surf yachts. I was pretty stoked for the trip, while I was there mainly to get images of the two Nike team riders aboard, Kolohe Andino and Evan Geisleman, there were a bunch of Red Bull’s premier guys on the trip that I hadn’t had a chance to work with. One of which was Adriano De Souza. I knew Adriano just from him being such a big part of surfing for the last few years, but had never had a chance to shoot with him outside of contest areas. To make a long story short, I walked away amazed by the guys surfing.

This particular day was one for the books; I literally shot on the dingy from sun up to sun down, having the crew run food, water, and fresh batteries, back and forth for me: it was was pumping, there was no other option. HT’s was as good as it gets, a bit over head, slack wind, and sunny as could be. We had the lineup practically to ourselves and the guys were on fire: Adriano especially. He was sitting as deep as anyone, rushing solid waves and standing tall in the tube through the inside section. As the tide filled in, and the barrels were as great as an option, Adriano adapted as well as anyone, punting ridiculously tweaked out air reverses and stylish straight airs. As I said, impressive.

His ripping wasn’t what really got me though; what really set him apart was how thoroughly stoked Adriano was. After every wave the guy was kicking out all smiles, hooting for himself, hooting for the guy on the wave behind him, arms raised in pure stoke. It was cool to see a pro surfer really not care about what others were thinking but rather acknowledge how fortunate he was and just be amped to be able to go out and surf perfect waves. A few days after this session I asked Adriano about the claiming, his answer was that he just loves surfing. That a good wave gets him excited and makes him happy and he’s not afraid to show it.

A Late Afternoon Surf With Legends Proves Productive

This is one of my favorite images from last year in Hawaii, and the story behind it is a pretty classic one. Once again, it was one of those shots where everything just seems to fall into place. A few hours earlier in the afternoon I walked over to the house where Julian Wilson was staying to see what his plan was; there were waves out front at Off The Wall, but it was a little wonky, a little closed out, and really not that motivating. We sat around and talked for a bit before deciding that it wasn’t worth it.

Just around that time Herbie and Christian Fletcher and Bruce Irons came walking into the yard; Jules was riding Astrodeck pads (Herbie’s company) so Herbie was bringing a box of new ones over. We all sat out on the deck watching the carnage go down (if you’ve ever witnessed overhead funky OTW you know what I’m talking about): beers were cracked, stories were told, it was a great time with an all-star cast of past and present surfing hall of famers.

Just as the sun was starting to dip below the horizon a set came through that sparked Bruce, Christian, and Jule’s interest. Like it often does on the North Shore, things quickly began to change a few gems were coming through. The boys were on it. I didn’t have much time at all so I just set up right there in the yard and decided to shoot speed blurs in the dying light and see what happens. It still wasn’t great, but Julian managed to grab this one and weave through one of the more impressive barrels of the trip, coming out practically at Rockpiles. Not 10 minuets after this was shot the light was completely gone. The three surfing scrambled up the beach and we quickly returned to beverages and story telling on the deck.

Christian shows Jules and his brothers a new board

Herbie, Christian, and Bruce. Two generations of legends

the shot turned ad

When Covers Just Happen

This cover of Kai Barger was shot quite a few years back, but it is still one of my favorite images. Warm sunny day, clear blue water, Barger absolutley killing it on this turn, you may be thinking that this was shot in some distant country, on some lavish surf trip: well that’s not quite it. The night before we knew that the waves were going to be pumping so I gave Kai a call and told him to be meet me at the beach early, he said he was in, it was on. First light and I am down there ready to get some work done, but no Kai. The waves were pumping and there were a handful of guys out so I stuck around and shot all morning any ways.

Right when I was about to pack up I see Kai strolling down the beach. I told him he blew it, missed the session, I was out of there: but he talked me into staying. His excuse was that he had to sticker up his boards, the funny thing was his Nike sticker was upside down! This was nearly the final straw for me, not only was he hours late, but the company who I was working for, sticker was upside down making it pretty much unusable. I was pretty over it but told Kai I’d stick around for another hour.

Kai ended up flaring up the whole session and pulled the unreal blow-tail pictured earning himself his first cover of Surfer Magazine. The funny thing is, the upside down sticker ended up being placed perfectly right side up in the photo: needless to say it was the last time I hassled anyone over their sticker placement.

Oh, and the tropical looking, epic surf. It was Lowers going absolutely richter one summer day


Well Wishes for Wilko

Surfing has always had it’s shares of characters: Dora, Potz, Andy, Gerr, and plenty of others who not only ripped, but brought a bit of flare and fun along with them. Heading the new crop of guys that have come to realize that surfing is a hell of a lot better when your having fun, is none other than Matt “Wilko” Wilkinson. Not one to stray from ridiculous clothes, and even more ridiculous wetsuits, Wilko backs up his antics by absolutely ripping in the water. Solidifying himself as one of the World Tour standouts his rookie year, Wilko just couldn’t seem to put it together in year two.

Midway through the season Wilko joined us aboard a Mentawai boat trip, and to say that his surfing was impressive wouldn’t even begin to do it justice. His lightning quick backhand that he is so well known for was absolutely tearing apart waves. Yet, what was even more impressive was what he through down over a few days at Macaronis. He threw down mind-blowing combos with enough consistency that he could have put together a full video part (actually he pretty much did just that on his website). The variation of turns he has on his forehand is astounding, I mean who the hell does double hand drag cutties? Needless to say he left everyone impressed, and a bit bummed at the thought that one of surfings most entertaining (in and out of the water) may be missing from the tour.

Thankfully for surf fans world wide, this last week at the Cold Water Classic Wilko put that backhand to use, dominating his way into the final and securing himself a spot on next years tour. His surfing was on point and gave us all a glimpse of what we are hopefully in for for the next year.

Ian Walsh is a Madman

Walshy has been a friend of mine for quite some time. From the early days putting me up in his parents house in Maui for months on end, to more recently spending two weeks in Indonesia, we’ve had some good times and scored some unreal waves. When you spend that much time with Walshy, one thing becomes clear, whether its 5 foot or 50 feet, Ian Walsh is a madman. Just a few weeks ago, Waslh played a key role in the big wave paddle session that went down at “Jaws” in Maui. The level these guys are taking big wave surfing to is unreal, and was unfathomable just a few short years ago.

Unfortunately I was not able to make the jump over to Maui for that swell. I was, however, able to jump on a trip to the Mentawais with Ian a couple years ago; and while it may not have been 50 feet, the waves were fun and Walshy was ripping. It was pretty impressive seeing a guy that paddles into the biggest waves on earth go out and punt airs and lay it on rail with the best of them.

The Spartan and His Weapons of Choice


This shot of Michel Bourez aka “The Spartan” was taken last year on the North Shore of Oahu during the Triple Crown. With the first solid NW swell pounding Hawaii as we speak, we cant help to get a little excited about the upcoming Hawaii season. Hopefully the boys will get plenty of chances to bust out the big boards and pack a few solid ones.

Lowers: its on!

With two solid days of progressive surfing in the books, the 2012 Lowers comp is off and running in fine form. With the comp going on pretty much in our backyard, and the level of surfing always going through the roof, it is easy to say that this contest is one of our favorites to check out and shoot. It looks like a solid shot of SW swell is lining up for the middle of the week, bringing what should be pumping waves to the finals. The only question remains is whose winning the thing…

Slater has won 5 times…

Medina won the Nike comp here just a few months back…

Jules blew up last year, with an interference being the only thing to slow him down, and is more than due for a win…

So what do you think? Whose taking the title? let us know….

Where the hot wind blows

Kenworthy is here right now, has been for over a week, and where here is I can not say. What I can say is that Kenworthy’s present version of here (this photo is a tad dated) is much bigger, better, meaner than this version of here. The now version of here is enough to make this version look like childs play (which its not) and leave you gathering your jaw from the floor. So just sit tight because soon enough we will be bringing you a current look at here: although we still can’t say where here is…

From the Archives

We have been going through a sort of office re-vamp lately: reorganizing old drives, moving stuff to new drives, and just generally digging through the archives. While tedious, the process has been great that it has brought to the surface some old gems that somehow slipped through the cracks before. This photo is from one of the very first Nike 6.0 trips to Fernando de Noronha in Brazil. It is truly one of the most scenic and beautiful place on earth. We had been shooting waters for a few hours and this was one of the last frames I popped off as the sun began to set behind the rock.

To buy this print and others click HERE

Dear Tahiti

Why are you playing with our emotions? Last year you gave us huge, ugly, gray, heart-in-the-throat, death defying waves: too big to compete, too big for anyone but the clinically insane. This year, two days of small, weird, borderline mundane surf; and now, flat. Clear, blue, not a breath of wind, paradise, but flat. We’re not asking for last year. We do not need death-defying: just heart pounding. Just something to give those of us watching with bated breath from our office chairs something to cheer for, something to get us excited. Tahiti- this is our plea, there is still time in the waiting period, we have been waiting anxiously for a year now, please respond urgently.

To purchase this print and others click HERE