Thursday, July 30, 2009

Mr. Freedom

Here's one of those lovely bits of internet functionality happening. I've been linked to the December Snowskates blog for a bit as Kevin from December has been doing some really cool stuff. He's been handcrafting these bindingless snowskates for a while, and he loves to surf so it seems natural he'd be enthused by a lot of what's been going on in surfing with the alaias (he's built a decent quiver including one that's hopefully going to develop into a board that can be ridden snow, surf and skate style!) With the snow/surf crossover he's very aware of the Mackie/Winterstick/Taro Tamai program, and that has led him to what we're doing here, and it's been great seeing what he's been up to and sharing our new projects with someone as stoked as he is. Then this week I find a box containing the above board in my PO Box. 27" x 7" hand crafted asymmetrical skate deck. Utterly beautiful piece of work gifted from December Snowskates. I'm still tripping on how fantastically cool it is, and my daughter immediately named it Mr. Freedom which works for me. This is definitely what makes all this nonsense so worthwhile- a piece of hand crafted beauty.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The Surfing Masses

the weekend's home away from home.

Jon Wegener making finless magic happen

Made it through the US Open weekend although I'm fairly shell shocked by it. The Sacred Craft area was pretty cool, there was a shaping bay where boothmate Jon Wegener sliced out an alaia at full volume and Scott Bass deserves major thanks for not only getting it together but for also managing to get a range from Jon's graceful wooden creations to Maurice Cole's equally graceful ultra modern EPS rockets. The contest scene was terrifying- decent waves but the jetskis were a bit silly, and the crowds were huge and in most cases clueless about surfing. We did hook up with a lot of folks interested in the boards we had on display, Joe Bauguess made a mysto shaper appearance on Saturday, blew a few people's minds then vanished back to his border lair to carve out more whoopee ships, RK was out hitting it all time at Brisick's, a certain secret N. LA spot and we drank lots of coconut water. The celebrity expression session was crazy lame- tow-ats in a dropping swell with the superstar surfers just launching over the back of the wave. Curren paddled into a few on the inside and surfed better than the jet assist circus. Early arrival meant that if you had a booth with some demo boards in it they could get surfed at smaller but way less crowded/media saturated spots before the crowds started rolling in, but of course we were all about working hard and providing some interesting craft for the public to view. There's been incredible stuff showing up in the mailbox and inbox so I'll definitely get onto posting a bit more regularly.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

A Random Sort Of Selection

Short while ago I was all stoked on handing off some custom Swift mini Simms, especially since one was going to Bali it seemed. Well, it did and the photos above are Steve putting his board through it's paces. Seems he scored some pretty nice surf and got a few blazing runs on the mini. Nice. Meanwhile check the Hydro blog, there's shots of the Bauguess/Ekstrom collaboration orchestrated by RK- there will be some highly interesting foam coming out of this one. Even more random: should you be at the US Open of Surfing in Huntington Beach this weekend, try to find the board booths as we will be there, a shared Jon Wegener/Hydrodynamica Test Pilot Series/Mackie Surfboards mega booth. Please come by, it'll be nice to see someone that isn't a sticker hunting mouth breathing grom I imagine. Not entirely sure how all this came together as it happened fast, but apparently I'm spending my weekend surrounded by energy drink purveyors and multinational clothing companies trying to interest the masses in cutting edge planing hull design. Excellent. The Kinski board, well that's totally rad. R.I.P. Baby Paul Cullen, one of the Dogtown mainstays. He lived the life, no punches pulled, and I'll miss the mad phone calls out of the blue.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Ether Monthly #3

Photo Kidman from 'Ether'. Available from Foam & Function and worth every cent.

After posting the Narrabeen pics last month and then having my thruster moment courtesy of RT's new film project, it seems only natural to post this particularly epic shot of Simon Anderson at North Narrabeen in 2000. In this photo, he's twice the age of most of the Pro Tour guys.

from his interview in 'Ether'
"At Narrabeen, Col Smith is known as the father of modern, radical, explosive surfing - I think that's fairly common knowledge and he should be proud of that fact. He did set a lot of standards; we were looking at what Col was doing, as opposed to Terry, and trying to emulate that sort of more vertical surfing, that was more oriented to destroying the lip and surfing in the pocket; carving off the top and doing cutbacks, stuff like that.

How I developed my style? I don't know, it just happened. I wanted to surf like Col and be explosive and be radical. Narrabeen, back then, was conducive to doing that under the lip thing and finding out about backhand tube riding. So I was quite happy to practice my craft at Narrabeen and develop my backhand surfing, to a fairly large extent."

Monday, July 13, 2009


Derek Hynd, Jeffreys Bay, South Africa. 26/06/09 from Yves Van den Meerssche on Vimeo.

If you haven't been checking out Safe To Sea and the Kurungabaa blogs you're missing out. This little gem turned up via them.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Saturday, July 04, 2009

RK Droppin' Science Like Galileo

TJS | POV - Richard Kenvin from The Surfer's Journal on Vimeo.

Vimeo gives me all sorts of grief, herky jerky and quiet but it's worth persevering with as Richard gives the goods. Meanwhile here in South Central LA it's like a war zone- you people certainly love your patriotic fireworks. Back home we celebrate an attempt to blow up the English Houses of Parliament but certainly not with as much vigor. This year is exceptional, the dog may not recover.