Friday, December 30, 2011

air drop

I've been brainstorming ideas for silkscreened posters. One idea is to take actual strips of 16mm and S16mm film, sections used in the final edit, and make illustrated posters based off of them. This is a mock up of the basic design. So, similar to this, same colors, yet hand drawn/printed...

That's Daniel Jones in this one.

Friday, December 16, 2011

the lagoon

Decades ago hydrogen bombs detonated high above this atoll. It is now home to about 5,000 people. Surprisingly, a recent large scale clean up crew that checked radiation levels reported finding no abnormal levels of radioactivity anywhere on the island. Aside from a leftover monolith of a runway, a few rusting remnants of US and English buildings, and some slabs of concrete, there are few remaining indications this place was once home to a large military presence. It was hard to imagine the man-made violent fury unleashed many times over the atoll in years past.

There is a two lane road that twists and turns its way around a large part of the atoll, with shrubs growing up high enough to block visibility around many of the curves. Americans drive on the right side of the road. The English drive on the left. I heard stories that this difference led to head on collisions.

I wish it was more visible in this photo...the clouds above an atoll lagoon, especially this one it seemed, glow a bit of a greenish blue, reflecting the lagoon color from below. It's very noticeable when you scan the entire sky and compare the difference between the clouds over the deep blue of the open ocean and those over the atoll. On a cloudy or partly cloudy day this can be seen from far off in the open ocean, long before any fringe of land is visible.

This is the lagoon that took the life out of my Canon AE-1 35mm camera as well, the one I used to shoot this photo.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

out of the bay

early 2005

Under the weight of my full pack and tripod, under the scorching midday sun, I'm thoroughly exhausted. And out of water. It's still a long way up back to the main road. I'm alone. I wish I'm somewhere I know, somewhere comfortable.

Off the dirt track to the right I see a trickle of a small waterfall. I walk over to it, throw my pack down, and put my back against the rocks. I let it pour over me and I feel instantly refreshed. The water is very cool. I sit there for a minute and relax. I get out of the small pool and reach down to grab my pack.

I look up and there is a big shirtless man with one eye, and a machete in hand, staring down at me. He's wearing only a lava lava. I'm startled. I didn't hear him approaching.

We say "malo". I then notice he has a coconut in the other hand. He hacks off the top of it and with a big smile hands it to me to drink. My fear instantly fades. I've never been more appreciative of a drink in my life. I thank him profusely and then am on my way again, and he disappears into the bush.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

the great caldera

Standing on the edge of the caldera. Epic.

Shot this with the first camera I ever owned, my Canon AE-1. Saltwater claimed it not too long after this was taken.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Kona Surf film Festival

A 5 minute Hangs Upon Nothing piece premiered at the Kona Surf Film Festival this evening on the main screen, billed as one of the short films to open the fest. A big thanks to festival director Chad Campbell for making this happen!

There are a lot of awesome films showing there, and it's an honor to be a part of it. Among my favorite shorts showing at the fest is this film called "the BONUS round" from Hilo, Big Island local Cliff Kapono. I love the idea of this film, the title, the music, and the absolute ripping at the end:

Monday, November 28, 2011

turbofire to zenith - now on bandcamp

Turbofire to Zenith now has a home on the world wide web. We're kicking out the original score for this film. As a start we have the song featured in the teaser trailer, "7 headed golden dragon", on our bandcamp page. As the project goes on, look for the entire soundtrack to be released through our bandcamp page:

Sunday, November 27, 2011

blast off hello - full color

I finished up the gouache painting on this poster concept today. Wish you could see this in person, the colors look better. Overall I'm really excited about this design. I'm going to do a bigger version of this, and hopefully have my friend Matt silkscreen some of these.

I'm probably going to make the lettering a little less goofy, and also work to make the squid pop a bit more from the background. But I want to keep with the feel of this piece. Looking forward to kicking out more poster designs soon.

click here to visit the film's page on facebook

Friday, November 25, 2011

Thursday, November 24, 2011

blast off hello

Here's a rough poster concept for Turbofire to Zenith. I'm really having fun with this idea. Going to put some color on this next. Want to try to apply some of the amazing colors I've seen out in the water recently during sunsets. Looking forward to making some big versions of these. Also...Turbofire to Zenith is going to have a page on bandcamp soon...

click here to visit the film's page on facebook

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

rolling hills

(click drawing if you'd like it biggie-sized)

At the end of a day of amazing waves, glassy rolling hills kept marching in. The clouds were giant. The ocean was a shiny purple grey. The swell lines hit the reef and threw out big perfect barrels. The spray of the waves glowed an orange/pink from the sliver of sun still hitting them. I'd seen and shot so many waves this day I just sat and watched. They were possibly the most perfect looking barrels I've ever seen. Maybe I should have shot some more. I just took it in though.

click here to visit the film's page on facebook

Monday, November 14, 2011

7 headed golden dragon

There were many, many of these barges, part of a large procession down the river. It was spectacular. This one is the royal barge. The most amazing part though was the sound. The singing and chanting of over 2,000 oarsmen echoing down the river.

Saturday, November 12, 2011


The swell has fully arrived, but the winds are onshore. So a few of the guys decide we should go trolling for dinner.

The further out we go, the rougher the seas get. I have visions of pearling. Or of the motor dying and being blown into this maelstrom; the boat splintering to pieces on the jagged rocks jutting out of the ocean angrily in the middle of the froth.

As I shift back and forth between pondering a drift story, or getting sucked down into the angry sea, it hits me that we have no radio on this boat. Flares? Doubtful. Life jackets, I don’t think so. Our first aid kit consists of the few band-aids and half used tube of antibiotic ointment I have packed. Not to mention we forgot a large portion of our food rations at Bill’s house; big blocks of cheese and tortillas. And then there’s our one knife blade.

"Uh, you think we should turn around?" Daniel says. Mikala is in the middle of a story about using a board to roof tie down strap as a leash one trip, Timmy is walking around the side of the boat with a box of beer as if we're at anchor in a calm lagoon, and Dustin is casually talking story too like we could be anywhere.

"Let’s turn the ____ around," I say.

Mikala laughs.

Monday, November 7, 2011

teaser trailer is on korduroy!

The teaser and an interview, check it out!

A big thanks to Cyrus and Reis over at Korduroy.

Also want to say thanks to friends Jason Lukas and Scott Goldsbury for contributing photos to this project, and to the piece on Korduroy. Jason shot the Turbofire to Zenith amp and guitar shots in the above image. Their links are at the right of this page.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

speed of light

Daniel Jones under a rainbow arc of water on a 3 fin bonzer. This board is so sick. It's a one of a kind. Swallow tail with an E-wing, and the old school side fins. It's the dims of one of Daniel's typical short boards, but maybe just a little more volume overall. Beautiful orange resin tint and a double white pin stripe. There's some footage of Daniel on this board in the film.

This is a 35mm shot by Jason Lukas.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

hurtling towards space

Turbofire to Zenith poster concept...the band behind the original score of this film. I didn't originally plan on using the 3 primary colors on this one, but I dig how it turned out. Would love to later on do a bigger refined version of this, maybe silkscreen a few.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

where the tigers are

This logo design(click image to enlarge) was done by Marcin Zeglinski.

Keoni Jones, dropping into a blue wall. Keoni is on a board that older brother Mikala shaped back in Hawaii. It was the 2nd board Mikala had ever shaped. A 2+1 fin set up with a long fin box in the middle.

I recently told a friend who's from this general area that we went by motorbike two hours through jungle paths to get to this spot. He'd been over here before, but by boat. His eyes opened wide and he goes, "You know there's tigers there..."

I hadn't thought about that possibility at the time. We didn't see any though. I do remember that after we took the motorbikes as far as we could, on foot we hiked over these ridges under arching canopies of bamboo so big it felt like something from Honey I Shrunk the Kids. This bamboo was enormous, made me feel miniature.

Sunday, October 23, 2011


The view from the top of Mauna Kea, Hawaii. Looks like it could be Mars maybe. This was at the end of the day. I shot time-lapse, frame by frame with my Bolex, hitting the trigger button by hand every 30 seconds. It got freezing cold up here as the sun went down and I wasn't dressed for it. There were a few chunks of ice and snow scattered around where I was. I lasted for 30 minutes, and by the end of shooting this, I could barely feel my fingers enough to hit the trigger button.

I made the drive up in a rented "all wheel drive" mini SUV. I don't think I had the budget for 4WD, and well, all wheel drive is nothing close to 4WD, I'll say that. There is a really good reason the road up there is marked 4WD only, and there's a good reason the rental car companies don't want you driving there. It is steep, loose rock and gravel, and treacherous. The drive up is pretty intense.

The drive back down as darkness fell was frightening. I remember looking down on the clouds as I coasted down, riding the break on and off just enough to stay in control, yet not lose them. I'd never think of doing it again without 4WD. Later on I heard that three Japanese tourists had died in a 4WD vehicle on the way back down, a couple weeks prior.

Chuck Corbett told me a story of how he made the drive up here in the early 80's in a beater of an old station wagon. The last third of the way up he had to drive in reverse because it was the only gear that could make it.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Captain Abun

Captain Abun pilots the boat perched on a little red plastic chair that has been bolted down to the crew’s raised bunk platform. It’s a typical plastic pop out type lawn chair, but with the legs sawed off. The steering wheel looks like it’s from a 1970’s van. The generator sits on the floor next to him. He sits up on this chair, barefoot, with his legs crossed, smoking a cigarette. His shirt says “Short Boarders Fake It. Long Boarders Take It. Knee Boarders MAKE IT!”

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


Blacky during the midnight ride across the Lombok Strait by Ferry, big swell, and the girl at the point.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

morning of mikala

Mikala Jones, setting up for a long barrel. The light here reminds me of some shots from Morning of the Earth. I really relate to that film and the vision Alby Falzon brought to it. Amazing film and one of the inspirations for this project.

Friday, October 7, 2011


is making news again today:

"...Darmaputra Tonyo (IND) the Bali local from Legian has added another scalp to his collection, after taking down ASP World Junior number 2 Nat Young (USA) earlier in the event, he's now eliminated Jack Freestone (AUS) reigning ASP World Junior Champion..."

full article:

Thursday, October 6, 2011

october 06

Here's a poster design I've had in mind for a long time. I finally got inspired to finish it up today. The photo I used as the basis for this is from the first wave I ever shot of twin brothers Tonyo or Bleronk. They were both out, and I'm not sure which brother this is. This shot is from 5 years ago, and they were 15 then. It was messy and onshore, but still these guys were finding barrels. They were both on beat up boards with mixed and matched fins.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011


Darmaputra Tonyo, home break.

Tonyo is all over surf news right now. Nice write up here: "In the surprise upset of the event so far..."

They refer to him as "...a small and wiry bundle of energy that never stopped smiling..."

Surf media has taken to calling him Darmaputra Tonjo usually, with a j, and it looks like it's going to stick. In that Surfline feature, he's called Tonyo, Tonjo, and Tonya. Tonyo is his nickname, it's pronounced Tonyo, that's how he writes it, it's what he paints on his boards, and that's what his brother and all his friends call him. When asked about people now calling him Tonjo, he just smiles big and says, "It's OK..." He doesn't really care.

Monday, October 3, 2011

over the edge of the world

Chuck Corbett, twin fin cutback on his prized beat up fish. Chuck surfs with the reckless abandon of a kid, and with style that reflects the era he grew up in. On land Chuck sometimes reminded me a of a cartoon character, bumbling around, usually on some sort of near impossible mission, fully committed. Sometimes he's ten thoughts ahead of where he's at in a conversation. The way Captain Jack Sparrow walks, there's something similar going on with Chuck. There's this wander to his walk, an uncertainty to where each next step might land.

His surfing has this too. In the moment. Spontaneous. Flowing. A bit off balance and wandering at times. But there's this awesome style to it. Usually made me smile.

Friday, September 16, 2011


During a visit to see Chuck Corbett, I crossed paths with a group of surfers including Josh Mulcoy, Nate Tyler, and the Jones brothers. This is Josh after he kicked out of a wave on a shortboard, this is as he's settling into the water.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

duncan and mom

After a fun day surfing a right point we stopped to visit Duncan's mom in her home village. It was a surprise visit and she was really surprised and excited to see Duncan. I remember when she saw him she put her hand to her mouth and kept saying, "my son". In the first frame of the sequence Duncan is combing his hair with his hand as we walk down the path. Duncan's mom and aunt were really hospitable, their place felt peaceful. It was a wonderful visit.

From the moment I met Duncan on the beach 5 years ago, he took me in like a brother. He's like that with just about anyone. I met all the other local guys I've filmed with through Duncan.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

house on water

There were lots of these floating across the water. They had bamboo swiveling arms with nets that would lower down.

I've been fascinated by some of these trippy lens flares recently. I love shooting into the sun. I love lens flares, old school lens flares. They look really cool in motion. But it's just as cool to find frames likes this one with stuff going on that you don't really catch while watching in motion.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

earth rising skyward

This was awe-inspiring to look down on in person. It's a special memory for me as I was with my parents when I shot this. Doors off on the helicopter, hands on my Bolex, full trust in the seatbelt as we banked through turns.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

cosmic rays

...energetic charged subatomic particles, originating from outer space(although it is currently unknown which objects have produced them). They may produce secondary particles that penetrate the Earth's atmosphere and surface. -from Wikipedia.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

"i am surf!" - 10 year old raju

Here's a poster concept sketch based on a ride Raju got recently. The kid gets barreled a lot. Describing himself he yelled out, sort of rapping, "I am Raju! I am 10 years old! I am surf!..." and on and on.

Monday, August 29, 2011

turbofire to zenith

Original music by Turbofire to Zenith. This is a poster concept I made recently. The idea is this colossal squid rocket is blasting off into outer space, with this cute petite SE Asian gal riding the squid rocket. The inspiration for this band name and this idea is all over the place, from The Neverending Story, to classic Chevy Turbo-fire engines, to Led Zeppelin, to Japanese depictions of rays of sunlight, to how surfing makes me feel.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

double d

Dedik and Deduk. Twin brothers from Seminyak. This shot is from a few years ago. Dedik runs a surf school now:

Two of the nicest guys you'll ever meet. Pure stoke. Twins who surf twin fins.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Saturday, April 30, 2011

ARCADE: the Last Night at Chinatown Fair

This documentary looks really cool. It's about the last night at NYC's last real arcade. It's being made by Kurt Vincent, who edited and produced the recent Lake Erie surfing documentary Out of Place. Out of Place is a really great film with a lot of heart. Some of the characters and scenes in it are just awesome.

Update: Kurt and crew are really connecting with people with this film so far. They have met and are far exceeding their kickstarter goal. Wow.

Also, I have to mention the music in their trailer. They absolutely nailed it with the music. The full version of the trailer's second song, a Clams Casino track - Motivation (Lil B) Instrumental, can be listened to on the film's website:

Friday, April 22, 2011

the next breath

I never truly felt mortal until I experienced getting worked by a powerful wave. Underwater, reaching a place where I realized, wow, I could die under here. It's only happened to me a few times. When it does happen, there is nothing that matters except the next breath. It's an amazing thing to experience.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


Kekoa Cazimero. 16mm workprint. " surf trip I've ever been on."

The full version of this 16mm sequence made it into the new Surfer's Journal, vol. 20.2. It's at the bottom of Michael Kew's article(about a different trip of his own), and the sequence spans about nine pages or so.

I wasn't even supposed to be on Chuck's boat for this trip, I almost got left behind. Chuck squeezed me on as crew. I had 7 rolls of film left. I surfed way more than I shot. And helped out on the boat more than I surfed. It was a misadventure, nearly a few disasters, such as the motor-less 60 foot Tuaraoi 360'ing through the channel into the lagoon of the atoll on the way in, just missing the reef.

It was an amazing trip of a lifetime though.