Over the last few years, I have been getting my hands into some video work. After seeing our mini-documentary series, Just Beneath the Surface, Ocean County's Office of Tourism and Business Development hired myself and Oak Leaf Media to create a video spot for the county. We were very excited to take on this project.
We took a couple of days this summer and put together something that really shows the best of Ocean County. Our models were awesome. Brie Fagan and Dave Ambrose especially were troopers. Archie even made a cool cameo at Jenk's Aquarium.
I think this is just the start of where we can go when government offices and commerce organizations look to locals to really tell the story and give a sense of place.
Since I started snowboarding, it was always very deeply tied to surfing and skating. Even though I've always been merely average at all three, I've has this fascination with the crossover - surfing a big north swell at Holyoke in the morning and running up to the Poconos for the twilight session, hiking a hit in Northern California and then checking the jetty at Humboldt before dark, riding at Whistler one day and then making the trek out to Vancouver Island to surf the next. I love it.
So I was fairly excited when Red Bull asked me to work with them on Switchboard, an event that involved surfing in Asbury and riding Mountain Creek... in the same day. And while we're at it, why not skate the bowl at Fourth Union? (Thanks Uncle Derek.) Unlike so many events that are designed to spotlight the elite, this was all about a bucket list experience that anyone could enjoy.
Yep, the surf was ridiculously flat last Saturday when we all met on the beach (23 degrees - nice touch, New Jersey) so we had a few hearty souls jump in the drink for effect. My bud, Dave Werner is a very good sport.
We skated the bowl and then headed up to Mountain Creek, where I learned to ride over two decades ago. I helped direct the content with photographer Kyle Arcomano and Foreword Films.
While this was based at the college demographic in California for a few years, in New Jersey it was everyone from awesome Dads with kids to pro surfers. Every got in some laps, a few surf turns and messed around in the park before all the high fives and hot waffles at the base. Great time, great people.
And they used this old man's blunt stall as the feature image at RedBulll.com with my story, which is hysterical.
After weeks of work preparing for the Hop Sauce Festival here on LBI last weekend, I am pumped to just go enjoy Punk Rock Bowling this weekend in Asbury Park. Who's playing? Ah.... just The Descendants, Dag Nasty, Agnostic Front, Flag, H2O, The Slackers, 88 Fingers Louie, and my boys The Scandals. Damn, this is going to be a good weekend. For a complete guide, check the advance I wrote up for The Aquarian. I'm told there's bowling too.
In early 2014 I was invited by my buds at Jetty to get on a Nicaragua trip to gather marketing content for the coming year. It was non stop laughs the whole time. I also got to spend some real time with team rider, Tim Daley of Brigantine.
Eastern Surf Magazine included Daley in this year's Who Da Guy Issue, #168, August, 2015. I really appreciate surfers like Daley who know a thing or two about hard work in the real world.
"You know that ace on the surf trip? He’s not a pro, but he rips. He’s the good-looking one, but you never catch him in the mirror. He’s got a six-pack and sculpted pecs, but you don’t see him exercising. When the surf is firing, he puts himself into the slot of the day. And when it’s shithouse, he somehow finds the speed in mushy lines to crush crumbly lips. He gets friendly with the boat driver and somehow manages to nab a Spanish mackerel on the way back in. He never gets sunburned or spends a night barfing/shitting out some third world bacteria. Between his grasp of the language and natural disposition, he hits it off with the local ladies or some Euro backpackers. He knows exactly what to order at the bar in any country, but always holds his drink. And by the end of the night, he’s teaching a local Bad Religion chords on guitar, entertaining everyone in the room.
You want to hate him and his mustache, but in this case, you have to love him.
That guy is Brigantine’s Tim Daley."
Our good friends at Jetty have just released their Summer 2015 campaign featuring shoots from Barbados and The Keys. We are extremely excited about Jetty's summer gear and the work that Creative Director, John Clifford did with these images.
Today was a great opportunity to watch democracy in action. A dedicated group of people from coastal communities went to tell Chris Christie to "Finish the Job," of helping them get home 26 months after Superstorm Sandy uprooted their lives. Before the State of the State Address, they banded with other activists to get the word out to the national media that New Jersey has some more work to do. I got to write about and shoot the event today for The SandPaper which is running the story as breaking news. (Yes, I was next to CNN's Dana Bash with a GoPro...)
In terms of the surfing world, especially the East Coast, this major news. Thanks to Red Bull, I took part in a swell chase mission in the Northeast with my friends Sam Hammer and Mike Gleason as well as global big wave chaser, Ian Walsh.
What it turned into was more of a gamble on a ledge, some 12 miles offshore. What we got absolutely blew our minds. I was sitting on a ski or the boat next to perhaps the most critical wave on the East Coast for two days. Men's Journal ran my piece on this pretty amazing and rare New England discovery. It was big and steep. Seeing the pros not making it look easy, I didn't even try to get one. But man, am I inspired for fall barrels.
The first artist reception at the Ann Coen Gallery is in the books. It was an insane week of painting, planting, power washing, preparing, and hanging our first ever show Caught in the Act. But it was also a pleasure to spend time with such a legendary and humble photographer in Ken Salerno.
“The Pope,” as he is known here, still won’t let us refer to him as an artist, but his documentation of the punk and hardcore scene in New Jersey going back over 30 years was truly amazing. Shown in conjunction with Steve Tozzi’s “Riot on the Dance Floor: The story of City Gardens and Randy Now,” at the Lighthouse International Film Festival, we are very grateful of how many who came to see the film also checked out Salerno’s work. We're thankful for Randy who helped promote the exhibit and want to congratulate Tozzi on a fantastic New Jersey premiere. Caught in the Act will hang through Thursday, June 12 and we will have digital files available upon request for the rest of the summer. Please contact the gallery if you are interested in purchasing one of the limited prints or skate decks.
Starting the new year right.
In 1987 I got a subscription to Surfer Magazine From junior high through college and beyond, I would read every article – most of them twice. The articles in “The Bible of the Sport” at that time helped shape my life. This month, I’m stoked to have my first ever feature in Surfer.
It was, however, an unfortunate event that got me the assignment. On September 12 of 2013, the Seaside Park and Heights Boardwalks became a raging inferno just as they were in the midst of rebuilding after Superstorm Sandy. This feature is about the history and mystique of Seaside, its importance to the economy, all of New Jersey’s common connection to this town, Sandy, the rebuild effort, and the fire. I just hope I did them justice in telling the story.
There are some fantastic photos by Ben Currie, Ryan Miller, Ray Hallgreen, and Ryan Struck.
The article is on page 74 of the February 2014 issue of Surfer Mag, on shelves now. Or you can subscribe to Surfer Mag’s digital edition.
This is big. Got my first feature in The Surfer's Journal 12 pages entitled "Last Chance Power Drive," in Volume 20-3, page 108. It represents an awful lot of my career so far and let me weave in some of my personal history. Read the feature.
Photos by Ryan Miller, Rich McMullin, Mez, Trevor Moran, Ryan Struck, and Seth Stafford.