As I have now worked with the creative team at Rip Curl producing content and photographs for the past three years, I have been lucky enough to work and travel with Alana Blanchard many times. I first photographed Alana in 2009 when I was in Hawaii filming First Love. I was slightly nervous when I first met her, as I am when meeting all of the surfing greats. But as most idols tend to be, she was friendly, hilarious and dare I say it, quite “normal.” I won’t mention any names but I’ve met quite a few divas in my time, and Alana is not one them.
Alana has a unique position as a pro-surfer. Not only is she a professional athlete on the World Tour, she’s also the face of her sponsor Rip Curl, and has to do numerous fashion shoots a year. As most females usually have quite short professional surfing lifespans, it is very wise to create a marketable image outside of just being an athlete. There are a lot of people out there who don’t understand why she markets herself the way she does. They say she sets a bad image for women’s surfing, but if you looked into what it takes to be a professional female surfer you would understand. Alana is a confident girl hailing from the Island of Kauai, where you wear bikinis all day, and she’s smart enough to know that posting cute photographs of herself on Instagram for her 773k follows is going to be a positive thing – for her sponsors, for her future as a professional surfer on the CT, and of course, for her fans.
Her surfing talent, healthy outlook on life, and natural beauty has always been an inspiration to me, as I’m sure it is to many people around the world. Here is a collection of my favorite photographs of Alana that I’ve taken over the past few years… Enjoy!