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The Inertia

The photos you are looking at are from one of the weirdest years of my life. Well, the last three have been odd but 2013 just stole the weirdness show.

The one year I decide to be alcohol free too, through choice no less, after one of those “never again” mornings following Australia Day. I have rather proudly remained alcohol free to this point. Three weeks to go and it will be 12 months. I have dodged many bullets, so to speak, Matrix style, which is tough because there are few things more satisfying than an afternoon post-surf beer.

My year started normally. Quik Pro, chasing swells, etc., and then out of nowhere, boom, a cut to my heel Parko-style shooting wide angle at my home on the Northern Beaches. It stemmed from a momentary lack of concentration and the result was a cut from one side of my heel to the other to the bone from a fin. I dealt with a few solid sets to the head while assessing the situation, staggered up the beach, forgot where I stashed my keys, drove myself to the hospital, and nine stitches later, I’m out.

I continued shooting, did a trip to the North Coast of NSW and the waves were peeling. I couldn’t shoot water, though, and the waves were so good. Not to mention it was unseasonably hot.

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My foot healed just in time for Fiji. I attended to shoot the Volcom Pro and all was well. Then I returned home for a few weeks and my Aunt, who helped raise me, decides it’s time to pass away and join my Nan who only passed away the year before. All a week before my birthday. My mind is boggled, slightly bummed on the world, but I’m cool and things keep on trucking.

Anyways, out walking one day, I slip on some wet grass. Under that wet grass were some broken house tiles and yep, sure enough, I cut my hand pretty bad after landing on them taking a chunk out of it – off to the hospital again. Nothing major, just a week or two out of the water and some butterfly clips.

Later on in the year, I leave the mag I have worked with for over 15 years. This is a scary but invigorating feeling as I felt free to get back to what makes me happy and now shoot how I want rather than being told to how to shoot.

I sniff and smell Hawaii season is just around the corner, so I begin to train like I always do. I’m out jogging a trail near my home and had a moment where I was probably not paying attention and stepped on a weird rock throwing me off balance. Yep, here I go again – down a steep embankment, my knee jerk reaction was to grab for a branch on a tree to stop myself from falling and, what do you know, I dislocate my shoulder. I suffered what is called a subluxation. Not a great feeling. My 2013 Hawaii season is done and dusted right there.

Well, that’s it. I managed to fire off a few shots throughout the year that I’m happy with, which you’ll see here, but it wasn’t a hugely productive year. Hey, that’s how it goes sometimes. Yep, life is weird, and next year I’ll most likely enjoy one or two cold beers, get some balance back and hopefully be accident free.

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To see more of Nate Smith’s work, see his portfolio, his website and Instagram page.

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