I grew up in the center of the surf industry. Back in the ’90s, my father owned a couple of One Hour photo labs in southern California, and we were about thirty minutes from the beach. When I was sixteen years old, I started working with my father and signed up for high school photography classes to get familiar with a camera. I continued on with them in college, and soon realized that photography was what I wanted to do for work.
I would go to the beach whenever I could, to bodyboard and take pictures of my friends surfing. A couple of them, like Donovan Frankenreiter and Joe Grodzen, were professionals at the time. That was my foot in the door with Surfing Magazine and Bodyboarding Magazine. Every time I went to the beach, I’d see Larry “Flame” Moore shooting Creek. Instead of going out in the water, I would sit next to him and watch him shoot, listening to everything he said. Over the course of a couple of years, I’d built up a good relationship with him, and he introduced me to a lot of people in the surf industry.