I filmed with the Nike team for about five years. In the beginning, I was working for Jason Kenworthy as his assistant. He had just put together the plan for Nike’s girls movie Leave A Message, and came to me saying if you can figure out the switch from photo to video, you can start coming on these trips and shooting. It was a done deal. A few months later, I found myself sitting on the Pelagic in the Mentawais, learning the ins and outs of filming on the job.
We would always bring a couple of the Nike guys on the girls’ trips, for a two reasons. One, to get ad photos. Two, to help with our sanity a bit – spending fourteen days on a boat with a bunch of teenage girls can drive you up the wall. The footage was just being stockpiled. When Nike switched from 6.0 to Nike Surf, they pretty much did away with all we had shot up to that point, and when Nike finally pulled the trigger, we were sitting there with years worth of A+ footage, more or less never seen, being forced to the grave.
After trips I would usually make little edits out of the footage, just to teach myself again how to edit video and to stoke my friends out. A few months back, I watched a few of these and really started digging into that old footage. As soon as I watched that turn of Michel’s in the second song, I knew I had to do something with it all. There was way too much good stuff to let disappear. I started building out the edit; really cherry picking the best of the best. The crazy thing is that there is still so much that is going unseen. There are entire trips to Australia, to the North Shore, and full boat trips that I didn’t use anything from.
The Nike days were pretty unreal. Looking back, it’s hard to believe the opportunities I was given. My first boat trip happened the summer before my final semester of college. That following spring I was planning on going back for my teaching credential when I was offered a chance to go to the Gold Coast for a month. The next four years were a blur of spending the majority of my time on the road. It was a fun time, and an amazing experience. The crew we were working with, both the surfers and the guys behind the scenes, were really tight knit and we had a lot of fun together. A lot of guys I remain close with. This project was a really fun way to look back and kind of relive those days. I’d be watching clips and remember random little details from that particular session or trip. I cringe at the Rag’s right footage remembering that it was supposed to have been flat that day so me and the boys stayed up until the early hours putting back Bintangs only to be pretty much pulled out of our bunks. I don’t know who had it worse, them weaving over dry reef or me sweating it out on the reef.