Thursday, September 27, 2007

Patchies Hideout is one of my favourite stopovers when I get a moment to cruise the lineup at right.

What little tit-bit awaits from that colourful mind?

The man has a lot of energy, or an understanding wife, or too much free time on his hands, or all of the above as I have no idea how he manages to produce so much, on a near daily basis. And he gets more surfs than me.

Not hard.

A couple of weeks back I had a surf down at Cathedral Rock, and on leaving the water I was glancing around for 'photo ops'. At my feet, and pretty much staring back at me, was what I saw as Patch's work, in stone. Has he been sneaking down to the the Southern Hemi at night?

I wonder if his wife knows?

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Musica Surfica Update.

Up in Sydney today for some meetings regarding Musica Surfica. A lot of work to do, but with luck it'll be on air in Australia before Christmas, so perhaps early next year for the DVD. Let's hope so.

While up there I gave Derek Hynd a call, and he was waiting at the Foxtel reception for me afterwards.

Come on Mick, I thought I'd give you a lift to the airport.

Of course, you'll have to sit in the back seat because Mack (the dog) sits next to me.

Good old Mack.

Good 'ol Derek.

Had a great chat on the way but not before he showed me his latest incarnation of a finless.

It's better in bigger waves, he says. Don't need to pump for speed so much.


At 3ft 6" I think he's giving new meaning to minimal.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Yesterday I visited an old friend.

I haven't surfed "'the Schanck" as it's called for a couple of years. It's patterns just didn't fit mine, and I just... missed out.

It's an epic to surf,. About a kilometre walk in to a 300ft clamber down the cliff (about 45 degree gradient), then suit up and out... often lonely, sharky feeling and very isolated. If you fuck up here, you're in deep doo doos. In fact I remember hearing the screams of guy (years ago) as his mates helped him up the cliff. He ended up with 75 stitches from a fin in the leg. Lucky to live.

But, it is a wonderful place. The view down and from the water , same... as it ever was. I might be a teenager.

Two different breaks. The inside left, 'Head Injuries', fast, shallow, sucky and fickle. But a blast. The other "The Schanck' proper, a long sometimes fat, sometimes hollow, long walled, a sort of left hand Winki at best, flat and sluggy on the wrong tide. It looks like a cold Uluwatu on it's great days.

Yesterday, I surfed both.

The tide was on the way out.. good. It was biggish, 8ft sets, a bit of left over wind slop crossing into it, difficult takeoff, got worked a bit, got about 5 good ones, then paddled over to the main break as the tide dropped and got a screamer (150 yds)

A great, slightly odd session. Felt a bit spooked out there. Total crowd at Head At Schanck .. one other guy. He felt a bit spooked too. Still had a smile though.

Afterwards, and as some other guys turned up, I snapped a few.

Low point of the session? Did the climb down, only to realise I'd left my leggie in the car. 300ft back up, 1k back to car, 1k back 300ft back down.

I earned the surf.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Sunday... Richie and I hit it down to a dying swell and a roaring offshore. Drove around for a bit, visited Bells for a toilet stop, drove some more, finally settling on giving Marky a call.

What's 13th like mate?

Tiny, but I'll go for a mal surf if you come 'round for a cuppa tea afterwards.

Ended up having a lovely session to ourselves on a little right, then a couple of others decided to paddle out so we ditched it. Too crowded.

As you can see it was packed.

The other two shots detail the Bell's dunny. (Oz for toilet, toilette en Francaise)

Painted by a local indigenous artist about 10 years ago (at least) it is a testimony to respect on many levels.

Respect for the original inhabitants and their lore.

Respect for the place. At its best a home away from home.

Respect for the artist. Not one piece of grafitti has ever graced it's exterior walls.

Respect for the kids who chose not to. There is hope yet.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Succumbing to the urgings of Sissyfish and Patch, I bought myself (and Joey) a Wacom tablet the other day. I've been mucking about and in a spare moment last night doodled the Fish Guy.

Then I re did him in Illustrator,just to see how he looks. Major homage to Keith Haring as it turns out but... I'm amongst friends.

Mind you, why the hell I'm succumbing to the fish frenzy I'm not sure, but they're such a pretty shape. And I did ride a 5'3" Pavel while on King Island. Now that was an experience....

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Occasional visitors will be aware of my son Tom, he of the reckless nature, trouble on wheels, if fact just plain trouble most of the time. Here he is, a couple of winters back, climbing a beach wall down the coast as we sat wishing the waves were better.

As I remember, he didn't get up to much strife this day... surprisingly.

I love this shot, all exploration, sinew and stilled movement.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Got lucky yesterday.

Did a run down to the island with Richie and scored a lovely 3-4ft left with just us two out, to be joined
later by a couple of other guys. The first was a laid back character that was happy to have a chat and share the very frequent waves.

We were all kicking back and thanking the wave gods.

Then the next guy joins the 'crowd'.

He gets his first wave, hooting loudly and very, very 'up'.

'We've got a live one here' I think to myself.

Next wave he's hooting the same and as I'm paddling back after one I say to the more laid back guy that he may have been ADHD as a child. I say the same to the man himself out the back and he just laughs and says 'I think I still am".

He paddles right up to me, sticks his hand out and says 'Brett'.

"Mick" I return as we shake hands.

"G'day Micky" he roars. "Bloody great waves, ay?"

Damn right they were and we all had a fantastic, happy session, with more than enough waves to go around.

Turns out Brett was a stockman from central Victoria, and a good surf was a rare thing in life at the moment, plus I think the waves were a blessing during tough times as he was having a few relationship problems.

Lovely man, great session.

Richie and I staggered out of the waver after four and a half hours of bliss.

The pics don't do the waves justice, but they give a sense of the day.

And Rich, throwing his tired old arms up, with half the rest of the crowd behind him.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Three years ago right now I was having the time of my life on a boat trip in the islands off Northern Sumatra.

Never have I been so relaxed.

Surf, read, paint, talk, eat, sleep. No hassles, shops, cars, work, deadlines... nothing. Below is my favourite shot of the entire trip. Chris and the crew, loving it.

And one of the little water colours I'd do each night, up on the top deck. This was the last one on the last day of the trip.

Let's hope I can one day show you some new ones from another little adventure, or three.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Ooooooooh I was a bad lad today and did an early run on a Monday morning. I'd done the right thing by hanging around on Fathers Day...while it was 6ft and offshore at Bells.

I'm a good Dad aren't I?

So anyway, Richard Tognetti of Musica Surfica fame, violin god and pretty good bloke is in town for a couple of concerts so we hooked up for a surf and made the run.

Wind stayed in the offshore(ish) quarter for long enough for us to have a few laughs, and I took the happy snapper out stuffed down the front of my wetty.

The results, well, um,,, they're great...aren't they? (Aren't they?)

One is Rich dropping into the only wave he rode that was within shooting distance, two is an accident while duck diving and three is of well, er, um.. a rock.

Hmmmm. Back to work.