Posts Tagged ‘Coastal Classics’

A California Opus

Saturday, July 9th, 2011
Napa Orange Gold

Napa Orange Gold

Chapter 5 in the California Series.

I have not always lived in California. My Dad was going to college on the GI Bill in Milwaukee Wisconsin, at Marquette University. I had never asked him why, being from Hawaii, he chose the Mid West. He met my Mother there. That was where my two Brothers and I were born.

We were sick a lot as infants. The family pediatrician had told my parents that our Hawaiian genetics may have been to blame, as we did not tolerate the cold of  hard, Midwestern Winter very well. In fact, I ended up in the hospital. I remember the experience vividly. It was a bleak time of laying in an oxygen tent in a ward, and staring out a third floor hospital window, looking at the City, watching.

Eventually, the family moved to California where my Father explored his career as an Engineer. My parents bought a home in Whittier California.  The design of the first computer, as well as launch of the Space program, became a regular part of our household, via my Dad’s work.

In some ways, we were healthier in the warmer climate of California. However, a problem arose. I developed allergies. Those caused a lack of energy, and attendant respiratory problems. I began getting injections twice a month (one in each arm), which helped alleviate the symptoms. I still get a phantom muscle ache, when I think about those shots.

I recall days where one could not see the nearby foothills, which created the basin in which Whittier is located, such was the density of the smog prevalent in California in the 1960’s. It had been around this time that the massive citrus groves disappeared from the area, being replaced by housing tracts and strip malls. Part of a methodical, concreting over of the Los Angeles area.

I was already a swimmer at this point, having learned to bodysurf, ride foamies, and inflatable mats, at the beaches in and around Newport, Huntington, Palos Verdes and South Bay. I swam for a local AAU team. But those allergies were a persistent problem. The only time I had true respite, was when we were at the beach.

Due to my diminutive size, and sort of sickly nature, my parents decided that I needed to wait to get a surfboard. By this point, it had been a topic of discussion for a couple years. But my water activities, which included fishing and diving, kept me pretty busy.

I craved those idyllic long days at the beach. I have fond memories of ten hour days in the water,  a piece of chicken, or a few rice balls, snatched on the run, from the picnic lunch my Mom would have made, very early that morning, as she loaded up the white 1955 Chevy wagon, for the long (to me) drive to the beach. I had fallen for California.

Timeline

Timeline

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Sliding into 2011: Year in Pictures

Friday, December 31st, 2010

Golden Reflection

Golden Reflections

This link is to a new piece by Zuri Star called Keep Holding on. It fits the New Year quite well.

It seems that all around us this past year there was friction. In fact, I found myself enmeshed in three massive battles, all at the same time. I did not author those. I simply said “no” to three entities I saw as abusive of my fellow man, community and Ocean Environment.

friction |ˈfrik sh ən|
noun
the resistance that one surface or object encounters when moving over another : a lubrication system that reduces friction.
• the action of one surface or object rubbing against another : the friction of braking.
• conflict or animosity caused by a clash of wills, temperaments, or opinions : a considerable amount of friction between father and son.

So as we close out 2010 here are a few things to lubricate the road ahead.

A fantastic treatise on “love”, from the eyes of babes.

How to change the world completely, one girl at a time: The Girl Effect.

Beauty that matters. Sent along by Fernando Ismerio. A stunning high speed (slow motion) look at the oceans.

Seth Godin on 2011

Best to use lubrication when you have something big to move.

Because as it stands, anything worth attaining must overcome the things that impede progress and the only lubricant that sustains that in our lives is love.

Perfect love casts out all fear. (John 4:18) Fear is a mind killer

Easily said.

Lubricate.

Do it.

The images below are a small selection that are my Year in Pictures gallery. Click on any of them to toggle through as a slide show. I am stunned at what I managed to produce in motion and in stills with the Canon 5d Mark 2 system. 3 Music videos. 2 reality show teasers. 6 commercial Photography campaigns. 18 editorial features, and a book and six covers. Then there is all the random wonderfulness below.

High Art

Saturday, October 16th, 2010
Concept

Concept

There is a friend of mine, Joe Cardella, who has coined a phrase: “Art Saves Lives”

When looked at sideways you can truly understand that statement.

However, approach it with logical pragmatism and you will in fact, experience NO magical transformation in your life at all.

The reason for this is because the human heart establishes parameters that allow for a daily experiential flow that keeps everything in a predictable array of experience.

What this does is to allow for order.

It has long been said that genius borders on madness.

Well, high Art endeavors to lift Man into the realm of the Divine. It does so by enabling, via lateral thinking,  a skirting of the modus that keeps us locked in to the established rythmn of society and culture.

Is that a good thing?

Of course it is. Because it will implant the light of hope.

We all need hope to survive.

My Art is life, and all about encouraging people to embrace it.

This week I have Art showing at Couch in Santa Barbara on Ortega Street. The show is entitled “Gaviota Nude” and is an homage to the Chumash settled coastline where I grew up. The gallery owner is Michelle. Go see it if your are in Santa Barbara. It is inspiring.

I also have work showing at J’s on Main St in Ventura, and Betty B in Ventura as a part of the Ventura Artwalk.

Shows are something rather new for me. Though I have been in some rather prestigious venues around the world, I have at the behest of my friend and colleague, Robb Havassy,  and my girlfriend Donna Von Hoesslin, begun to show more. Why? Because it can help people.

Think of me as your neighborhood evangelist. But I am at your door to tell you that there are a wealth of experiences awaiting you.

Jesus will save your soul.

Art can save your life.

Build it.

Go.

The gallery below was shot in the Seychelles, the Maldives, Hawaii, and at home, in Ventura, California.

If you would like to purchase work, I hate to say this, but I really sell nothing. I am always away working. But any of the above three venues can help you, OR go to http://hookupusurf.com/, Waveriders Gallery, Pi Studios, Corbis Images, keyword David Pu’u, or by contacting Donna at Surfchick @ Mac.com. Soon you will also be able to see my work via Coastal Classics at any surfshop near you on apparel, and fine canvas and plexiglass strata prints.

Coastal Classics Are No Accidents

Monday, September 6th, 2010
Pierpont Bay, Ventura, Ca.

Pierpont Bay, Ventura, Ca.

A lot goes on in the creation of a commercial production shoot. This one developed over a relatively long period of time. Recently, almost by chance I had reconnected with an old colleague and friend, Glenn Gravett, who I had met when we both worked designing my own company apparel and surfboard art, decades ago.

Glenn and I share much in common, having been raised on the same stretch of coastline, and share similar passions for the Ocean and Art.

Over a period of months, I had been invited to sit in and contribute to a series of product development meetings, where I discovered that Glenn was at the helm of a fantastic crew of artists, all of whom I had admired for quite some time. People like Meegan Fiori, Ron Croci, Wade Koniakowski, Rietveld, etc….

One day Glenn casually asked me if I would like to be the featured Artist for the company he worked for, Coastal Classics, which is headed up by Thom Hill.  Not thinking anything other than I really like Glenn, and that we would get to be around each other, I said sure yea, in a very nonchalant fashion. I was so casual about it, (and somewhat clueless) that Glenn knew to take me aside and explained : “Dave, this is  sort of a Big Deal. People look and wait for years for this. Look at who we have in our lineup.”  I did. Gulp. “Wow and you guys want ME?”

I laughed. But inside, it was game on. I had a close look at the company and artists. A chat with my colleague and friend Robb Havassy, confirmed it all. Better pay attention. I would be engaging and creating imagery with some of the cream of popular culture’s Art crop.

Great artists are funny. I have found that frequently, they are so understated, that human nature causes them to be overlooked. Havassy is like that. So much so, that I almost did not get my work to him in time for his remarkable book, Surf Story.

Glenn is like that. So is Thom Hill. So are ALL of the Coastal Classics people. It seems that somehow, I was being drawn right back into the vortex from which my photography had arisen decades ago, that of drawing, painting and the traditional craft of the working Artist.

So when Thom casually asked if I would be interested in doing a little catalog work for them, I agreed with a simple: “Yeah that would be nice”, and began doing my homework. In a down economy Coastal Classics is growing. As a company grows, it has certain requirements to embrace it’s historic modus, (those things that created forward momentum in the first place), yet morph into what it needs to become, in order to compete in the marketplace.

This week, in a commercial space that is to be the Coastal Classics art production location in Ventura, California, I loaded in my production equipment, assembled a group of my own creatives under the direction of Thom, and Glenn, and Sarah Lubeck, the Coastal Classics artist director, and went at it. The shoot was originally scheduled to be for two days with an additional day safety if needed.

We completed principal photography in twelve hours. I did  16 different set ups.  We shot in three locations, and produced both catalog and branding imagery that featured many of the artist’s work, I had admired for so long.

Primarily using continuous lighting, and Canon’s 5D Mark 2 system, I was able to created a rich tableau of work in 1854 shutter actuations. We drove nowhere. This was shot in my home town. We walked from our studio (I jogged) to the beach and Thom, Donna, Glenn and I simply just had a nice little casual golden hour evening down on the pier and at Surfer’s Point, much as all of us do on any given day here in Ventura.

There is no place like home, and the charm and allure of a small town. Ventura has been wonderful that way. In spite of what appear to be some onerous changes to the nature of this place on the horizon, this shoot was all home town charm.

This once again illustrated the importance of planning, connection, friendship, trust and vision to me.

That is how forward occurs.

My fabulous crew were:

Chris Jensen, Photographer and first assistant, Donna Von Hoesslin, Stylist, Angela Izzo second assistant and production assistant with the super quiet and uber efficient, Rachel Evans doing principal hair and makeup.

Models were Gabe Witmer, Marie Avery, Jeanette Ortiz, Hailey Partridge, and the Hill kids. (Yep, Thom’s kids rock.)

Well, since it is Labor day and I am actually ( as is the tradition with many of us)  laboring,  I reckon that I should share Seth Godin’s take on the meaning of modern craftsmanship with you all.

The following image gallery is a small, unfinalized sample cull from the 360 image final file. Art defines culture. It is a privilege to be able to engage in that as a craft.

© 2009 David Pu'u. All rights reserved.

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