My parents moved to California when I was four. It was at that time when I saw my first surfer gliding to shore on the South Side of the Manhatten Pier. We lived in a walk up a couple blocks from the beach. I have no idea why a four year old would retain such sharp memories. I can only assume he was getting his foundation tutored to him by the land and sea.
In the years since, I have seen a LOT of change in this State. My understanding of the place comes from a deep connection to our ocean based culture here in California, and is rooted in my genesÂ and experiences acquired while running and founding a plethora of businesses as well as my current career as a commercial and editorial Photographer, Writer and Film Maker.
This is the first in a series of blogs that will examine my home. California: land of the warmly toned sun rise and yes, sun set. She is struggling a bit more than other places right now. So I thought that maybe a look from my perspective may be a good thing to proffer. It is a very beautiful place.Â Most of the time.
“A Day at the Beach”
In the late fifties and sixties, it was the allure of California Beach Culture that drew people from all over the US, to California. The promise of sun, sand, surf, freedom and a burgeoning economy, were this brilliant siren song that caused us to eventually become the 7th largestÂ economic entity in the world.
The State utilized the talent and passion of that large influx of people, seeking golden shores and fair weather, to build all manner of things.
People needed jobs, so they set about designing and assembling the accoutrements of what would eventually affect the popular culture of the globe.
One of those funny little projects, which was manufactured both in Oakland and Van Nuys, was the Corvair. The Euro styled little car was designed as the answer to the VW Beetle and Renault. It soon disappeared into a sort of time warped oblivion as a mainstream effort. Big block V8 muscle cars of the day, took advantage of an abundance of cheap fuel and the need to haul families around in a little bigger vehicle, and became the design direction to be followed.
Here is a great little piece on the Corvair by Jay Leno. I find people like Jay, one of the better, and more enjoyable aspects of Californian popular culture.
California has always set trends. The Corvair was decades ahead of itâ€™s time.
And the fashion, which has arisen as a result of surfing and our beach lifestyle, quite frankly, is stronger and more influential now than ever before.
Deep Magazine recently offered me the chance to do a swimwear shoot. The theme was up to me. My answer was to hearken back to what made our Fashion develop and endure, our State grow and flourish, and what today, still offers a laundry list of assets that continue to lure: the California Coast, a rich and beautiful Ocean, pretty girls, and lots of laughter, fun, and our own, very unique lifestyle.
A day at the beach is almost always pretty special. I bet just reading this, you will recall some of yours.
Seth Godin has this to say about being an exceptional brand. For that is what California really is: a brand.
Click on any of the images below to toggle through as a slide show.
The “Models” are all surfers. But why wouldn’t they be?
Hans Rathje, Lars Rathje, Ruby Kernkamp, Jentry Huntington, Taylor Bruynzeel, Alma Billgren
Assts: Joshua Pu’u: 1st , Angela Izzo, 2nd and 2nd camera, Dante Sigismonde 3rd
Stylist: Donna Von Hoesslin
Car wrangler, owner, camera car operator: Keith Huot
Project Coordinator: Andres Nuno for Deep Magazine