Thursday, October 21, 2010

One of Many Hats

Back in the 90's, I organized an annual bodyboard contest called the Summer Slam. My friends and I ran that for 13 years! I couldn't believe it either!

This summer while shooting down in my hometown of IB, Katy (Katy's Cafe head honcho) mentioned that she wanted to put something together for the local groms. I immediately said, let's do it. This was right before I took off on my summer trips. So when I returned, Katy and I got the ball rolling.

The Warm Up, went down this past Saturday and it was awesome. It was purposely arranged to go down one day before the infamous Dempsey contest. It was to get the groms mentally and physically ready for that particular comp. Great turn out and great people made the Warm Up cool. The morning of the event brought back a ton of memories from the Summer Slam days. Here's a quick list why the event is one to attend in 2011:
-It's free to enter.
-It's for groms only (16 and under).
-Surf, Bodyboard, Girls divisions.
-BBQ after the event at Katy's Cafe.
-Every finalist walks away with prizes and cool trophy.
-Did I say FREE to enter? Oh yeah, I did.

Katy texted me yesterday and insisted that I check out and read the cool articles that Khari wrote on the event. Cool video too. Check it out:

Khari Story:

"What did he just say about 10 wave maximum?"

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

HD Pro Films Gathering

As you may or may not know, I have a Canon 7D. This bad boy has full HD video capabilities and I feel like I've been ignoring this feature like a red-headed step child. I've done a few video gigs in the past month but I really haven't spent any time on the video side of the 7D. After attending last night's cool HD video gathering, I may have to dive into the video side of things a little more.

Last night, Robert from HD Pro Films organized a gathering for anyone to attend. It was free and it was cool to see what the five or so vendors had to offer. And I have to give credit to Robert... he knew how to attract the flies to the sweets... FREE PIZZA!

Below is a quick and dirty video that I pieced together from the gathering. I used my Canon point and shoot to capture the footage. No tripod, no script... just your good old fashion blog style video.

Before you check the video, I want to say thanks again to Robert. Without his enthusiasm for video, the gathering wouldn't have happened. Also, Todd isn't the man behind the video compartment of SGA. In fact, Todd Lynch is the Producer/Director of Wind An Sea Studios and will be heading the video department at ASG (Action Sports Group). You'll know why I had to mention that after you see the video. Remember, no script.

Couple more shout outs:
-Frank Castillo from was cool to talk to and let me in on some industry secrets.

-Bernie Keach from Marshall Electrontics ( for selling me on the cool ass 5" LCD monitor for the DSRL video peeps. This will definitely be my next purchase.

-Bill McClelland from Steadicam for jumping for me. That was cool.

-Eric Lingle from for talking surfing with me. I was stoked not to be the strictly-industry dude.

Thanks again Robert and hope to see you at the next one!

Check it:

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The New Rig :: Cha Cha

You know that feeling you get once you have that new board in your hands? That's the feeling I got when I bought the GoPro HD video camera off of the infamous Bill Andrews. He had no use for it so he sold it to me at a price I couldn't refuse.

I had a GoPro set up on my old SPL housing. It was a first generation GoPro with standard definition. Now, holy crap, I've got the unreal colors and speed of the Canon 7D AND the wide angle HD video of the GoPro... all in my right hand! I would like to introduce you to... Cha Cha.

She's beautiful. Great curves, has two eyes staring you down, she likes to get close to you and is always down to put out... great photos and videos, that is. After a day of bringing her to life, today was the first day I had Cha Cha take a dip with me in the ocean. We headed out at to the reefs together and hung out with a few cool surfers. Cha Cha was comfortable and was easy to manuever through the water and waves. I just have to remember to press her buttons before each wave. The GoPro was set on Standard Def today but will have it on HD in the next sessions.

Got home and... unreal! Cha Cha performed perfectly! I can't wait for a sunny day and have her set to HD. I'll stick to HD 720 at 60 fps once the sun is out. That is unless it's going off, then I'll switch to full HD 1080p.

My only concern is not a major one. Now that I've added another 3 inches to the top of the housing, I have to be aware that I don't ruin the barrel photos by holding the housing to high in the tube. I noticed a few splash drops on a couple empty barrel shots today. Other than that... be ready to have Cha Cha dish out HD video along with the high rez photos on La La...

To see the first round of the new rig, check out my photo session from this morning:

Now who's ready! Look at that thing of beauty. Cha Cha is alive!

I hope my Mexican ingenuity doesn't go south on me (gulp)!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Secret Ceviche Sanctuary

Most, if not all, ocean lovers will always enjoy a delicious serving of ceviche. According to, ceviche is described the dish, "typically made from fresh raw fish marinated in citrus juices such as lemon or lime and spiced with chilli peppers." Wow, Wiki is wicked! They got it right on the dot. But not every ceviche is spiced before serving. You usually add your own hotness to it on your own. Either way, it is something that everyone should try at least once. And the chances of you getting hooked, pretty frickin' good.

Well, for those of you that live in the south bay of San Diego, I've got a treat for you... Fruitlandia! Located on University just west of the 15 highway in City Heights, is a secret little Juice Bar that serves up some of the best ceviche I've had this side of the border. My wife and I have been shelling out for Fruitlandia's ceviche for the past few months and we are never disappointed. I'll let you in on a little secret. Order your ceviche tostada to go. We think you get more ceviche than you would if you ordered to eat in. You can still unpack it and eat in the shop, no problem. And for under 3 bucks, you get a ton!

If you're in the area or if you want to make the drive for some tasty ceviche, head over to Cherokee and University and visit Fruitlandia! Oh yeah... don't forget the fresh juices, smoothies and fruit salads! Oh man, this place will rock your boat.

You can't miss the Mexi influence of the neighborhood. 

Order up!

My wife and I split an order of three and that's plenty!
Check them out on Yelp:

Friday, October 1, 2010

September Photo Contest Winner

September's Photo Contest winner is Willie Barrio. Willie is a fellow photographer from the east coast. He sent in a cool bodyboarding photo of JB Hillon from a recent comp at Jenkinsons Beach in New Jersey. Congrats to you both. Willie walks with two exclusive Cabo Freak Fest 2010 tshirts and a book on Cabo. Score!

Be sure to give Willie a call if you're up in his area for photo shoot:

JB Hillon doing his thang.

October's Photo Contest Winner will walk with the goods on the left. Spy sunglasses and a bottle opener that I got down in Cabo. Follow my blog, send in your photo and you'll be in the running to win the goods!