Sunday, March 17, 2013
The Arrival of Approaching Lines
If you dig on the the words/images/movies side of surfing almost as much as you like the act of riding a wave itself - if you have a bedroom chock-full of stacks of old surf magazines and you're reducing your attention span by incessantly goggling 3 minute surfing shorts on the interweb - then this weekend is like waking up to see the first lines of a new swell marching in.
Approaching Lines is a collective of surfers who between them churn out a wide range of words, images, movies, artwork, design and music, headed up by Chris Nelson and Demi Taylor. Chris and Demi are the directors of the London Surf Film Festival, and between them have edited numerous surf magazines and authored a number of books and surf guides (Surfing Europe and Cold Water Souls to name just a couple). They're perfectly placed to craft and collate interesting and relevant content to satiate your appetite for wave riding cultural goodness. As such, I am still bemused as to why they approached me to contribute. I am massively honoured though, and really made up to see my work alongside the work of some really talented people such as Tim Nunn, Mark Leary, Chris McLean and Calum Creasy to name but a few.
The idea, as Chris explained to me, is to create a platform to share the stories of surfing from our corner of the planet with surfers from our corner of the planet, to provide an alternative to the Californian and Australian mouthpieces of surf culture; Stories of surfing that are real, true and accessible rather than sensationalistic or aspirational, and work that transcends the internet, spilling out into printed pages, special events and trips. Here it is in Chris', far more concise and eloquent words:
"Approaching Lines is about ideas – big and small. It’s about the lines we draw in the water, the words we’re compelled to put down, the inspirations and images we want to share. It’s the lines traced on a finger-worn map. It’s about championing creativity, celebrating the makers and the doers; the artists and artisans, the films and filmmakers, the waveriders and purveyors of the glide. It’s the people and places that stoke the fires. Approaching Lines is a chronicle of our times and tides. It’s a haven for tall tales, and home spun yarns, a place to share. You can find us online, or at our regular socials and happenings. And we’re suckers for the smell of the freshly printed page. Above all Approaching Lines is about the stories, the stoke and the surfing."
The site went live a couple of days ago, and there will be new stuff going up all the time so it's one to bookmark and keep checking back on.
The first social event is the Slyder Cup, an annual "friction affliction spring convention" where fins will be off-limits: it'll be all about bodysurfing, mat-surfing, alaias, paipos and laughing and having fun. It'll be going down at Lusty Glaze in Newquay on Saturday April 13th. Bring yourself and something to catch a wave with, there's even a "run-what-you-brung" expression session planned if you want to catch a wave on a fast-food tray or inflatable pool toy.
So stop reading this, click through to Approaching Lines and have a dig around all of the good oil on there already. But please come back to An Tor Orth An Mor next Sunday...