surfin'

a film by martyn randles made for the Extreme Winter Sports Vimeo Weekend Project.

I remember listening to The Beach Boys on the radio as a young boy & thinking what is surfing? As the years passed & I played & played the songs I kept thinking what is surfing more & more. I needed to know. I vaguely remember being in the Childrens Library with my mum & asking the lady there if she had any books about surfing. She took me into the adults Library where I got my hands on the encyclopaedia of surfing, a big book for a young mind. It changed my life & I decided that I was going to surf one day. Years passed & I'd only been able to body surf once in North Wales. Until, aged 18 I finally managed to get my hands on two short boards from PJ's surf shop on the Gower. I'd always wanted to be a long boarder but I couldn't drive & so needed short boards so I could get them on the train, then bus, then hike to Hell's Mouth North Wales. It was something like 11 hours to get to the beach back then.

I'll never forget my 1st wave, I was on a 6'2" Cool Change, shaped by the man i bought it off, PJ. While my cousin David rode my 6'3" Wave Graffitti. I remember hearing Brian Wilson's music in my mind while I hung on for dear life. Stoked & hooked I knew I'd made the right choice as a young boy.

I owe the most gratitude to the boy I was. The ideas formed there simply grew & blossomed. I vividly remember playing with an old super8mm camera with no film in it as a young boy too. Thinking when I'm bigger I'm going to make films. I remember thinking as a young boy looking at my 3 or 4 string six string guitar & thinking one day I'm going to learn how to put some strings on you, tune you & then dedicate my days to learning you...thanks again little marty it would have been a shame if I'd ignored you. The seeds you planted in my mind as a young boy blossomed & brought me more joy than you could have imagined. Don't worry the feature film's on it's way, then I'll grow that big beard you wanted ;)

Somedays you really need to go surfin' to wash away the world around you, re-energise the soul, forget the worries & think of nothing but catching a wave...maybe.

Saturday 28th Jan was one of the day's where I not only really needed to get in the sea but I also had the added stress of having to film the whole session & catch the 1st wave. Surfing turned a bad day into the best, with the added bonus of making me happy & giving me the final footage I needed. It's also the 1st time I've ever pointed the camera at myself in the sea. I've always been more interested in filming the wave...

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...so...
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...awesome, I thought when I read the message for the Vimeo Weekend Project. Extreme winter sports...I'll have me some of this! I'd already planned to film some test surf footage over the course of the 1st weekend to test out some multi camera shots that I'm planning for a feature I'm (fingers crossed) shooting over the next year...or so. So, when I read the group message I decided, after laughing that if I shot 2 mins of footage from the time my toes hit the sand I'd not reach the sea at low tide. Which then, luckily, made me decide to film on as many cameras at once (sadly I could only use 4), and attempt to capture everything involved in trying to make a 2 minute surf film. & for fun & added extra pressure I decided to use the 1st wave footage no matter how bad it was.

The 1st weekend's footage (17 films) edited & exported throughout the week gave me plenty of time to capture the 2nd weekend's surf footage & time to think about the audio. Luckily there was an extension on this project or I'd not have been able to include the shots of me catching my 1st wave since I injured my ribs in November, & the guitar piece simply couldn't have been made on any other day.

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Filmed on:

Friday 20th Jan - night bike shots to check out surf & get forecast.

Saturday 21st Jan - bike shots to beach & the bulk of the surf footage.

Thursday 26th Jan - I wrote & recorded the guitar piece "esplanade cruiser" for the film while watching the working edit to date & recorded the track straight onto my iPod using my bro Jon's Nokia headphones & his guitar (thanks Jon I literally couldn't have made & uploaded this film without your help). I pretty much always leave the music right until the last day, but, on this day I needed to play the guitar & this piece came out of nowhere (with a little help from a muse).

Saturday 28th Jan - my 2 mins of surfing footage, filming an entire session with Billy (thanks for surfing with me mate, & for the lift up & down the hill).

Saturday 28th & Sunday 29th Jan - Final edits & upload.

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Cameras used:
Canon 500D, GoPro HD Hero, Oregon Scientific (SD) helmet cam, Samsung miniDV...& a couple or three stills on my LG phone.

Edited on:
Apple iMac using Final Cut Express 4
G4 Powerbook using iMovie
acer Aspire One using Windows Live Movie Maker

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Having read this back it sounds like this film was really easy to make. Trust me, it was a nightmare, i've hardly slept, I'm exhausted but, I'm really happy with this film. I feel it more than covers my interpretation of the extreme winter sports weekend project brief.

Shot on location in Woolacombe & Mortehoe Devon.

Made by me to make you smile ;)

martyn xxx

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