It’s always a good thing when a camera company calls you up and wants to give you some lenses to have. All photos by Jack English.
Archive for the ‘Jack English’ Category
Told by photographer Jack English.
It was the morning of October 23, 2007. Winds reaching up to 85mph and approximately 1,000,000 people had to evacuate their homes, the largest evacuation in California’s history. My emotions we’re in a weird place this day. I was up early to do my job and that was to shoot surf photos. I went straight to Torrey Pines knowing that was a great place when the winds are howling offshore. Once I arrived to the beach at around 6:30 in the morning it looked like something out of a movie. The sky was so covered with smoke and the sun was just rising which added a much more mystique look. The surf was around 4-5ft. I phoned Joel Tudor knowing he lived minutes away and the surf was great for longboarding.
Waiting for Joel to show up knowing good and well he will be late I phoned him again, get down here now I insisted. The lighting is something I had never seen. My intentions were to photograph Joel with the smoke in the background. Waiting and waiting for Joel I noticed alot of people at the beach for how early it was. Here it’s 6:30 and the parking is full and people are on the beach and in and around their cars.
I met this guy who tells me he is from Ramona and that all the counties inland were evacuated by the authority’s and everyone was told to go to the coast. I put on my 16-35mm lens and started shooting. I had just switched at that moment from a “surfing photographer” to a photo journalist within seconds. I remember telling myself what would a National Geographic photographer be doing in my position right now. Here I am at the beach to shoot a pro surfer and then I have all these stranded people all around me. I wasn’t excited being around all these people who are freaking out and are grieving over their homes possibly being lost to the fires. I noticed I was the only photographer around and with Joel not their I just started shooting.
It was so different shooting these type of shots from what I was use to. At a surf contest your battling other photographers for a shot and here I was with nobody else around. It felt to easy to get my own shot cause it was, feeling much like I was the assigned San Diego wildfire photographer for Torrey Pines state beach. Oh yeah, still no Joel Tudor.
By now the wind had kicked in so much it had blown much of the smoke that was overhead out to sea and to the north of us. By the time Joel finally did arrive that “look” was well gone. I wasn’t mad at Joel by any means as I was actually excited that he did take so long knowing I had just shot some pretty historical photos in San Diego.
Joel shows up with a joint dangling from his lips as if nothing is happening. He rolls down his window and without saying a word I take his picture. He clearly sees the waves are good and suits up. My only request to him was not to light his joint until we get to the shoreline. I wanted to take a photo of him smoking with all the smoke in the background.
If I would had gone way, way down towards the south end of the beach I may have been able to get some smoke in the action photos of Joel. Again the smoke was mostly gone by now. Joel caught around 10 waves and we wrapped it up.
Surf Images: Why have you been so obsessed with stationary
Jack English: I don’t know. I have always had a freakish obsession with fonts, materials, artwork, graphics, logos, all of that stuff.
SI: So why don’t you become a graphic artist
JE: Cause I suck at all of it. I have no idea how it all works, but I just love looking at it. Trust me I wish I knew how to do it, or yet maybe not because I would probably be changing my stationary every month. One thing is for sure I don’t use my stationary much anymore. Now we’re well into the digital age of things, things are just sent through the internet and not through the mail.
SI: When you use to send slides to the surf magazines and surfing brands they all knew what package was from you, because you would spray paint the outsides of the envelopes
JE: Your right! That’s funny. I went to Home Depot and bought a bunch of stencils and various colors of spray paint. I laid out all of these over sized envelopes onto the ground and I would just go to town spray painting everyone. I always thought the post office would not deliver my packages, maybe they liked them.
SI: What made you do this
JE: My obsession with just doing it. I just liked it. I then one day found this book called Purple Cow by Seth Godin. It’s a marketing book where Seth said “that the key to success is to find a way to stand out–to be the purple cow in a field”. What he meant by that is if your driving down the road and you see a cow in a field, you think nothing of it. Now what if that cow was purple, you would be tripping out. So I guess I was becoming the purple cow in my photography field. You have to remember that in the slide days the photo editors would receive stacks and stacks of submissions. So if your the photo editor staring at this huge pile of envelopes that all look the same, which one do you think the photo ed was going to reach for first, the one with the spray paint!
SI: Sounds like some surfers we know Ozzie, Donavon, Rasta
JE: Yeah, you can surely say that. Guy’s like Ozzie, Donavon and Rasta have all stood out and even now you have guys like Alex Knost really been the trend leaders of today. One thing is for sure is all these guys can look all different and weird but they rip at surfing. The surfers I can’t stand is the ones that try to dress all weird, but can’t surf. By being bad surfers their trying to make up for it by being on land looking so different that the surf brands like them. Those surfers make me want to puke!
SI: What are your influences on this
JE: Now I look at brands like Nixon, RAEN, and RVCA. To me those three brands have such high quality to everything they do. Theres so much bad stuff out there I am amazed what some people and brands put out there thinking it’s going to work.
JE: I don’t want to name names, cause it’s all subjective. I just don’t like looking at stuff knowing a company has a lot of money but their to cheap to look good or the company think’s they do look good. It’s also such a west coast thing or east coast. What works over there would usually never work over here. The brands expect their product to sell, but their ads, branding, product, website, looks terrible. Just because your not any large brand doesn’t mean you can’t look the part.
SI: Going back to your stationary can you explain
JE: My friend in San Diego was a fashion type photographer and I really liked his website and I asked who had done it. He referred me to the guy named Justin. I met with him in Del Mar and we spoke for about 30 minutes and then he sent me some ideas. In the end he came to the conclusion that I am this photographer who travels the world, so he wanted the stationary to kind of have a little bit of a dirty look to it. Notice the red stamp, he made that more like my own passport stamp.
Have you ever wished you had your own surfing photographer to document you surfing either at your home spot or on some surf destination anywhere in the world? Well now your in luck! Jack English has just launched his newest website titled Surfing Photographer.
A couple questions we copied from his site
Are you available to be hired
Yes, I am available for any photo assignment from any magazine, agency, company along with any individuals that may want to be photographed for there personal use.
Are you available to travel anywhere in the world
Yes, I am available to travel anywhere needed with all expenses paid including but not limited to airfare, hotel and a daily per diem for food.
How much do you charge
For a 2 hour personalized shoot (non-commercial) is $400.00. Each hour thereafter is $150.00 an hour. For international photo shoots, prices vary on how many days needed as well as how many surfers will be involved. Please visit the contact page and fill out the questionnaire and I will reply to you with an estimate.
“We had a group of eight surfers on a boat trip to Indo and we we’re so stoked to have Jack their documenting the entire trip. The images he got of everyone were timeless”.
Surf Photographer Jack English serving San Diego and Orange County’s which consist of Coronado, La Jolla, Pacific Beach, Mission Beach, Torey Pines, Del Mar, Solana Beach, Cardiff By The Sea, Encinitas, Leucadia, Carlsbad, Oceanside, San Clemente, Dana Point, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, Huntington Beach, Bolsa Chica, Seal Beach, Long Beach, Hermosa, Manhattan, El Porto, Play Del Ray, Venice, Santa Monica, Topanga, Malibu, Point Dume, Zuma, Leo Carillo, Port Hueneme, Channel Islands, Oxnard, Emma Wood, Rincon, Santa Barbara, Ventura, Jalama, San Luis Obispo, Pismo, Avila, Morro Bay, Cayucos, San Simeon, Big Sur, Monterey, Carmel, Santa Cruz, San Mateo, Half Moon Bay, Mavericks, San Francisco, Alameda, Marin, Sonoma, Mendocino, Humbolt, and Del Norte.
Jack is also available for any worldwide surf trips to destinations ranging from Mexico, Baja, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Galapagos, Peru, Chile, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Mentawais, Samoa, Sri Lanka, Nicaragua, Sumba, New Caledonia, Bali, Morocco, Brazil, Ecuador, Tahiti, Sumatra, Australia, Java, France, Spain, Portugal, Reunion Island, Puerto Rico, Barbados, Ireland and the Dominican Republic.
On September 29th we posted a free backpack to the person who wrote in to give us some constructive feedback on our site. Mike Witt wrote in and in doing so he has received a new Jack English Surf Explorers backpack. Thanks Mike!
Mike Witt enjoying his new backpack
This backpack available for purchase at Dress Code
Pipeline At Its Biggest, Oahu, North Shore can be ordered here
Waimea Shorebreak, Oahu, Hawaii can be ordered here
Brandee P from Maryland , United States
The Waimea Shorebreak mural was the best thing we did to our nursery. It was easy to install. We have had so many compliments on our nursery. We know it wasn’t something normally done with the chair rail style, but it looks fantastic and breaks up the difference in colors. We even wrapped the switch plate covers with the leftover pieces of mural to give the room a completed look. Thank you very much and we are looking forward to the babies getting older and getting a fire engine scene when we redo their room again.
Debbie J from Hamilton , Bermuda
The Waimea mural looks so beautiful – and it gave my living room the effect that I was looking for. I wanted people to think that they just keep walking and thats the effect that was achieved. Everybody loves it.