At the start of the 2015/16 season we saw a swell coming through and it was the first big swell of the season. At that time Tom Butler was staying in Bundoran and we liaised with eachother and decided to go out and id try get shots of him and the crew catching waves.
On one of the first waves of the session was Frank Solomon and I was out of position. Local surfer and rescue driver Dylan Stott was driving the Ski and after Frank's wave drove the ski to a different spot just in time to connect with Tom on this wave.
It was a surreal event as I have spent hundreds of hours shooting the waves with blips of success and many times without. But to get this shot right off the bat, on the first proper sesion of the season was something else.
I never realized at the time but this shot strengthened many friendships, careers and created much competition amongst athletes and photographers alike. It also led Tom, myself and good friend Epic Eric to go to the XXL big wave awards in LA.
Ill never forget it and it is by far one of the best shots ive ever taken.
Flying into LA. A few more buildings than Bundoran!
When I found out that my picture of Tom Butler was nominated for the Pure Scot Barrel of the year award I wasnt sure if I could make it.
I chatted with my good friend Epic Eric and we decided to do a strike mission to LA.
The first day there we went to the awards and got to meet some surf legends like Bruce Irons, Shane Dorian and many more.
We spent a couple days cruising around LA, catching waves at a few beaches and checking out the well known tourist spots like Hollywood, Huntington, and Venice beach. If it wasnt for Eric I wouldnt have been able to make the trip and we had a great time on our very short time in LA. Thanks Also to big wave legend Will Skudin for showing us some cool spots too.
The XXL Big Wave Surf awards was held at Anaheim Arena. All the legends of the sport were there. It was a glitzy event.
Meeting Bruce Irons.
Mullaghmore being represented. Emily Winch, Tom Butler, myself and Eric Kazmierczak.
Spent the day cruising Los Angeles.
We visited Surf Prescriptions Doc Lausch and picked up a few boards for the Bundoran crew. Doc lent us a board and we caught a few waves at one of the local spots. Thanks Doc!!
Found some waves at Venice Beach, but we were just looking. After this it was back to the airport for the return to sunny Ireland.
Big thanks to Epic Eric and the epic crew who have supported me in the tough times and the good ones.