Girl surf.

I was sent this link in an email the other day (thanks Ben!)

I'm never sure whether to pop these things up, because I try not to support industry stuff too much, but the way this is put together is pretty cool. It's dynamic and interesting and really highlights the surfing over, well, you know. I mean there's still lots of bikinis etc and as you can imagine, there is a lot more I could say, but I kind of have something percolating, so I might wait and see if I get time to think it through properly. For now, see what you reckon...

Leave A Message Trailer from Nike 6.0 on Vimeo.


  1. The standard of surfing in this looks pretty high, but if female pro-surfers ever want to be taken seriously all this prancing round in bikinis has got to stop!

  2. PS. I wouldn't call myself a feminist or anything, but I'm getting increasingly disenchanted with the way women are perceived and portrayed in the surfing media - I was so angry when I saw the video advertising Surfer Magazine's bikini issue but I couldn't really express why!

  3. Fantastic! Just tearing the waves apart like some blokes do and a lot of other blokes wish they could do!I Do we insist the guys stop wearing just their boardies before they are taken seriously too! Just a thought!

  4. Yeah. It gets complex, doesn't it!

    The surfing in this looks amazing, but I'll admit to finding the bikini thing distracting. But then, surfing in a bikini only is wonderful (although I'm more of a one-piece lady these days!).

    It's hard to know how to talk about these things without implicating the girls too harshly, which they don't deserve. My problem with it, is that it is a rare production which uses women in wetsutis even. For example, a guy asked to photo a group of girlfriends of mine who surf. When they agreed and tried to make a date, he tried to make them wait til summer "That way we can just get you in your swimmers". The girls turned him down entirely.

    The problem here isn't that girls are photgraphed in their swimmers, but that when the girls are always in their swimmers, the footage becomes about MORE than their surfing. The only reason it hasn't been an issue for guys in their boardies is that they like to assume that the dudes around them are hetero and won't desire them. In this way, their bodies - what they look like, what people thin about them - aren't as sexualised. But watch the reactions when they find out someone's not straight! It's like they're under attack, which is equal parts hilarious, horrifying and pathetic.

    In the end, it's about what gets valued and normalised. For women, what's 'normal' as a surfer is to be blonde, long-haired, feminine, slim and bikini-clad. That's great! But show me the magazines and films where women and girls who don't fit in with this are featured? Guys are valued on HOW they surf, not so much how they look (although, of course, it can play a part), whereas women face huge barriers to sponsorhip adn thus competition based on their looks - their bodies and their body-types are always a consideration.

    Like I said in this post, I've been thinking a LOT about this stuff, but I don't think I've quite found the words to explain myself very well. I've been putting off writing about these things (bodies, bikinis, sexualisation, surfing, media etc) because I am totally implicated in it too - in the ways I personally read and respond to these images and ideas, and the ways that they personally affect me and my body-image. I find it hard to thnk through my own connections, frustrations, experiences and self-consciousness to get some handle on the ideas as a whole. I'm not proud of admitting that, but I'm also unwilling to pretend it isn't so.

    Gosh, that got long-winded!


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