Last year Patagonia commissioned teamrider Reo Stevens to pull together some clips from the world’s best kiteSURFers to demonstrate the sports development in the waves. The response was mindblowing! Over 220k views on Youtube alone, featured on Surfline and other major surf websites and of course showing up throughout the online kiteboarding media. Not surprisingly Patagonia have seen the value in this crossover and asked Reo to go and do it all again. We think it’s a great concept and would love to see it go even deeper. We caught up with Reo to get some behind the scenes info on the project and where it could all be heading…
FKM: This is Kitesurfing (1) got a huge response especially from the surf industry (featured on Surfline and other major surf media). What is the purpose behind “This is Kitesurfing 2”?
Reo: Just to continue the stoke. People from in and out of the industry were really stoked on the first one and I didn’t want that stoke to fade out. After another year of riders getting out there and pushing the limits (like Patri and Jesse at Jaws and Ian’s above the lip tricks) this is just a quick refresher that things are still progressing and guys are still out making the most of marginal conditions.
FKM: Who has supported the production of This is Kitesurfing 1 and 2?
Reo: Firsst and foremost: the riders! Nothing would happen if it wasn’t for them getting out there and pushing whats possible with a surfboard and a kite. Secondly, Patagonia, they love kitesurfing and want to help show how awesome the sport it. Having them involved offers a unique opportunity to showcase the sport and the riding and not the product. The majority of movies you see put out there, although sick and have good riding, they are put out there to push the companies riders and the companies products. This isn’t what these clips are about, they are about showcasing the best riding in the kiteSURFing discipline and Patagonia has fully supported me in that fact. If you look, most of these riders have nothing to do with Patagonia, most actually ride for someone else, but they are at the top level of the sport and thus are include in the clip. I’d like to point out, there are a lot of really good riders out there and not all of those riders who deserve to be in the clip are included. I simply created the best clip I could to showcase the sport in the best light with the footage and connections I have.
FKM: Patagonia have been great supporters of this project and your own efforts to take Kitesurfing forward. How can the sport as a whole capture this kind of support from a wider range of companies? How could the brands in the industry do more to expose the sport in the right light to surfers facing summer months filled with blown out afternoons at their locals?
Reo: Hard to say how to attract more outside industry companies as most are doing their best to stay afloat in their own industry. It’s hard for most to think about taking a risk in something they don’t know much about. Riders just need to keep going out and doing what they are doing; ripping waves apart. Things will progress naturally from there, people will catch on and if they don’t, it was never for them.
FKM: Part of the success with these clips has been the involvement of so many leading riders, how do you bring together their footage so effectively?
Reo: I am lucky enough to call everyone involved a friend so we work together easily. Most of us are slackers (we are surfers/kiters afterall) but when the swell drops things will eventually get done and if the footage is good, the edits come easy.
FKM: Any chance of a full length movie along these format lines coming out?
Reo: Maybe, we’ll see how this one does and go from there…
FKM: Thanks and good luck, we hope it goes well and we can see more of this quality kiteSURF content out there as it keeps everyone psyched to keep pushing forward! Keep up the great work!