My Friend Claire


In the US, summer officially kicks off in the third week of June. The JettyGirl calendar runs on a slightly different schedule though. My summer begins each year when I get the first phone call from my favorite Western Australian, Claire Bevilacqua. Yesterday was that day and I jumped at the chance to meet up with Claire in Newport Beach.

This may end up being incoherent and rambling but here are a few words that pop into my head when I think about Bevo...

RAW: I love that what you see with Claire is what you get. If she's sad, you know. Happy, you know. Irritated, you know. Amped, you know. If my photos stink, she'll tell me. If we score a good one, she'll make me feel like a hero. Maybe it's an Australian thing, I don't know, but what I do know is that Claire's raw honesty makes her refreshing to be around.

REAL: Face it, JettyGirl is not Transworld, Surfer, Surfing, even FOAM for that matter. We don't have their clout and the mainstream advertisers that claim their pages couldn't give two hoots what we're doing. However, when Claire runs across the sand to pass out an authentically warm hug, I don't feel like our little publication is playing second fiddle to anyone. And the "real" thing about Claire is that she'll deal with me wherever, whenever and without regard to who may be watching. I won't name names here but it's incredible how many surf stars act like they're your friend but will turn away from you instantly if "cool" people are around.

PASSIONATE about pushing women's surfing to the next level: So many times when I'm shooting, the surfers seem to have a safe "three to the beach" approach to our photo shoots. While it may be "good" surfing, it's hardly exciting ...I can practically eat a sandwich with one hand and casually shoot away with the other. There's no way I can do that with Claire. The second she stands up and starts generating speed, I'm doing my best to follow focus because I know something amazing is about to take place. I hear a lot of people talk about getting scores, etc. but Claire is the only one I've heard (repeatedly) claiming that she wants to entertain the fans. Claire may or may not ever become world champion, but along with Melanie Bartels and a few others, she has advanced women's surfing in considerably more ways than she's given credit for.

I'm sure there must be a generally accepted maximum word limit to blog-writing so I'll give this entry a rest. I could write a book about my thoughts on Claire but to summarize, in a surf world containing its fair share of phonies and forced-upon-us-flavors-of-the-month, Claire Bevilacqua is the real deal, a superstar and one of my favorite people on the planet.

Worm  – (May 26, 2010 at 6:51 PM)  

claire looks like she is not only pushing it but wants to push her surfing even father all the time.

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Much of the time at JettyGirl, stories and photo galleries arrive more as snippets instead of full-on features. This blog provides a perfect place to give those items a new home. Thank you for your continued support of our little surf mag :)

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