Hey Kate! Thanks for taking the time to speak with us today. We have seen you do so many cool things with the surfing scene here in the Charleston area. Your painting series, Animal Shred, is so unique. You capture surfers natural movements on a wave and can see an animal’s natural movement from the same pose or form. We have seen you in competitions, such as the Folly Beach Wahine Classic. You also serve the coldest beer on the island at Drop In Deli, while promoting Roots Hummus at the same time. What don’t you do?
Tell us a little about yourself: I'm 27 and was born in New Orleans. When I was younger we moved all over the Southeast as my dad moved up the ladder in his job and eventually ended up in Clover, SC (the town with love in the middle :)). I spent a lot of my teenage years climbing and whitewater kayaking which lead me to apply for a college near the mountains. Unfortunately I was a goof in high school and was rejected by Clemson which brought me to my second choice The College of Charleston where I studied Geology. The greatest science on the planet .
When were you first introduced to surfing? I was introduced to it in high school but it didn't win me over. I guess the rivers inland were way easier to read.
Who taught you to surf? Jenny Brown taught me to surf in February of 2008, she was 4 months pregnant with Georgia. To this day I'm grateful for this wonderful teacher in and out of the water.
Is your family involved in surfing? Now they are .
What was your first board? Haha, a 6'2" Spyder Murphy shred stick that I had no business learning to surf on.
What do you like to ride today? Thats a big question, theres so many variances in design that offer such cool and unique experiences. It comes down to what kind of conditions are out there. Sometimes I really like feeling my longboard in big, clean surf because I enjoy the challenge of trimming on a faster wave. At the same time I feel like a retriever going bonkers at a duck hunt on a fish in the same conditions.
Who’s your favorite shaper? Richard Prause is a wizard.
What introduced you to videography? My college sweetheart.
When did you become involved in surfing? February 2008 I dove in headfirst.
What surfers inspire you? Derek Hynd, Steph Gilmore, Rasta, Leah Dawson, all the ladies of Folly, and definitely Craig Anderson (yowza).
What locations did you shoot for Ear to Ear? Florida, Jamaica, and Folly.
How long did you work on the film for? I only had 5 months to work on the film.
There is a scene in Ear to Ear where you are riding Carver skateboards. How do Carvers help you with your surfing? (We love them!)
Carvers are the tits...I find they help a lot with shoulder and hip alignment while gaining speed.
Your soundtrack choice was awesome! Our favorite was the Dean Martin song that says, “just a little bit south of North Carolina, I found paradise”. That’s why we live here! You even had a French song in there that went perfectly with the black and white footage.
I'm stoked everyone dug the soundtrack. Music is critical for my overall enjoyment of a surf film and I chose the music carefully. A lot of songs came to me in various ways. It was a very cool experience hearing the songs and having new images appear in my head. The music gave me the story that should be told through the surfers.
What are your goals for film making?
My goal for filmmaking is to involve as many talented, idealistic, creative, good folk from our area in a collaborative effort to make films. Films with simple plots envisioned with the sole purpose of having left the viewer feeling glad.
Any future films in the works?
I am very stoked to say "yes"! Holy smokes I cannot wait to see what happens. I'm currently working on the business side of making a film and have started an LLC called Rabbit Hole Media but there is a storyboard, there is a grant being written, there are surfers waiting for the call when the right swell comes, there is a very talented and all around rad cinematographer that I'm looking forward to working with! I could go on :)
Long story short...give me two years and there will be another film. I'm going to pour all of my being into this one.
How are you associated with Roots Hummus?
I love their hummus. I love it so much that I e-mailed them and asked for a product sponsorship. They replied months later asking what exactly that meant. After explaining it they thought it was a great idea and started sponsoring me. It’s been very awesome representing something made with good intention that just so happens to be delicious. The beautiful Jenn Dakor, who plays a big role keeping the company together, actually ended up moving down here shortly after they started sponsoring me. So no we can get hummus on the fly ;)
Have you ever bought a used surfboard before? If so, tell us the pros and cons of shopping for used gear.
YES! Holy smokes, practically every board I owned for the first 5 years or so of surfing was used. I wouldn't spend more than $300 on a board for a while.
PROS of a used board: They don't break the bank, your keeping a bunch of toxic fiberglass and foam out of a landfill for a few more years, you can paint all over them, riding used sometimes older, heavy equipment can occasionally make you a better surfer because you're learning to work with its flaws...it’s all you got, there is joy in extending a boards life and taking it to new breaks, you don’t get stomach knots when it’s dinged up, and in addition to that used boards are great victims for practicing ding repair.
CONS: There is nothing like the feeling of a new surfboard...especially one shaped by Richard Prause.
What do you like about Shred Season?
You can't sell used boards unless you really understand the need for them and Shred Season has compassion for the needs of the surfer on both ends of the deal and of the board.
Any shoutouts? Jenny Brown! Thank you for teaching me to surf. I'll never forget the day and I'm overwhelmed at where the lifestyle has taken me. Will Smith (the white one)! Thank you for your beautiful love. Makenna Perry! Greatest friend on this side of the Universe (Pluraverse)!
How can people follow you (Instagram, FB etc)? Instagram: @kbtini
Where can we watch “Ear to Ear”? On Vimeo, yew!! https://vimeo.com/171469284
Thanks Kate! See you in the lineup!