A Masterclass In Artful Simplicity - Stab Mag

Live now: How Surfers Get Paid, Season Finale


A Masterclass In Artful Simplicity

Nothing forced, nothing wasted, with Malia Manuel and Morgan Maassen

cinema // Feb 28, 2023
Words by Holden Trnka
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Modern cameras allow anyone with a couple hundred bucks to manufacture a nice image.

Possibly even a compelling video.

But, to create true immersion, to evaporate the separation between screen and receptors, true talent is required. Not just behind the lens, but in front of it as well.

As such, the quadruple-M pairing of Malia Manuel and Morgan Maassen is intoxicating.

We’ll be featuring a full piece with words from Morgan, regarding this film, in the coming week. For now, consume yourself with knock-knees and artfully corrected color, choreographed over scenes of Africa and various archipelagos.

A backlit rail burying of the highest order. Photo by Morgan Maassen

“It was nothing short of a pleasure to hop around the world with Malia, from dancing with Humpback Whales to watching elephants pick fruit from trees in South Africa, sailing through Indian ocean archipelagos and being blistered by winter wind in the Atlantic.

We scored waves of all shapes and sizes, sampled cuisine and smelly taxi rides across multiple continents, surfed in the belting rain and counted bands on poisonous sea snakes… I could go on and on, with so many experiences that could fill an anthology of films.

But in-between all those moments I strived to capture with my lens, I watched a woman continuously spill her curiosity out into the world, while constantly striving to hone her athletic ability… and so I made a visual tale about a world-class human, surfing her way around the globe.”


Comments are a Stab Premium feature. Gotta join to talk shop.

Already a member? Sign In

Want to join? Sign Up


Most Recent

Long Read: Pete Beachy Is No Bore 

The life and times of an off-the-grid Alaskan surf pioneer who claims to cure cancer.

Mar 26, 2023


Watch: ‘Haiku’

Scenes From a Remote Reality, by Vans & Karina Rozunko

Mar 25, 2023

Sun Room: The Overnight Success Of A Young Surf Band

What's it like touring the world and living off of McDonald's?

Mar 25, 2023

How Surfers Get Paid, Episode 6

An instructional manual for the modern professional surfer

Mar 23, 2023


Caity Simmers — Extreme Competitive Surf Vlogger

Cool is chemical.

Mar 23, 2023

Globe Pulls Out Of The Apparel Game

…and, Taj Burrow and Dion Agius are now looking for new main sponsors.

Mar 22, 2023

Owen Wright Announces Retirement From Competitive And Heavy-Water Surfing

But will surf final CT event at Bells.

Mar 22, 2023


Fancy An Ale, Some Good Music, And A Bunch Of Tubes?

Ballet's minimalist full-length will satiate your needs.

Mar 22, 2023

João Chianca Spent Seven Years On The QS Without A Sponsor

And look where he is now.

Mar 22, 2023

Take Stab’s 2023 Audience Survey, Win A 3-Board Quiver

Stab towels and Premium subscriptions also up or grabs.

Mar 21, 2023

Jessi Miley Dyer On The New Challenger Series Schedule And More

Did you know that you could miss the mid-year cut and still theoretically win the…

Mar 20, 2023


Don’t Miss The Last Wave Of The First 2023 SEOTY Entry

Jacob Willcox's ‘Into Dust’ just set the bar.

Mar 20, 2023

Warren Smith on New Welcome Rivers Range and Buying Jaguars on Facebook Marketplace  

Now available in the Antipodes...

Mar 20, 2023


Wavegarden Spills How The Sausage Is Made

BTS of their global air wave rollout ft. Yago Dora, Dion Agius, Reef Heazlewood and…

Mar 18, 2023

Minds, Machines, And The Magic Of Hands

How modern shapers split their time between designing files and hand-finishing boards.

Mar 18, 2023


Are Hectic Lefts The Final Finless Frontier?

William Aliotti is on the right-foot-forward fringes.

Mar 17, 2023

Watch: Luke + Eddie

A mostly unknown, on-duty lifeguard won the most prestigious big-wave event in history. How Luke…

Mar 17, 2023


A Pipe Master, Ryan Burch, And Some Pickle Forks On The Eastern Seaboard

This one ticks a lot of boxes

Mar 16, 2023