This Filmer Has Captured Several Of Surfing’s Defining Moments
Meet Nimai Strickland, the man who shot Hippo’s iconic ‘Thundercloud’ barrel and Mr Lenny’s freak Jaws acid drop.
When Nimai Strickland was 16 he did work experience with Tim Bonython. “I was logging hours of footage, learning the ropes, doing really basic edits for the better part of a year. Through him I got involved with a production company, The Construction Site, who handled all of Quiksilver’s production,” says Nimai.
After a five year stint at Quikky, Nimai got the opportunity to work with Dane Reynolds on his first feature film ‘First Chapter’. “That was pretty special, and funny. Dane is very particular and was heavily involved. I’d choose some music and send it over and he’d just write back saying, ‘Nah, this is shit.’ He pretty much ended up directing everything we did,” laughs Nimai.
Sure enough, the film ended up winning the Surfer Poll ‘Film of the Year’. Nimai was pretty much a grom at that point.
Not long after, Nimai got poached by Billabong as an editor and cinematographer. “That was pretty incredible traveling the world and doing surf trips with the team. I stayed there for five years before moving to Surfing Australia, which is where I’ve been for the past eight years.”
The opening shot in Nimai’s Real to Reel entry (above) is from KS’ wave pool. “It’s when Surfing Australia sent their Olympic squad over for a training camp and I drew the lucky straw and got to film it all. The whole crew, cinematographers included, got a chance to get a wave out there.”
“I’ve never got a legit barrel before,” adds Nimai, “so to get a legit barrel was like ‘Holy Fuck, this is a once in a lifetime opportunity.’ My former boss is the guy at the start, luckily he ate shit and I was on the inside to pick up the scraps. I swung into it and got absolutely pitted. I was like ‘this is what it must be like to get coned at Kirra’,” says Nimai with a tonne of stoke.
“I was so amped that night I send a DM to Kelly outlining the whole experience, that I’d been trying to get barrelled for the best part of twenty years and your technology allowed me to do it. The next morning I woke up and he’d shared it on his Insta! I couldn’t believe it. I was so stoked, so when Jed (Smith) came to do the narration on our ‘Rivals’ series, I got him to do a VO. My lord, that guy is funny.”
After 18 years in the industry, Nimai has shot so many iconic swells and superstars I actually thought he’d just ripped clips from popular Youtube clips. Not so — Nimai was the guy behind the lens on many important days in surfing. His cutdown is just a drop in the bucket of iconic moments he’s captured in his career.
The Heroic Story Of A Surfboard That Got Lost At Sea For Three Months Before Returning Home
Disabled surf coach to Gabriel Medina, Andy King, shares a cautionary (but hilarious) tale.
This Is What Caroline Marks Was Doing Instead Of Surfing G-Land
A tutorial on bouncing back(side).
How Much Weight Does The Most Important Surf Contest Of Our Time Carry?
Tell us who you think won S.U.R.F.'D plus your chance to win a Soundboks Go.
Stab Highway California, Presented By Monster Energy, Episode 2
Featuring the inaugural Steamer Lane Acid Drop Challenge and several burritos.
A Cost-Per-Wave Breakdown Of The Most Luxurious Surf Trips On The Planet
From under $30 to $850 a ride. Where you visiting next?
Big Ramps And A Little Shuvit Highlight Finals Day In Saquarema
Filipe Toledo quadruples down and Carissa Moore breaks through at the Oi Rio Pro.
True Grit: The Callum Robson Profile
A throwback to a Golden Age of Australian surfing — with a new age twist.
Unlocked: Stab’s ‘DNA’—The Colapinto Brothers’ Presented By Monster Energy
A sibling relationship is fueling some of the best surfing in the world.
Can Four Of Byron Bay’s Most Colorful & Sexy-Haired Pros Handshape, Paint & Surf A Board With Limited Time & Experience?
Byron Bay Brewery and Stab present ‘S.U.R.F.’D.
Captain Fin Co. Has The Most Culturally Relevant Surf Team
And that’s why the Volcom guys just bought it
The Slater-Backed South African Girl Who Just Took Her First Trip To Compete Internationally
Meet Indie Osinachi!
Different Dog, Same Fleas
The greatest rivals of the modern day surf era get matching MCL tears.
(Some Of) JJF’s Content Will Now Be Member Exclusive
$ign up and watch ‘Australia’ or get teased.
What Does It Mean If John John Florence Is Out For The Year?
Word has it he intends to sail from Hawaii to Fiji during the WSL Finals.