13 Reasons Why El Niño was Goddamn Excellent
Through the lens of Steven Lippman.
The long anticipated, much spoken-of El Niño season is officially gone. California and Hawaii had themselves a winter that’ll be talked about until the next big thing hits and now we wait… So here’s a photographic voyage through the lens of Los Angeles based photog, Steven Lippman. Steven’s resume’s stacked, from competitive surfing and skating into directing and commercial photography. He does work for Showtime’s The Affair and Ray Donavan, as well as Harley-Davidson, Patrón, Paul Mitchell, Sony, Verizon, amongst many others. As a husband, father, philanthropist and environmentalist, Mr Lippman makes his living through fashion and commercial photography and film. Surfing’s his passion and he has a unique eye that can’t help but radiate through his work. So pour one out for our lost brethren and indulge on what the little boy brought to the Pacific.
“This year was one of the strongest El Niño seasons to date,” Steven tells Stab, “and it surely didn’t disappoint for surf. There were moments when I thought the swell would never stop. Most of the time it was too large for anything but the point breaks, which were always crowded. However, there were windows of incredible surf if you knew where to look. I was able to spend two weeks on the North Shore with the Aulta Surf team and we were blessed with early season swell and minimal crowds. These photos are a visual journey through my El Niño season.”
An view of Kanaloa’s backyard from up above. Pipeline.
This was the first big swell of the El Niño season at Pipe and Reef Mcintosh was there to welcome it with open arms.
Yves Bright points to another perfect right that went unridden this morning. Got to love those California days when everyone decides to sleep in.
The view every surfer wants to see when they pull up to their local spot. Somewhere in California.
I know I can always count on Yves putting himself in critical spots to get the shot.
For the most part, all of the swells have been too big for California’s beach breaks to properly work. Luckily, we got some combo swells to break things up.
Long dormant waves came to life with the large Northwest swells, and if you were in the right place at the right time, you could score. Luccas Mesinas knows where to look.
When California’s first rays grace the morning, just slide right in and enjoy.
The HIC Pro at Sunset Beach was in full force with 10 footers rolling through. Here’s Pancho Sullivan greeting raw power with raw power.
Afternoon perfection somewhere on the North Shore.
Maxing Pipe, third reef cleanup sets, and second reef roll-ins. Perfect conditions for Mark Healey.
Gavin Beschen surfs with such amazing style, he makes surfing Pipe look too easy. But we all know that isn’t the case.
When you spend 14 days on the North Shore, you’re guaranteed to see at least one amazing sunset. We were lucky to have this view from the back porch of our house.
Check out the rest of Steven’s work right here.
Follow him on Insta here.
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