Stab Magazine | If An Air Gets Landed And There’s No One Filming, Does It Matter?

If An Air Gets Landed And There’s No One Filming, Does It Matter?

Why the renowned air heavy surfer keeps his fins planted when a there isn’t a red light blinking on shore.

style // Nov 9, 2018
Words by Stab
Reading Time: 3 minutes

How do you surf when there’s a filmer around? Distinctly worse than usual, urgent and jittery at the thought of watching yourself post-surf?

Are you just all around agitated and nervous at the thought of your surfing being displayed to anyone except those select few paddling back out?

That’s how most of us feel.

Noa Deane, however, isn’t the same, in fact, he’s the opposite.

Noa surfs better when he’s on film, not because there’s some positive mystique to a man sitting on the shore behind a lens. But because he’s had one too many negative experiences losing potential clips when a camera isn’t around. And while there’s nothing inherently wrong with surfing well unrecorded, it’s a bit of a headfuck when you’re in the midst of filming for an edit.

Noa’s fears aren’t unfounded conjecture either, they’re based on prior experience. It’s not often one of the better airs you’ve ever landed results in frustration and an abrupt end to the session…



Surfing’s different when you don’t have a filmer.

If there’s no one filming, and I’m just going for a surf, I usually ride some sort of channel-bottomed board with glass ons that’s more suited to turns. I pretty much keep it really chill and just have fun, I think when I go for airs while I am not filming I tend to land them more often, which is annoying when your trying to get clips, it’s Murphy’s law.

When I was nearing the end of filming for ‘Cluster’ I was surfing at home, and Mikey [Noa’s filmer] was surfing too, and there was no one else was filming. But the waves were super shit though so I assumed it didn’t really matter.

I usually just go out and do turns when no one is filming, which isn’t a bad thing.


Murphy’s Law and injury prevention; reasonable excuses for taking your surfing from 11 back down to a flat 8 (out of 10).

Deliberately, I rode this 6’2” channel bottom with glass ons and thought, “yep, ill just do some turns and have a fun surf” so I don’t land anything decent while no one’s filming. I’m not usually doing any airs too film worthy when riding those sort of boards. I’d been so stressed about filming for Cluster for the past 18-months and at the time wasn’t super psyched with what I’d done. Landing something that would’ve been worthy without a filmer on the beach would be super fucking annoying.

This one decent wave came through, and had the most perfect fucking section on it; I was going to go around it and thought, ‘fuck it, I’ll hit it” anyway. I thought I’d probably just kick the air out or fuck it up, because the section was big and I sort of wanted that, cause as weird as it seemed, I didn’t want to stomp it.

I somehow hit it perfectly and it launched me, it was pretty solid and I thought I wasn’t going to land it because it was kinda high and sort of assumed I’d fall.

Instead, I came down perfectly in the flats and stuck it. 


Now I just go out and do turns if there’s no one filming.

“You fucking idiot” was the first thing I thought. I was super eggy, but kind of laughing too.

I went straight in and my Dad had seen it from the beach and said, “Woah, that was pretty huge”.

I was just shaking my head and thinking “why couldn’t I have done that when I was filming the last few fucking months. It sounds so stupid, but it rocked me.

It’s funny, I sort of used to get bummed when I took off on a wave and thought to myself, “don’t do an air”— cause I had a bad habit of just pumping down the line and doing punts, but I’m over that now. Now I just go out and do turns if there’s no one filming. I’ll still have a super fun surf, there’s nothing wrong with it, I just try not to do too many airs.


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