It's time to start enjoying the rich terrain that covers California. I cant believe I've never been to Yosemite and it's only 4 hours from home. Only staying a couple days, Zoi and I were not ready to leave. Here's some photos from the trip.
The cabin reminded me of something out of a Wes Anderson film. The tones of the wood, the furnace placed in the center of the living room. The bed placed in the corner surrounded by large windows. Beautiful.
After swimming in the river that runs under Half Dome, we decided to head back towards the cabin. We stopped by the local General Store for some snacks and a leak. The woman working at the counter sparked up a conversation which led to her letting us in on her secret local waterfall. She ripped a piece of paper out of her notepad and began to give us one of those hand drawn maps that would be in The Goonies or some shit. We followed the vague directions and began to hike in. We found it! An oasis of crystal clear pools of water with a flowing waterfall and not a soul in sight.
Amazing trip! I think Zion National Park is next. But until then..back to lalaland.
Monument Valley, Arizona
This past year I feel like I experienced more than most people do in a lifetime. It was a good one. A growing one. At times it was overwhelming. I traveled to 10 plus countries. I got to work on a handful of very cool projects. I'm grateful to be alive and to continue to do what I love.
Closing out 2017 I decided I wanted to ring in the new year in a different way than I ever had. I wanted to be in a quiet place where I could reflect on everything that I got to experience over the past 12 months. I wanted to wake up New Years Day in complete silence without being hungover... and meditate on my attitude going into 2018. I don't want to live in fear. I don't want to stress about being stressed. I want to stay positive and try to be a light to as many people around me as I can. I want to create!
I told some of my closest friends what I wanted to do and we all hopped in the car the next day and headed out to Monument Valley where we stayed in a Hogan (mud hut.) We took a quiver of cameras and shot some pretty incredible stuff that will be shared soon. In the meantime here's some random pics from the trip.
Cedros Island, Mexico
On October 2nd we flew out. Headed for Cedros Island about halfway down Baja almost 50 miles offshore. I had never been before and have only heard stories about the epic fishing... so when Luke and Rick asked me to go, I couldn't be more excited. Let's start with the plane...If you took a Honda Civic from the 1990's and attached wings to it, this is what we were flying in. Floating over Tijuana and then for 50 rickety miles over the ocean in this single engine plane hauling 4 guys and bunch of gear was a bit unsettling but that's also why we love doing these things. We landed on the desert island and immediately dropped our bags and got on the water. Fishing has always given me a rush due to the mystery of the ocean. You never know what you're going to pull up. Our captain didn't speak a word of English, but Luke held it down communicating in Spanish with him the whole time. Here's some pics from the trip.
We fished from 6am to 6pm. We caught a ton of Yellow Fin Tuna, Dorado, and Yellow Tail.
La Tuna Canyon Wild Fire
It rained ashes for three days. On Friday, September 1st, 2017 a fire broke out in La Tuna Canyon near Sunland, CA and over the next few days developed into the largest brushfire fire in Los Angeles history. Hundreds of people were evacuated from their homes in Sunland, Tujunga, Burbank, and Glendale. Governor Brown and Mayor Garcetti declared, at both a local and county level, a state of emergency. Approximately one hundred firefighters that had been sent to Texas to assist in flood relief were called back to California to help fight this fire. Flames spread over seven thousand acres in just three days, charing five homes and a few cars along the way. Luckily, no one was seriously injured. While most home residents obeyed the evacuation orders, some stayed put and decided to fight the fire themselves.
Ed, from Sunland, remained on site to battle it out. Nicholas Small and I noticed himdowsing a hill with a hose. We approached him as he was one of the last people still inthe neighborhood. Ed saturated the entire perimeter of his property with water. The windkicked up flames over his hill and he jumped into action, racing towards the fire on hisATV. He created fire breaks by spinning his ATV in circles and separating the brush. Hisgirlfriend had just left after begging him to do the same. Firefighters had also been encouraging him to get out. He told us that his home was filledwith items that could never be replaced, ‘stuff my old man left me.’ We asked him if hewould consider gathering some of his things in case the fire got too close, but he had noidea where to start. Thankfully the wind didn’t continue blowing the fire over his hill andEd was alright.
Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Scotland
Taylor Gray and I went out to Scotland to the Edinburgh Fringe this year to perform the play, "Sold In The Name Of Sex." It is a two act drama that we will soon be bringing to LA. This was my first time doing theater. It was an amazing experience and i'm glad to have shared it with one of my closest friends. With that being said, we did some of the weirdest shit we have ever seen in our lives. This festival was full of some of the most bizarre acts. We quickly realized that our play did not fit into the majority of the absurdists. From a naked woman on stage prancing around with a popcorn machine strapped to her head to a naked one man show filled with pure dark energy...we saw it all. It actually upset me to see these meaningless shows get the attention they got. Buncha clowns. Anyways... here's some pics.
After 10 days in Dubai, Nick and I got asked if we would travel Iraq to go document the Yazidi women. After landing in Erbil we had a two and half hour drive through small towns until we reached Dahuk, Iraq where these families lived in a refugee camp.
Maasai Mara, Kenya
Started 2017 off by traveling to Kenya
The Maasai Warriors and Mammas performed a ceremony, which included spitting goats milk on us as well as rubbing goats blood on our faces.
Working on a new film called "KOOK" I play a kid named Pans.
I'll be bringing my 35mm to set everyday to capture this incredible production.
Tamariu, Costa Brava, Spain
Spent the first few days of 2016 in Rio De Janeiro with two of my best friends.
Although the trip was short, we made our time count and stayed up and watched the sunrise three nights in a row.
Brooks Range, Alaska
-The bond I have with my brother and two cousins, Holden and Luke, is unbreakable. We are the wolf pack. One of the things we love to do is travel. Submerge ourselves in different cultures and experiences.
Rick came to us with the idea to head out to Alaska and do a float through the Arctic Circle on the Kobuk River. Unguided. The idea of getting out of Los Angeles and away from civilization sounded pretty incredible. So we packed our bags and guns a left for the last frontier.
After a few jumper planes, we landed in Bettles, AK, population: 12. Casey works a beaver bush plane which transported us to the Kobuk river mouth. He flew away leaving the five of us to begin our journey.
Kobuk River, AK
-This trip was definitely not a vacation. Needing to set up camp everyday and fight off millions of mosquitoes was pretty rough. But we laughed and enjoyed every second of it. A couple days in, we unexpectedly encountered class 5 rapids. With no option to turn back we charged them. Super intense moment but we were cracking up and yelling like mad men all the way through. After getting to calmer water, we saw Luke floating down but Rick was missing. Luke was yelling Rick, "fell out!" We pulled off to the side and waited for about 10 mins. Than we heard Rick's yell for help. Thankfully he made it back to us with only his back scraped up. Waking up and seeing Grizzly bears walk the river bank, moose roaming and wolf tracks all around, reminded us of how far from civilization and secluded we really were.
Klutina River, Copper Center
-We caught some Sockeye Salmon and ate it within the hour. Doesn't get much fresher.
-Overall, we were in Alaska almost a month. This was one of the most beautiful experiences of my life.
Big Island, Hawaii
-While filming on Oahu, we had a 3 day weekend coming up. One of the local crew guys (Pono,) came to a few of us with an idea. He wanted to take us to his home island for a night and guide us on a intense hike through the jungle and onto the Lava fields. Telling us he'd only been once before and that it was a terrifying experience, we obviously said, "Were down." So we hopped on a plane the next day and left for Big island. After dropping off our bags, we went straight to the trailhead. Didn't look like much more than a game trail to me...everything was overgrown and the one "Do Not Enter/No Trespassing" sign was shot up. We obviously ignored that and began the 5mi hike.
The Lava Fields
PC: Braverijah Gregg
-Exiting through the jungle's tree line, we found the lava fields. I'm not gonna lie, the first few steps were terrifying...actually every step we took for the next two miles was terrifying. After the first few hundred yards, Pono told us that this was the furthest he had ever walked. We all agreed we wanted to keep going until we saw actual lava. The ground was radiating heat and hot to the touch. With every step, we heard a crunch as if we were walking on burnt pizza crust, praying to Pele (The Hawaiian Fire Goddess) we wouldn't fall through a skylight. About 2mi in, we came across one. One of the most surreal things I have ever seen.