Nice to take the hat off
You work with people and admire them for what they do and every so often, that admiration for what they do, evolves into admiration for who they are and Al Mackinnon is very much that. He's been with us since 2006, has been the eye behind some of our most iconic images and is probably to date, one of the most accomplished UK photographers within the global surf arena. In his eight years as a pro, he was the first Brit to lock down the cover of the The Surfer's Journal, the first Brit to be nominated twice (winning once) at the Billabong XXL and is best known for going rogue, disappearing to the far corners of the globe and finding waves that have yet to be ridden.
He's currently living with Rusty Long in San Clemente, California, taking pictures and getting in the water when he can and if not doing this, you'll finding him spending time with guys, who are either building our industry, or have built our industry - it's always nice to take the hat off and pay a compliment.
Al Mackinnon writes:
"Greg invited me along to the Big Wave World Tour awards ceremony to be held out on a gin palace somewhere near Newport.
Pete Mel won this years' tour and the ceremony was a beautiful one, intimate due to only a select crew being invited and emotional for many with a huge amount of humility in evidence - as always with the big wave chargers.
This years Big Wave winner - Peter Mel
Turned out Dick Brewer was going to feature heavily in the proceedings (he's great mates with Gary Linden who organizes the BWWT) and Tom Carroll was also present, no doubt as a result of Quiksilver being Mel's sponsor. Linden and Carroll are two absolute legends in surfing and so I was delighted to get the opportunity to meet and photograph them. I can't tell you how cool they both are, just wish I'd had more time to chat to each of them. Greg kindly snapped a couple of pics for posterity!