george greenough

Screen shot from the “Inner (lost) Limits of Pure Fun.” Image courtesy of George Greenough

Long before the invention of HD video cameras, we’re talking the 1960s here, George Greenough was muscling an unwieldy, full-sized film camera to capture POV footage from inside the tube.

In a fortuitous turn of events, the iconic surf filmmaker, board designer, and Santa Barbara, California, native made a recent discovery—lost footage from his days shooting “The Innermost Limits of Pure Fun.” He partnered up with Patagonia to make it public.

Through Greenough’s pensive narration, we benefit from a rare glimpse at an innovative surf cinematographer’s versatile approach to the pursuit of perfection, while experiencing a day in the life of a man who helped define this modern era of surfing.

GrindTV recently caught up with George. He told us that in the movie “Crystal Voyager,” during the Pink Floyd song “Echoes,” he edited one of the waves into two different shots, because he was only using its “magic” moments. But he’s since gone digging through the footage that he cut out, and it turns out it was pretty cool. So now we get to see the whole wave; here’s his take on what went down:

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You lugged 17 pounds of camera gear on your back—what was your set-up?
The camera, in its housing, was mounted to a scuba tank backpack.

Then versus now: What do you miss and what don’t you miss?
When I shot the big wave, I was the only one there; now it’s so crowded I don't go there any more.

Surfing’s biggest innovation?
The development of the shortboard.

To learn more about the impact George Greenough continues to make go here. To learn more about the making of “Inner(lost) Limits of Pure Fun,” go here.

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