Red Letter Day: Shooting the Breeze

Words: Fabian Muhmenthaler
Photos: Samuel Cardenas
Location: Playa Chica, Tarifa
Date: Tuesday, June 8th 2021

At the beginning of June, I spent some days shooting for Duotone together with my friend and teammate Jerome Cloetens. I was very motivated to be shooting with him and also the fact that we had Lidewij Hartog as our videographer made me super happy, because she is a true professional and has an incredible, artistic eye.

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After a couple of intense days shooting, exploring Tarifa and its surroundings, the filming was coming to an end. On the Monday we had a pretty extreme day, filming in the morning at Valdevaqueros and then heading to Wakana Lake in the afternoon. Pretty magical but hard work. Wakana is a big lake, an hour away from Tarifa, and Jerome and I were the first ones to ever wingfoil there. The cows were looking at us the whole time and making sure we were giving our all, riding and sending those big backflips! At the end of the day we bagged a pretty epic sunset and felt super happy to have unlocked a new spot. 

This particular Tuesday I had an exam, so went training in the morning and after that I was studying the whole day. At 7pm Jerome, Lidewij and I went to Playa Chica, to make the most out of the last Levante day. 

“Jerome and I were super amped to shoot and we wanted to go full send. Although our bodies were destroyed from the last couple of days, our motivation was stronger than our tiredness.”

Our great friend and photographer Samuel Cardenas decided to join us, and these pictures are the result of that session. Samu has been a very good friend of mine for more than 10 years, and I am very proud of seeing him evolve as a person and as a professional. Jerome and I were super amped to shoot and we wanted to go full send. Although our bodies were destroyed from the last couple of days, our motivation was stronger than our tiredness. I had some holes in my foot that looked pretty nasty, but hey, my philosophy is that salty water heals everything, so of course I went riding.  

We went out and the conditions were just perfect, amazing 20 to 25 knots of Levante, crystal clear water and an empty spot, just for us. We were completely in touch with nature, dancing over the water with our foils and flying with our wings like the seagulls who followed us, curiously eyeing us up.

Behind us we had “La Punta del Santo”, which translates as “The Saint’s Point”, with the big statue of the saint who takes care of the fishermen of Tarifa. I like to believe that for him, we are kind of a big show every time we go riding at Playa Chica, and he enjoys watching us and, for sure, he also takes care of us on the big and strong Levante days.

We had a great session together, riding till sunset, which was a very special and pretty one. The sky turned all red, orange and pink, and these are the moments when you give thanks to Mother Nature for being just so perfect. The best thing is to enjoy such a special moment from the water, it makes everything ten times more wonderful. I remember Lidewij screaming around because she just couldn´t believe that the sky was so amazing… guess she took some nice clips for the upcoming video. 

As we finished up and realized it was our last filming session, mixed feelings were passing through my mind. On the one hand I was happy for the days we had and to have been able to wrap it up in such a perfect way. On the other hand, I was just analyzing how much I’d learnt in the last few days and kind of sad that it had come to an end. 

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