Sunday, March 28, 2010

My apologies Ferg...

As we say back home "i screwed up", earlier in me blog i said this is Tom Lowe but out came Carve mag and it's frign Fergal Smith. Sorry about that Ferg, so to fix my balls up i have put here the full sequence of Ferg's unreal barrell at Aileens. One of the most insane barrells i have seen there, for someone so young he certainly does charge, i think his philosophy must be go hard or go home...

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Al Mennnie's book of...

Never in my life have i read a book front to back cover without putting it down. Right from the opening page you know Al has put his heart and soul into this..."Dad, you are my inspiration. If our love could have saved you, you would have lived forever". The start of the book goes thru his younger years about his family, surf comps and how the big wave passion came about, always these parts of books are not so action packed but you need it to get to know a bit about the person to understand it all. Not long thou into the book Al is talking about his travels and big wave stories ands steps up about 10 knotches in a fast action packed read that i could not put down, actually as the pace grew i felt my own reading getting faster and faster wanting to know what happens next. "I dropped and began to glide into position as Duncan pulled away at speed and the wave stood like a 6 storey office block. As i got to about half way down it, it just lurched on the reef and grew massively above me, I thought i was a gonner" Al talking about the epic Dec 1st Mullaghmore day really got my heart pounding. It's like reading a book of gnarly short stories, each one with it's own uniqueness if there's such a word. "All along the reef where the waves breaks, all in a line, these boils of water were surfacing and pouring out from below the surface. One of them was about 6 feet in diameter and surged out to about 2 feet in height. It looked like a big jelly fish!" Al describing how the wave was breaking on the Mullaghmore Massacre day. I think Al's book is a fantastic read and i'm not just saying that cause he's a mate. I honestly could not stop reading it.
I'm stoked to have the covershot and a few photos inside, thank you Al for asking if i wanted to be part of it, a real honor and a highlight in my photographic career.

cheers mate and good luck

Thursday, March 18, 2010

2010 St. Patrick's day parade

It was sunny, warm and felt like the first real day of spring, Dublin was buzzing with people from all walks of life and it was good to see there wasn't too many drunks about during the parade. Man it was wedged which made it tricky trying to get any sorta ok shot, i was glad i had my little compact gem the Limus TZ7, the colors this thing puts out is pretty astonishing for such a small camera. Kids were climbing up anything and everything including one that tried to jump from a statue to my shoulders but missed! Ladders were everywhere and overloaded with half a dozen kids all trying to get the ultimate view. It was great to see so many people out smiling and laughing at all the great floats going past. Just heard that over 650,000 attended the Dublin parade with no incidents, that's something to be proud of. Maybe a country in recession but a country with a heart of gold or errr is that green

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Tonnta comes home

Well it's that time again and yes it should be another cracker issue on all the going on's in Ireland. This issue covers a little town i call home, well my Irish home anyway, Strandhill. Cain Kilcullen grabs the cover at ....Pete Fleming's first cover, big congrats to you both, damn it i must be the only photog in Europe to not get a cover yet hahahaha. The best of winter, a bit on the Mentawai's and loads more, grab a copy before they all dissappear, should be out in the next week or so.
Tonnta Issue 6

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Cranes, cranes and more cranes

It was way back at my Grandfathers birthday i asked if there were any jobs going in the drilling business and that's where my passion for cranes truely started. Almost 20 years on now my passion is stronger than ever. It's a unique job allowing you to play with a big toy all day long and gives you the chance to travel and see alot most would not. I don't drive the tall tower cranes but i drive the heavy lifting crawler cranes, why called a crawler because they're on tracks and crawl around the place...simple. The smallest being the 15Ton Smith in the above photo, my very first crane. Since then thou i have driven cranes up to 180Ton. Picking something up and swinging it around like a feather with the ease of a couple of leavers is great fun, there has been a couple of hairy moments but you need them to know your limits and the cranes!! There was one day the ground i was working on which the digger driver assured me was compacted properly gave way on me while i had a 6Ton load on at full stretch heading for a bridge deck 40m above me, the crane started tipping over fast, i applied a method i had been taught by my mad mate Doobie to get the load to the ground and i just got it down in time, the boys reckon at one stage the back track was that far off the ground you could've walked under it! Instances like this are very similar to tow surfing and getting a serious hold down, my legs were shaking so bad afterwards i could hardly stand but you have to get back on the wagon and straight back into it otherwise you'll lose your wits and confidence. It definatley made me a better crane driver. Here's a few pics of some of the cranes i've driven. The big splash is where i took a boulder the size of a mini and dropped it from 150ft just to see what would happen, there's a big kid in all of us. Also there have been some real magic places to work like the New Brighton beach pier in Christchurch, NZ pictured just below a long period swell cruizing in, what a view. What's next for me, well my dream is to drive the crane pictured at the botton. It's a 3,000Ton crane which will lift it's on weight and more...dreamtime...

Monday, March 8, 2010


It was a few years ago Allan Mulrooney and brothers Barry & David Mottershead started the Strandhill Indonesian Relief Fund to help rebuild schools in Java and help the communities out after a devastating earthquake not long after the Tsunami. Strandhill as a community poured their hearts and souls into it fundraising left, right and centre and getting 5 schools built. I had decided to give them my support as well by having people sponsor for how much weight i lost in 6 months and ended up raising enough for a school. So i would like to take this moment to personally thank everybody who supported SIRF and all the fundraising, hard work organising events and a huge thank you to the 3 lads for allowing us all to be part of it. Here is a video of the 5 schools that got rebuilt and as you can see the kids are so happy to have it. This i will never forget, seeing the video really hits home how lucky we are, i am just so stoked to have been part of it all.
Thank you

SIRF visit Java Indonesia 2010 from Allan Mulrooney on Vimeo.