"Inside: The Journey" is a new film showcasing the cream of the European talent embarking on that surfing staple: A classic surf trip. The Deeply team of Vasco Ribeiro, Johanne Defay, Maxime Huscenot, Camilla Kemp, Jonathan Gonzales, Lucia Martino and Joao Guedes traveled to the Atlantic Island of Madeira, back in January.
"They have been traveling together for more than six years and I have been shooting them since day one," said director Gustavo Imigrante. "With this trip, the only goal was having a good time, creating some memorable moments and sharing with one another all the highlights from all those years as friends."
The fact that this was the last real trip all the surfers embarked on before Covid-19 shut the world down now makes it even more special. Reunion-born, France-based Maxime Huscenot, agreed that given the calibre of the surfers and the strengths of the relationships, it had all the ingredients for a classic.
"What's really cool with Deeply is that we're always allowed to be ourselves and we're just having a good time surfing, doing what we all love," said Huscenot. "Looking back now that feeling has only intensified. It was a special time and we didn't even know what was round the corner."
However, no matter how good friends you are, a surf trip without waves is still no trip at all. Lucky with this mission, Madeira turns on.
The Portuguese Island sits two hundred miles directly west of Morocco, deep in the North Atlantic Ocean. Winter swells constantly pound the green, mountainous cliffs that guard the rocky points and reefs. It's a well-known big wave location with a variety of world class spots that hold any size that come their way.
In his 2016 Pulitzer Prize-winning memoir Barbarian Days William Finnegan travels to Madeira and waxes lyrical about the beauty of the island and the quality of its waves. "Then, after a few moments of this stomach-turning suspended animation," he wrote, "you would suddenly start rocketing down the coast, with the boulders turning into a long white blur under blue water."
World No. 8 Johanne Defay was on her first trip to the island was also mesmerized by the location. She too had many moments enjoying that sensory overload as described by Finnegan.
"The highlight was a probably surfing a big lefthander for the first time," Defay told the WSL. "The locals were riding these big guns, but the atmosphere was so cool and with the mountains behind and speed of the waves it made for an epic session."
The film had originally been planned to have premieres in Porto, Santander, Barcelona and Hossegor, yet obviously all those dates have had to be canceled. The movie is now free to watch online and shows a time not very long ago when special surf trips with good friends were a part of every surfer's life. Hopefully we will all get to enjoy this type of experience this in near future