Watch: Michael February in black and white

Stu Nettle
Swellnet Dispatch

'Such and such in black and white'

It's been the lazy writer's title since 1992. No colour? Voila!....just call on Slater's original biopic.

You can't blame me, it's Sunday morning, the surf is picking up by the set, but so is the wind meaning the window of opportunity is squeezing shut and the conditions demand full attention.

So let's be quick: it's Michael February at a Mex pointbreak smoothly linking turns between wonky sections. You may have read Jamie Brisick's recent New Yorker essay where he accused M'Feb of having a style "as self-conscious as the duck-face selfie."

Brisick had a valid point about the standardisation of surf style due to videos, but methinks he chose the wrong target in February.

Comments

mugofsunshine's picture
mugofsunshine's picture
mugofsunshine commented Sunday, 8 Sep 2019 at 8:24am

Agree. As much as I admire Brisick's writing he was wide of the mark and somewhat disingenuous targeting Feb. It felt lazy, kinda low hanging fruit. The good news for Feb is that it appears most of the commentariat also disagree with Jamie.

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin commented Sunday, 8 Sep 2019 at 8:54am

I’ll occasionally venture to an easy wave with a transient population of fakers and showmen. The pretence through the lineup gets so thick at times that I’ve started referring to it as Fugazi Head.

All those young hipsters who can’t imagine a fate worse than the structured ambitions of the “ Jock surfers “ with their desire for dynamism in their surfing. The top knot crew who like to fantasise that their interpretation of surfing is an unencumbered free- form , soul riff of jazzy expressionism.

Till you watch for a brief moment and recognise the same surfing conservatism they rally against is even more defined by their desperate straining to recreate Midget’s arms- high redirect on their longboard than by the guy forcing cutbacks on his 6’0”.

Now that’s some duck- faced, selfie level pretentious bullshit.

Makes Michael February seem like a fella walking his own path even when he’s contorting himself into that marketing pigeon hole.

westernport's picture
westernport's picture
westernport commented Sunday, 8 Sep 2019 at 10:56am

Luv that Guy, beautiful to watch and no airs.

Jon

udo's picture
udo's picture
udo commented Sunday, 8 Sep 2019 at 11:45am

Nice surfing
Some smooth surfing on a mini simmons on his insta

Finntim's picture
Finntim's picture
Finntim commented Sunday, 8 Sep 2019 at 12:55pm

+1 blowin

bipola's picture
bipola's picture
bipola commented Sunday, 8 Sep 2019 at 1:38pm

I agree with westernport this guys unreal to watch so smooth, it reminds me of the infinity sign, he just keeps so loose and fast.

Spuddups's picture
Spuddups's picture
Spuddups commented Sunday, 8 Sep 2019 at 1:56pm

Jamie Brisick's farken' tripping. What a nob.

Island Bay's picture
Island Bay's picture
Island Bay commented Sunday, 8 Sep 2019 at 1:59pm

Yeah, I find it hard to be cynical about Mikey Feb's surfing.

blackers's picture
blackers's picture
blackers commented Sunday, 8 Sep 2019 at 2:19pm

He looks like he is having fun and it pays the bills to boot. Brisick's arguments read like the standard lament of someone pining for times past despite being an active part of the change he is complaining about. More of Mikey please.

Spuddups's picture
Spuddups's picture
Spuddups commented Sunday, 8 Sep 2019 at 2:28pm

'kin oath!

Fliplid's picture
Fliplid's picture
Fliplid commented Sunday, 8 Sep 2019 at 3:22pm

February’s surfing is better than Brisick’s writing

indo-dreaming's picture
indo-dreaming's picture
indo-dreaming commented Sunday, 8 Sep 2019 at 3:56pm

So crazy that at least from a distance he looks like Buttons, and his style, flow and lines he draws is like a modern day Buttons, i dont think anyone could dislike this guys surfing, you can almost feel the fun he is having.

Im sure he must get sick of the comparisons, but its hard not too.

billie's picture
billie's picture
billie commented Sunday, 8 Sep 2019 at 8:17pm

That really annoys me, what Jamie said. It's simply not true. He was surfing for himself and surfing well. Just because he makes it look easy it doesn't mean he is vain. Is there anyone who fits that description?

Billie

The MIDdleman.'s picture
The MIDdleman.'s picture
The MIDdleman. commented Monday, 9 Sep 2019 at 8:41am

Zero repetition alludes to his synchronization with surrounds.
Beautiful shapes he makes.

Signature.

dandandan's picture
dandandan's picture
dandandan commented Monday, 9 Sep 2019 at 9:22am

Agree that Brisick's criticism is way off. For me the pretensiousness in surfing style is all in the arms and upper body - I can say that confidentally because I remember doing it. Taking a look at Mikey's surfing, it's a whole body affair, and always flows with the movement and momentum of the wave.

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf commented Monday, 9 Sep 2019 at 2:08pm

Who is Brisick, who cares about him and how did he get it in the New Yorker? The whole thing seems pithy and a waste of time and effort and real important stuff in the world around us. Feb is good and anybody at that level is not a wanker it is just who they are and what they have always done. Anybody seen Brisick's style?

savanova's picture
savanova's picture
savanova commented Monday, 9 Sep 2019 at 3:05pm

jamies comments would be better directed to the dicks in the next vid Tan madanna

NDC's picture
NDC's picture
NDC commented Monday, 9 Sep 2019 at 6:46pm

"Self-conscious"... maybe it is.

Mostly, I would say though that Jamie.B's writing is more pretentious than Mikey.F's surfing but my smart-arse, anti JB post got sidetracked when I read his article at the end of the duck face link... it's a good article, I liked it. Probably the first piece of JB's writing which I've enjoyed. His criticism of MF didn't seem so personal or harsh in the article, more a remark on a single session than an attack on the person.

NDC's picture
NDC's picture
NDC commented Monday, 9 Sep 2019 at 6:46pm

"Self-conscious"... maybe it is.

Mostly, I would say though that Jamie.B's writing is more pretentious than Mikey.F's surfing but my smart-arse, anti JB post got sidetracked when I read his article at the end of the duck face link... it's a good article, I liked it. Probably the first piece of JB's writing which I've enjoyed. His criticism of MF didn't seem so personal or harsh in the article, more a remark on a single session than an attack on the person.

freeride76's picture
freeride76's picture
freeride76 commented Monday, 9 Sep 2019 at 6:55pm

Brisick is a good writer, thats why he got published in the New Yorker.

M-Feb has a weak, affected style and thats why he got booted from the CT after one year.

He's now found a career path as a soul pro so all the very best to him.

Bungan33's picture
Bungan33's picture
Bungan33 commented Tuesday, 10 Sep 2019 at 9:03am

Whats with all this shit criticising a surfers style.....does ANYONE really think that they have genuinely developed their own style by flawlessly weaving around the styles of every other surfer to go before them. I call bullshit. All art is theft. All ideas have their DNA somewhere else. So to step in and drag down another surfers style is just uncool I reckon. Let those who have not sinned cast the first stone...or shall i say go ahead and criticise all you old timers who have never EVER paused and replayed a VHS of Richard Cram in full flight and thought "what if I dropped my knee a little more...."

More love. Less hate.

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin commented Tuesday, 10 Sep 2019 at 9:21am

Theres homage and then there’s plagiarism. Ones acceptable whilst the other is not.

That’s not the issue here , the issue is that a contrived style requires constant conscious maintenance. Anytime you’re trading being lost in the moment to focus on gentrifying your surfing for the benefit of onlookers you’ve started down the steep descent to wankerdom.

Which you MAY get away with if someone is paying you to surf as you’ve already sold your soul to the devil.

If you’re spending half the wave concentrating on hanging your hands by your sides and you’re not on the payroll , it’s time to go surfing on your own again.

Bungan33's picture
Bungan33's picture
Bungan33 commented Wednesday, 11 Sep 2019 at 10:06am

Blowin....you've never seen the pack in the channel and stood a little taller, slouched the shoulders or maybe...god forbid....even done one of those evil attention seeking soul arches that the instagram hungry everyman seems to be doing these days. How do we KNOW he is doing it for others? How do we know he doesn't just LOVE the rush of the upright high line followed by a knee breaking crouched bottom turn? Do you know his mind...?

t-diddy's picture
t-diddy's picture
t-diddy commented Tuesday, 10 Sep 2019 at 8:11pm

looks about as self-conscious as Miles Davis behind a trumpet

icandig's picture
icandig's picture
icandig commented Tuesday, 10 Sep 2019 at 9:09pm

I prefer February in black and white to the lightly sun kissed mother of Jesus. Not much in the world isn't derived from something else. Buttons is as good as any to emulate even if it's unintentional. (Is it though?) At least Feb's aesthetic is easy on the eye....fluid and loose. Nice to watch. Knost on the other hand.....

JosephStalin's picture
JosephStalin's picture
JosephStalin commented Wednesday, 11 Sep 2019 at 2:55pm

Can't say black and white anymore too racist