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Interview with Ale Piu about the surf documentary "BACK TO THE ROOTS“

Interview with Ale Piu about the surf documentary "BACK TO THE ROOTS“

Matze Ried

Matze Ried

Fotograf / Kameramann Mit seinen Visionen schafft er es nicht nur unglaubliche Fotos zu machen, er hält auch das Pure-Media-Team als erfahrener Fotograf zusammen.

Our Teamrider Ale Piu just finished a film project about his island Sardinia. It is called "BACK TO THE ROOTS" and will definitely blow your mind! We had the pleasure to ask him out so here's the interview and the story behind his
magnificent documentary!

BACK TO THE ROOTS from Backtotheroots on Vimeo.

1) Tell us how you came up with the idea of this project!?
 Hey there!
 I have been into surfing since I was 9 years old. My father and my uncle were pioneers so they introduced me into surfing. Both taught me lot of good things about it. First of all the respect for the sea.
One day I watched “ The Big Wednesday Movie” and I fell straight in love with the surfing world. Pretty often my father used to drive me around the island in the search of waves with my whole family, so I started meeting day after day all the pioneers. I remember I was so happy to be part of the surfing community of the Island and understood, since I was a grom, that surfing is not all about getting your wave and make a cool move - It’s way more than that. I have been lucky enough to realize that surfing is more about meeting people, see places, explore  other cultures, share experiences with your friends and stay in contact with Mother Nature. I truly believe that surfing has a lot of deep values that help you during your life. So I wanted to create something that brings back the deep values of surfing into the present. So a small idea became a big idea and here we are :)
 
2) Tell us a bit how you came up with the idea of this project!? How long have you been filming?
This Documentary has probably been the most important project I have been working on during my entire surfing life. I spent more than 2 months creating and visualizing it in my mind, then putting it into words, write it down and then involve a cameramen who was crazy enough to follow me through this adventure. We went filming for 5 months around the Island. Just me and my cameramen / friend Gianluca Fortunato (also director of the photography). We have been pretty much everywhere during this time and trust me when I say it has been a super hard job for us. In the end we always had some epic times. About me, I was very focused, I wanted to create footage as best as possible. For me it was a big responsibility because there were many people involved in this project and because of the expectations about it from the local community as well. We had also a big dose of luck! Thanks to the sea we had great conditions week after week, choosing the best spots, being there at the right time and thanks to the Sardinian People we had a really good welcome in any single place we have been.
 
3) Do you think that after seeing this movie there will be more surfers coming to your island?
I believe it will attract people after watching the documentary. You know, people will see lots of good waves and it gets easy to believe that around the Island there are always crazy good waves every single day. But I like to say it doesn’t work like this in Sardinia Island. You need luck, you have to know where to go and when to go. For who lives here it’s easier but still hard sometimes to understand if the swell will be good or not. It’s important to know that in the Mediterranean sea good timing is everything, when we are talking about waves. You cannot just decide to get a flight anytime without checking the forecasts properly. Also when you finally get here you have to get ready to DRIVE a LOT, check spot after spot, having the spirit of adventure and maybe know someone here to get tips about the waves. On Sardinia Island it’s definitely not an easy job to find waves sometimes, definitely not as easy like in the bigger Oceans!

4)Whats the best time of the year to surf around Sardinia?
I believe the best time is for sure the Winter season or also when the seasons start to change because  the atmospheric pressure gets lower and the bigger storms are able to push with all their power. Around Sardinia the swells are pretty much from W/NW/SE. 70% of the swells come from the W side. I love winters here especially because you can find your self surfing alone or just you and your best mate, and that’s gold these days! Also because the inside part of the island gets really cold generating a morning off-shore wind from the sunshine to lunch time, even when the swell is still pumping, just great.

5) Are there any surfcamps or surfschools around?
There are a few here but my favorite by experience is definitely the PURE house in Buggerru. It’s located in the W coast. There you can live the dream… you wake up, you get Italian breakfast, you go surf or get surf lessons and afterwards you hang out in this cute town. It’s just cool and the people are so welcoming.
 
6) What is it like to grow up on a very surfable island that most people don´t even know about as a surfing destination?
Sardinia Island has always been like my little secret land for surfing. Since I was a grom I remember many times surfing with just a few mates out, or finding my self alone in the water hoping to see a car coming with another surfer to share the waves with. This Island can give lots of swells and be magic, but sometimes the Mediterranean Sea can just turn into a lake and it gets totally flat. People around the world just don’t expect that this Island located in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea can generate some of the best waves you can find in years of surfing. Growing up here has been great because I learned to live surfing for what it really is, and for me it is a PURE PASSION!
 
7) Whats your plan for the next year? Are there any other projects comming up?
Yep, I have some good ideas rolling in my mind at the moment, I just have to make them real in the right time. At the moment I can’t say much about it but I’am pretty sure that if you guys will keep tuned I will show you some more interesting stuff during the year. For sure I know that I will do a road trip around Europe this summer with the PURE team and I will spend great times at the PURE HOUSES AND CAMPS ,- can’t wait for that!

8) Are you still competing or is your focus going towards free surfing projects?
I love comps and I really love to stay under pressure, cause I believe it is the moment where I can show best what I can do in the water. I would love to keep doing both of course, I love free surfing as much as I love competing because at the end for me it’s just another excuse to grab my board and jump into the waves! So let’s see what the future will bring on my way.

9) What are your favorite places to stay in Europe?
This is probably the easiest question for me ahah. Well, int the past 4 years I have always been really welcome in any PURE SURFCAMPS AND HOUSES everywhere in Europe, probably some of my favorites are MOLIETS because it’s soo soo fun and full of fun people! Also Santa Cruz in Portugal is amazing, a beautiful house with a nice pool and garden with yoga classes every day, and so many barbecues. I do also love the houses around the Algarve where you can surf in some of the prettiest bays in Europe I believe. I can see the same in the faces of the guests every time. When they come back from a surf lesson or after surf while they are eating their food while laying in the pool ahah lets say that is why people stay in the PURE HOUSES AND CAMPS, they just live the dream!
I travel a lot and I like to feel at home even when I am not at home, and these houses I mentioned have always make me feel like I was at home. For me PURE is like a family and because I am Sardinia/Italian family is everything!

10) What tip would you give to someone that just started surfing?
The important thing in surfing is to never forget to have a big smile and good vibes while you surf! When you find your self in the water while waiting for your next wave, just think about where you are and where your life has brought you and be happy about that! Surfing is way more than paddle into a wave, enjoy every single thing of this magic world.
 
11) Last words?
See you in the water boys and girls! Thanks for the support!
Big Love
Ale