Morgan Maassen is someone whose creative style we’ve admired for a while. His work, which is often themed around water and surfing, encompasses both photo and video. He’s profiled some of the top surfers on the planet and captured an underwater world that most of us aren’t privy to. After watching his content, I find myself looking online for a plane ticket to Tahiti. We caught up with Maassen last week and asked him a couple of questions.
How did you get started in photography and filmmaking?
When I was 13, a surfing injury saw me out of the water for a month. I picked up a video camera, and began documenting my friends surfing and exploring our hometown and the surrounding area. I fell in love immediately! I pursued filmmaking all through high school, as well as studying art and anthropology. After leaving high school for a full-time graphic design job, at the age of 19 I had saved up enough money to take a year off and travel. At the last minute, I opted to get a nice DSLR and shoot some stills to complement the video I was shooting. From that point on, photography has become a full-time passion and career.
How would you describe your work?
I’m driven by curiosity. I love to explore and question things…places I’ve never been before are what I yearn to visit most, and both my passion for culture and nature see me to the far corners of the world. I think my work reflects this in that it’s all over the place, limited to no one style or look. I have no artistic statement, I’m just documenting what fascinates me.
What piece of work are you most proud of?
My “Water” short film. I made it out of miscellaneous clips that were lying around after several commercial shoots in Tahiti and Hawaii, and after releasing it on the internet, it continuously tickles me how many people get as excited about the ocean through it as I do.
The JacksGap team loved the music you chose for your video “Water”. How do you use music to enhance your work?
Music has been a part of my life since day one. I love exploring music as much as anything else, and more often than not my films are driven by the music. In this case, the song I chose helped me mentally structure the video, so you can always count on a tight synergy between them.
What’s coming up in the future for you?
Lots of travel – I’m currently in Oregon working on a photoshoot for prAna. I go to New Zealand next week for a Corona commercial, then Australia for a fashion shoot – as well as following many ideas that I try to dream up and attempt in my free time.