matt's write up. check the video, it gives you an idea about the magnitude of the articles Junko and Takashi put together. I am so honored to be a part of this.
below is a translation of the article:
An ancestor of modern surfboard designs
Restoration of PIG
A guy called Mike Black is the source of the message
Right now arising from a blog generated in Southern California are indications of a revival of the standard Pig.
Centering in Southern California, people with Pig Fever are steadily increasing in number. It looks like the source of the infection is this maniac blog. He is the ringleader of this Pig Movement, and (probably) the world’s number one lover of Pigs.
It somehow always existed in the surf scene, but until now a Pig Movement had difficulty surfacing. To those who know, pigs have a unique, recognizable outline, but it seems that most people only see a simple longboard. Even photographers who are shooting icons of this movement, such as Alex Knost and Robbie Kegel, riding pigs frequently don’t notice the difference. Editors are the same. Because they don’t have designs which are noticeably different at a glance as do the Fish and Alaia, it is difficult to see tangible signs in the media.
Moreover, there is a reason that pigs will not become caught up in a global type movement encompassing places such as Hawaii and Australia. That is that one can’t enjoy them unless it is a Southern California type of wave. With the exception of one spot in a place like Waikiki, one can’t expect that this movement will rise in Hawaii, which has wave qualities the exact opposite of what is most appropriate for pigs. On the other hand, basically since the short board revolution in Australia, which is the basis of evaluation, with the exception of some log freaks in one part of Noosa and Byron Bay, log culture is essentially out of sight, out of mind. Of course, even within California, the farther north you go, the lower the penetration rate of pigs becomes. Michel Junod of Santa Cruz says, “In this area there are various things that lead the mavericks. In Southern California wave quality, culture and quiver differ greatly.”
Having said that, it is unnecessary to be conscious of the limits of the movement. Rather, to the contrary, if one at least understands the Southern California type of wave quality and logging, then it is possible to love pigs anywhere. For example, there are many followers of the Southern California movement in Japan and Europe, and in places where wave quality is relatively present, pigs are probably accepted as the best trim board.
Well, there is a person who plays a central role in that kind of Southern California Pig Movement. “Surf a Pig” also provides links to board design forums, as well as support to pig freaks around the world. It has secretly, quietly expanded the range worldwide a little at a time.
The beginning of a long trip looking for pigs
Mike Black is not even a pro surfer or a shaper. He is, of course, not even a surfing journalist. On this point, he differs from industry people like Derek Hynd and Richard Kenvin for the fish or Tom Wegener for the alaia who have skillfully used the media to plant the spark for their movements. “I am not a surf world person. My occupation is a math teacher. I am just a regular surfer,” says Mike. In the end surfing is no more than a hobby for him.
He is originally from Texas. Because his grandfather’s brothers lived in San Clemente, he often came to California with his family and camped in San Onofre. However, he was completely ignorant of surf culture. In 1988 he drove to California by himself using money he had saved up. It is a three stringer pintail board with a narrow nose and a wide point aft of center , with the entire length being full belly. On this board Mike surfed at San Onofre, and then after returning home to Texas, continued to surf. This is what he used to learn how to surf on a single fin longboard. When he moved to California in 1996, he brought this board with him. It was in bad shape, so he had Tyler Hatzikian, who he knew through a friend, overhaul the board.
After that, for a while, his eye drifted to stylish nose riding surfing on a Nuuhiva type of nose rider, but in the end he returned to the pig. “Basically I use a parallel stance, and I don't really do cool tricks or anything on the nose. Since becoming an adult and becoming wiser, when I understood what it is that I really like, I noticed that I really want an old style D fin pig.” From this, Mike’s long journey to find a real pig began.
First he looked on the internet for a bing, but a vintage bing was too expensive. He then decided to order a present day bing. The shaper was Matt Calvani. Mike’s order was for an offset stringer with a resin panel in a particular shade of green, 10 ounce Volan Cloth, 10 foot pig. Matt made the pig to Mike’s specifications. “I was satisfied to finally have a real pig in my hands. On the day that I received that pig, I got the “surf a pig” domain name and started my blog. I put a photo that I had taken of Matt Calvani’s pig on it.”
This is how in 2008 the extreme maniac blog “surf a pig” started.
The Shared Consciousness of the Mania to which the Blog Gave Birth
Led by Matt Calvani’s pig, Mike obtained various shapers’ pigs, such as those of Lance Carson, Jim Phillips and Dano, and compared how they rode. He tasted each one of the different designs, and while slowly ruminating, came to understand how a D fin functions, the perfect feeling of fitting in a pocket, and the peculiar sensations of a pig.
After that, in an exchange he had been having with Gene Cooper, he requested a shape. Gene was not keen at first, but readily revised his evaluation of pigs after seeing Mike’s riding. This is how Mike’s model, the Blackboard, was born. It is extremely unusual for a surfboard model to be made for an amateur anonymous surfer. However, Mike’s extensive knowledge of pigs, his clear vision of the ideal shape and his passion were on par of a pro surfer.
Each of the boards that he has obtained or for various reasons had to let go has a story. There is a board that didn’t feel right. There is a board that he doesn’t want to ever let go. There is a difficult board that he came to understand painfully and conquered after a long time. Regardless that they are all pigs, the same variety of surfboard, why do they each differ in their ride and character??? After surfing, there was a time when he was at wit’s end. However, this, for him, is the attraction of a pig. He is not a shaper, but he has an enormous amount of first hand experience with the relationship between design and function in the water, and also the feeling for the ride of the board under one’s feet. He has patiently gained a feeling for how the actual function changes depending upon the things like the template, full rail or not, the volume of the form, and balance. For that reason, he gets great joy when he finally gets that board made. This stoked feeling is directly uploaded to the blog, so a lot of people feel that real joy with him. Because there is little information or resources on pigs, even though “surf a pig” is an amateur production, because of Mike’s own learning and growth, it has given birth to many similarly minded people. “I frequently receive emails from people who are looking at the blog. They say, “I’m making this.” “I think this.” “Look at my pig.” “I restored it like this.” Each one has his or her own answer as to what a pig is. I like pigs, but just by having some experience riding them, I am not an expert in them. If I’m asked, I’ll tell my opinion and my preferences, but I also like hearing other people’s opinions. Even when sometimes I don’t have the same opinion, it becomes a resource for the people who are looking (at my blog). For me, it’s good if the post supplies comparative information on pig sense. This is what this blog is about, and I am thinking it is an honor to be able to do that.”
Potential growth of Pig Mania
If you look at Alex Knost or Robbie Kegel, Cody Simpkins, you can believe that the fuel for this movement was there before, but the type of pig that they like to ride and the type that Mike pursues are clearly different. In comparison to the relatively modern pig that young surfers favor, Mike is undoubtedly pursuing a pig that has historical value. He got into pigs just three years ago, but in that time, he has knocked on the doors of a lot of shapers and he has been able to have shaped what he has told them what he personally has been looking for in an ideal pig. This passion has come through in the blog and transmitted to a lot of people, and has caused a lot of people to become interested in pigs. When a surf icon briskly hops aboard making a board design explosively popular, the quality and structure of the movement is fundamentally different. The drama of the revival of the pig these days is, by one definition, part of the soil. However, for that reason, one can also say that it is stable. While looking at “surf a pig,” the outline of a pig looks at first unexciting and then mysteriously gradually becomes beautiful. As such, there may be the potential for pig mania to increase around the world. Formidable, Mike Black’s pig fever. That infectious fever is also starting to spread further now.
Born in 1972 in Texas. Started surfing in 1987, moved to California in 1996. Fell for old Pigs, and started a blog, “Surf a pig” in 2008. His main occupation is as a math teacher, but he has the face of an independent filmmaker and also produced works called “Invasion! From Planet C” and “Jazz the Glass.”
What Mike Black Considers to Be the Five Elements of a Pig
Having a narrow nose
Having wide point in the rear
Having a full rail
Having a flat rocker
Having a slight belly bottom along the full length (a belly that is rolling)
Having a D fin and wide tail block attached to the end of the tail