Air Tour

I was lucky enough to go for a fly over Santa Monica. It’s was jaw dropping…I am still buzzing. So many people underneath us, so much life, so much going on…such a big place!

Firstly, these images are NOT captured from a drone (I get asked that a lot). The image quality from drones, for me, just isn’t there yet. Call me old-fashioned, but I like to be up there in a heli, enjoy the view and shoot in super hi-res so we can blow them up 1.8 metres wide later. I’ve been shooting these aerials for a decade now – and I still get super excited when I get the chance to fly. There is very strict rules in The States about flying drones – especially with LAX and SM airport just down the road. LAX is one helluva busy airport.

A few things I bet you didn’t know about Santa Monica:

  • They get 300 days of sunshine. That’s a lot of bluebird clear sky days. It’s been perfect the whole time I’ve been here.
  • 94,000 people live in Santa Monica alone – it is its own city (separate to neighboring Venice Beach, Malibu and LA). It feels about the same size as the Eastern suburbs of Sydney.
  • The Santa Monica Pier is actually 2 adjoining piers which originally had separate owners (circa 1909). The pier(s) were left to ruin in the 1970s and nearly got removed. In the 80s and 90s, the pier was fully restored and seen as an important landmark in the area.
  • Venice Beach is famous for it’s Muscle Beach. You know, where Arnie used to work out. The original muscle beach began though in Santa Monica in 1934.
  • Some of the best sunsets in the world are viewed from Santa Monica (reliable source – me!). I don’t know the scientific reasoning, but every single sunset so far has been a ripper. The colours at sunset are amazing.

Big shout out to The Oceana Beach Club Hotel in Santa Monica. They’ve looked after me so well and the service is next level. It’s right on the front so you can see all the action on the beach/pier. I’ve ridden their bikes around Santa Monica all day long and had a ball. More Info

later y’all. :: uge

Colorado X Ocean Ave, Santa Monica


2nd Set wave Venice Beach CA


Volley at Santa Monica Beach


Pier Contrasts, Santa Monica CA USA


Santa Monica and all the way up to Malibu


26 miles of flat, rideable, cycling track.


Marina Del Rey is the biggest inland marina in the world


The beach is busy near the pier - but 100 yards away it's dead quiet


6 thoughts on “Air Tour

  1. There’s actually quite a bit of recent history that’s pretty interesting in that area: Right next to the Santa Monica Pier, to the south side was the Pacific Ocean Park Pier, P.O.P, which was not only an infamous surf spot, but also kind of the birthplace of progressive skateboarding, and home to the Z-Boys. If you surf between Tower 24 and Tower 26, there is a chance that you can see a piece of rusty metal at the bottom of the ocean. Also, the surf shop where Jeff Ho was creating the legendary Zephyr Productions surfboard shapes has been somewhat preserved as a landmark and turned into a cafe on Main Street, called “Dogtown Cafe”, as a reference to the Ocean Park (not Venice) neighborhood around that pier referred to as “Dogtown”. Watch Stacy Peralta’s documentary “Dogtown and Z-Boys”, the 2005 feature “Lords of Dogtown” or some footage here:

  2. Love the shots Uge! I’m so stoked you’re in town. As an ex-resident of bondi (Curlewis st) I miss that damn place everyday. And of course your daily pics don’t make it an easier. Ha!. Now I’ve been in Santa Monica/Venice for the last 6 years and it’s great to see (and hear) your view on my new home, it’s a pretty special place too. It certainly makes me a little less homesick. Enjoy your stay mate.

  3. Stoked you’re able to see my hood! Been following your e-zine for the past 6 years, since I shacked up in Bondi for a year on a work/holiday visa. Check out Nicky over at the Whaler in Venice if you can, he runs the joint and surfs Venice often. Also if you haven’t already, say hi to the boys (Todd owner/ Timmy manager) at ZJ Boarding House, it’s the staple surf shop in the area, worked there for a while. Have fun brudda!

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