Tanner Prairie, born and raised in Costa Mesa, CA. He is the Gemini middle child of 4 boys & a girl in a large family by todays standards. The son of cowboy & United States Marine, he spent most of his childhood growing up surfing Blackies in Newport Beach as so did I. I met Tanner around the age 16 while I was in California shooting Alex Knost for a magazine. He stood out from the pack of kids he was hanging with.
From some reason we connected and it just fit. He was like me in a lot of ways; a rebellious character beginning to make his mark in the world.
Tanner is old soul & it wasn’t hard for us to be friends even with 15 years age of difference between us. I think he learned a lot from me as I did him.
In 2008, legendary shaper Mike Marshall took to Tanner as I did and begun showing him the ropes in the shaping bay. Mike was a Mentor for a lot of people in Newport. I myself, fortunately had the pleasure of knowing him the last 6 years of his life.
Now age 27, Tanner a proud father of 2 beautiful girls & a gorgeous wife. His credentials for the surfing world & within the community around him are
astounding. From his backyard to brands like; Saint Laurent, making boards for Alex Knost to some new grom we don’t know of yet.
His boards and talent are perfection. Jeffery Jones, was born in Livermore CA which for most who have never heard of it, its a truck stop on the way to San Francisco. Its a small town with only 2 exits and a nuclear power plant. My father was a professional baseball player for a few years with the Pittsburgh Pirates. My mother, beautiful blonde from La Porte, Indiana. My parents moved us at a young age to southern California, where I fell in love with the ocean.
I grew up getting into trouble & surfing the same spots as Tanner did. Blackies in Newport Beach, CA is probably what we would both call our home. It was never my intention to photograph surfing as I always had strong opinions about mixing fashion with surfing but I think it just came together naturally. Surfing was my outlet from the real world. I gave it up for photography while I was away studying but it found itself back in my life again.
I owe Alex Knost for this. He introduced me to Tanner & showed me surfing in an entirely different way that I know from growing up as a kid.
In some strange way, I’d like to think they needed me as much as I did them but I will never understand the mystery of our collaborations.
I think thats what keeps me going, it motivates me to see things different way.
Photographer: Jeffery Jones
Style: Anna Su @ Art Department
Talent: Tanner Prairie
Nudie’s Rodeo Tailors
, Nudie Jeans
, Birdwell X RVCA
, Yellow Rat, Wonderland
, Saint Laurent
and And Grails