Wyatt, Sandys, and I
Wyatt and Hansen’s day at Sandys is revision through new shots of barrels and waves. In
Wyatt’s sudden passing, Hansen grapples with with losing his best friend and moving forward to
appreciate the love of adventure Wyatt left with him.
Wyatt and Hansen travel to Sandy’s beach, Oahu for the first time together. Fun, active
waves crash scene by scene to relay the fun the two had. The detailed description with audio
from Hansen retells how the waves ‘pitted’ them and their bond was strengthened.
In an unexpected turn we turn the film’s demeanor dark. Clouds move in, waves become
chaos when the audience is told about Wyatt’s passing. The cruel waves show Hansen’s struggle.
Deep, slow shots are background for Hansen’s raw emotion facing the loss of Wyatt.
In the third and final act, Hansen tells returning to Sandys for the first time. The video
makes breakthroughs into self reflection and moving forward to carry on Wyatt’s sense of
adventure in life. Leaving space within the shots gives room for Wyatt’s presence, shows tribute
to a great friend, son, and human.
Hansen – DOP
My name is Hansen and this is my favorite story about Sandys.
The Summer of 2013 Wyatt and I travelled from California to Oahu. There was one place Wyatt and I couldn’t wait to get to, the legendary Sandy Beach. After practice, we’d watch wave of the day and greatest wipeout video clips. We finally got a chance to visit and we couldn’t be more stoked. Wyatt and I got up before sunrise and snagged a spot right in the front and collected our gear together. It was when Wyatt and I stood at the shoreline and it dawned upon us that this wasn’t a computer screen, we were actually there.
Wyatt and I put our fins on and rushed into the massive surf. The waves at Sandy Beach towered over our heads like skyscrapers, the water was so smooth it resembled glass more than liquid. I can still remember floating in the warm tropical water. Next to me was Wyatt, my best friend.
We were out there for an hour or so when the surf really started to pick up. I remember watching one wave as it slowly began to form, getting bigger and bigger, I made eye contact with Wyatt and we both knew what to do. It was a solid 10 ft face, Wyatt and I began to swim for our lives, positioning ourselves to capture the perfect shot. I could see the wave forming into a monster. I could feel my heart begin to race and my adrenaline begin to pump in anticipation for the wave. I can remember the moment of serenity as the wave began to curl over us, seeing the sun illuminating the water, bringing out the incredible blues and greens. Then as the saying goes, “everything good has to come to an end.” The wave started collapsing in on itself like a building being demolished. It destroyed us. The wave took it with us like we were nothing. It was like being inside a washing machine, we were being flipped and thrown in every direction. We actually ending up both washing so far up the beach we had sand in places we never knew existed. The best part of the whole thing was Wyatt and I couldn’t be any happier. We had dreamed about coming to this beach since we first became friends back freshman year of high school. This was what we flew across an ocean for and it couldn’t be better. We were sitting there catching our breaths and busting up about how crazy that was when I realized that Wyatt was more than a friend to me. Wyatt reminded me of myself in almost every way. Wyatt was a brother.
It was Friday September 19, 2014 when I found out. I rolled out of my bed still half awake and picked up my phone. After my eyes had adjusted to the blinding light I saw it had around 5 messages and a couple of missed calls from my friends back in California. What I read next absolutely broke me… It was from my friend Kevin and it said, “Dude. Wyatt Is dead.” I didn’t believe it. I tried calling Wyatt over and over, his phone would just ring and go to voicemail. It wasn’t until an hour later until I got in touch with his parents and they had told me that the rumors were true. My heart dropped and I went numb, I felt like throwing up. The best way to describe overall how I was feeling was broken, I could feel the hole in my heart start to form and I started to break down. I just kept thinking about everything we’ve been through and how he made me into the person I am today. Sadly, this was the end of our adventures. I kept thinking about when we went to Sandy Beach, just relaxing in the water and catching beautiful waves. Those memories helped me pull myself together and return to Sandy’s once again. The usually enjoyable drive seemed to drag on for an eternity. Finally, I was on the sand, sitting there for a few minutes just staring at the water, my mind began drifting in and out like the waves.
The water was colder than usual and the sky was dark and overcast, it felt somewhat fitting for the occasion. The waves were rough and heavy, pounding the shore. Once I was out in the water something seemed to change. I could see the clouds start to part and the sun breaking through. The waves started to form cleaner and break as smoothly as when I was last here with Wyatt. Wyatt, I thought to myself and I looked out onto the horizon and saw a massive wave start to form. It was just like the wave that destroyed Wyatt and I when we were here. I swam as hard as I could but it was no use, I prepared myself to get taken, picked up, and smashed by the wave. I was sent tumbling through the water. In that moment I could feel Wyatt there with me. Again I got washed up on the beach but this time instead of looking over and seeing Wyatt’s smiling face, it was just empty beach. It was set in stone, he was gone.
Wyatt helped make me into the fun loving adventurer I am today. His death changed my whole outlook on life. The months after his death I was a very cynical person, I was lost in my own mind and locked myself away from the world for months. Although, he is gone physically, spiritually he will be with me until the bitter end. Everything I go through, all the crazy adventures, he’ll be right there with me. If Wyatt’s death has taught me to live your life like you’re living it for more than yourself. Life is short and not guaranteed, you can waste it behind a cubical somewhere or you can go explore the world and open your mind. Im living my life for more than myself and I’m planning to travel and photograph the world to show Wyatt everything he couldn’t see.