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What Youth’s Michael Cukr is on the run, literally in between making some of the raddest shit known to man since the invention of the wheel, Cukr works behind the lens from shooting portraits of his Grandma to freaks like Chase Webb busting bangers down the street. Fortunately we caught up with The Horse under the influence of fun and interrogated him about Star Wars, hating surfing and Kolohe’s obsession.
ABSTRACTFILTH: Horse, what are you doing?
MICHAEL CUKR: Driving to go surf.
How’s it look?
I think it’s alright, my dad told me it looked good.
Your Dad’s full surf dog?
Yeah, he used to be pro...he used to be on the tour. His last year was 92.
Sick… you used to not like surfing?
I hated surfing when I was younger. I think it was like the salt water and the sand I guess. I skated, and I guess when you skate your supposed to hate surfing or something. Then I just started filming sponsor me tapes, that’s how I got into shooting. Surfing came later.
Your friends with Chase? [Webb]
Yeah he’s from my hometown he’s a little fucker.
Yeah I hated him before I was friends with him. Then I started filming him and started to like him. [Laughs]
What do you like shooting more these days surfing or skating?
Probably neither. But if had to pick one I’d probably choose skating. When you’re shooting surfing you’re on the beach covered in sunscreen, by yourself and nobody lands anything anyway, and at least when your shooting skating and someone lands something you can high 5 them.
Who’s fun to go on the road with for a surf trip?
Kolohe’s really sick to do surf trips with when there’s no surf. He’s really fun to party with and shit, but when there’s surf, he’ll surf 12 hours a day, goes to bed, wakes up at 4 in the morning and that’s not that fun. Dillon Perillo’s pretty cool… never mind take that out.
What inspires you Horse, to do epic shit?
What inspires me…? Warren Smith. I guess music does a lot. I thought a couple years ago that there was a correlation with the music I listen to and the way my photos look, but I don’t think that anymore. The culture of music during the 70’s was pretty cool and what band dudes look like. Lately I don’t know if it’s lazy, smart or what, but I’ve been thinking like the way things work naturally for example, shooting a roll of film and using 3 or 4 of the frames in a row, and just having that as your image. I like old photos that my Grandpa had, just of older people not necessarily my Grandpa, but pictures of them in front of their first car or a newborn and they don’t show any emotion, just a stamp in time. People weren’t smiling in their photos they were just like “Here’s me in front of my car.” Shot really geometrically, I always thought that was cool.
Where did you get your interest in shooting?
I don’t have a photo background at all. I’m the only photographer in my whole family. My Grandma was like you’re clearly really into this you need to meet my friend John Dykstra, who was the guy who did special effects for Star Wars. So I went to lunch with him and my Grandma. Then I found out about the dark room, shutter speed, and pretty much every part of photography you need to know. He told me if you want to become a photographer you need to know the basics.
Has school helped?
I learned a lot of technical stuff at school, but hated school and critiques. Just when you have to judge photos, and try to teach you how to shoot, I just thought that was bullshit.
Advice for groms?
Ask Kai that question. Just trust your gut.
Hell yeah Andeaux.
X Abstract Filth
"Kolohe’s really sick to do surf trips with when there’s no surf. He’s really fun to party with and shit..."