Ian Smith, of Pittsburgh, PA, is on a mission: He hopes to spread the SUP love and protect the waterways he loves to paddle with his company SupAdventures ( www.surfsupadventures.com), through both films and taking others floating.
His latest project: Contours, a film and story of river surfing and the art of filmmaking empowering youth in Pennsylvania’s poorest city to conserve their waterways and reimagine their community’s future. The film is a project by First Waves ( www.firstwaves.org) , a group that works primarily with underserved and at-risk teens. Through mentorship and educational workshops, the students learn to recreate safely in local rivers, spearhead environmental improvement, and incorporate filmmaking and digital media as a tool for inspiring others.
“It’s totally great seeing these kids get out on the water for the first time and have so much fun,” he says. “And it also opened their eyes to helping protect the area’s rivers.”