Film spotlights surfing, traveling and protecting oceans for future generations

Ocean by Blackburn

FOLLOWING THE SUCCESS OF RIVER, the acclaimed first chapter of the Water Cycle film project, Blackburn Design has released the second chapter, Ocean. The Pacific Ocean, the largest body of water on earth, serves as the foundation for this film about surfing, traveling, and protecting oceans for future generations. Ocean can be viewed at

In this chapter, we follow surfer Ashley Lloyd Thompson of Santa Cruz, CA. With her family, Ashley traveled down to Mexico in search of surf that is accessible only through a willingness to explore on a fat bike.  

Ashley has been an avid surfer since she was a child, eventually turning her passion into a career shaping surfboards and teaching new riders. As she became closer to her craft and the ocean around her, she adopted an emphasis on sustainable building practices that respected both her ability to ride huge waves, and desire to do as little harm as possible to the planet. 

“As recreationalists, we’re able to reach parts of the earth  in the saddles of our bikes or on our surfboards that are unimaginable when sitting behind a desk. But our adventures are not individual: we rely on our families, friends, and the world around us. Ocean delves into the depths of these relationships, and we’re proud of how it builds on the foundation River set forth,” says Brand and Marketing specialist Dan Powell. 

Protecting our oceans is the duty of each of us, but only possible with all of us. Blackburn has partnered with Sustainable Surf, and organization that protects and restores ocean health by harnessing the appeal of “surf-culture” to inspire people all around the world to live an ocean-friendly lifestyle. Help keep the oceans clean by making better daily choices, living a Deep Blue Life and by riding ECOBOARDS from shapers liker Ashley.

Ocean by Blackburn


Ocean was directed by Nicole Mackinlay Hahn.  Mackinlay Hahn grew up in New York, where she worked at for the family business on Fire Island National Seashore. Curious, adventurous, and with a drive for honesty, she began making films in 8th grade using her brother’s pixelvision camera. Since then, she has collaborated on projects throughout the US, Africa, and the UK. 

Brian Vernor, a noted filmmaker and photographer, is provided art direction for the film.  Brian has long been a Blackburn collaborator and will be making certain that each story in the project has a distinct point of view, while still holding close to the overall theme and vision. 

Ocean was produced by Robin Sansom, a long time Blackburn collaborator and a principal of Offsite Studios, a brand and content agency.

Chris McNally returned for the second chapter of Water Cycle by providing the amazing illustrations.  

About Blackburn

In 1975, Jim Blackburn looked at the at the emerging cycling culture and knew he could make a difference.  That meant thinking from the end-user perspective, showing respect for materials and their functionality, while offering purpose-built design and innovation. Over the years, Blackburn has adopted and honed those principles to build quality gear that allows people to go further, do more and be better prepared for everyday and extraordinary adventures alike. Join us on social: Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.