Slide Night presents an evening of 10 minute talks by 10 thought-leaders intimately connected to the ocean. They include artists, craftsmen, athletes, activists, scientists and personalities who will share their inspiring ideas and adventures in an informal, fun gathering. Slide Night is being hosted at the Centre for the Book on Monday 4th December 2017 and starts at 7pm. Tickets cost R150. The lovely Lauren De Vos will be our MC. Slide Night is a very popular event with limited space, so please secure your tickets soon. (Above image by www.sachaspecker.com)

Please click here for Archive: 2016 Speakers


Dougal Paterson

Creating Surf Films

Kommetjie resident Dougal Paterson is commissioned for advertising campaigns that require high fashion and lifestyle imagery specialising in the global airline industry. He counters these spurts of high octane travel by riding giant waves back home, while furthering his unique storytelling ability to explore the art of surf movie making, a hobby that is fast turning into his passion.

``I am a husband to Deborah and a Dad to Malia and Coco. We live in a wooden house by the sea. My Dad, himself an explorer, prophetically named me after the Scottish alpanist, Dougal Haston. I have two jobs. I chose photography as a career because it allows me to tell other peoples stories. I choose to ride Big Waves because it allows me to live my own story. I regularly travel to the ends of the earth, both in search of liquid mountains, and to shoot images for clients. I am sought out and commissioned to create advertising campaigns that require high octane, fashion-lifestyle imagery. I’ve also become one of the worlds most experienced photographers at shooting imagery for the global airline industry.``


Bernie Shelly

The Ghost Ship

Bernie Shelly, the 70-year-old longboard surfer who came back from three hip operations to defy the odds and get back in the water, will narrate the short film The Ghost Ship live on stage. According to the filmmaker, ``the film is testimony to the indomitable courage of women-kind: part love poem to the ocean and part hero’s journey``

” ‘The Ghost Ship’ is a come back story. It is a testimony to the indomitable courage of women kind,” said writer and director, Dougal Patterson. “It’s part love poem to the ocean, part hero’s journey. Bernie’s story will inspire you to believe in your dreams and push your own personal limits. This little movie is the collaborative offering of a large team of surfers who have pooled their time, passion and skill. Our desire is that ‘The Ghost Ship’ gives you, the viewer, HOPE.” Bernie Shelly is SA’s legendary lady logger who can found gracefully weaving along Western Cape walls at the age of 70, despite three major hip operations.


Faine Pearl Loubser

Sea Change

Faine Pearl Loubser, a 20-year-old film student at UCT, has a passion for the beautiful underworld of the Cape Peninsula where she spends many hours, sometimes with no wetsuit in temperatures as low as nine degrees celsius to become one with the marvellous myriad creatures of this nutrient-rich shoreline. She will show her passion while unlocking some of the mysteries of this amazing realm.

Passionate about documentary filmmaking and photography, Faine’s love for the sea was fostered by her dad through many ocean-related adventures. With a deep desire to capture the feeling of being in the ocean, it was the gift of a GoPro that enabled her to share her vision. Camera in hand, Faine would make solo trips into the sea along the Cape Peninsula seeking to capture her underwater world. This mostly included diving without a wetsuit sometimes in temperatures as low as 9ºc. It was a natural progression that Craig Foster, a close family friend, would nurture and mentor Faine’s passion for the sea and unlock a need to explore more, learn more and open up to the incredible mystery of nature.


Saskia Koerner

Single fin

The soulful, visual side of the ocean is strengthened by the beautiful photography of Saskia Koerner who started out as a fashion designer but graduated with a Bachelors of Fine Art in Photography from Brooks Institute in California in 2014. Her exhibition Light Waves chronicles female surfers who ride single fin longboards. In this talk, Saskia shares her passion and some of the highlights of her work with us.

Photographer Saskia Koerner started out as a fashion designer when she launched her own label 'Misfit' at the age of 18. Shops opened in Cape Town, Europe and Bali. After years of being on set at her own product shoots, Saskia decided to pursue her lifelong passion for photography when she began taking the shots herself. Furthering her dream, Saskia graduated with a Bachelors of Fine Art in Photography from Brooks Institute in Santa Barbara, California in 2014. She recently moved back to Bali after living in New York City where she worked with Mary Ellen Mark, Nan Goldin and Kenneth Willard, and in her free time exploring the concrete jungle.


Ceinwen Smith

Beach Co-op

Ceinwen Smith, part fish and part mountain goat, has a passion for marine creatures and steep mountain faces. Her marine research has focused on biodiversity and conservation stewardship, and finding creative ways to raise awareness about marine plastic pollution. Ceinwen shares insights in her work with the Beach Co-op - a volunteer movement that has evolved into a formal organisation dedicated to eliminating single-use plastics in South Africa.

Ceinwen's work is broad and varied, currently focusing on marine research, field-based teaching, biodiversity and conservation stewardship, and finding creative ways to engage with, and raise awareness about, marine plastic pollution. Ceinwen will be sharing some insights into the main findings of her work with the Beach Co-op. The Beach Co-op has evolved from a volunteer movement focused on cleaning up Surfers Corner, Muizenberg to a formal organisation dedicated to eliminating single-use plastics in South Africa.


Andrea Angel

Championing seabirds: from peril to hope

Seabird champion Andrea Angel, a Chilean national but a Capetonian at heart, manages the Albatross Task Force and leads BirdLife International's policy and advocacy. Part of her story is how Birdlife SA helped the South African hake trawl fishery reduce accidental seabird mortality by 90 percent and up to 99 percent reduction in albatross deaths as a condition of the fishery’s Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification. This astonishing conservation success story is a notable example of collaboration by stakeholders to ensure sustainable use of marine resources whilst drastically reducing the impact on ocean ecosystems.

Apart from her role of managing the Albatross Task Force team in South Africa and leading BirdLife International policy and advocacy at the South East Atlantic Fisheries Organisation, she engages with BirdLife’s Common Oceans project and the new BLI global programme to eradicate mice from SA’s Marion Island.


Ian Thurtell

My connection to the ocean

Shooting surfing imagery in a heaving ocean, with waves exploding all around you, can be challenging experience, but for water cameraman Ian Thurtell it's a thrill he never grows tired of. To get the shot, many elements must converge at the same time. Ian, who also tells us about the underwater housings he makes, immerses us in the ocean in his pursuit of the perfect photographic moment.

Capturing a surfing ``stand-up`` image is one of my favorite photographic experiences. In order to get the shot, alot of elements have to come together at the exact time. For me the most important elements are the surfer I am photographing and the light I'm shooting in.


John McCarthy

The Sexy Ugly Beautifuls spoken ONLY

Waterman John McCarthy, who hails from Durban, lives a life with the sea at its heart. Publisher of theBOMBsurf magazine, instigator of theGREENERsurfer and the architect behind the Swim Free Confidence Underwater course, he is the founder of OCEAN CHILD, an environmental surfboard and adventure company. John has just written a book and will regale us with some of the anecdotes that tell the story of his trajectory from international competitive surfer to a more connected and sustainable life of ocean endeavour.

John is a surfer. He can ride anything, including the alaia finless flat wooden surfboard used by the ancient Hawaiians. In fact, John could probably ride an ironing board. A former competitive surfer on the Qualifying Series and surf consultant to various television and film projects, John lives with his wife and two children in Durban, South Africa.


Robin de Kock

Gearing up for the Olympics

The news that the World Surf League has bought multiple world surfing champion Kelly Slater's wave pool, and will hold an event there in 2018 has thrown the future wide open. Surfing administrator Robin de Kock gives us a fascinating glimpse into man-made wave technology and how it fits into the global plan now that surfing is part of the Tokyo Olympic Games in 2020.

Robin began surfing in 1960 when he was eight. His first board was a resin coated polystyrene, yellow Sunsurf with an aluminium fin. It cost R64 at the Shell garage in Clifton. In 1974, Robin became Secretary General of the Atlantic Surf Club. Over 43 years as a surfing administrator, he has served as President of WP Surfing and the SA Surfing Association (SSA) that oversaw the transition to unity in 1991. He has been General Manager of SSA since 2002. He has also served as Technical Director and Vice President of the International Surfing Association (ISA) and remains a member of the ISA Technical Committee. His SSA work oversaw the establishment of the annual Grommet Games in 1992, SA's return to the ISA in 1992, a State President’s Award from Nelson Mandela in 1996, SA’s victory at the 2013 ISA World Games in Panama and in 2016, surfing’s inclusion in the 2020 Olympic Games in Japan.


Mike Schlebach

Dungeon Keepers

Big wave surfer Mike Schlebach takes us out to the Dungeons to ride giant waves. Mike started out as a bodyboarder but is now part of an elite group of big wave surfers in Cape Town. He shares anecdotes about the scariest, and finest, moments of his big wave surfing career.

Mike, who recently won the Rebel Sessions big wave contest, started out as a bodyboarder. Now he is part of a small group of big wave surfers in Cape Town. In this talk, he gives us a visceral take of what it's like riding the giant waves of the Cape Peninsula. He shows us photos of some of the biggest waves he has ridden. He talks about the salty characters that have been with him through his big wave journey every step of the way and what motivates them to charge on every swell. He will share some anecdotes about the scariest and most gnarliest experiences he has had in his big wave surfing career, and some of his finest moments.