Video and interview
Who are you in real life, can you introduce yourself?
Dannie: I’m a wee lassie from the Scottish Highlands living my best life in sunny Kernowfornia (aka Cornwall!) in between Kelly Says adventures. When I’m not surfing bad waves or drinking terrible wine, you can find me exploring the coast, attempting and failing to skate. I also volunteer with the Wave Project, which is a surf therapy charity that helps young children to reduce anxiety, boost confidence and improve emotional health.
Hannah: I’m originally from the East Coast of England but I moved to Tenerife when I was 18 and taught myself to surf. I have been living in Devon, England for the last 4 years (about 2 hours from Dannie) but we try and travel as much as possible, especially in the UK winter!
Where did the idea for making these videos come from ?
Dannie: Kelly Says all started a few years ago when Hannah and I lived next door to each other in Newquay and we needed a project to help us get through the cold, dark, windy winter. Not really having a clue what we were doing, we decided to film ourselves surfing as much as possible, “no matter what”, and somehow (mostly through Hannah’s amazing editing skills) that turned into Episode #1. We enjoyed the process so much that we decided to repeat it in France, Scotland, Tenerife, Australia, Wales (Surf Snowdonia) and most recently the Maldives! People do seem to prefer watching us suffer so maybe we should film in Antartica!
A bit of humor, it’s not so common for surf videos?
Hannah: We knew we weren’t the best surfers and we weren’t photographers or videographers but we just thought we could try something different. We watch surf videos and even though we love them, we just don’t really relate (even the girls ones). Obviously we would love to surf like the pros but we are not that good and we are definitely not models! So we just thought, why not show what its like when we actually go surfing? We always have fun, so we just tried to film what its like for us in real life.
And … about Kelly Slater?
Dannie: One day in winter we didn’t want to surf and someone told us that Kelly Slater said “you need to surf all sorts of waves to improve, even the bad ones” (maybe not his EXACT words!), so we felt it right to name our episode after him as we followed his mantra. I can also confirm that after creepily waiting outside a restaurant in France for Kelly Slater, wearing a mask of his own face, he is indeed the legend he is made out to be as I wasn’t given a restraining order. He also put the photo up on his Instagram….legend!
ok, let’s move on to a somewhat more serious question … Violence against women remained one of the key unaddressed problems throughout The Maldives, is it something that you have heard about ?
Dannie: To be completely honest this isn’t something I have heard about before. We spoke with many Maldivians about their politics, history, culture and religion, but the subject of brutality towards women was never mentioned or hinted towards, even in conversations with Maldivian women alone. It also wasn’t something that was apparent to me while we were on Male or any of the other islands – in fact I felt more comfortable there as a female than I have in many other parts of the world. However, this could be completely naive of me and its something I would be interested in learning more about. We would definitely return to the Maldives and would love to explore the islands some more and spend more time with Maldivians.
Next movies and next destination?
Hannah: We have a episodes planned for the next few months, one in cold water and one in tropical waters! This last episode, in the Maldives, we were on the Surf Sojourn and Perfect Wave Travel have been amazing organizing some epic warm water destinations and Dannie’s mum always lets us stay when we want to film in Scotland!