Last week, in a hotel ballroom packed with his peers and heroes, Duncan Macfarlane (NSW, Australia) took down $5,000 in cash c/o the Follow the Light Foundation. The grant, made annually in honor of late SURFING Photo Editor Larry “Flame” Moore, is meant to reward and support tomorrow’s surf photographers.
It is not meant to fund Vegas vacations.
SURFING: How's it been so far since you won?
Duncan Macfarlane: It's been good, I've just been holidaying with my girlfriend since I won the award. We hung out, went to a couple of events like the Globe [Year Zero] premiere and stuff. And we went out to Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon just to check that out, did a bit of touristy stuff. Not with the grant money though. [Laughs]
Have you spent any of the money so far?
No I haven't, I'm holding on to it at the moment. Didn't want to cash it in before I went to Vegas.
What are your plans for the $5,000?
I think what I'm going to do…well, I haven't planned it out too much. I want to enroll myself in a course or two regarding the business side of photography. I feel that with photography everyone can take good photos but then there is the business side of it — the way you market and conduct yourself. That is kind of my weak point at the moment, that's what I'm going to try and invest in I think.
Do you feel like you learned something about the industry while you were here in California?
Oh yeah, for sure. Hanging out with Peter [Taras] and talking to him, coming into the SURFING office and talking to all the guys. Meeting people and watching them do what they do as well. Hearing what everyone else had to say was pretty eye-opening.
What have you been doing to celebrate?
Just having a bit of R&R, which has been really good. We're going up to San Francisco in about an hour. That should be fun. Plan on staying there three or four days. Then we’re going to fly back home, back to the real world.
—Interview by Jen Sirchuk