Ojai Photo Club welcomes Emmy Award-winning filmmaker and photographer, Elizabeth Pepin Silva
“Waterwomen – On the Shore No More”

"Andrea Ventura CA" by Photographer Elizabeth Pepin Silva

"Keren Pacifica CA" by Photographer Elizabeth Pepin Silva

"Kiai Age Two And Half" by Photographer Elizabeth Pepin Silva

"Mary Osborne Solimar CA" by Photographer Elizabeth Pepin Silva

"Rachell Pacifica CA" by Photographer Elizabeth Pepin Silva

"Sunset Fog Pacifica CA" by Photographer Elizabeth Pepin Silva

"Unknown Girl Refugio CA" by Photographer Elizabeth Pepin Silva

The Ojai Photo Club welcomes Emmy Award-winning filmmaker and photographer, Elizabeth Pepin Silva, as guest presenter for May. Documenting the shattering of stereotypical “beach babe” images in surfing culture, and the rise of women surfers as world class athletes, her presentation is titled “Waterwomen - On the Shore No More.” The meeting will take place at 7:00 p.m. on May 17, 2016, at Help of Ojai’s Kent Hall, 111 Santa Ana Street, Ojai, CA.

As a veteran surfer in the mid-90s, Pepin Silva became increasingly dismayed by the portrayal of women in the surf media. Often used to advertise surfing merchandise, the fashionably skinny, bikini-clad models were nothing like the women she was seeing out in the ocean. Her fellow women surfers were, in her words, “from 6 to 60 years old, strong and athletic, of all ethnicities, sizes and shapes.” Determined to create a more positive perception of women in surfing, she embarked on a photographic journey spanning two decades, with the goal of dismantling the “surfer girl” cliché.

Beginning with portraits of women surfers in 1996, Pepin Silva went into the waves in 1997 with a Canon water camera and water housing to capture the action up close. Since that time she has photographed hundreds of women surfers in the United States, Mexico and Europe. According to former Surfer magazine editor and surf historian Matt Warshaw, she is one of the first women in the world to photograph surfing from the water.

Moving on to filming documentaries, Pepin Silva created “One Winter Story,” about Sarah Gerhardt, the first woman to surf the legendary big waves at Maverick’s Beach, California. Her most recent film is “La Maestra,” documenting the inspiring life of a young Mexican primary school teacher and surfer.

After living in the San Francisco Bay area for most of her life, Pepin Silva was finding, by 2008, that the foggy weather and cold water surfing had lost their appeal. She began searching for a place to live where she and her husband could enjoy outdoor activities and warm weather surfing. While camping in Ventura, they drove up Highway 33 and immediately fell in love with Ojai, moving here permanently in 2011.

Beyond the focus on women surfers, Pepin Silva envisions a wider scope to her work: “The goal of both my photo and film projects is to make women, both surfers and non-surfers alike, feel better about themselves and to acknowledge them in a positive way as athletes and enthusiasts. I hope to act as an agent of positive change, dispelling myths and altering the way all women are portrayed in the media.”

The presentation at the Ojai Photo Club will be interactive, and will include a wide spectrum of photographs of women surfers, a clip from the film “One Winter Story,” as well as the photographic equipment used in the ocean. After her presentation, Pepin Silva will review members’ images. For full information on Pepin Silva go to: http://otwfront.net

Monthly free presentations are part of the Ojai Photography Club’s community service outreach. Visitors are always welcome to attend. The Ojai Photography Club, which is devoted to education, inspiration, and camaraderie, meets on the third Tuesday of each month, February – November. Only members may submit images for review. For additional information please visit: www.ojaiphotoclub.com/