She was only 21, but Monica Guo suddenly knew exactly what she wanted to do in life: surf. She watched Blue Crush, booked a ticket to Hong Kong, and stood up on her first wave. For Monica, that was it: her life had changed forever.
Monica’s story reads a bit like a fairytale – only in this updated version, the princess doesn’t need the prince; just the sea. Despite her parents’ protests (her father worried no one would want to marry her if her skin got dark; her mother feared the sea was dangerous), Monica left her home of Yangshuo, located in mainland China, and moved to the island of Hainan. Ten years later, Monica has represented China in the ISA World Championships, and is one of the best longboarder in the most populous country in the world.
“Surfing is not just surfing, it’s a lifestyle, Is it purely your heart, purely your mind. It makes you become a better person. I learned, don’t be afraid to change. We are stronger than we think.”
When Monica isn’t surfing, she runs annual camps, Monica Girls Surfing Camo, for Chinese girls that she handpicks based on their personal letters to her.
Take a picture of you and your board in an iconic spot in your hometown. Show us where you are from and #KnowTheFeeling
DIRECTOR : SCOTT WYNN @GRIIMM_COLLECTIVE
VIDEOGRAPHER/EDITOR: WILL ADLER @WILLADLERPHOTOGRAPHS
PRODUCER: COLLEEN CONROY @PIGEON_RESEARCH
MUSIC : ARTIST: RYAN STUBBS TRACK: AT A LOSS