Carlos Sáez - Parafina

What was your first board?
My first surfboard was actually a small windsurfing board my uncle brought it from Ho´okipa (Maui, Hawaii) It was 8 foot long and single finned, I was 10 years old the first time I stood on it. (it was 1987)

What was the feeling you had when you first stood on a surfboard?
Happiness and excitement, I felt weightless, I felt I was flying as a bird… I was amazed. The wave´s shoulder was building up in front of me, that conection to the sea and how it´s inner force could be used to have fun, it was like a dream. I keep on having that same feeling today.

What do you love about surfing?
Many things, I like how the ocean can make you feel humble, through its raw power, I like surfing takes place in the outdoors, I like it´s solitude and I also like enjoying it in good company. I like how the ocean colours change, I love it's sound too. Overall it makes me feel much alive.

Who/what inspires you?
Kids, they are the most creative people by far. Specially when they are 3 to 5 years old. They always say what they think, and they always think out of the box because there is no box made for them yet. Music and art inspires me in any form. I get a lot of inspiration from people who help other people and by people who create stuff by themselves. To name a only few characters: Da Vinci, Pablo Picasso, Margaret Kilgallen, Paul Rand, Shawn Stussy… sites like KorduroySea StokeThe death of cool…

Do you have any regrets or wish you had done something differently?
Ummmm, not really… I mean, sure I could have done a few things differently, but then I wouldn´t have learn from those experiences. So, no regrets… life is all about embracing change, learning, sharing, caring and loving. At least that is how i see it;)

What are you most proud of?
I´m most proud of have always followed my dreams. I always took what I felt it was the right path. This mindset always pays off… maybe not with a lot of money, but with a lot of good feelings. For me that´s what counts.

Of all the places you have travelled to, what place in particular stands out? And why?
This is a difficult question to answer, I have traveled around the world on my backpack for about 10 years. China, Thailand, Australia, Africa, North and South America and of course Europe… Each place has it´s ups and downs. The world is full of really amazing and beautiful places though. For living southern spain is pretty awesome, relaxed people, great food, the nicest weather and a good quality of life. Portugal is really close and you can find the best uncrowded surf there… I heard from Ozzy friends it looks like West Oz 50 years ago.

What’s your favorite meal?
"Bocadillo de jamón serrano" it is a delightful spanish sandwich. It is the best thing ever, you have it with sliced tomato and olive oil, you roast the bread and it is delicious (you can´t imagine how much) and simple. I also love sushi big time.

What music are you currently listening to?
I am crazy for music since my childhood. My all time favourite band is Soundgarden. In my list right now: Ty Segal, The Oh-Seas, Tweak bird, Guadalupe Plata, The Sheepdogs, The scientists (Au), The Mattson2, First Aid Kit, CC Adcock, Yellow Ostrich, Com Truise, Beirut, Greg Brown, Neil Young, The Black Keys, Kyuss… The list goes on and on.

What sort of education have you had?
I am graduated in science of sports. Also have a master in olympic sailing, and I´m licensed to coach athletes professionally.  I studied in the University of Las Palmas in the Canary Islands (Spain) The place is great and I was able to surf a lot in my spare time.

What was your very first job?
It was as a snowboard instructor in "Sierra Nevada" during the mornings, and bartending during the night… That was the only way I could pay for all the expensive equipment (snowboards, surfboards, windsurfing and kiteboards) It was hard work as I had to wake up really early in the morning and go to bed vey late. (In spain bars close around 3-4 am)

What is your current job and what does it entail?
I´m working in a little startup called "Parafina" I took a year of after 8 seasons as a judge in the PKRA world tour (kiteboarding world cup) I started selling at selected stores in California. I try to tell a story of love for the ocean in a fun way. Focused in hand drawn art, eco inks and organic garments. It is being a super fun and rewarding experience so far… Loving the community response, I am so thankful for that.

How did you get into the position you are today?
Connecting the dots, as Mr Steve Jobs said… I have my wife an lot of amazing friends and people who support what I am doing.  It is a lot of work, but if you like to learn things, if you love what you do, if you visualize your goals, you can be sure it is gonna be a rewarding experience. It is all about enjoying the trip. Do the best you can with what you've got and let things flow, learn to adapt and change. It is actually pretty similar to surfing a wave, you can always fall, or go over the falls, but that would not stop you from trying. The reward is big.

What do you like most about your job?
The creative side for sure, bringing ideas to life, sending out a visual message of positivity and making people smile. I also love meeting awesome people along the way. Find a job you love and you won´t have to work for the rest of your life;)

Where can we find you online?

Web: www.parafinaco.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/ParafinaCo
Tumblr: carletessaez.tumblr.com
Twitter: twitter.com/parafinaco

Posted by: Troy Roennfeldt, on March 3, 2013
Categories: Interviews

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