Monday, March 31, 2008

Wooden: A Legend

(John Wooden (C) Tiner)

Congrats to UCLA for advancing to The Final Four! Although they are a cross-town rival to my graduate school, I'm excited for this Pac-10 team and look forward to The Big Dance. It will be really exciting if they win the tournament and honor John Wooden's legacy.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Congrats x2!

(SL8R @ Trestles (C) Tiner, signed by Kelly Slater & Sean Tiner)

Congrats to Kelly Slater for winning the Rip Curl Pro at Bells Beach in Victoria, Australia. This is the year's second ASP world tour event and coincidently Kelly's second consecutive victory. If Slater continues this blistering pace, he will be on track to win his 9th world tour title.

(The Life of Kelly Slater (center with Quiksilver hat) (C) Tiner)

(Abstract SL8R Sequence @ Trestles (C) Tiner)

(Kelly & Sean with Sean's artwork signed by the Quiksilver Team)


(Aerial Photography Tavarua Island (C) Tiner (2008))

Visually, I'm attracted to this photograph, because it conveys a unique perspective of the island. Normally, most photographs of Tavarua are when the sun is perfectly shinning and illuminating the crystal clear waters. This photograph illustrates the wet-season, which affects the island for several months ...showing that even paradise can take a break from perfection.

Forward-Thinking: The Future of USC Academics

Ernest J. Wilson III, Ph.D., recently joined USC's Annenberg School for Communication as Dean and Walter Annenberg Chair in Communication. Dean Wilson brings decades of diverse international experience to The University of Southern California.

One of Dean Wilson's new goals is to create a joint Masters of Communication Management (MCM) and Masters in Business Administration (MBA) degree program between The Annenberg School for Communication and The Marshall School of Business.

On Thursday, as I was going to class after Annenberg's Annual Career Fair, I approached Dean Wilson and was invited to join a panel discussion for the proposed duel-degree program.

Since I have commenced my graduate studies last fall, I have taken one second-year MBA marketing course each semester. Although my academic experience at Marshall is not comprehensive of the school's offerings, I still realize the importance of the visionary duel-degree program. Marshall classes tend to place their emphasis on learning from case studies and how to maximize return on investments. This education creates a firm foundation for creating business in the twenty-first century.

However as international borders exponentially shrink, it is crucial to have a theoretical and cultural understanding of diverse communication practices. In my opinion, Annenberg provides its students with a cultural, psychosocial and theoretical outlook, without engaging in exhaustive business models that are crucial to understand in this competitive world.

I feel that Wilson's proposed duel MCM/MBA program will bridge the academic strengths from both schools and better prepare students for business in the twenty-first century.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Tom Servais' Party

(Sean, Tom Servais & AFC)

Last night, I attended Tom Servais' Book Signing Party at The Surfing Heritage Foundation. I really enjoyed the evening and catching up with old friends. Enjoyably, the foundation had hundreds of surfboards on display that span the entire history of the sport, including a 14'4 solid wood surfboard and the quiver from Coppola's Apocalypse Now.

(The crowd enjoying the evening.)

Tom and Pat O'Connell provided commentary on over 300 of Tom's photographs, which spanned his entire career. It was a very enjoyable evening and fun way to unwind.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Sneak Preview

I am excited to give you a sneak preview of a new product that I've been developing the past few months: SURFBOARDS!

Each surfboard is hand-shaped and constructed using the finest materials by industry experts. The boards are functional and look epic in any living or office environment.

The goal of the new medium is to change the paradigm of fine art in society and reflect aesthetic qualities of our contemporary culture.

(Sean with his 6'0 surfboards (photo credit: Rod Mortazavi)

(Sean with his 6'0 surfboards (photo credit: Rod Mortazavi)

(Sean with his 6'0 surfboards (photo credit: Rod Mortazavi)

Wednesday, March 26, 2008


As USC's spring semester in my Annenberg graduate program is winding down and the weather is heating up, I thought it would be fun to reminisce upon my undergraduate studies' environment at Brown University.

(Flashback to Sean at Brown University.)

...It definitely took a few years of adjustment for this Southern California native. ;)

Close, But No Cigar

The Festival of Arts posted the juried results today and I was only 4 points away from making the festival this year. This news is actually good for me it will motivate me to capture more stunning images to share with you.

On a side note, I am excited for a friend Casey Parlette who was juried into the show and received the third highest score. Casey's amazing sculptures reflect The Southern Californian culture and are definitely worth the price of admission.


"Live one day at a time and make it a masterpiece." -Anon

(Fiji (C) Tiner)

In Memoriam

(Keath Ledger (1979-2008) (C) Tiner)

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Relax :)

(Fijian Landscape (C) Tiner.)

Connecting the Dots of Web 2.0

"If you do build a great experience, customers tell each other about that. Word of mouth is very powerful." -Jeff Bezos, Founder and CEO

Web 2.0 has poured the foundation to create a sustainable, loyal customer base. On a micro-level, I have spent part of this year connecting the dots of Web 2.0. Using existing social networks and posting diverse, aesthetically pleasing content, I have created a diverse web that accelerates traffic to my blog and portfolio website.

(Diagram (C) Tiner.)

On a macro-level, the same strategy can be applied for any member of the creative economy (artists, fashion designers & musicians) and other businesses that desire to create traffic for their website. It is important to remember that anyone can join these social networks, the key is to differentiate your company or brand in a positive aspect to "build a great experience, (that) customers tell each other about" (Bezos).

Monday, March 24, 2008


Congratulations to Tori Praver for making this year's 2008 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition. Praver is a professional model and professional surfer, Danny Fuller's girlfriend.

(Tori Praver, photos courtesy of Sports Illustrated.)

I am also excited that Quiksilver and my friend Michael Baron's Byrne Surfboards were able to receive some press for Tori's appearance in the magazine.

(Danny Fuller @ Pipeline (C) Tiner.)

(Danny Fuller @ Pipeline (c) Tiner.)

(Danny Fuller @ Pipeline (c) Tiner.)

(Fuller Flippin' @ Tavarua.)

Saturday, March 22, 2008

NCAA 2nd Round

Congratulations to UCLA and Stanford for advancing to The Sweet 16! I was honored to be a guest today at The Honda Center and watch the double header. Both games were really exciting and I'm glad that both Californian teams won.

(Chris Stansbury & Sean Tiner)

(UCLA preparing for their dramatic comeback.)

Friday, March 21, 2008

It's about CREATING needs, not satiating existing ones.

(Excerpt from my thesis: Thinking Beyond Web 2.0: Leveraging the Dynamics of Generation-Y to Build Business)

According to Seth Godin, a best-selling author of business books and a famous marketing consultant, ten years ago the third most popular website on the Internet was Jennicam, a site that allowed voyeurs to watch a young girl frolic in her bedroom (Permission Marketing, 1999). Internet surfers were intrigued by the mystique and realness of watching a young girl share her secrets with the world.

...Sound familiar? ....Remember Lonelygirl15? Flash forward approximately 10 years from Jennicam and you are introduced to's Lonelygirl15 aka Jessica Lee Rose, a 19 year-old entrepreneur who used Jennicam's strategy to garner attention and propel herself to Internet stardom. In fact, Forbes Magazine made her #1 on 2007's "The Web Celeb 25" list, a ranking of the Internet's most influential people ( If we flash forward another 10 years, I doubt the masses will still be talking about the novelty of Lonelygirl15. Instead, we may be intrigued by yet another young girl who is sharing her "secrets" to the masses.

Human beings are hungry creatures, who constantly search for sweeter sources to satisfy their appetite. But once our cravings are satiated ...are our needs? In Web 2.0 and beyond, the goal for any marketer or company is to connect the dots of Web 2.0's infrastructure and CREATE a sustainable consumer base. This is accomplished by CREATING consumer needs, NOT satiating existing ones.

For example, did the world really need another cell phone, when Apple's iPhone was launched? With hundreds of available cellphones on the market, one can argue no. But Apple created a need ---the need to CONNECT more efficiently. The iPhone allows us to share our pictures, watch movies and most importantly CONNECT through chatting, texting, phone calls and sharing a passion for Apple's brand --one that has developed a loyal following (myself included) through years of strategic brand development.

For years, Apple has strategically created devices and applications that CONNECT consumers to each other, an underlying building block to Web 2.0's success. The more we as consumers are connected or feel the need to be connected, the more we "need" a new product or device.

It's similar to bees and honey. If you chase after the bees, they quickly fly away. The goal for any marketer or business in Web 2.0 and beyond is to become the honey, but only in small doses. To stay with Apple, look how dramatically the iPod has changed in 6 short years.

The first generation of the iPod made consumers desire the product. The honey was created. Each additional feature, including the use of color, addition of movies and a touch screen, was incrementally added to the existing product. Apple was CREATING needs each year for the existing consumer base, or introducing incremental amounts of "honey" to the bees. ...Now, don't you think they will use a similar strategy with the iPhone?

If you give bees too much honey, they get stuck. The failure of Jennicam and Lonelygirl15 to remain a sustainable presence in our society, illustrates what can happen when consumers or "bees" are given too much honey. If marketers and companies, like Apple, introduce incremental amounts of honey to their existing consumer base, they will remain sustainable entities for today and beyond Web 2.0." --Excerpt from Sean P. Tiner, USC Master's in Communication Management Candidate, December '08

Thursday, March 20, 2008

2 Thursdays Consolidated Into One

(Enjoying Life in Fiji.)

Today is the longest day of my life.

I gently woke at 6 AM in Fiji to the subtle chirping of my watch alarm clock. Quickly, I managed to finish packing and catch a boat with an Australian film crew to Namoto Island. The film crew is creating a surf documentary that highlights 9 global surfing destinations in 6 weeks (it will air in a few months).

(Reg Prasad (producer), Renee Bargh (commentator) & Sean Tiner)

After photographing Wilkes Passage, I boarded a boat charter at noon, which took me to Nadi Harbor. To pass some time, I spent the day relaxing by a local hotel pool and soaking up my last moments in Fiji. However, I was mainly absorbing rain drops and not the cliché postcard sun rays, because it is still the wet season in The South Pacific.

(The crew filming Renee parasailing.)

As the evening hour approached, I taxied over to Nadi International Airport and boarded my 10:30 PM flight back to LAX. Since, the direct flight is only 10.5 hours and the time difference is considerably longer, I managed to arrive in Los Angeles at 1:30 PM on Thursday --the same Thursday that I started in Fiji.

I cabbed over to USC, revved up my car and dodged rush hour traffic back to Orange County. After catching up on some emails, I watched a few of the first-round NCAA basketball games latter in the evening.

Despite the inconsistent weather conditions, I really enjoyed my trip and look forward to sharing my artwork in the approaching weeks.

To satiate your thirst, here are a few images:


(Fijian Landscape.)

(Fijian Sunset.)

It's 10PM (PST) ---still the same Thursday ---I'm now ending this long, enjoyable day. Good night. :)

Wednesday, March 19, 2008


It's been raining heavily the past few days in Fiji, which forced me to wait over 8 hours today to take a heli over to Cloudbreak for photography.

Magically, as we were granted clearance to fly, the sky parted and the sun illuminated Tavarua and Namotu. In the background, there was a daunting storm cloud rapidly approaching as the pilot and I raced to capture the surf breaking at Cloudbreak.

I took Joe, a local boat captain who as never been an airplane or helicopter, along for the ride. He was thrilled to see an aerial perspective of Cloudbreak and the local islands.

Upon our return the Plantation Island Resort, we flew through a daunting storm cloud that turned even an ironclad stomach. Fortunately, we landed safely.

Tonight, I've been invited to join 75 Ausies for dinner as they celebrate the wedding of New Castle sweat hearts. ...I'm off for the celebration. :)

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Leaving On A Jet Plane....

I'm off to The South Pacific today. I look forward to sharing my work, when I return.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

New Work in Fashion Island

I recently installed some of my new limited-edition photographs at Gary's in Fashion Island (Newport Beach, CA). Gary's is adjacent to The Cheesecake Factory and PF Chang's China Bistro.

Included in the work is an image of Trestles, which will appear in an upcoming issue of Surfer Magazine. Additionally, I also have my image of Crystal Cove's "Beaches House," which is the setting for Bette Midler's 1988 movie, Beaches.

(Aerial Photograph of Trestles)

("Beaches House")


After Dwight Howard's incredible performance in the NBA 2008 Slam Dunk Contest, I was inspired to test my dunking skills. My hometown has two NBA regulation half courts adjacent to the beach, which is the aesthetic backdrop for these photographs. My friend Chris Stansbury took the images.

Monday, March 10, 2008

...Moving one step closer

I discovered today that I passed the first round of jurying for The Festival of Arts, California's Premier Fine Art Exhibition. Over 240 applications were considered by the jurors and only 107 were accepted for the second phase of jurying.

The second round of jurying is in a few weeks and I look forward to it. 

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Rick Irons Birthday Party

On Saturday, March 8, I celebrated Rick Irons' 40th Birthday with 80 other guests at a private residence in Encinitas, CA. Irons is the editor of Surfer Magazine and has contributed to sport for decades.

BareFoot Wine
, Corona, and Smartwater were generous sponsors who kept the party following with festivity. Several respected guests from the surfing industry including, Grant Ellis and Peter King “roasted” Irons with celebratory praise throughout the evening.

One of my photographs was auctioned of at the event with the proceeds benefiting The Cardiff Educational Foundation of California.

(Portrait of Rick & Destiny Irons that I created as a birthday present for Rick)

(Rick Irons & Sean Tiner w/Tiner's photograph that was donated to the event.)

2008 Scholarship Application Deadline

The deadline for The Mark P. Tiner Education Foundation* scholarship is March 15, 2008. The $1000 scholarship is open to graduating high school seniors in Orange County, CA who demonstrate financial need.

Last year over 60 applications were received for the inaugural scholarship. I look forward to selecting this year's recepient with the 2008 board.

Click here for the application.

*The Mark P. Tiner Education Foundation is a fund of The Orange County Community Foundation (OCCF). OCCF is a CA 501 (c) 3. Donations to the foundation are tax deductible.

(The 2007 Mark P. Tiner Education Foundation Board Meeting: Selecting Scholarship Recipients.)

2008 Oscars

As new movies are released in 2008, I thought it would be a fun opportunity to reflect upon 2007. From New Country For Old Men to Michael Clayton to Juno, last year had several fascinating movies that sparked curiosity and cinematic engagement.

Earlier last month, I had the fun opportunity to photograph my friends Caroline and Christina Francis, before they left for the Oscars. It was fun to be part of the experience and capture their excitement.

(Pre-Oscar Fun with The Francis Sisters.)

(Christina Francis and Sean Tiner)

Thursday, March 6, 2008


Congratulations to Kelly Slater for winning the Quiksilver Gold Coast Pro this past Tuesday in Coolangatta, Australia. Slater, an eight-time world surfing champion, has reclaimed his #1 world ranking with his finals victory over Mick Fanning.

(Kelly Slater @ Trestles)

From Reef McIntosh catching the ride of his lifetime at Pipeline last season to Kelly Slater ripping up Trestles this past Fall, last year provided fun opportunities for me to capture passionate action moments. I look forward to sharing more work throughout 2008, as this year continues to take me in new directions.

(Kelly Slater & Sean Tiner)

(Reef @ Pipeline)

(Reef @ the Quiksilver House)

(Reef Mcintosh & Sean Tiner)

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Project Ethos

On Friday, February 29, three friends and I were guests of Project Ethos, a fashion, art and music event that profiles creative individuals under the age of 26. The red carpet event was held at the Avalon in Hollywood, CA. I really enjoyed the diverse range of fashion products and unique artistic expressions. My friends and I each wore ties that I designed and created for the event (see tie picture below).

(picture of me with Aurora, Ethos coordinator holding a portrait I created of her for the event.)

(some of my recent tie designs.)

Monday, March 3, 2008

The Power Behind "Faces”

…Imagine sharing your song, book or artwork with one hundred thousand people at the click of a button. The Internet has transformed the landscape of contemporary communication. Musicians, artists, authors and brands are creating awareness and knowledge for their companies through social networks and Web 2.0 mediums. A company’s ability to successfully harness the power of the Internet will determine the most successful and innovative brands of the twenty-first century.

Generation-Y, the 80 million people born between 1979 and 1999, are self-involved in issues and products that relate directly to their lives (McLean 2008). The ability to connect with Generation-Y on a one-on-one level is a dramatic strength for businesses. According to Anna Ivey, an independent consultant and author of The Ivy Files, a popular blog about Generation –Y, 'businesses that crack Gen-Y are going to have a real advantage' (McLean). Generation-Y is constantly demanding to be electronically stimulated and engaged in material relating to their lives. The ability to connect to a diverse range of 'friends' at a moment’s notice appeals to their desires, as long as the material is reflective of their lives.

The total reach of my recent 'Faces'* portrait series illustrates an innovative way to connect with Generation-Y. Traditionally, people assume that they are communicating with only their 'friends' when they communicate online, especially when they post pictures. However, Facebook and other social networks give individuals and businesses the opportunity to connect to two-degrees of separation (see figure 1).

(figure 1)

Assume that you post 50 images and 'tag,' a way of linking an individual’s profile to a picture, a different person in each one. If each of these people has an average of 300 “friends,” you are directly communication with 15,000 'friends' (50 pictures of 'friends' x 300 friends) (see figure 2).

(figure 2)

Figure 2 illustrates a hybrid of the potential reach a company or individual has when communicating with 'friends' in an online community. The ability to personally connect with Generation-Y is a key contributor to a brand's success and moving beyond the current interactions of Web 2.0.

*Links to Faces:
please click here.
please click here.
please click here.
please click here.