Sutton, Cyrus

Resourceful surfer-filmmaker best known for his blog Korduroy, a sort of digital general store of surf videos, DIY how-to segments, and surfer interviews. Sutton was born (1984) and raised in Southern California, the son of divorced college professors, and bounced between their Fullerton and Long Beach homes. At age 8, Sutton started riding waves with a friend on a bodyboard, and three years later began standup surfing with his father. He took to longboarding quickly and had a brief run of amateur success, winning the juniors division of the Rabbit Kekai Longboard Classic in 1999, and the 2001 Longboard East Coast Surfing Championships. Shortly after, Sutton contracted a staph infection, quit surfing for seven months to recover, and while doing so picked up a camera to film his surfer friends.

By 2003 Sutton had compiled enough footage to release his first film, Riding Waves, which netted him a Best Cinematography Award at the X-Dance festival. Two years later, Sutton earned an Emmy for his work as cinematographer for the documentary Next Wave: A Tsunami Relief Story. In 2010, Stoked and Broke, a charming surf film featuring Sutton and experimental surfboard shaper-rider Ryan Burch tramping around San Diego living on the largess of strangers and riding weird boards, was released to instant acclaim.

In 2009 Sutton launched, a lo-fi and much-loved surf website. Popular segments include a sort of “This Old House” for surfing called “D-I-Why-Not?”; a cooking feature entitled “Health Nuts,” and “Surf Sufficient,” a surf equipment repair tutorial. As of 2013, Korduroy had three employees on staff and was pulling in about 90,000 visitors monthly.

Sutton’s extended filmography includes dozens of short webclips as well as the full-length features, Freedom to Foam (2011), Under the Sun (2011), and Compassing (2013).