Samson Hatae – Photographer – Fun Haver

posted by Nicoletta Rolla February 14, 2017 0 comments
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Name: Samson Hatae

Location: Ventura County, California

Job: Photographer




Samson Hatae Photography

The Interview




First Approach with Photography: My dad gave me his old camera and I would take it around skateboarding and photograph my friends. I had a lot of fun doing that, then took a photography class in high school and have been hooked since.


The very  first experience that made you love the Adventure : I used to head out after school and on the weekends on a skateboard or bicycle with friends to find new stuff to get in to. Then as soon as I got a car, it was driving to new beaches looking for waves. This lust for finding something new and exciting that was just around the bend set a good foundation for my love of adventure.




Black and White or Colors: Mostly color, but I sure do like some good black and white tones.


Favorite Light: Winter light in California





Nature as an artistic Muse: I really do enjoy being out in nature. Being out in nature is a nice refresh to the system. The lines and shapes of the natural world are fun to work with.




The Place you call Home: Southern California


Camera/ Equipment: Nikon, Sony, and Hasselblad




The Country more attractive for you today: I have traveled a fair amount through out the US, but every time I go somewhere new I learn about something else I’d like to experience. It is such a large country, with so many nooks and crannies. This isn’t to say I don’t have my list of out of the country places I’d like to experience…


Best Adventure till now: My friend and I got hired to document a cruise that was circumnavigating the globe. It would go to 23 countries and 45 cities in 4 months. We visited so many placed I never imagined going to, like Easter Island and Madagascar. It opened up the world, seeing into so many different cultures and cities. We met some awesome people along the way from all over. Whenever we had the chance we would head out into wherever we were and head out and try and do something fun. This included body surfing at random places and renting motorcycles from locals. It was a demanding project, but it led to an adventure of a lifetime.



A Culture that really impressed you: I have been fortunate to travel to Japan a lot to visit family since I was young. It was a great way to see a different way of day to day life then I lived mine. The Japanese culture is very special. Even tho I have experienced a good amount if it, it still impresses me.




Tell me of your other passions: motorcycles, surfing, cycling…

My dad rode motorcycles when he was younger. When he saw I had some interest in them he got some motorcycles for the family and we would take trips out to the desert to go ride them. As soon as I could save money to buy my own I got one and started exploring my surrounding area and taking small trips. This lead to getting other motorcycles and taking bigger trips with friends all over California. I have made great friends through motorcycling.


I got hooked on surfing as a kid when my moms friend lent me a surfboard and I managed to figure out how to stand up on it. Luckily growing up in California surfing is super accessible and you can almost surf everyday. It is great to sit out in the water for hours with out technology, just staring at the horizon waiting for a wave to come. Every wave is different, each day something new, and there is a constant search for more.


I picked up cycling later in life when more of my friends started getting into it. I remember driving through the canyons going to the beach and thinking these people were nuts for riding up these steep hills in spandex. Fast forward a few years and that was me…Cycling has taught me to suffer, which is a weird thing to get good at. With mountain biking, you can head out into the hills and not see any cars or hear any city noise in no time at all. Then you get to ride up and down ridges with no one in site taking it all in. I have ridden a bicycle in some amazing places.


I recently picked up rock climbing as well. The act of scaling up a rock face with your own strength and a little rope to save you is something else. It is also just another way to get outside and enjoy the outdoors.




What do you ride? My current quiver: 1971 Honda CL350, 1975 Honda CB400f, Kawasaki W650, Suzuki DRZ400




What about your Adventures on Two Wheels?

I have been on quite a few adventures on a motorcycle. From day trips into the hills, up through Big Sur, to a cross country trip. My friend and I bought matching old police motorcycles and rode up into Canada, through Yellowstone, and into the bayou near New Orleans. Those are just some highlights of the entire trip, but it was the longest trip I’ve gone on just living with everything we could bring on our bikes. I do enjoy just a day trip to go get some desserts or some good views. Recently I have really been having fun hopping on my dual sport and exploring the hills in my surrounding area finding some dirt to get into.





What will be your next destination? 

Besides a few work trips I don’t have much planned for pleasure. I will be visiting a friend in New York for a few days soon. I haven’t been there for pleasure in a long time. I always try to squeeze a night out camping somewhere in between work trips as well. Get a refresh in nature. Those trips usually happen on a whim, but those can be the most fun.




I know that often you have a special travel companion…tell me more!

Jax! My loyal little adventure dog that loves to go anywhere he can with me. He pulls me on a skateboard, chases me on a mountain bike and swims after me in the ocean. As soon as I can figure out how to bring him on work trips with me, he will totally be there. Truly a mans best friend.







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