Dersu Rhodes. Design Director Vice Magazine. Los Angeles.

 

 

 

If Dersu could be any age for a week, he’d be three years old so by the time he turned four he would be absolutely crushing the decks.

Growing up in Whitefish, Montana with an architect father, a painter mother and no TV, Dersu actually spent his childhood days sketching. His canvas of choice: napkins in restaurants.

It wasn’t until high school that Dersu would finally indulge his passion for music; when he and a friend discovered two 5-disc-CD-players and started spinning at dances and proms.

“We went under the name Youngunz Productions and occasionally rapped over tracks”, laughs the Design Director of VICE magazine in Los Angeles, who lives in Venice, loves Mexican food, funk, soul, deep house, Martin Luther King, dental flossing in public, long nights, early mornings and surfing.

“My first surf trip was on my 21st birthday to Tofino, British Columbia. The minute I was in the water on my board, my life changed.” Dersu was instantly hooked, but his body wasn't exactly in prime surfing shape. “I remember being so exhausted after that my girlfriend at the time had to carry my board to the car for me.” When we had the chance to meet Dersu in Venice, he had clearly overcome that minor hurdle, and we spent a few wonderful hours with this inspiring soul.

Words: Nike Martens

English copy editor: Lili Bordan

Photography: Lindsey Childs

“My first surf trip was on my 21st birthday to Tofino, B.C. The minute I was in the water on my board, my life changed.”