Dave Nelson

Is a surf and skate action/lifestyle photographer based out of Santa Cruz, California.

About page

Dave “Nelly” Nelson is a globally published veteran surf and skate photographer with countless magazine covers and spreads to his name. After spending years as a senior photographer at TransWorld Surf Magazine, Dave now shoots freelance for domestic and international publications. Major action sports brands such as Vans, O’Neill, Fox, and Reef commonly contract Dave to shoot on location for trips locally and abroad. As one of the best action water photographers in the world, he is usually in the right place at the right time to produce “the goods”. Dave’s personal relationships and mutual respect with some of the most elite athletes in the world gives him access to the best action at the best spots.

Dave’s dedication to the sports of surfing and skateboarding is matched by his values as a person. A true family man, Dave cares about is daughter and wife as much as he cares for his community of Santa Cruz. A consummate role model for young athletes coming out of his home town, Dave has helped pave the way for some of the best young talent in Nor Cal.

 

“What can I say about Dave Nelson, I’ve known this guy for over 25 years. I still remember the fist time I ever met him. I was surfing a rare left sandbar up north, just sitting in the line up minding my own business, when I see this guy padding out yelling “Yeah Meekster!”. I’m thinking to myself, who the hell is this guy? So he gets into the line up and burns me on his first wave.

Well right there I knew I was dealing with someone who is either going to get some serious beatings or become a good friend, well Nelly ended up becoming a really good friend. This guy has way too many classic stories to go into at this point, so we’ll save that for another time.”

— Keith Meeks