Humans of Santa Monica

by Jintak Han

Jintak Han / Daily Bruin

On any given day in Santa Monica, musicians, acrobats and other performers draw crowds to their sounds and movements. They can be found on the pier near crashing Pacific waves or along Third Street’s cement curbs, providing visitors and shoppers with a walking tour of live urban art. Here are a few of their faces.

“I do a lot of stuff that most people would look at me and go, ‘This guy’s on drugs,’ or ‘This guy’s got a death wish.’ But it’s kind of a little strange way of celebrating my life. I like to look death in the face. … The world out here is a gym, so I train, push myself every day.

Mostly I work on just shutting fear off. Just shut that fear switch off. And when you shut that fear off, all the magic happens. The whole world’s so fear-based. When you actually learn to shut it off, you get that adrenaline, and adrenaline is the key to success.”

– Kane Serfin

“Well, I normally perform in clubs and concerts, but I was born in Santa Monica, so whenever I’m in the area I always like to stop by and touch the soil again. It all began here for me.

All my life, since I was 10 years old, I’ve been writing music. And I’ve been traveling around the world for the last 10 years, all over Europe, South America, everywhere you think of. It’s amazing how much more singer-songwriter vintage music is appreciated in other places than here in the States. You know, when I play in Europe it’s like there’s a silence everywhere I play. People would just, ‘It’s an American singer-songwriter! It’s Bob Dylan!’ Over here, it’s like you’re lost in a crowd of noise.

I am who I am. It’s all about the music anyway.”

– Brad Rodgers

“I juggle, I do magic, I ride unicycles, I tumble, so I do stunts in film, but mostly street performing. I’ve been doing this for over 15 years.

Jintak Han / Daily Bruin
Jintak Han / Daily Bruin
Jintak Han / Daily Bruin

I do this because not a lot of people do it. And I love these people. I love these people, you know. But it’s hard to reach them. Hard to just say, “Hi, I love you.” But if you do a street show, and they see you’re awesome, then they look up to you. ... So I cultivated my art, my craft, and that allowed me a platform to be able to communicate with different people, and as I learn other languages, people respect me more.”

– Eric Nash