Kelly Cestari was born in Durban, South Africa in 1980 and it was not until 1990, 10 years later that he discovered the joys of the ocean when his family moved to the Eastern Cape, South Africa. With nothing else to do in the small town of East London he bought his first surfboard and thereafter spent every possible weekend and post school afternoon surfing.
After seven years, Kelly and the Cestari family moved back to the warm waters of Durban where despite the pressures of tertiary education and gaining employment which required an hours commute to and an hours commute from work surfing still remained an important part of my life. He had always enjoyed playing with cameras but never entertained the thought that he could make a living from photography. Growing tired of familiar sights and sounds he spread his wings and did the “mandatory” move to London to work and see the world. Within three years I had grown tired of life on “Mud Island”, then went on to the USA and eventually returned to South Africa due to an injury on the ski slopes.
Pierre Tostee, the man who introduced digital photography to the ASP (Association of Surfing Professionals) World Tour lived in Durban eventually offered him the opportunity to help on a shoot. One opportunity led to another and in 2007 he made his first working trip overseas to assist on a surfing event, an ASP World Tour event. From there his scope grew as he covered more events, some on my own.
A dream that was born from a broken leg has led to a life making a living as a photographer, I will never go back to sitting behind a desk.