Water Angles

Worth the Squeeze

I went surfing for a few hours today, sloppy on shore beach breaks. When you’re not used to it or just throwing one trick on a wave you find yourself chop hopping till you realize you’re already out of position. Plus I got to re-encounter the always friendly locals of Palm Beach County haha. People start to smile when you bust out a camera, But I’m a prick you burn me while I’m surfing good luck catching a free shot.

This kid Albert from yesterday showed up with some of his buddies and it was worth me grabbing my camera. They obviously grew up here and understood how to tear apart these waves or at least throw the “go for broke” tail-whips.

Sequence of Albert blowing tail, he was the only one really linking the rights (the board art is so punk rock!!!)

Any one that wears such awesomely bad 80’s style face stick better be able to surf… He’s going to have to land airs to pull off a neon wetsuit thought haha

Didn’t really grab any shots of there 3rd friend but doesn’t mean he should be left out, high school can be a cruel place and I don’t want him getting made fun of tomorrow.

I’m really still not used to seeing buildings on the beach, I grew up in New York where they protect the natural beauty of the beach and the North Shore of both Oahu and Maui don’t  have a single building taller then 3 stories on the beach (except Turtle Bay). It just reminds me of the bumper stickers “KEEP THE NORTH SHORE COUNTRY”


A New Blue

So I’m currently in Southern Florida (tell your friends)… And I actually got some waves this afternoon. I miss Hawaii but It was great to be able to get wet and get some shots. I used to surf Lake Worth Pier when I lived in Florida back in 2003, it was an extremely local spot and I couldn’t get a wave to save my life (I was learning in a spot you shouldn’t be learning at).

But today was fun and I actually had some talent to shoot, so over all it was a fun afternoon. Aloha

North Side of the pier is a wedgey reform, not a lot of power but there is usually a little ramp at the end for a hard cut back or mini air.

I tried to shoot some video, not a huge fan of the quality thats why I rarely post videos but enjoy


Lost and Found

I had a lot of epic shots I took this winter but it’s funny how many I missed, It would be impossible to post all of them but I’m getting surf stoked all over again going thru my re-edit.


Seeing thru Fisheyes

Fisheye Lens are a staple of surf photography. Depending on how you angle the lens you can make waves look bigger, deeper or steeper, But the down fall is you can also do the opposite. When I first got comfortable enough to get close I realized that I then had to master the fisheye. I mess up a lot of great shots due to inexperience and being too far away. But I learned from my mistakes and how to crop a photo to hide the distortion. Enjoy

Check out the original and the cropped, it’s really hard to maintain a believable horizon

 

Bottom angle shots will dwarf a wave size

Water droplets on a dome shaped housing ports are a way of life and an image killer

Subjects on the edges of the image get distorted

Too Far away


Then It Clicked

Around the 3rd week in November the North Shore Lit up, It was time for me to step up or get out of the water. All the pro’s started to show up and the waves started to get heavy. If you remember the waiting period for the Haleiwa Reef Pro, 9 days without contestable swell then BANG.

I was so impressed by the talent that it made me hold position longer and try to get closer. It was the push I needed, I was getting drilled by outside sets and slammed into the reef everyday but the fear was gone. I wasn’t going to miss it, I wasn’t going home empty handed.

Adriano De Souza

I would stay out all day everyday, holding position, legs cramping, watching the never ending magic

Tanner Gudauskas


Having Fun

Once my nerves started to subside and I started having fun,my pictures got exponentially better. These are all from November 12th, my 4th day as a water photog. I stayed in the ocean for over 7 hours that day (3 sessions), it was also the first day I sold my shots to anyone. A huge mile stone and the first day I felt like things started to click.

I’m a ham and rarely serious…

I started feeling comfortable getting close, I was out of position but at least I was close haha

This one is painful to look at because it shows I had no clue how to position my body, I took many beatings to figure it out. Flynn Novak bottom turn

I went out for my last session at 5pm stayed out until 7pm trying to figure out controls for fading sun shots.


Humble Beginnings

Ok, if you haven’t been following me or new to my site, this was my effort to cover this winters surfing season in Hawaii. I had never taken a professional water angle shot before in my life and had no clue what I was getting myself into. I’m the first to admit I was way over my head, but it didn’t stop me from going for it.

This is the start of my re-edit of my photos from this winter. After reviewing my photos I’m amazed how far I came in 3 months. It just goes to show if you put your heart into something and tell yourself failure isn’t an option you can accomplish your dreams. These are my photos from the first 3 days with my water-housing (november 9,10,11). It’s not as easy as point and shoot haha.

 

How bad it this hahahahaha, it’s Gavin Gillette but It’s so blurry If it wasn’t for the logos on the board I couldn’t even identify him

I was so afraid I was going to drowned, I keep myself soooo far away from the action. Hawaii waves are more powerful then anything I have ever encountered. Humility was the best lesson I learned thins winter

Not only being too far, I didn’t understand how to frame a picture. I was unconfident in my abilities which led me not to even look thru the view finder I would just hold my arm out and hope for the best. Man I’m a kook

I must have taken 5000 photos into the sun before I figured it out. Here is my first attempt.

I’m sorry you have to look at such crappy photos but it’s important to me for you to realize how far I came. Here is a picture of my first sunset on the North Shore, (notice the lack of people and all the sand that was on the beach during the beginning of the season).

 


Here’s a turtle

Ok I know I’ve been slacking, I’m starting a new Job which will put me on the road for the next 6 months straight. I will re-edit at least one day every week for the next few months so I can keep the Aloha alive. I took about 50,000 photos this winter and yeah maybe I posted the best of the best but there are a lot of unseen photos to re-discover.

Here’s a turtle… Yeah he’s slow but when you see him he’s worth the wait

 


Kate…

It’s always a pleasure to work with beautiful talented athletes. Kate brought this calmness and elegance into the shoot that really translated to the photos. We had the opportunity to explore a lot of different ideas and different mediums (rocks, sand, waves, deep dives, pool) and the morning sun was excellent lighting. The shot took place @ Big Beach in Makena

(http://www.facebook.com/KateBella)


Point on Point

Point is the West break at Ho’okipa and it was super glassy and on point. No need for a description, the pictures will say everything

Lets start with the airs!

Some barrels, hard shredding and local flair

I love the perception of this photo, I was shooting under the lip of the section that broke in front of the surfer and it makes it look huge!


Pavilions Hookipa part 2

Pavilions is fast steep take off with a long workable right, it’s a fun technical wave. When it’s going it off is a heavy local spot and you can bet if you aren’t sitting deep or paddling like crazy you are going to get in someone’s way. It’s my favorite wave at Hookipa despite the fact I’m goofy foot and the lefts are blocked offed by jagged rocks.

Dylan Walsh was tearing up the wave the whole day… Check it

Some more local Shedders

Overall a glassy over head fun day


Pavilions Hookipa part 1 (Donkey Show)

Pavilions is the East break at Hookipa beach park, it’s also the most localized spot on the beach. Knowing what you are doing and watching out for deeper surfers is Key at this spot. I’m only stating this because as a photographer I have no right to tell anyone to watch out, I’m just a peaceful observer. But I was dodging Long Boarder’s and kooks for more then half my session, Kind of a pain in the ass when you are focusing on a surfer that clearly has the peak and someone drops in on them and right in front of you.

Maybe I’m bitter or maybe I spent the last 2 month at Rocky Point on the North Shore of Oahu and saw people get beat down for putting peoples life’s at risk.

I personally feel the same way as this girl in the photo flipping the bird…. This guy should have got booted

This happened so many times I decided to get a shot of this donkey bailing his board. He bail his board after dropping in on the surfer on the wave and didn’t even try to hold his board. It’s dangerous and personally I think it’s a sign of disrespect.

And I’m not one to get to gang up on someone but this girl didn’t give a shit. She must have thought she was at Waimea Bay .  With that huge red board, acting like this is a local share waves… She got barked at and did it again…

This is my favorite Donkey 1 Trips Donkey 2….


Good Vibes and Cute Girls

It was a longboard day at Hookipa, small waves but some enjoyable Kona off-shore winds. This brings a lot of smiles and mellow attitudes. Everyone is out there just enjoying the ocean and the wonderful felling you get gliding along the water.

Lets get the cute girls out of the way first, then we can worry about the god vibes haha

Bust out your best shaka

Since it was small I made my friends hold hands and look cute for an underwater shot. Maybe one day I’ll take engagement shots, hahahah yeah right


Over Exposed Gold

What’s funny about shots like these is that they have more of a mass appeal then regular surfing shots. Over exposed, over edited garbage will all grace peoples walls. Don’t get me wrong I don’t dislike shots like these, I’m just try to salvage a bad day of lighting with an artsy touch. Basically I’m disappointed in my effort today…even though you will enjoy these shots 

I gave up half way into the shoot and went underwater, I got a cool sequence of a guy breaking on a wave (stopping Flintstone style  hahah)

and the ever popular behind the waves shot…. I still have to work on this one


Hookipa River

Tried shooting at point today at Hookipa beach park and ending up at middles. I haven’t lived here too long but that was the worst current I dealt with on Maui. I couldn’t stay in one spot and on top of that I was having issues with water droplets on my lens. I got a couple of good shots but that was more luck today then skill. Enjoy

 


Setting Sun Session

Got to Hookipa around 4 for a setting sun session with my buddy Rez. Some cool shot and great color. Less words more pictures 🙂

Rez almost landed on me 3-4 times during the session but he was going hard so I didn’t mine. 

You need a permit  to use a Jet Ski (they call it a thrill craft in HI) and be able to Tow-In surf in Hawaii. This guy was in my class this weekend, He is a Kite-Surfer from San Fran cool guy, hopefully going to shoot him kite surfing next week. 

Rez into the sunset


Wind Surfing

Ok I never tried Wind Surfing, seen a wind surfing magazine and have never shot pictures of wind surfers, That being said I think I did a good job. Met some nice wind surfers in the parking lot of Hookipa  Beach park asked some basic questions about the sport and swam out. I’ve seen them bust crazy airs before so I was ready for that but I had no clue how fast the can move in with a slight shift of their sail. I really didn’t want to get hit so I played it cautious

Air of the Day!

The next 2 shots are of the same guy (SAME WAVE), I loved the color behind the wave shooting into the sun. Surfers never get that high so I wasn’t use to turning around looking for that image.

Here is an older guy that was leaning so deep into the wave, not sure if that a good thing or not. But I though it was cool

This kid was killing it!

GOOD JOB? YES OR NO


Duck Diving Photo Shoot

So a few days ago I had a photo Shoot with my friend Val Frey. She operates a Billabong Surf Camp here on Maui (www.WavesHawaii.com (best school on the island)). She wanted to get the classic duck diving photos so for an hour all she did was swim under wave after wave. The girl is a super athlete and did it with a smile on her face the whole time.

900 photos, over a 100 keepers, this was the hardest editing I had to do all winter


Honolua Bay 2

So I said had a bunch from yesterday session so I thought I’d do a part 2 from Honolua Bay.

This was actually my favorite shot of the day! The surfer dropped in on the bodyboarder and the sponger edged him into the white water then looked back to watch the guy get smashed by the lip. Really funny

This not a bodyboarder post but this guy got super deep so I had to show it too.

Longboarder’s were killing it too

I’m a goofy foot so I understand this photo, still doesn’t make it a good idea on a point break style wave. The girl duck diving can’t figure it out either haha

This was a great spot for this surfer but this was the wave I got smashed on. Thats how crazy I am, I know I’m about to get pounded but I still grab a few shots before the wave drills me haha, I might have issues


Honolua Bay!!!

Today at Honolua Bay was EPIC!!! I have so many amazing photo’s from todays session. If you don’t know where the place is don’t come here haha.

Kai Barger was killing it!

Dustin Barca about to get shacked!

Its awesome when you have the chance to show people there waves after the session, Met this guy on the top of the hill, he’s a local guy that was killing it all day, went back for more after I left too

I dig this shot cause I get to show you how heavy it was and where I had to sit to get these shots. Only got pounded once but I can tell you it wasn’t fun…


Merry Christmas

So this is going to be a different type of post, I gave out a bunch of business cards today and told everyone I would post their picture. My gift to everyone…

Email me if you want the sequence

Started off at rocky lefts

This guy was ripping, he was dress partly as Santa, said he couldn’t surf in the jacket. 3rd picture is him getting clipped by the lip. Dude came right back out for more. It’s my pleasure to shoot people who go for broke

Heres Todd…

Here is a bunch of shots from Gas-Chambers, some big sets and heavy drops


Drying out

It’s unlike me not to post for a few days but I’m honestly happy to be drying out for a few days. I’m giving my wounds, cuts and bruises time to heal. If you have never been to Hawaii the surf breaks are over a very hard and sharp reefs. It hurts a lot when you get smashed into them. I will be exploring Maui for the next few months so I promise to post a bunch of new and exciting locations soon…

here are a few pictures I liked that I didn’t have room to post in the last few weeks

Here is Myles Padaca during the break for the final at sunset, He was a caddy and got the place to himself for 40 minutes

Here a guy getting burnt at pipe and the other guy getting an epic barrel, happens a lot at pipe, kind of suck but it’s reality

And Jamie O’Brian home at pipe


Good Morning Pipeline

Got up early to get out at pipe before the glorious sun ascended over the Koʻolau Mountain Range which frames the North Shore. I was feeling artistic from the moment I left my house, the air was crisp and I was good spirits. I’m really grateful for my time here and I want to make the best of it. I hope my images warm your heart wherever you may live…

And here is a barrel shot because it is Pipe 🙂


Backdoor BARRELS!

Swam out to Backdoor today, Pipe was firing too, I just liked the shape of Backdoor today more. (for people that don’t know they are the same wave, Backdoor is the right, pipe is the left).
No more talking, you say the word Barrel and nothing else matters

Kamalei Alexander getting shacked

Ok I’m not hatting here but I had to post this. I don’t know if Benji Weatherly gave up or literally fell asleep during this backdoor wave. The wave was not a closeout and pealed down the line with Benji so I know he didn’t fall but I have no clue what was going on during the wave.

I can’t end a post with Benji and his narcolepsy so here is Dylan Goodale about to get shacked