Author Topic: Revealed: How surfer-photographer captures the precise moment the world's biggest waves break  (Read 3962 times)

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Offline Rapunzel

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Revealed: How surfer-photographer captures the precise moment the world's biggest waves break

    Surf photographer Clark Little, 44, from Hawaii, shoots waves from within with his waterproof camera
    He has braved waves up to 15ft high at beaches across the world
    Pictured here are his stunning shots of the water crashing from the air back down onto the sand

By Emily Kent Smith

PUBLISHED: 09:33 EST, 11 March 2014 | UPDATED: 12:01 EST, 11 March 201

Surf photographer Clark Little will ride any wave for the perfect shot, with water crashing onto him from up to 15ft above his head. Pictured below are the stunning photographs taken by the 44-year-old from inside the waves.

Mr Little, who lives on Hawaii's North Shore - renowned for its waves and great surf - has been taking photographs from the ocean since 2007.

His tool is a Nikon D300 with a fish eye lens. The ultra-wide angle fish eye creates a wide panoramic picture. The camera is then cased into a waterproof box.

Scroll down for video

Clarke Little waits for a mutant barrel that could fit a large school bus to fall. The wave breaks in water less than 2ft feet deep and the sand gets sucked off the sea floor and into the wave

Pictured: a shot from behind a breaking wave looking towards shore. Here, the photographer is under water and the curve of the wave distorts the beach scene elongating the palm trees

Wave photographer Clarke Little captured this picture during a morning photo session from inside the tube at Teahupoo, Tahiti's most famous surf break. Breaking on a very shallow reef, this spot is known as one of the deadliest waves in the world

Surf Photographer Mr Little, 44, pictured here inside a tube wave as it breaks on North Shore, Oahu, Hawaii. His tool is a Nikon D300 with a fish eye lens, cased in a waterproof box. The ultra-wide angle fish eye creates a wide panoramic picture

Mr Little looks out of a glassy California barrel during sunset on Newport Beach in California

Holding a waterproof camera with an attached strobe flash, the photographer throws himself down on the sand as the wave pitches over and creates an opening with a sunset view in the distance

So as not to lose his valuable tool when tossed around by a wave, the camera is tied to a leash attached to his ankle.

The photographer presses the trigger and the camera then fires out an impressive nine to 10 frames per second.

Not only does the 10lb camera come into the ocean with him, the photographer also drags in tools such as strobe lights so that he can capture the scene perfectly.

And no wave fazes Mr Little, who has been hurtled into waves as high as 15ft before being thrown back down to the ground.

As he swims, he passes marine wildlife on his way, wearing flippers to help him glide through the ocean.

Although his career started out in his native Hawaii, Mr Little travels the world to land the perfect picture - capturing some of the world's biggest waves as he goes.

Mr Little started out as a surfer in the 80s and spent two decades riding the waves before discovering his passion.

As a surfer, his talent lay in riding shore break waves - waves which break close to the shore - and coming out in one piece.

Then, in 2007, his wife, Sandy, asked him to take a photograph of a wave breaking for their house. The surfer stood up to the challenge, bought a cheap camera and threw himself into the wave.

He has been photographing the water hurtling down to the shore ever since and has exhibited his pictures across the world from Japan to Brazil.

An endangered Hawaiian Green Sea Turtle (Honu in Hawaiian) swimming behind a breaking wave in the shallow waters off of the North Shore, Oahu, Hawaii

A large wave is captured laying on the dry sand as it throws over to create the shorebreak barrel. Seconds after the shot, Mr Little was washed up onto the beach - his whole body covered in sand

Two waves crash sending water flying into the sky on North Shore in Hawaii

It's the golden hour: A wave captured in the early morning looking straight into the sunrise, North Shore, Oahu, Hawaii

The surf photographer is pictured here lining up his perfect shot moments before the wave is about to crash onto him

He describes his vision as photographing the waves 'inside out'.

The photographer spends his days in the water because: 'I love to be in the ocean and I love to take pictures of mother nature.

'I have a major passion for being in the ocean and capturing these images,' he said.

In an interview with Fox 5, Mr Little said: 'I'm getting right into the perfect spot.

'I'm just holding the trigger and the adrenaline's pumping because I want to get the best shot. But at the same time you're going to get pummeled.

The sun and its rays captured in the arc of the wave on North Shore, Oahu, Hawaii in this early morning shot. Mr Little often leaves his house in the pitch black to capture the sun as it rises

The silhouette of a surfer Flynn Novak is frozen the moment before he jumps off the back of his surfboard. The flash was supposed to go off and set the scene alight. Instead, the true light from inside the wave is perfectly captured

A classic Californian setting captured from a new perspective: Malibu Pier shot by Mr Little from inside the tube

Mr Little is pictured here grabbing onto his camera before snapping the inside of the tube as it crashes onto him. The waterproof camera housing has a safety leash attached to his wrist so the camera is not lost if the unit is ripped from his hand

This is the breathtaking moment two waves collide and send a fan of water upwards in front of the setting sun to create a stunning image

'So I kind of hold my breath and a lot of times I get sucked up, a lot times I get sucked up into the falls.'

The results of the photographer's time in the water are breathtaking, but mainly Mr Little says he throws himself in, wave after wave, because he has 'a great time'.

Sometimes he has to tuck his camera under his arm to stop it from being dragged away by the ocean. 'Or, I get in the featal position and hope for the best,' he said.

Clarke Little's latest coffee table book 'Shorebreak' includes over 100 shots from Hawaii, Japan and California.

Below, you can watch the video of Clarke Little braving his way into the waves with his camera.

In this picture there was no wind which made the ocean look like glass. The picture was taken ay Makena Beach, Maui, Hawaii

This picture was taken underwater from the backside of a Tahitian tube spinning down a shallow reef in Tahiti, French Polynesia

In this picture the wind was blowing strongly offshore, creating a mist flying off the top of this backlit wave on the West Shore, Oahu, Hawaii

« Last Edit: March 12, 2014, 10:49:45 PM by Rapunzel »

Offline katzenjammer

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Thank You so much for posting these!!  What wonderful pictures and interesting story about the photographer!!


Online mountaineer

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“Hell hath no fury like a vested interest masquerading as a moral principle.” - Ryan T Anderson

Online Oceander

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those are some of the most beautiful images I've seen in a while

Offline happyg

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Beautiful! I wouldn't want to be the one taking pictures. Those waves would scare the H out of me.

Offline Rapunzel

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Beautiful! I wouldn't want to be the one taking pictures. Those waves would scare the H out of me.

Me, too... the waves he photographed off Tahiti are some of the largest in the world and have a unique breaking pattern thanks to the coral that causes them in the first place.  I wouldn't want to be drug into that coral.

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