STORY BEHIND THE SHOT - ' S P A R K S '
Welcome back!!! You could have been anywhere else right now, but, you're here with me - I appreciate that 🙏 This weeks story is part of my monthly print giveaway and tells the story of 'S P A R K S,' which was captured on my Sony A6000 at beautiful Natadola beach, Fiji.
I chose this shot in particular because I had it turned into a cinemagraph (a still image that contain's traces of motion) by the talented, Jersey Maria of Motion Magic. From what I can tell, Jersey is an early adopter of the technique and is producing some mesmerising imagery collaborating with some of the world's best ocean photographers. Because of this fact, I was surprised (and stoked) at the swiftness of her reply to my email, and within 8 hours she had edited and sent me this awesome cinemagraph of 'S P A R K S.' And so, this week's blog and my monthly print giveaway had been decided.
Anyway, onto the yarn...
It was a blisteringly dry day on the mainland of Viti Levu, the wind was howling and the sun was unforgiving. Sorry to sound so dramatic, but, there's no other way to describe it. Feeling like the wind was coming blowing from every angle it was hard to say where it was actually coming from, making me doubtful of the conditions up north. Add to this the dismal forecast on MagicSeaweed and I was so close to pulling pin. In saying that, I'd been inside editing a wedding I shot a couple days prior and needed some fresh air (if nothing else) so I prepped my housing and pessimistically set off.
Arriving at the southern end (RED ARROW) of Natadola Bay is the reef I normally shoot at and the conditions were hectic - not in a good way. It was crazy windy and although there was some swell it was completely blown out, just as I'd suspected. Completely and utterly convinced this was a terrible waste of time I jumped straight back in the car and drove the back road to the Northern end of the bay to check the spot directly in front of The Intercontinental Resort. To my utter disbelief the conditions were world's apart and looking at the photo it's easy to see just how much of a factor the wind plays here with the 2 spots almost parallel to each-other. For those that don't know, as a surfer and surf photographer the ideal wind direction to create a nicely groomed wave is for it to be blowing directly off shore.
Totally shocked and equally stoked I grabbed my housing and got amongst it. The light at this point was fairly boring so it was just a matter of time before I could judge whether this was going to be worth it or not. With ocean photography there's so many elements that need to align in order to capture beautiful photographs. Not only do the wind and tide pay a factor, but, more importantly the light has to offer something too - so when the sun finally started setting I could tell it was going to be an epic session. This photo was one of many waves I captured this particular evening, but, it was definitely one of my favs from the session. The colours created are a reflection of this particular spot and can't be duplicated anywhere else. The deep brown/purple tones come from the seaweed that line these shores and the blue comes from the clarity of the water. The orange to the left is a reflection of the sun setting and the colours on the ocean surface are mirrored from the sky. I especially LOVE the warm sparks created by the subtle offshore breeze, hence the name of the image. I was so stoked with this image that I transferred it straight to my phone as soon as I viewed it in camera and uploaded it straight to Instagram. It's safe to say the Fiji Gold went down all too easily that night 🍻 Vinaka!
As always, thanks for reading and make sure you sign up below for more interviews and yarns, MONTHLY PRINT GIVEAWAYS and the odd bit of film.
For your chance to win an A3 sized 'S P A R K S' printed on Epson's “Signature Worthy” fine-art 100% cotton rag paper click this link and follow the instructions in the post. If you're not on Instagram comment with your email address below and I'll throw all the names in a hat to draw on Friday evening.
Mā te wā (see you later) ✌️