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ISSUE 02| JULY 2022





Published by Odell Harris Designed & Edited by Hannah Jessup Cover image by

CHASING CLARITY PODCAST Listen to the latest episode at

GENERAL General enquiries

SUBMISSIONS Send in your best work to


SOCIALS @chasingclaritypodcast Chasing-Clarity-Podcast @HANNAHJESSUPPHOTOGRAPHY | f/2.5 | 1/3200 | ISO 400 | NIKON D850 | NIKON 20MM f1.8 | AQUATECH ELITE HOUSING 2


WELCOME ODELL HARRIS | @SENSEIODELL If I had to pinch myself last issue…this

and my neck of the woods, displacing

issue, I’m smiling from ear to ear!

thousands of Australians, some of my family included…and of course the first

The quality of submissions again has

world problems we’re fortunate to face

been incredible, you really are a talented

here at the most crowded surf break in

bunch aren’t ya.

the world…but again we’re honoured to bring you some of the best Ocean

Just when we think we’ve seen every

Imagery on the planet, seriously, on the

angle and perspective from the ocean…


another artist produces work that blows our minds. Thank you!

The stories and articles in this issue are next level as well, an in depth on

Hannah and I received amazing,

how to create a portfolio website, surf-

supportive feedback after the release of

ography etiquette and interview with

the inaugural edition on Christmas eve,

legend Dave ‘Nelly’ Nelson that will

we’ve taken it all onboard, listened to

leave you gasping for air...all to help in

your constructive critique and refined

your pursuit of the perfect capture and

what most thought was a near perfect

of course features from some more

launch, unfortunately Covid cancelled

artists from our beautiful, every growing

my planned launch party and dinner…


everyone knows how much I hate missing food, I’ll call it a reschedule.

Everyone should be proud of this one!

This stellar issue hasn’t been without

Share this issue far and wide, spread the

its hiccups, travel restrictions, an eerie

good vibes, read it on a big screen the

anxiousness in the air over Russia,

work deserves, enjoy and look out for

unprecedented flooding in Hannah

one another!


@SENSEIODELL | f/4.5 | 1/1250 | ISO 100 | CANON EOS 70D | 10MM 4


In this Issue 02





Contributer Gallery


Snapper Rocks


Dave ‘Nelly’ Nelson


Creating a Portfolio Website & Logo


The Perfect Photo Just Happens


Surf-ography Etiquette


Making Money from Your Images


Photog Features


Experts Panel




f/5.6 | 1/2000 | ISO 250 | SONY A7RIII | 70-200MM f2.8 7

CONTRIBUTER GALLERY HERE ARE SOME OF OUR FAVOURITES FROM THE LAST FEW MONTHS... Thank you so much for the submissions, the quality of work that was sent through was just incredible. For those we didnt feature - keep shooting, keep sending in your photos. Even if it didnt make it this time, we love seeing your work and there is always Issue 3! - Hannah


f/2 | 1/250 | ISO 100 | SONY A7III | SONY 55MM F1.8 | SEAFROGS HOUSING 9

@B_U_Z_Z_E_R_ 10


f/4.5 | 1/160 | ISO 100 | DJI Mavic2Pro| Hasselblad Camera with an NISI saturated polarizer filter




f/1.8 | 1/2000 | ISO 200 | CANON 5D Mark IV | SIGMA 50MM f1.4 | AQUATECH REFLEX

f/9 | 1/3200 | ISO 200 | CANON EOS 7D | EF 300MM f4

@JOSHDIMAGES | f/4 | 1/2000 | ISO 1000 | CANON 7D MARK II | SIGMA 50MM f1.4 | AQUATECH HOUSING 13


f/6.3 | 1/2500 | ISO 400 | SONY A7RIII | SONY 85MM f1.8 | AQUATECH HOUSING




f/1.8 | 1/4000 | ISO 125 | SONY A7R4| ZEISS 55MM | AQUATECH EDGE HOUSING


@RAGDOLL__IMAGERY | f/5 | 1/1250 | ISO 320 | SONY A6100 | 16-50 F3.5MM | SALTEDLINE HOUSING 18


f/5 | 1/1000 | ISO 100 | SONY A7III | SONY 55MM F1.8 | SEAFROGS HOUSING


f/11 | 1/125| ISO 100 | CANON 5D IV| 70-200MM f2.8 21


f/1.8 | 1/4000 | ISO 100 | SONY A7III | SONY 24MM f1.4

@TAV_OCEAN | f/14 | 1/20 | ISO 800 | SONY A7III | SONY 70-200MM f4

@SHANE_ANTALICK | f/5.6 | 1/’8 | ISO 1600 | CANON EOS R | RF 24-70MM | Flashpoint evolv 200 PRO W/ 25” Softbox 24

@BLKJAVAPHOTO | f/5 | 1/1600 | ISO 800 | CANON EOS 80D | SIGMA 18-35MM f1.8 | AQUATECH HOUSING 25


f/2.8 | 1/400 | ISO 125 | CANON 5D MARK IV | CANON 16-35MM f2.8 | AQUATECH HOUSING

@ROKIT7 LEFT: MANTA | f/7.1 | 1/160 | ISO 320 | SONY A7RIII | 16-35 MM F2.8 | AQUATICA HOUSING | INON Z330 STROBE MIDDLE: LEOPARDS | f/8 | 1/160 | ISO 320 | SONY A7RIII | 16-35 MM F2.8 | AQUATICA HOUSING | INON Z330 STROBE RIGHT: TURTLE | f/10 | 1/160 | ISO 300 | SONY A7RIII | 16-35 MM F2.8 | AQUATICA HOUSING | INON Z330 STROBE



SNAPPER ROCKS decades of knowledge of being an avid water user of the

ODELL HARRIS | @SENSEIODELL It’s been described by the world’s greatest surfer as the world’s most crowded break.

location and share a few insider tippets of the goings on


AND how to shoot it - so let’s get started.

If there’s more then 15 walking the shoreline, littering the rocky outcrops or scurrying for a better than the one you


have vantage point, it can only mean that the waves are

As a creative you know the best light is dawn and dusk, it’s no

pumping. Say hello, be friendly, while crowded, that line-up

different here, you’ll find people paddling out on a full moon

can be a lonely existence bobbing among the 300, a familiar

if there’s swell and the chance of a thin the line up, I myself

face is always pleasant.

have been guilty of jagging a few before sunup and well after it’s bed time.

CHOOSE YOUR LENS WISELY With a raging sweep running south to north that can easily

The sunrises here are spectacular and a benefit of getting

and often will take you from the rocky jump off point of

the early work is that you may just snag a prime position

Snapper to the sand swept beaches of North Kirra…it pays

carpark, high demand real-estate at the super-bank!

to do a little investigative watching before the paddle out. If you take the fisheye, expect to get one set of waves behind


the rock to shoot each lap (a lap is when you swim out, wash

You may think it secures you a carpark, but the night watch

down, swim in, run back, do it all again).

will wake you and the only thing you’ll secure is a fine for breaking the ‘no camping’ rule rife in Queensland.

Decide on the 50mm and you’ll have a more variety to photograph, a 70-200mm can zoom your camera into the

A stretch of sand that spans nearly 2km and on its day, when it

a hell hole for those that remember the old days. For a

was first dubbed ‘The Superbank’ a fortunate wave rider could

photographer, videographer or even the modern-day content

cruise for almost the entire leg burning length of it, back then

creator, it’s a special kind of heaven!

when the crowds were sparse and the carparks plentiful. Only one fatal shark attack in 65 years, and trust me there’s On any given day now, it’s a break shared (and I say ‘shared’

plenty of them out there, an endless amount of water safety

loosely), by more than 300 hundred surfers and depending

and the chance to snap hundreds of water user’s lifetime best

on who’s in town, 7 or more former World Champion surf

surf moments…it is indeed the land of opportunity.

athletes. You will also find a growing community of travellers exceeding their visas, a continual current of Southerners and

It’s over loved, overpopulated and after my last session there I

an entire beach I call ‘the horde’, wave starved beginners and

decided for the majority, now overrated…but…it has been my

intermediates all wanting their piece of the new and current

favourite place on earth for the last 24 years.

‘Surfers Paradise’. Now, I’m not here to tell you how you should feel about it, It’s become a pilgrimage for some, a Mecca for others and 32

where’s the learnings in that? I’m just here to pass on two 33

take-off zone as you zoom away from it. One thing to note


with this lens is that to get a good angle of the take-off zone,

There are only two places for consideration within walking

you’ll often have to sit in the impact zone.

distance from the beach. Little Mali, a popular cafe on the corner has been serving locals and travellers for years (say

I love my wide lenses but if I’m low on energy, time poor and

hi to chef Mat) and not 20 meters away, a newcomer to my

want the most productive session, I’ll attach the 50mm for

belly, Switchfoot Cafe. Switchfoot will look after all Chasing

peace of mind.

Clarity podcast listeners, just tell Mitch and Sarah you heard about them here.

DON’T MISS DAWN OR DUSK The sunrises over the ocean and sunsets behind the


hinterland are the things of postcards and Instagram thirst.

The iconic Rainbow Bay surf club, the veranda overlooking

Get beyond the breaking waves before the dawn, in the dark

endless barrels and endless drop ins, its entrance stairs

and into the oil slick glass waters…you know, near the drop

adorns the names of Champions that have won the Quicky

off right on feeding time for marine life. Get there and point

Pro. You too could walk the same hallowed steps as Steph

your lens at the shards of light that bounce off the surface as

Gilmore, Mick Fanning, Joel Parkinson and the great Kelly

the sun breaks the horizon, get there and you physically can’t

Slater, just as he did before he declared Cooly the most

take a bad image - it’s that beautiful it’s literally impossible to!

crowded line-up on earth, which brings me full circle of my guide to as I said before, one of my favourite spots on earth. Hope to see you out there and shoot together. Yeeeeeew!

Point your lens at the shards of light that bounce off the surface as the sun breaks the horizon, get there and you physically can’t take a bad image - it’s that beautiful it’s impossible to!





and all these guys. We had an A+ crew on a boat trip, and

I also used to do a lot of trips to Morocco, Tahiti and Fiji, Japan and Indonesia…and they wouldn’t let you get

from that point on it was like, ok, I have to quit my job, I’m running with this!

DAVID POZNIC | @DAVIDPOZNIC DP: What are the biggest differences you see between back then and today? Nelly: Back in the day we measured sessions by how many rolls of film we shot. I usually shot 4-shot bursts, and 4 x 9 would be a roll.

“After 9 waves, you’d have to swim in, get pounded, dry off, take the camera out of the housing, change film, and protect the film that you’d just shot.”

on your plane if they couldn’t put everything through the x-ray scanner. Sometimes it was… not good! We’re talking like 15-day international trips and I’d pull out a magic slide, and it would have a big slash through it from the x-ray scanner. I even had a few cover shots ruined by x-rays. That’s another one a lot of younger photographers wouldn’t think about.

So after 9 waves, you’d have to swim in, get pounded, dry off, take the camera out of the housing, change film, and protect the film that you’d just shot.

DP: What are your top tips for people new to surf

I’d wrap it in a towel, put a stick on top of it so I’d know where


it was, put the housing back together, get pounded again swimming back out, and then do it all over again. An average

Nelly: When I started out shooting here in Santa Cruz it

session was 2 rolls. 4 rolls would be a phenomenal session. 5

was pretty gnarly. There were like guys like Bob Barber, Ron

rolls would be the best ever!

Edwards, T.R., and Chris Klopf. World-renowned respected

Interviewing Dave “Nelly” Nelson over breakfast is basically a full crash course in surf photography history, culture, and ethics, complete with eggs, bacon, and blueberry muffins.

He’s been shooting professionally for 25 years, but with each

you’re getting good enough, you need to start submitting

story he tells, his eyes light up like a grom skipping school

some of these!” Three weeks later he came over and said

to surf for the first time. Nelly was the Senior Photographer

“I’m moving to Costa Rica. Here are a few lenses, some photo

for Transworld Surf for 17 years, has shot the covers of

books, and some phone numbers for contacts. I’m outta here

97 magazines, and recently released his new book, “Dual

and I ain’t coming back!”

Perspective.” So I called the guys at O’Neill. I already had sick photos of all DP: When did you start shooting?

their team riders, like Adam Replogle, Josh Loya and Ruffo. I brought in a bunch of slides, they took my number, and we

Nelly: I started shooting professionally in1997. I was working

started working together right off the bat.

at Arrow surf shop, and more people were coming in to buy photos off me than anything else! So I bought a water

Then the magazines started bringing me down to southern

housing and every morning I was up at the crack of dawn, I

California. Surfing Magazine was like “Hey, we wanna pay you

was fiending on it!

to shoot for us. We keep hearing that all you do is shoot all day, and you’re producing all the best water shots in Santa

My friend, the photographer Tony Roberts, was someone I

Cruz.” So they started paying me, and then I started doing all

had always worked with as a skateboarder. He came over

these trips for Reef and Volcom. This was all in the first three

one day and looked at some of my slides and was like “Dude,

months! I went to the Mentawai islands with Ozzie Wright



their social or to run an ad. And that’s where all the money’s

When I came up I was totally spun, super dizzy. I started

at anyways, cuz a 2-page Volcom ad’s like 2,500 bucks. A

swimming in and I got almost all the way to the beach, but

cover of a magazine is only like 1,000 bucks.

then the rip came and it sucked me all the way back out there! I was just destroyed. Totally exhausted, just worked. Got the

As for sending photos to magazines for free, the way I look at

wind knocked out of me and the bone was coming out of my

it is, I’m always turning it around. Say I’m shooting a random

elbow. And I was trying to get my housing in so I could try to

surfer. They hit me up and they say, “Will you send me that

save the roll of film, cuz this was film days.

photo?” So I say, “What do you do for a living? Construction? Cool, will you come build a deck in my back yard?” It’s the

So it sucked me all the way back out there and all the guys

same thing. They’re asking me to do my work for free. Same

that were swimming - Aichner was swimming and he was like,

with magazines. Their publisher is not doing it for free, so why

“You ok Nelly?” I was like, “No.” And he was like, “Just fucking

do they want your work for free? Always turn it around.

wait for the set and then swim on the back end of it!” So I timed it on that next set and got in and went in the O’Neill house and went into the bedroom. I closed all the shades,

DP: Scariest day out ever… Do you have a memory of

pulled out my camera, got the film out, and I saved the roll!

“That One Day?”

Everything else was toast. Housing, camera, fisheye… All toast. So I lost like 6 grand, but I ended up getting two covers,

Nelly: Yeah, I have many of them! Had one session where I woke up photographers. And you wouldn’t ever, I mean, NEVER go

Transworld and Happy Magazine!

in the morning at the O’Neill house

“I hit my elbow SUPER hard.

and I was shooting with Cory Lopez,

I came up and my elbow was

DP: I also heard you got chased by a

down to the beach and shoot the guys they were shooting!

Dorian was tombstoning by the rocks and I was in sheer

Roy Powers, Timmy Reyes, the

You would get so snapped on. It was just out of the question.

panic mode. Luckily for me, Frank Quirarte came out right

Gudauskas Brothers… I woke up

then on his ski and got him. It could have been the end of

at dawn and it was HUGE! It was

the bone and shit, and it was

Nelly: Oh yeah! It was up north, one of

Nowadays, these guys come down and just start shooting

Shane’s life or the end of mine, because I hadn’t been trained

rolling in off the second reef, and

those little reefs up there. That day was

your crews, and it’s just really bad etiquette. Especially with

properly on jet ski saves. But I was ready to risk it to go get

there were some third reef sets,

gushing blood. Then another

social media, because then they’ll post it and now your ad

him, for sure.

and there were a lot of wide ones

12-footer is coming down on

going into the channel that were

that you’re trying to shoot is ruined because it’s already out there.

just… hanging. I could see

So look at everything out there, and be aware of what might

really scary big, thick 12-footers.

me, full force. ”

great white once?

crazy, I’ve never swam out there since. It was about 15 years ago. I didn’t really want to swim up there anyways, but these guys I was shooting always wanted to go. So finally I gave in and went up there and I

be asked of you. There’ve been a lot of injuries over the Another thing is, if you’re swimming out at Pipeline or

years at Pipeline and other spots where people have saved

So I swam out. At Pipe there’s a safe zone and then there’s

got some pretty good shots with a big cliff in the background.

something like that, you better know what you’re doing.

guys’ lives. Evan Geiselman, Dusty Payne, Kalani Chapman,

a not-safe zone. I went into the not-safe zone, and a huge

Looked different, so the mags were psyched on them.

Because if you get in someone’s way and they get pounded

on and on and on. These guys got saved by somebody

set hit and I was trying to get a Reef ad done of Braden Diaz.

and hit the reef and get cut, or drown, that’s your fault. And

who was there and aware and ready to do some lifesaving.

He took off on this huge wave, and it just barely missed the

So it was like the 5th day in a row we shot up there. Tyler

you’re gonna get pounded by the boys. So stay in shape, and

Without them, those guys would all be dead. So be ready to

second reef, and the thing just jacked so gnarly on the first

Smith surfed by me and did a big backside tail blowout in

never swim out in the first five minutes when you get there.

save someone’s life. Cuz you’re not just out there capturing

reef! I swam into it and he straightened out. I tried to suck

my face. I followed his ride, cuz I knew there was nothing

Always watch for a good 10 or 15 minutes to see what the

photos, you’re part of the lifesaving team.

through the back, but it sucked me over the falls and threw

behind it. And as he paddled back out we were talking and

me down right on the lava.

laughing. Then suddenly his eyes got just REALLY big, and I

conditions are really doing.

turned around and there was a wave coming up on the reef

DP: How about sending photos to magazines and not And then there’s the next level, like Todos Santos or

getting paid for them?

Mavericks spots, where you better be ready! I had a situation

I hit my elbow SUPER hard. I came up and my elbow was

with this 18-foot shark perfectly silhouetted in it. I was like, oh

just… hanging. I could see the bone and shit, and it was

my god… it was like your nightmare has been realized!

at Mavericks where I was the only ski out there. Shane Dorian

Nelly: Never! But it’s actually an interesting question, because

gushing blood. Then another 12-footer is coming down on

scorpioned on this huge wave, and there was no one to save

there’s very little money in it. But once you get published, you

me, full force. I didn’t get any air from the one before because

It was only like 30 feet away and it was coming straight at us!

him but me. So I threw the photographer who was riding with

become more valuable as a photographer. Say you get a full-

I was looking at my elbow and looked up just in time to see

So I was just swimming and swimming and the whole time I

me off the back of my ski and dodged a 60-foot wave to get

page photo of Dusty Payne, now Volcom’s stoked on you, and

this 3-foot thick lip coming down on my head!

was like, “If I make it to the beach I’m never swimming out here

in there.

in the future, they’ll probably buy a shot off of you to run on


again!” I made it in, and it was the only time I’ve ever just laid


down on the beach and been like, thank you God! Because I don’t want to die, obviously. But I also don’t want my leg getting bit off! Because I’m so Type A, I really can’t picture life without being able to do the stuff I live for, skateboarding and surfing and surf photography and golf and all these different things.

DP: What was it like making your new book, “Dual Perspective?”

What I’ve learned over the years is that the nicer and radder you are to people, the better you feel about yourself, and the more you get out of life.

Nelly: The first five months were all slides. I was editing down about 700,000 slides and got them down to like 5,000. Then another edit down to like 2,000, which was still way too many! So I had 2,000 magic photos on slides, and then I had all my digital stuff, about 1.5 million photos in all! I realized there were way too many photos for one book, so I came up with the idea to make three. The next one is gonna be Santa Cruz, focused on all the locals. But to give it flavor, it’s also gonna have photos of all these iconic surfers from the last 25 years that came and stayed with me, everyone from Matt Archbold to John John and Kelly Slater. And looking through all that stuff… it’s gonna look good!

DP: How can people buy your book? Nelly: is for the book and prints, or @nellysmagicmoments on IG, where people can DM me anytime.

DP: Any closing thoughts? Nelly: Just be kind and respectful to everyone. That’s the key to everything. It’s like, when you’re out in the water and someone burns you and you snap on them, does it make you feel better? No. Makes you feel shitty. What I’ve learned over the years is that the nicer and radder you are to people, the better you feel about yourself, and the more you get out of life.



Creating a portfolio website & logo BRAD HATTON | @_BRADHATTON

Hi, I’m Brad, a photographer based out of Newcastle, NSW. I’m a long time Chasing Clarity listener and with the advent of the magazine, I’m now an avid Chasing Clarity reader.

Well I don’t have a large social media following, nor is my

would like to register a catchy domain name around ‘ocean

Instagram carefully curated with complimentary images

imagery’ or surfing or whatever your focus may be.

of similar standards. It started as and remains a personal Instagram account and my audience is very limited (hi

There are other options out there though, including

Mum!), but I like seeing how my photographic journey has

changing the suffix. The traditional domain name suffix

evolved so I’m keeping it going for now.

is .com however there are many alternatives including .photography, .photo, .photos, .studio, .gallery and so on.

If on the other hand, you have nice professional social media accounts with a well-earned following,

Australian readers will also be familiar with or

congratulations that’s an epic achievement! Keep this up as extensions. These are great professional looking

it will compliment your website nicely and you’ll be able to

options however please be aware to register one of these,

use this to drive traffic to your website and vice versa.

you will need an Australian Company Number (ACN) or Australian Business Number (ABN).

I recently moved away from the occasional Instagram post for my imagery, to creating a simple portfolio website to reach a broader audience. I’m here to give you some tips on how you can do the same if you haven’t already, I will even include the costs I incurred along the way (spoiler alert, it wasn’t much).

A website however lives in the broader internet world, by its very nature the potential audience is anyone with an

To register my domain name,, I

internet connection and a browser. If you’re looking to

used Google Domains. The cost to me for a one-year

grow your audience, it is a very good idea to tap into this.

registration for this domain name was $19.80 and the entire process of registration check to purchase took less

Sounds daunting though right? Time consuming, expensive,

now daring to dream of one day building a business from

difficult? I thought so too, however in reality the process was

this passion. The first major leap in this evolution, has been

surprisingly none of that.

building a website and having it go live.

So how did I go about it then?

time than cooking a packet of two minute noodles.

After some procrastination, I reviewed a heap of websites

Create a professional email address

of some of my favourite photographers, formed a picture Now I’m no expert, I’m just someone who picked up a camera

Why create a portfolio website, why can’t I just rely on social

in my head of how I wanted my website to look and then

This one is a no-brainer, you don’t want your old email

for fun, found a passion, turned it into a frequent hobby and


done a bunch of research on how to make it possible.

address you made when you were 12 years old to represent you as a creative professional, you just don’t, it’s

Whilst this was happening though, I also went ahead and

not a good idea at all.

registered my own unique domain name to use when I was actually ready to create the site.

The ultimate level of professionalism is an email address using your own domain name. You could set up a few

Registering your own unique domain name

actually like a simple contact email such as admin@, your own personal email or accounts for

Some generally well-regarded domain sellers include;

other employees or services. And whilst this projects an

Google Domains, GoDaddy, Namecheap among others.

extremely professional image to your clients, it will also

You don’t strictly need to go these providers though as

come at a further cost.

website domain hosts SquareSpace, WordPress etc. also allow you to register a domain name for a fee as well.

Google Workspace appeared to be a great resource available that provides email services for your domain in

You will need to check if your preferences are available

addition to a bunch of other useful business resources.

as sometimes they can already be registered. If this is the

And although the basic business package was $8.40 per

case, you can often still purchase them, but you may have

month, I ultimately decided to go with a free Gmail address

to go through some added steps to buy it from whoever

of bradhattonphotography@gmail for now although I will

currently holds that registered name. If you’re using your

revisit this as my journey progresses.

own personal name or similar, you would be unlikely to encounter this issue but please bear it in mind if you 52 44


professional at the same time.

displays in your browsers URL address bar and is great way to enable your audience to easily find your content as

You can go through and preview, as well as demo a few

well as another visual cue to remember your brand.

selections before you narrow your choice. When you find a style you like, simply click the ‘start with this design’ button

At a minimum, be sure your site includes your portfolio,

and then you will be prompted to sign-up and create an

your social media links and a contact area, you might also


add a blog section to drive traffic via regular blog updates. Another handy addition is an ‘about me’ section. A good

Don’t worry you’re not locked in yet, there is a free 14-day

about me will give your audience a bit of an insight into you

trial to help decide whether the platform and the site you

and what it may be like to work with you so be genuine, be

build on it is worth committing some hard earned cash

approachable and be professional.

towards. I initially played around on a couple of different templates on the free trial until I felt the website was ready

Now as the templates include stock imagery, you will

to go live, and it was only at that point did I decide to

need to remove these and include your own portfolio of

commit the necessary funds.

amazing images. This is again an extremely easy process, at least if you have your portfolio

Once you are all signed up, you can accept the template as is CREATE A LOGO

So now I have a domain name, an email address and a logo but no website. How did I actually build the

I would also recommend creating some sort of logo if you


don’t already have one. Whilst this isn’t necessarily a must step as most website domain hosts can actually display

Surprisingly this for me was actually the simplest part!

your business or creative name in a very professional looking manner, having a memorable logo affords you the ability to ‘brand’ yourself across multiple platforms and even merchandise. Some photographers I really admire that have logos that stand out include, Art Brewer, Ted Grambeau, Peter ‘Bosko’

Well it was after I had settled on using SquareSpace templates. And like I mentioned earlier there are similar alternatives to SquareSpace such as WordPress, SmugMug etc. you might like to check out, however I really liked the aesthetic as well as the user ease of SquareSpace.

Boskovic, Chris Burkard and Rambo Estrada, please go check them out. These logos are all different, but they

Getting started on SquareSpace is as simple as navigating

are all memorable and I tried to go down this path myself

to their website and clicking the ‘get started’ button on the

instead of the dominant ‘handwritten’ type style used by a

top right corner of the home screen, too easy!

lot of photographers. From here it will bring up a collection of templates with Now I’m not a whiz at graphic design and my initial

prompts to narrow by inclusions (such as blogs, online

attempts were pretty average so I engaged a couple of

store, etc.) as well some popular categories of designs for

freelance designers on an online marketplace. After a bit

users such as photographers. Click your selections and

of back and forth on concepts/revisions over the course of

SquareSpace will bring up a host of recommendations for

around a fortnight, I received two final designs that I liked with one featuring on my website currently and the other to be used on future projects. This exercise cost me just under $200 all up with a roughly fifty-fifty split between the parties at just under $100 each. 46

you to use, so move through to view some of the swanky templates that you can modify to suit your taste and purposes. Of course, you could also grab a blank template and build away if you’re so inclined, however as you may notice, the available templates are both pretty cool and

and merely throw in some of your own personal details such as business name and other relevant details, along with your photography portfolio and be done with it or tailor it to suit.

At a minimum, be sure your site includes your portfolio, your social media links and a contact area, you might also add a blog section to drive traffic via regular blog updates.

Since we all have our individual

already to go and upload. If not, unfortunately it will take some time to review your catalogue and narrow your portfolio for your website. This a crucial step as you don’t want to overwhelm your audience with volume, still you also want to showcase your best work (however you define it personally)

preferences and design tastes, your best bet here is to play

and provide your audience with a sense of what you

around, watch a few YouTube vids on using SquareSpace

specialise in or can regularly provide. Don’t rush this

or access their well resourced help centre to help cultivate

process, and if you can, have someone you respect look

your artistic vision. In reality though, it really is as simple as

over your portfolio and provide advice on content. It also

adding/removing pages, creating sub-menu’s and editing

pays to regularly review and revise established portfolios

your pages and layouts including fonts and style guides,

as time progresses.

there’s even the ability to preview the site in both web and mobile versions and make individual tweaks to both these

Once your portfolio is ready, and I mean each photo in the


portfolio is edited to a final standard, then the process is as simple as uploading your files in your portfolio page(s)

You can also apply your personal branding including the

of the website. A key part to consider here though is the

use of any logo’s and watermarks etc. to complete the

dreaded file size, you don’t want a slow loading website

look. These steps are all incredibly easy, in fact adding

where you audience loses interests and clicks away yet

a logo is as simple as uploading your file and then you

you still want a decent resolution to display your work. In

can customise location, size etc. to your heart’s content.

this regard, and although there is a file size limit of 20MB,

Another good idea to complete your branding is adding a

SquareSpace recommends formatting your images with a

Favicon using all or part of your logo. For those out there

file size less than 500KB and a pixel width of around 1500

wondering what a favicon is, it is a little website icon that

pixels wide, RGB colour mode. 47

And hot tip, don’t get lazy on naming your files! Make them

through before publishing which can be found in their

web friendly by using only lower-case letters, numbers,

help centre, as a bonus it also includes what to do post

underscores and hyphens as well as insert some relevant

publishing to register and further optimise your website

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) tags to each particular

for search engines.

file name. An example would be ‘brad-hatton-photographynewcastle-surf’ as this may include your image in a simple

Of course, the work doesn’t end here though. Take time to

google search of surf photography in Newcastle or even

regularly review your portfolio, as well as utilise the website

just Newcastle photography thereby further expanding

performance and tracking tools available in analytics to

your reach.

continue refine your web presence. But for now though, breathe, grab your favourite drink and congratulate

Ok the portfolio is up and you have embedded a little SEO

yourself on self-publishing a website you champion! Then

into your file names, now it is time to crank up that SEO

share the shit out of it if you want to.

throughout your website. The key to remember with SEO is that you want to increase your sites visibility in the search

And for a quick re-cap of the costs involved in my exercise,

results of the various search engines and there are many

here’s the breakdown for my website as it currently stands:

areas of your website that impact this.

• $200 upfront on logo design for two distinct logos from different designers.

Now SEO is a major topic in itself and something you

• $20 for unique domain name that

may want to research heavily as there is a lot of good

renews yearly

information out there from SEO experts, I’ll break down

• $16 a month for SquareSpace personal plan although I

some basic areas below however to get you started:

took advantage of a discount code (look out for discount

• Add a site title - this is text that search engines use to

codes) and paid a 12 month subscription of $144.

index your site

• $0 for free Gmail email address.

• Add a short site description - this is text that will show up when people search for your site so keep it relevant but do

So for an upfront cost of $200, yearly subscriptions of $20

include some keyword tags

and $144 respectively plus using whatever spare time I

• Add SEO tags to pages - similar to the site title and site

had available over a period of around a fortnight (including

description however applied to individual pages of your

portfolio review), I have a basic yet professional looking

site. Again, keep it relevant to the content of the page but

website and now you can too.

include keyword tags. After completing SEO, my website was pretty much ready. It was at this point I decided to commit to a SquareSpace on personal plan for $16 a month and transferred my previously registered Google domain name to my SquareSpace site. Transferring my domain name was again remarkably simple and quick but acquiring your domain name in SquareSpace would be an even easier option. The final step was the fine tooth comb check before publishing and going live. This includes reviewing web and mobile versions end user display, and the back end components crucial to either display or search engine results. SquareSpace has a very good checklist to go 48


THE perfect photo just happens LARISA CEVALLOS | @SWEETOCEAN

A kind approach to shooting underwater photos and videos In this insane Digital Era, where anyone and everything can

Observe. Have fun. Be persistent without obsessing, to the

seem extraordinary after executing brilliantly the art of post

point that you must share the joy, the place, the subject

processing, anyone with or without skills can potentially feel

with the ones that surround you and share the same love.

far from achieving certain goals, most likely created by the

You know what? “We are Us”. Humans are built to rise as a

overload of visuals in the net.

community, never as individuals. Always in togetherness, never in solitude. Free your heart from fear.

But I’m here to tell you; the perfect photo just happens. And it only happens when you are on location, with your camera,

6 years ago in 2016, I became an Official @GoProAnz Content

with all your senses connected to the moment and your heart

Creator and it’s been an EPIC journey every single day.

full of love.

However, I feel in love with GoPro 10 years before that date, when I first watched their YouTube video ‘Whale Fantasia’. A

Forcing yourself to re-create a photo or video captured before, creation in nature, where humans meet humpback whales going into debt to get top-of-the-line camera gear, housings,

under the sea. The video incorporates one of Allan Watts

lenses, ports, batteries, flashes, SD cards and the sturdiest

narration, “The Dream of Life”. That piece of beauty was filmed

tripods, without really understanding the environment you

with the Hero 3! After seeing that, I bought my first GoPro; a

want to shoot, will only bring disappointment. I’m here to

Hero 4 Black and from there, I was hooked, in love and I knew

tell you; fall in love first. Fall in love with what you want to

where I wanted to be. No, I didn’t want to be a GoPro Content

photograph, then have the guts to learn everything about

Creator, I wanted to be underwater with the whales! BUT, it

your subject, grab your camera and start experimenting.

was that dream that connected me with GoPro 10 years later,

Play anywhere, with anything, with everyone. Become your

to get accepted as a Content Creator and experience some of

camera’s best friend.

the most fun times of my life in the ocean. So - fall in love first.


Each year, I make the most of each of their cameras. I have seen all the tutorials, read all the reviews and tested many settings. Some years I have used some settings because I was experimenting with certain styles or because it was a particular setting that worked better for me with that specific model. With the GoPro Hero 10 Black, being the newest and best version yet, I’m currently filming underwater in 4k using 4:3 ratio allowing more vertical space in frame, 60 fps with Hypersmooth activated and wide lens. If I know conditions are going to be challenging, I shoot directly in 4k 120fps with Hypersmooth activated but sacrificing the 4:3 for standard size. I’m currently in the process of experimenting with 5K/60fps/Hypersmooth to test a more cinematic feel. I’m waiting to try these settings with the new Enduro batteries that increase recording time with up to 40% improvement in HERO10 Black. For photos, I cannot be more stoked I can finally shoot in 20 megapixels with both the Hero 9 and the Hero 10. However, one of my all-time favourite GoPro Photos and my most printed one was shot with my first GoPro Hero 4 Black, back when I would spend at least 3 times a week shooting in the dark in the water, waiting for the sun to rise. So please, fall in love first. It’s the purest, most sustainable fuel on this planet and it can only be found within (it’s free).


However, one of my all-time favourite GoPro Photos and my most printed ones was shot with my first GoPro Hero 4 Black, back when I would spend at least 3 times a week shooting in the dark in the water, waiting for the sun to rise.

SURF-ography Etiquette HANNAH JESSUP | @HANNAHJESSUPPHOTOGRAPHY When I am chatting with new photographers or just people


one of these. And I am sure that Odell had promised this for

You can generally tell who wants their photo taken and who

Don’t piggyback off another Photographer’s shoot

Issue 1 so better late than never.

doesn’t. There is always a grouch or two around, but most

If you come across another photographer shooting in the

surfers are stoked to get a shot of themselves on a wave. If

water and it’s obviously a pre-planned shoot with a purpose

This is my guide to Surf Photography Etiquette, which comes

unsure then just ask.

(such as boards, swimwear, products or a private surf shoot),

down to a combination of common sense, respect, and


stay out of the way and don’t mooch off another photogs

This is a bit of a grey area but better to be on the safe side.

Look out for each other

who are interested, I always seem to get questions about

experience. And I’d love to hear what you think - do you agree? Disagree? Have something to add? Let me know!


Don’t get in the way of surfers. It’s your job to move out of their way, not theirs to dodge you. Dive down and grab the sand if a surfer is coming at you and you are unsure what line they are taking.

Read the vibe of the line-up


Kids? Ask before shooting if there is a parent around I have clients who will not let images of their children go on social media so better to ask the question first rather than deal with the fallout of an unset or angry parent.


bread & butter. Find something else to shoot & leave them be.


If you see someone struggling, help or call over a surfer. If you see hazards or dangerous marine life, make sure to warn other ocean-goers.


This may be different if you are shooting professionals, or you

Don’t be creepy

trust in the surfer’s ability to manoeuvre around you. But if

If you don’t know them then please assume that no female

Value your work

you don’t know them, don’t assume their skill level, and don’t

surfer wants a shot of her bum duck diving through a wave

While everyone starts somewhere, once you build up your

ruin their wave. It’s not worth it - boards and fins HURT.

posted on your socials or sold as a print. Would you post that

skills and your work is of a certain standard, you have a

shot if it was of your sister/mother/partner? No? Delete it.

responsibility to our industry to start charging appropriately.

Keep it tasteful.



Be friendly Give respect, get respect. If it’s pumping and there are a bunch of photographers trying to get in position, it’s first in best dressed but be aware of the people around you.



Don’t geo tag lesser-known breaks or give away locations of secret spots

No drop ins My extra rule (which you can take or leave) is that I will not take photos of surfers intentionally dropping in on someone else - no matter how good their wave is.

Whilst the creative process for many is a form of therapy you cannot escape the fact that creating ocean imagery can be an expensive pursuit... Camera bodies, water housings, lenses, wetsuits, more lenses, swim fins, fuel, a body upgrade and it goes on and on.

Whilst the days of surf mags having big photo editorial budgets may have passed (along with the deep pocket of their advertisers) there are still ways to earn from your images. Speaking to a wide range of image creators from around the globe, there seemed to be a broad range of approaches.


SPRAY AND PRAY The easiest and most obvious way to earn money is to put yourself amongst other water users and get shots of them. The more shots the better in each session. Then you need to engage with the potential customers, either posting up on a public online space, like a facebook page, or onto your own website or social media channel. Whilst you can earn from this, as you are dealing with potential customers on a


one to one basis it can be time consuming communicating, discussing, agreeing and supplying images but it can be rewarding and also lead to other things…

1 ON 1 SURF SESSIONS / GROUP SURF SESSIONS The next step up is to arrange a more formal swim and shot session, either 1 to 1 or a group of surfers. This option needs to be pre-booked with fees and expectations agreed in advance. Then you just need to line up the time and line up the shots. Sounds easy but you are now managing a ‘surf shot’ and have to deliver on this, so the pressure is on! @DYLAN_BRAYSHAW











If you are able to jump on a trip down the coast or overseas

Digital downloads leave it to the customer to print and frame -

If you have a wider collection of images then you could ‘Self

The pinnacle of paid work must surely be the position of a

with some local aspiring / semi pro’s / then a longer trip gives

this means you lose control over the image, so multiple copies

Publish’. You can print a range of products from annual

publications ‘Staff Photographer’. Retainer payments to spend

you more time to get shots. This might include a range of

could be printed and also no control over the quality of the

calendars to high quality coffee table books.

all your time shooting in the best locations.... Well almost.

shots for their portfolios including portraits, lifestyle and water

print and framing, which might have a negative impact in the

action shots. This wider range of shots generally requires

longer term but it’s one of the simplest way to ‘sell’ work.

more kit and time - but you are on ‘holiday’ so what else is there to do.


Check the Chasing Clarity pod episodes with Travis ‘Don’ Prices for low volume print runs tend to be high and leave

Johnson who is a newly appointed staff photographer for

little profit margin, but if you can presell products and place

Australian Surfing Life magazine for a behind the scenes look

larger orders then there can be money to be made.

at this prestigious position, and see if it’s for you! Be creative - think creatively.

Printed images give you more control. You can choose the SURF SCHOOLS

best printer and paper for your work and quality control the

Most of these printing services will send you a sample pack so

Most surf school clients would love a surf action shot to

final product before supplying it to the customer, this adds

you can check on the options including paper weight, paper

remember their session. As the surf school is a business they

time to each sale but does give you the reassurance that the

finishing and printing options.

most likely will want to take a cut of any earnings but if they

image is sharp and colour correct.

Join the conversion #chasingclarity

who could become longer term clients as their surfing skills


There is no better feeling than seeing your work in a physical


Framed Images mean you get to approve the final piece

tangible printed publication (and getting paid for it). There

before the customer receives it, and allows you to offer really

is a still a thriving printed publication market, but the photo

Thank you to all of the following of their valuable input in putting


bespoke print sizes and framing options to suit the customer.

budgets have shrunk with the shift of marketing budgets to

this all together

Stock image websites sell your images under a range of

More work for you but higher value sales. If you are selling

different pricing policies and licences. These platforms have

your work online also factor in potential shipping issues and

a good reach to potential customers, however generally

higher costs.

the profit on each sale can be very small and there are a lot of images to compete with. It’s best to look at submitting


multiple images and using various websites but then once set

Printing, framing and shipping, is all outsourced, which means

up these sites can drive steady ‘passive’ income that requires

each order can be processed with the minimum of your time

very little additional time or input from you.

being used, but you are giving all of the quality control to a third party.

online . If you are submitting to multiple publications, choose images specifically for each publication. Magazine photo editors need some level of exclusiveness over what images they are running and check for any technical requirements (file format / file sizes) and their rates.

Deon Lategan @deonlateganphotographics Martin Caprile @martincaprile Matt Noel @saltylens_ci Dylan Brayshaw @dylan_brayshaw Chris King @kingflyber

Ask for feedback on your submissions, as you might get some guidance on the type of images the publication is looking for,

If you work to gain exposure via your website, social media


What worked for you? PUBLISHED

are busy you could have a nice regular stream of customers

What have you tried?

channel or displaying work ‘offline’ in popular bars, cafes,

It’s highly recommended to place test orders of your own

and some tips on how to improve your chances of getting

pop up events or any other busy area that has potential

products to check on how the final product arrives, and check


customers, then you could offer Online Digital Downloads,

the customer experience that your customers would get from

Printed Images, Frames Images and Drop shipping:

the purchasing process. 59


Hannah Prewitt | 35 years old | Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN SHOOTING AND HOW DID



images come right at the end when the model thinks you’re

I bought the Tamron lens more recently, as I needed a wider

not shooting anymore. And again I love to use negative space

focal range to shoot fashion.

I’d say I’m somewhere between full time and part time. I set

and black and white edits to create minimalistic and more

I bought my first DSLR back in 2015 but it honestly took me

up my business once I’d finally settled down in Australia at

artistic portraits.

a few years to really understand how to use it! So I’d say I’ve

the end of 2019, and then covid hit, which obviously made it

been shooting for about 4-5 years. I got into photography

more difficult to get things moving. I tried to go full time for a

around the same time I started learning to surf, so

year or so but my income wasn’t consistent enough so I do

yourself the question “what photographic problem will this WHAT DOES THE OCEAN MEAN TO YOU?

photography was my way of being involved in surfing when the

actually have a part time job as well at the moment, but it’s

waves were too big for me.

really flexible so I can always prioritise my photography and

refresh or escape, and I love how water and light interact.

I take to be honest, I don’t shoot just for the money. If I don’t

I didn’t grow up close to the ocean at all, but I remember I

and I’d spend every day off either on the surf boat taking

feel inspired by a shoot or it’s not going to add anything to my

used to dream of swimming in shallow clear water, and now I

photos or in the water. It was there that I happened to meet

portfolio, then I don’t hesitate to turn down work. I think that’s

love to capture that for those who can’t see it for themselves.

legendary surf photographer Peter ‘Joli’ Wilson, who was

the perfectionist in me!

It’s also such an enigma. There’s something I love about not knowing what’s underneath.

inspired me to want to pursue photography. I had some


savings to buy some decent equipment and he helped me to


choose what to get. In fact, he just told me what to buy! There’s

Most of my surf images are taken with my 50mm which is the cheapest lens you can buy, so don’t ever think that equipment

I’m still working pretty regularly. I’m quite fussy about the jobs

working as a surf photographer at the time and he really

lens/camera etc. help me to solve?” If you can’t answer that question, then you probably don’t need to spend that money.

I feel at home in the ocean. It’s where I go when I need to

I was working in the Maldives at the time as a marine biologist,

I always recommend before buying any equipment to ask

is holding you back. WHAT MAKES A GOOD IMAGE FOR YOU? I guess a good image these days is one that someone is willing to spend longer than a split second looking at it! That seems


to be what photography has come to thanks to the world of


social media and small screens.

nothing like putting down several thousand dollars to motivate

Constantly evolving! Haha. My style has definitely changed

you to learn something new! So once I had my equipment, I

as my photography has progressed but I’m always drawn to

I shoot with a Nikon D750, which I have an Aquatech Elite

Images that catch my attention are ones that evoke some kind

just practiced and practiced. I learnt everything from YouTube

minimalistic images, which is something I aim to create. I love

housing for.

of emotion or make the viewer question how the image was

and blogs and then by just getting out there and shooting

negative space and keeping things simple, and I definitely love

I have several lenses:

taken. Of course, this isn’t possible to achieve with every photo

and making mistakes. I’d spend hours and hours watching

moody images, as well as punchy colour. It’s funny, I actually

- 50mm f/1.8 prime lens with a flat port to take in the water

but my very best images are the ones that people tell me that

Lightroom tutorials and then copying what I’d learnt until I

don’t think that I really have a distinct style but other people

- 16-35mm f/4 wide angle lens with a dome port for the water

they feel as if they escaped from their world for a second and

started to find my own style. Then I decided I really wanted to

tell me that they recognise my photos so I guess I must have!

- 80-400mm telephoto, which I use for shooting surfing from land

were in the ocean with me.

- Tamron 24-70 mm f/2.8.

shoot in the water so I purchased an Aquatech housing and did the same thing. Just practiced and practiced.


I often get messages from people actually thanking me for

When it comes to photographing people, I would say that my style is candidly posed. I like to get my models to perform

I’ve kind of already covered how I chose my gear, in that I

helping them to feel calm and peaceful for a short time, which

an action rather than a strict pose, and often I find the best

didn’t! Peter ‘Joli’ Wilson basically told me that these were the

is the most wonderful compliment. If a still image can do that

lenses I needed to make a start in surf photography, although

for someone, I’d say that’s a pretty good image. 61


I also wish I’d known exactly how my camera would work


within a housing. Each camera is different and has different buttons and then camera housings are also different and

Hmm… that’s a tough question for me to answer, as I like to

enable you to access certain buttons and not others. Of

keep my cards close to my chest. I used to set goals all the

course, when I purchased my first DSLR, I had no idea that I

time but I’m trying to move away from the pursuit of constant

would end up buying a housing for it as well so there’s no way I

measured achievements these days and take that pressure off

could really have known this, but if anyone out there is looking


to buy their first housing and/or first camera, maybe see if you can somehow try before you buy. Workshops are a great place

So I’d say my only goal is to master the use of artificial lights.

to be able to do this. In fact, there should definitely be more

I recently bought a whole lighting set up and I’m keen to

workshops where people are able to actually see and handle

practice more with them and perhaps try some beauty

the equipment before investing I think.

photography. Although I will always love natural light, I think it’s important as a photographer to understand how to use

I guess I also wish I had known a bit more about lenses before

strobes as well. Other than that, just to continue to create

purchasing anything. It is slightly embarrassing to admit that

images that I’m proud of.

a professional told me what kit to get and I just bought it, but that’s just how it worked out for me. I remember how daunting


it felt looking at camera gear and not really understanding


anything, but if I’d known what I know now, I’d probably have made some different purchases. But I guess I can only say that

That’s a good question! Definitely to shoot in raw from day

with hindsight. These days there are so many resources out

one. When I first started taking photos, I didn’t understand

there explaining what different lenses do etc. that I think if you

what raw was and so I just shot in jpeg to save file space but I’d

put the time in, it’s much easier to make those decisions for

love to be able to go back and edit some of those first images

yourself before investing.

now. I remember reading a photography blog and someone had written that they wished they’d started shooting in raw earlier and I think that was the moment that I decided to change and hoped I’d figure out what it meant at some point!




Kevin Rom | 45 years old | Durban South Africa HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN SHOOTING AND HOW DID



Part time.

My passion for photography started in 2005 with the purchase


of my first semi-professional camera on my honeymoon. It


followed me around on my travels and to sporting events I participated in. Landscape, sport and candid photography

A portrait surf photographer who gets side tracked by light

of people seemed to be what inspired me. Back then it was

and landscape.

nothing but a creative hobby. After a few years it went into mild hibernation.


Fast forward to 2014 and the beginning of a small passion

The ocean is a dichotomy for me. It can be beauty or it can

business based around health and fitness(CrossFit to be exact,

be a beast. I have had 3 near drowning experiences and each

that’s also where the nickname ‘Prof’ came from) and I realised

time I enter the ocean there is a level of anxiety I have to

that social media was the best way to advertise and market

mentally coach myself through. The days of gentle offshores

this new venture. The more I investigated social media the

and incredible light can be nourishing for the soul. Cyclone

more the message of ‘quality content creates the perception

swells and raging rips can scare the hell out of it.

of quality product’ was emphasized. This lit the photography flame and drive to create better content.


In 2018 the ocean and water came calling when a friend who worked for a local surfboard manufacturer asked me to

Bodies - Sony A7III and Sony A7SIII

assist with creating content for them. My childhood was spent

Lenses – Sony 12-24 F4, Sony 24mm GM, Sony 85mm F1.8,

cutting out the local surf mag pics and pasting them all over

Sony 24-105 F4, Sony 70-200 F4, Sony 200-600 G

my room. Fate presented me with an opportunity to create

Housing – Liquid Eye C2100

such images. Since then I have invested time, money and

Drone – Mavic Air 2(but I think I can see myself trading it in

energy into creating imagery, still and moving, around people,

for the DJI FPV. That FPV stuff looks like way to much fun, and

the ocean and water.

danger.) GoPro – Hero 10 and Max



I made a choice to move to Mirrorless cameras (at that point


I had a Cannon 6DII) when I wanted to start shooting in the


water. The fact that they were smaller than the current DSLR’s made sense to me if taking a camera into the ocean. They also

1. You have to have more than basic knowledge of the ocean.

offered the ability to shoot good quality video which made

Understanding tides, winds, currents, swell direction and

them great hybrid camera’s. At the time Sony was leading

rips is vital. That knowledge can do two things for you, it can

the charge into mirrorless and the Sony A7III just offered

help you understand when the best time is to create the best

great value for money in terms of what the camera offered.

imagery and it can potentially save your life.

Changing over the glass was the painful part. 2. You have to physically train to venture into the ocean. Being WHAT MAKES A GOOD IMAGE FOR YOU?

a stronger swimmer and being confident in your breath hold ability will allow you to spend more time in the ocean in each

A good image for me is one where the viewer is able to engage

session you do and will allow you to remain calm and focussed

with the subject and feel the moment. That mixed with some

when required to in bigger surf and challenging situations.

magical light or a beautiful blue ocean and I think that is a

Not having a grasp on this got me into trouble early on in my


ocean imagery journey. I have now done a few breath hold and ocean confidence courses and I have a swim/breath hold

The portrait nature of my photography is what probably leads

coach I train with twice a week.

me to shooting more longboarding than surfing or wave/ ocean imagery. I think the longboarding discipline allows you

3. I wish I knew there was a global community of people

to get closer to the subject and really engage with them. It also

who embraced this craft and were so giving of their time

has an element of elegance which I love.

and knowledge prior to me starting this journey. I had so many early struggles in walking this path but was convinced


I would have to figure it out on my own as there wasn’t really


much out there in terms of educational resources in the art of creating ocean imagery. Finding ‘Chasing Clarity’ was a

I want to start shooting more ocean wildlife. Taking my portrait

priceless blessing. A resource focussed on this challenging

tendencies into nature. Turtles, rays and perhaps the odd

craft, updated regularly with ‘knowledge rich’ content.

shark is on my list.

But more importantly for me it opened a door to a global community of people who your could reach out to and learn from. People willing to share their time and knowledge. I would give up quite a bit to be a part of that IGer’s Gold Coast community.








There are few realms of photography that can truly put you at the peril of mother nature in a matter of seconds, and if you’re reading this then you probably enjoy one of those realms - surf and ocean photography. I can think of many hobbies and pastimes that are a bit threatening, but we do what we love not because we are afraid of the unknown, but because we are constantly mesmerized and captivated by the ocean, her inhabitants, and the way we flow as one with her. Part of loving what we do is learning to respect the environment we get to do it in; as I find myself continuously drawn to the potential perils of conditions that can change in minutes, I spend much of my time outside of the water preparing for my time in the water through various routines of physical and mental training.

One mistake that a lot of people make when purchasing camera equipment for their first water housing, is that they try and choose a single lens and camera that will cover every possible situation when shooting. Usually something with a massive amount of megapixels, every camera function under the sun, and with a huge battery booster and then sticking a zoom lens on it that has a range from 8mm to 800mm. This will only force you to buy a massive water housing that will end up being very clumsy to handle, and you will spend most of your time trying to figure which of the dozens of buttons to press and which dial to turn, and then getting dragged over the falls trying to get that fisheye image with that massive lens attached.

I like to apply the 1% rule - that even just improving habits and practices by 1 percent can, over time, have a significant impact on performance. From what I eat to how and when I train, I hope to think that each may marginally improve my preparedness in the ocean. My exercise regime includes strength training, long runs, and yoga/mobility training. I find that strength training combined with yoga and mobility helps build and maintain strong muscles and joints that may be thrown around underwater. Long runs and endurance-based practice helps train slowtwitch muscles, which in turn help for those hours-long swims in nasty rip currents. Further, being able to slow your heart rate - instead of panicking - can help you exert less energy when caught on the inside or trying to make it under the lip of the wave hurling over you.

‘Less is more’ and the acronym KISS – ‘keep it simple stupid!’ are the best terms to describe good functional water housing equipment. You would be surprised how few controls the gun photographers have on their water housings. In a perfect world, you would have a dedicated rig for fisheye work with side handles or pistol grip, coupled with a standard sized camera body that shoots 8 frames per second or more. Then a housing that holds a camera with a battery booster ( battery boosters give optimum auto focus and frames per second ) and combined, preferably with non-extending, 24-105mm and 70200mm zooms.

I find that the mental aspect of training is just as important as the physical aspect - ensuring that you are mentally prepared for the challenges that may arise in challenging and/or quickly changing conditions. I try to practice breathwork (again, being able to slow your heart rate), ensure I spend enough time watching and studying the waves where I am about to swim out, and also training myself to genuinely believe I am as prepared as I can be for any situation that may arise.



Nonetheless, we are entering the ocean at the whim of her power and energy, and part of my mental training is merely understanding that things can go wrong. Although understanding my camera and physical/ mental training help tremendously in ever-changing conditions, we are at the mercy of the ocean and remain just as grateful to get to swim and capture her beauty every day.

For most people their budget will not extend to this unfortunately, so a compromise will need to be made until they can expand their equipment stable. Most housings can be purchased that can be expanded on like adding pistol grips and lens ports as time and budget allows. Try starting off with a smaller rig with a 20mm or 24mm lens or short zoom in that range (with side handles or pistol grip depending on how much you want to spend). And as your experience grows progress to other lenses or add a bigger rig for longer lens work.



IT’S COMMON FOR CREATIVES TO FALL INTO THE TRAP OF ALLOWING SOCIAL MEDIA ALGORITHMS TO DETERMINE THEIR WORTH Digital marketing is ever-evolving, and the amount of work that goes into creating original content is often unseen by the everyday user. It can be easy to feel defeated as progress can be slow, especially when the likes, views, and comments fall short of expectations. Establishing which platforms to invest in and which ones to leave behind will save you a lot of unnecessary work. Consider who your ideal audience is and select one or two platforms that will form part of your digital content strategy. Master these and be open to experimenting with newly introduced features. Remember that a platform like Instagram is only one piece of the marketing/public relations puzzle, not the only part. Sharing with your audience what makes you unique as a creative will help cultivate a community of followers that can relate to the person behind the lens. This forms your unique selling point and will help you stand out from your competitors. Content creation that inspires change and has a purpose beyond what is being sold will help you wade through all the digital noise. Images and videos that connect us through stories and shared values will further set you apart from those that don’t have a defined niche. Weaving these values into your content will begin to attract the right kind of clients and brands who connect with your creative vision. If you are really clear on your reason for being on social media you will find that the work finds you and the followers just won’t matter.

My last tip is don’t rush into purchases. Good research and patience will save a lot of money, disappointment, and heartache!!







The process of slowing down and really focussing on the subject, lighting, and camera settings, that one click per wave rather than 1000 digital ones is what continues to draw me back to the ocean each time, fins and camera in hand.

Last issue I asked “SO YOU WANNA BE A FULL

never get photographed and swim where photographers


are rare. Heck even the most kooky of kooks lucks into the

PHOTOGRAPHER…” This issue I ask…”Well do ya..punk?”

barrel of a lifetime, at least once in their journey, capture

If you don’t get the Dirty Harry reference, please put this

that moment when they appear to tame Mother Nature,

mag down and go watch the classic Clint Eastwood movie!

right before the lip smacks them back to reality…capture

I honestly still get giddy waiting for rolls of film to come back from developing labs, the suspense and surprise of physically seeing images planned come to life through film weeks, sometimes months after the date of exposure is simply so rewarding. The film community around northern NSW/ Southern Gold Coast is well alive, both in and out of the water. Pushing to make each shot count whilst experimenting with different film stocks and settings keeps photography fresh and exciting for me. Through shooting film in the water, I’ve met and connected with some awesome individuals, I thrive on these moments – selling prints is an added bonus. The Nikonos V has been the ultimate workhorse for the past 9 years, these cameras are mental! Built in 1984 and made from one solid brick of alloy it’s a tank, these cameras have been used for photographing fires, sandstorms, war, hurricanes, riots the list goes on. Coming in at just under 900 grams these retro orange rigs are not to be taken lightly, dare I say there are some rare olive green ones out there? Shooting with the rangefinder has been a learning curve, fully manual and having to judge the distance from a certain subject, sometimes at high speed has taken a while to get confident with. Exciting projects in the mix regarding international double exposures with a few specific Nikonos photographers – colour and black and white rolls incoming, stay tuned and keep clicking. Film is alive! 70


that moment and show it to them as they paddle past, It’s been 3 months since I asked that question…so…what

that my friends as the credit card ad says…is priceless…or

have you done to progress yourself to that goal?

depending on your negotiation skills $30 - $150 plus!

There’s always going to be setbacks and life has an uncanny way of never going to plan…it also has a way of

So there you have it, start charging for your work. Next

sorting it’s self out, but it happens a lot quicker if you’re

time you hear that voice “Hey, yo, did you get that?”

moving in the right direction to help it along, so lets get

Respond with a smile and a “Absolutely! You were ripping


mate!’ Show them the frame and when the inevitable question of how they can get that epic picture of them

There are so many ways to make money from

comes…BAM, right there, NAME YOUR PRICE AND MAKE IT

photography and in this small paragraph of ramblings I’m


throwing you the challenge of choosing one, going all in, and making your first dollar.

I’ve been told to keep my articles from now on to about this many words (actually less, but I think Hannah will let

Shoot punters for peanuts.

this one slide). Go make your $ people! The cash needs a home!

Spend hours bobbing about next to me at the most

You’ve got gear to buy and a publisher to support on

crowded break in the world and unless you’re already

Patreon that won’t pay for himself…oh wait,

professional, you’re probably not likely to sell an image of punter OR pro. On any given day there are at least a

Seriously though…don’t wait another 3 months before

handful of photographers kicking alongside you and a

taking action, fortune favours the bold, or in this case you,

horde of wave hungry riders that expect free images.

you just gotta get out there, get amongst it and get some

I remember not too long ago surfers would collect

water on ya.

clout by screen-shoting as many watermarked images of themselves, by as many different photographers as


they could get per session…so folks, even water marking won’t save you an uncredited social share. What was the lesson…there’s always a lesson…photograph surfers that 71


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f/1.8 | 1/800 | ISO 320 | NIKON D850 | NIKON 50MM f1.8 | AQUATECH HOUSING 73


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