At only 14 years old, Lachy Starling is a surf photographer shooting above his weight. Taking photos that people twice his age would be proud of, he's showing us there's nothing you can't do if you're dedicated enough.
Hi Lachy, please introduce yourselfHi everyone, my name is Lachy Starling and I’m a photographer from a town named Thirroul. If I am not taking photos I am usually surfing or skating. I guess my love for the ocean pretty much controls my life. Photography for me is just another way of telling a story.
Here’s an image of me (I’m on the right)
What defines your photography style?I try to make my images stand out from most other surf photographers photos. I prefer shooting bigger, mutated waves that come from deep water and break on shallow reef. My favourite conditions to shoot in is in the morning when the sun is low, shining through the back of the wave.
How did you become interested in photography?I’ve always had an interest in photography. My mum was a photographer for the local newspaper and then freelance for a few years. I only really got into it in 2011 when I picked up a camera and went to shoot a sunrise at the beach. Ever since that morning I’ve been hooked!
Do you have any formal training?Other than a few pointers here and there from people, I have had no training at all. I just figure it out as I go.
What do you think were some of the key elements to the development of your photography?Cheaper, better cameras. I took my photography into the water when I purchased a GoPro. Action cameras, especially GoPro’s, have really opened up a new door with surf photography. They have amazing specs at a cheap price. 30 photos a second is perfect for waves, it really freezes the wave and creates a sharp image. Hopefully Canon and Nikon can achieve these frame rates on DSLR.
How has social media helped with the success of your photography?I am a big fan of social media. I use it most days to share my images with my followers. Instagram has helped me promote myself share my photos with the community. If I’m looking for inspiration I get onto Instagram and look through my feed, there’s always some rad content on there, normally from guys such as Josh Fogarty, Ray Collins, Lloyd Meudell and Warren Keelan. If you’ve got a spare minute, go check out my profile @starlophoto.
What’s on your gear list?Definitely a Canon EOS 5DSr or a Canon EOS 7D MKii. It’s a hard decision to make for me, 50 megapixels or 10fps. For lenses I will be adding a 50mm to the collection and hopefully a Sigma 30mm 1.4.
Any advice for novice photographers out there?I would still call myself a novice. With the technology that camera manufacturers are making available, there is always something new to learn. My best advice is probably always shoot manual and don’t get to ahead of yourself. To me if you shoot only in sports mode you are not a photographer. Use sports mode occasionally and look at the metadata to help figure out what settings to use for what condition. When I say “don’t get to ahead of yourself” I’m trying to say not to expect people asking for a print every two seconds or a magazine to publish your work straight away. Things happen over time.