Ted's Cameras Learning Centre


Catch The Next Wave: Surf Photography Tips

20 November 2017 4:22:41 PM AEDT

With winter finally leaving us for the year and warmer weather approaching, it is the perfect opportunity to head down to the beach to try your hand at an ever-popular photographic subject - Surfing. Surf photography is one of the most beloved forms of action photography and just like any other, this style take a little time and the right equipment to perfect. So without further ado, let’s jump into our quick and concise guide to surf photography.

 

Surfing

Dipping your toes in the water

The equipment you take with you will depend on a few important constraints, namely your budget, but also what approach you will be taking to capture your all-important images. If you are wanting to get up close to the action and get your feet wet, you are going to be looking at a waterproof camera or a underwater housing to protect your camera that doesn't take kindly to wave-catching.

 

When it comes to waterproof cameras, you really are spoilt for choice, with items such as the Olympus Tough range or the full featured FT6 from Panasonic at your disposal, you are sure to find a shooter that matches your photographic needs and your wallet contents. If you are wanting to capture the moving image, you can’t go past an Adventure Video Camera, such as the GoPro Hero 4 Black, which has helped many an adrenaline seeker relive their most extreme moments in ultra high resolution.

Surfing

Under some circumstances, the best course of action is to stay well away from the action and remain safely on land. This will mean less risk being caused to your gear, but you will obviously need to find a way to get a tight-frame on your subject to maximise the impact of your shots. A Digital SLR with a long zoom lens is a popular choice for this approach, with any lens longer than 200mm being a good place to start looking.
Another option is to consider something from the big zoom compact camera range, which allows you the long magnifications without the need to change lenses.

 

Surfing

Making A Splash

Now you have your gadget bag packed and you are all good to go, so here are a few basic tips for us to leave you with as you tread through the sand.

Learn the basic settings on your camera

A quick read though a guide such as our one here will help you be better prepared when you are out there shooting and could be the difference between an excellent image and a mediocre one.

Take plenty of photos

With Memory Cards being as big in storage and low in price as they are these days, there is no reason you can’t take as many practice shots as you want, on your way to that winning picture.

Wait for the right light

We touched on this here and it is important to remember that lighting is everything in photography. At the wrong time of the day it will be nearly impossible to get a successful photograph when you take the sun, reflections etc into account - so understand how light changes at different times of the day and keep this in mind before you eagerly head down to the shore.

Surfing

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