BIG PICTURE

Making waves with a scintillating shot

As pro surfer Benji Brand practised on Sunday ahead of a surfing event in Tahiti, photographers braved the waves to capture the athlete in his element.

The American surfer was vying for a spot at the 2019 Tahiti Pro Teahupo'o, which will run from tomorrow to Sept 1.

Because of the unique shape of reefs in the area, the event is known for its 2m-to 3m-tall swells that hold their shape for long distances.

During surf events, some photographers, such as the one above, get in the water and shoot from inside the wave or under it to get close-up shots of the competitors in action.

They use their skills and experience to pick the best spot to shoot from, and need to time their photos as the surfers go past. They also need to be good swimmers to tread water and avoid the reefs below as they get battered by the waves.

To protect their cameras from the violent waves, they use a special waterproof housing.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 20, 2019, with the headline 'Making waves with a scintillating shot'. Print Edition | Subscribe