Grab a coffee, a snack, and put on an adult diaper . . . this will be a long post.
December 26, 2016, found me back on the shores of the Pine Tree Surfing Beach . . . which is a misnomer. People don’t actually surf on the beach; they surf on the water.
So, here is the thing . . . I shot many, many photos. After reviewing them all, I kept 814 photos. For this post, I pared them down to 288.
I did not see the rest of the synchronized surfers but that’s not to say they are not there; the surf was pretty rough at time.
I think I got me a number of decent action shots, and I aim to share them all with you.
Got me a few shots of waves, too . . .
I know you be anxious to see all the photos, but I first be gotz to do a disclaimer . . . it was a gray day, the sun making quick appearances in between wispy clouds. I’m not unhappy with these, but they are a bit grainier than I would like and the colors are not exactly popping. And yes, these are pre-P900. It’s Nikon all the way.
What I lack in photographic skill, I make up in quantity. Are you ready for it? OK, let’s go!
Now that most readers have left, let me tell you that while I will post all 288 photos, the vast majority of them are in the form of animated GIF files.
There are 22 GIF files and I will pluck a photo from each, as well as throw in some additional non-GIF sequences, but I won’t actually individually post all 288 photos. I mean, I was tempted — really tempted — but even I realized readers have to eat, go to the bathroom, and some even have families they *gasp* value more than my blog. The nerve!
I don’t have a gallery of all the photos at the end of the post, but there is a SmugMug Gallery of them HERE.
One other thing before we begin for real. You can click on the static photos for a larger view, but the animations are limited to the width of the blog (640 pixels). The SmugMug gallery has the same animations but at 1080 pixels. In the gallery, each sequence ends with the animation of the previous photos. If you just want to watch the animation, you can go through all the photos pretty quickly.
So, when I started going through the photos, I knew I had a number of decent sequences, and after processing the first set I realized they would be difficult to show the action as a series of photos. This is what it would look like . . .
I mean, it’s nice to show the individual photos, but it doesn’t convey the dynamics of it. Videos would convey the dynamics but are usually very large files. That’s why I usually upload them to YouTube and only put links in here; it takes up less space.
I didn’t shoot video because it’s a pain to do with the Nikon. The best thing — maybe even better — is to show the animation . . .
And then select a shot from the sequence to share and comment on . . .
You can see that he has separated from the board . . . wiping out is the imminent result.
For some action shots, I did not have enough frames to make an animation, so I only share individual photos . . .
For them who be interested, making GIFs is fairly straightforward in Photoshop. There is some prep like processing each of the set of photos the same and cropping them all the same size. I also lined up the frames to keep the subject in the same approximate location as the frames progress through the sequence.
The early ones, like this next one . . .
. . . are paced a little quick. Later animations are at a lower pace so you can see what’s going on.
In the above animation, I tried tracking both subjects — the upright surfer and the body surfer — and that gets a bit confusing at the end (the body surfer gets rolled by the wave). Eventually, I settled on just following one surfer for each sequence.
I also paused a bit longer on the first frame; a reset of sorts. Also paused a bit longer on the last frame.
Like I said, the advantage of this method is the ability to isolate individual stills and show what’s happening.
For a decent animation, you need at least eight frames, but more frames are preferable for a better visual (my opinion).
I only had four of this guy surfing — it’s not just a young man’s (or woman’s) sport — and the animation is no better than showing the actual photos.
It occurs to me a bit of music might help readers pass the time as they read this . . . and what better music (and video) to go with surfing than this . . .
Back to surfing . . . if I’ve not mentioned it before, the ocean is pretty big. I mean, I’ve seen big puddles before, and even big lakes, but oceans are BIG.
Still, people do seem to crowd each other when surfing.
I don’t think she fell because the ocean is big; I think the wave broke early and the board went too far ahead of it (look at me; talking as if I know this stuff).
Notice that the animations are still pretty quick . . .
Not sure I would have the guts to wear that outfit in public . . . at home maybe . . . but only on Sunday.
This next guy was trying to hit the pipeline (boy! I’m like a native with the lingo) but it looks like a tiny one.
I am happy that I caught the older gentleman on a longer sequence.
It doesn’t look like much of a wave, but he also hit larger waves.
. . . and, yeah . . . it looks like fun. Were I a better swimmer, I’d be out there too.
These next two shots to me represent quintessential Hawaiʻian images . . .
Were I younger, Hawaiʻian, fitter, handsomer, a good swimmer, and had a full head of hair . . . why, that could be me!
This guy was not one of the better surfers, but he did execute the move that most surfers seem to enjoy doing . . .
. . . and was pleased.
Looking at these photos one might not realize how big the waves are or how much water dumps on you when it breaks over you. These next shots are all stills . . .
I think it’s time for more music, don’t you think?
I’ll stick with Moby . . .
Here’s another shot of multiple starts . . .
. . . and here’s an example of how you can get rolled pretty good . . .
I should also mention that when the waves are this high, you are moving at what I call a good clip. If you hit the water at that speed, it’s probably not all that gentle on your body. Once or twice might not be bad, but the surfers are usually out there for hours.
When about to get hit by a wall of water, many try to jump over the wave or dive before it hits.
Some of you might be wondering how one gets into the water . . . well, you go to the edge of the rocks and wait for a wave to come in . . .
. . . when the water is high, you jump forward with your board . . .
. . . and paddle as you ride the backwash out . . .
I suppose one has to practice with what one is given but in this next animation, that looks like a small wave for that maneuver.
. . . still better than what I can do . . .
This guy also wiped out . . . and I thought he was closer to the rocks than was smart . . .
I should mention that it’s not just adults. We’ll see a few younger surfers later on, but for now . . .
This next guy was pretty good in most of what he did . . .
. . . although, in this particular case, he pushes that last jump a bit more than he should have.
I do like the look of the water when it breaks like that . . . reminds me of the color of Alaskan glaciers . . .
Here’s another good fall . . . I wonder how often the surfers get hit by their own surfboards or by the surfboards of others . . .
You can see on this shot that he barely missed another surfer . . .
This guy was good, but I did not catch as many shots of him as I would have liked. Notice how he dives into the breaking wave.
This next body surfer got into the pipeline . . .
. . . and had a good roll . . .
Here are a few more individual shots . . .
. . . a piece of coral surfing the beach . . .
You do not have to be svelte or young to execute these maneuvers, but you look a tad cooler if you are . . .
This next guy looks like he’s enjoying himself . . .
There are only four frames, so I played them slower . . . here’s the “I’m having fun shot” . . .
There’s usually a pretty good mix of men and women; not on this day.
Here’s a picture of a young lady heading out.
Watch this next series as the body surfer comes from behind and cuts in front of the older guy.
Here’s a neat four shots sequence . . .
This is the guy from earlier . . .
I spoke about how crowded it is . . . he almost takes out two people . . .
. . . but pulls through . . .
Only six animations left . . . how are my readers doing?
. . . anyone left? If so, here’s a musical interlude to takes us home . . .
OK, I mentioned kids are out surfing . . .
That little shit is making it look too easy . . .
. . . gosh, I feel old . . .
Here, let me look at someone more sedate and less cocky . . .
. . . I still feel old . . . but, I bet I could still take them in a racquetball court. I mean, I imagine it’s pretty difficult hitting the ball with a surfing board.
Here’s the young lady from before . . .
Wait . . . is she smirking at me? I think that’s a smirk . . . I tell you, today’s young have no respect for gutless old people who want nothing to do with shark-infested waters.
Here’s another guy who was not bad . . . cool move at the end.
He’s not a youngster, either.
Here is a bit more of the show-off kid . . . gotta admit he’s a good surfer.
OK, we’re going to bring it home with a few still and one final animation . . .
This guy had pretty good moves and looked like he was hardly breaking a sweat . . . although, being as he was all wet, it was difficult to tell.
These next shots are not a sequence . . . well, the first two are, but not the others.
In case you are wondering, he does recover and rides out.
How would you like to see this coming at you?
In this next shot, there is a board in that white-water . . . with a human attached to it somewhere in there.
Another Hawaiʻian-looking photo . . . and very cool-looking . . .
One more of the cool dude before the last of the animations . . .
Wow . . . if you are reading this . . . you probably skipped a few photos and words, but I understand.
Here’s the hot-shot kid again to take us out.
Just as a reminder, the animations look better in SmugMug (larger).
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