6 Posted by - January 12, 2016 - PHOTO OF THE DAY


Camera: Canon 7D
Lens: 70-200mm
Aperture: 2.8
Shutter Speed: 1/6400


I took this photo during the waiting period for the Jeffreys Bay Open, the only World Surf League contest that graces South Africa’s shores. My general rule when taking photographs in Jeffreys Bay is to be on the beach by 6:30am. During Winter, this means the sun is yet to come up. The beauty of the Supertubes line-up, is that the sun rises directly behind the waves, offering what I consider to be the best morning light surf set-up that I’ve ever seen.

The most challenging part about shooting at this time is the changing light conditions. To get this shot, took a bit of patience and pre-planning. I already knew that I wanted to get a backlit or side-lit shot in the sunrise of a pro in the air. I positioned myself at a 90-degree angle to where I expected the sun would rise, and as close to the end section of the wave as I could gauge in the dark. And then I waited for first light. My goal was to stay in that spot until the right combination of elements presented itself – light, wave and surfer. Kolohe Andino offered just that with this wave: just as the sun peaked over the horizon, he shot down the line-up, ending on a perfect air that he’s known for, against the backdrop of these beautiful low light conditions. I didn’t want to pump up my ISO too much for this shot thanks to the grain the 7D captures, but luckily the sun just rising offered me enough light to get away with these settings.

Drop any questions about this shot in the comments below.


  • Ebrahim January 20, 2016 - 2:07 pm Reply

    Nice shot!

    • Claire Butler January 27, 2016 - 6:17 am Reply

      Thanks Ebrahim!

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