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Photography And The Surfing Photographer
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Photography and Surf Photography for the Photographer

I have on numerous occasions taken photographs of Surfing at North Padre Island, Texas; a Peninsula of about 150 miles of surf line from North Padre Island to South Padre Island, Texas. There are of course sections that are not accessible by car just boat so you just can’t drive the whole Island to Mexico almost. I enjoy, Bob hall Pier in North Padre Island to shoot my footage as a Photographer and Hobbyist, I have found as a photographer or surf photographer is about all I am now. I have taken footage of film, digital photographs and made you tube dot com videos for about 7 years now. I guess you could say I am a surfer with a camera that is what I use to tell the surfer’s. I Lived in North Padre Island for the time being up until 2 years ago due to an illness; now that I am better I wanted to make a film. A small 30 min. Independent film showcasing the highlights of these young and old men and women using their spare time, whether for lunch or in between classes to surf. I always considered them all Pro Surfer’s and they really didn’t care, yet at night when I went home and made the you tube.com videos, there were several hits , so I know some of them cared to watch. The Issue now is I have run into some copyright problems and any thought back I appreciate. I will go on to discuss my habit.

I was around 40 years old when I left Midland, Texas to go and shoot beauty in Corpus Christi, Texas , it was like day and night from Midland , Texas. There was water in Corpus, which I always like and there were palm trees and wild, colorful looking plants and flowers, so I shot for magazines for a while, and then was introduced into the surfing world. There are two main spots or towns on the island; one is Port Aransas, Texas and the other North Padre Island, Texas. That being said there were two piers for a photographer to shoot from one in each little section of beach. The two are rival competitors’ in surfing as football in high school in Midland and Odessa are, as a matter of fact a movie was made about the football rival called, “Friday Nights Lights” I think it was, with top actors in it. I figure, I can make a film on the island myself after shooting so much footage.

I was also in the art galleries in Port Aransas, Texas “The Center for the Arts”, and still am in there unless they trashed the photos, yet it was an outlet to sell my flowers and other nature photography. I had a pet peeve on shooting surfers and selling their photos, I did not do this, because I just didn’t. Shooting Surfing Photography had been a passion of mine, like a surfer told me, I said,” Why do you surf”? He replied,” It’s relaxing and I want to catch the big wave”, I left with no word then he said.” Why you always out here, I thought a moment and turned and said,” The same reason you are here, to catch you riding the big wave, and getting practice, “ a grin came on his face.

The longer I go without going to the Islands, the more I miss it, though I still find photography fun and enlightening, it’s not the same without running up and down the pier carrying three of four cameras’s and wanting to get that shot. The One shot that I was trying to get, well I got every day, and that was hard enough. A surfer in the island from south Texas has about a 2-6 second ride on a wave and then it’s gone, hurricane season was best, with excellent swells, the surf photographer then comes in from California, and I’ve seen it happen , their expensive camera’s and taking all the shots they get paid for and then left. I, on the other hand stuck around and talked to the girls, and guys, one fellow was 95 years old at Bob Hall Pier and he was in good shape from surfing. The surfer is a sports minded person, yes there are still the drugs around, where is there not, yet you won’t see these surfer’s doing them, they have a meaning to their lives and I wished to get that across in my pictures, yet I have not been able to yet.

In comes Christopher with two pawn shop good digital film camera’s now and they worked great, I myself was enjoying the waves much more now, as much as the surfer’s on the island. Surf Photography as anything else can be a hassle or be fun, to me it was just relaxing and losing weight going back and forth on the piers, and following my fellow surf friends out in the shark infested waters. I filmed for three years and then got ill, and while I was in Midland I tried to make a film called, “The Wave It Is” and I did, yet the quality was not there and I spent almost a year on it, I learn the hard way. I have the right camera now to do what I am set out to film in surfing, yet now there are strict copyright laws that may hinder my original plan. We will see if I can get enough releases in the next month or so, while I do some traveling to Corpus and back, it’s a 500 mile trip to the Ocean from Midland Texas and I can take it blind almost.

To sum up my article on surfing photography, I want to let newbie photographer’s know to be careful of copyright infringements on these photography shots of surfing, they have rights, and if you can make out who they are in the picture, even a silhouette, then you’re in violation of a copyright, without a model release and be ready to possibly be sued or worse, the surfer might want his share of the money. There are several top name brands that sponsor these surfer’s and there is big money in surf photography , and do not tread where you know you could be in trouble, this hit me the other day like a ton of bricks, thinking , hey these surfer’s know me, they won’t care, but laws are laws and you just never know. I hope you enjoyed this reading and I will update on a webpage or find my homepage, just search me out by name and you will find me. Have a time to travel and watch these guys and girls really make something out of nothing.

Christopher Hyer 1.28.2011

Please click here for more information on surf photography My name is Christopher Hyer and I have been a photographer for over 7 years or so. I have work on several internet sites and two galleries in Corpus Christi, Texas. I enjoy life to its fullest and enjoy helping others if I can.


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