Live Surf Cameras (April, 2020)

Project aimed at visually translating the effect of COVID-19 on surfing. Currently, companies are hurting, employees furloughed, small stores struggling, team riders dropped, WSL events canceled for CT and QS, and more. It is a very significant moment in surfing that will continue to worsen for the near and foreseeable future. audiences read about this, but many are not connected to the surf industry or athletes competing, and for them, it all seems quite abstract and behind the scenes. In reality, this is going to change surfing and what comes from the sport in the next years.

Over here in California, like many other places around the world, beaches are shut down, and surfing is not allowed. Among the beaches under strict ‘No Surfing’ rules are Lowers and Malibu –two of the most iconic and densely populated lineups ups out there. Driving is eerie seeing closure signs, entrances blocked off, and police and lifeguards are patrolling at beaches. But more haunting and relatable to the typical surfer is the live cameras of their favorite waves now abandoned.

My thought behind the project is these empty lineups will become the image most people will associate with this period in surfing. –Versus much of the difficulties happening behind the scenes.

I use screen captures to photograph these lineups, which proved more interesting than it sounds. For example, two surfers tried to boat into Lowers, which shortly afterward resulted in an overturned boat washed ashore and them detained. The swell also coincides with a dramatic storm, which is unusual to the area and helped to provide dynamic light to the often-flat images the live-cameras show.