I’ve been shooting a lot of underwater photos these last few years at Teahupo’o, choosing the right days when the water clarity gets insane. The morning this photo was taken was the day before the big swell we had in May 2013. I showed up on the spot early as a bunch of surfers were enjoying a nice 6ft Teahupo’o.
Landon McNamara was one of them and is the surfer in the picture. I decided straight away to only shoot underwater photos that morning, because the waves were perfect – completely glassy as there was no wind at all. Also it had not rained the last few days so the water clarity was just a dream. These were the conditions I was waiting for!
I spent four hours just shooting below the surface and the show was unreal! That wave came in, I dove under as the surfer was paddling for it, just early enough to be under and get the right position. Everything lined up perfectly and I was really happy with the result!
The funny end to the story is that it took me almost a year to identify the surfer. As I spent all morning underwater, I forgot to pay attention to who it was. Thanks to social media and the three color fins Landon was able to identify himself and tell me!