Entries are now open for the 2019 Nikon Surf Photo and Video of the Year Awards. We’re looking for stunning, ocean and surf-themed images or videos you captured in 2018.
In partnership with Surfing Australia, the Nikon Surf Photo and Video of the Year awards seek to recognise the very best photographers and videographers who dare to venture into the waves.
The winner of the Nikon Surf Video of the Year Award will receive the new Nikon Z6 while the winner of the Nikon Surf Photo of the Year Award will take home the new Nikon Z7. Each prize will include the Nikkor Z 24-70mm f/4 S-Line.
Q&A With Trent Mitchell, 2018 Nikon Surf Photo of the Year winner:
Since winning the award in 2018, what has the past year had in-store for you?
I was fortunate enough to use some lovely lenses that I couldn’t have otherwise, like the AF-S Micro 105mm f/2.8G IF ED (1:1) VR, AF-S 105mm f/1.4E ED and AF-S 200-500mm f/5.6E ED VR thanks to the prize which was super generous of Nikon. I worked on a lot of personal work this year and went through a lot of growth as an artist, father and husband this year too. 2018 threw everything at me and I learnt a heap because of it. Photographically I made some work I’m incredibly proud of too which is nice.
What has been your photography highlight of the year so far?
Releasing my series Inner Atlas this month – it’s been the most well received body of work I’ve ever made. It seems to connect with people that don’t relate to the ocean at all and it’s reached far beyond what I thought it would. I have a favourite in the series that sums up what the project meant to me and represents everything I love about photography, or what gets me excited, anyway.
Have you experimented with any new locations or techniques since winning that we can expect to see in your 2019 entries?
Yes I have, and you’ll see soon. It’s not conventional surfing as such, or techniques. It’s highly experimental and conceptual. I can confidently say it’s never been seen before!
Images from Trent Mitchell: Inner Atlas
Do you have any tips for those wanting to get started in shooting Surf Photography?
Surf photography as a genre is the hardest form of photography I’ve personally come across. It requires a serious depth of skill across so many sub-genres like Documentary, Lifestyle, Land Action, Water action, Portraiture, Underwater, Fashion, Landscape, Product and to some degree Commercial too. Looking at the end game all of these skills are required to become a well-rounded professional surf photographer. Although, to start out I’d recommend dabbling lightly in each of these sub-genres and find one you love. I’d choose what comes naturally and just play and have fun in that space. Fall in love with the process. Get up early, always keep it simple and practice every day!