How Wave Photographer Ray Collins Went from Beneath the Coal Mines to Behind the Camera

by Owen James Burke

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“Golden Peak.” Screenshot from “Sea Stills.” Photograph: Ray Collins

Seven years ago, Ray Collins was working a mile deep in the coal mines around Bulli, New South Wales, Australia, when he blew out his knee. It was the end of his career. He took his payout, bought a camera, and has since published a book, Found at Sea (the first edition is sold out, and the second is being printed), and become one of the most prolific wave photographers of our time.

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“I’m after the peak of the wave, or the wave looking like a mountain. …Sometimes it doesn’t even look like liquid, it just looks like solid structure.” “Mountain.” Screenshot from “Sea Stills.” Photograph: Ray Collins

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“Lone Peak.” Screenshot from “Sea Stills.” Photograph: Ray Collins

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“The Claw.” Screenshot from “Sea Stills.” Photograph: Ray Collins

“Even on the worst days you can get the best shot on just the random occurrence of two waves meeting.”

Watch the videos, “The Now” and “Sea Stills” below:

View Ray Collins’ portfolio and website here. — OJB

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