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DSC_4359I’ve been fascinated with the Mavericks Invitational surfing contest in Pillar Point (the same location I took week #74’s “Time and Tide” photos) since I first heard about it years ago. It’s always been my dream to see (and photograph!) it, especially since it takes place a mere hour away from my home. This year, I got a little closer to that dream, because I found a site with a live feed of the contest – which I watched in absolute awe. And, I learned that there are public boat tours during the event that get up close to the surfing action – YES! (I just updated my bucket list with that!) To make it more exciting, this year’s winner was local “boy”, Peter Mel, of Santa Cruz who’s been in every Mavericks competition since it started in 1999. He won for the first time this year at the young age of 43. (Hey, perhaps it’s not too late for me to take up surfing after all?)

The day after Mavericks, the beautiful weather and crazy waves continued. I went down to Santa Cruz with some friends and caught a bunch of local surfers enjoying the big waves. (Okay, not Mavericks-big, which were *only* 25-30 feet high this year. But still bigger than I’d swim in, which is saying a lot.) It was the perfect opportunity for photo assignment #2 – shooting at various focal lengths, (which I did with my 18mm-105mm zoom lens) and good practice for the day when I get to cross “photograph Mavericks from a boat” off my bucket list, too.

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One thing I wanted to point out is that none of the focal lengths are “wrong”. The choice you make depends on what story you’re trying to tell, what mood and feelings you want to evoke – and that is entirely up to you, the storyteller and picture maker.

There’s no assignment this week, because I’ll be using my camera every day, taking literally thousands of pictures next week as part of the photo team for our school’s drama department. But rest assured, I’ll have a post and assignment number 3 for you next Sunday. (I can’t wait!)

In the meantime, enjoy some of my favorite photos and video from Mavericks; they’re as amazing as the surfers themselves.

My favorite Mavericks photos:

http://mavericksinvitational.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/BigGregLong.jpg

http://mavericksinvitational.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/DaveW.jpg

http://mavericksinvitational.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/DropGreg.jpg

http://mavericksinvitational.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/TaylorRyan.jpg

http://mavericksinvitational.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/DropZack.jpg

http://mavericksinvitational.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/GB.jpg

Video of winner, Peter Mel, surfing Mavericks this year. It’s two minutes of pure awe and happiness! (I love seeing other people’s dreams come true!) And in case you’re wondering how they got that amazing footage, they used a GoPro video camera mounted on the surf boards — which made watching the live feed of the event this year even more amazing!

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