Andrew Semark

Interview With Andrew Semark Surf Photographer by Katherine Nielsen

ANDREW SEMARK @anjsemark

Firstly, can you start with a little bit about yourself?

Born and raised in the Southwest of WA. Sharing life with my little Family and I always love a good adventure.

How do you think to being a surfer influencers your photography? 

I guess I want to show people how I feel in the ocean. I grew up surfing and have enjoyed photography since I was young, so combining the two was Inevitable.

The Ocean has given me so much, so it’s nice to take that feeling of stoke home and enjoy it again and again.

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How would you describe your current photographic style? 

I guess my work shows the raw and dramatic style of Ocean.

Can you give a breakdown of the equipment you use to create your images? 

I have been using Canon equipment for most of my photographic life. I’m currently using a canon 5d mk iii and a variety of lenses and recently upgraded to the 5d mk 4. 

What would be your favourite lens and why? 

I have been loving using the canon 85mm l series and 50mm l series. Such a great piece of glass.

What are your go-to settings when you shoot in the ocean for someone just starting out in ocean photography? 

It's always condition dependant but 1/1000th of a second f7.1 and iso 200 is a start. 

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What inspired you to capture the ocean and what continues to motivate you? 

My brother and my little family. Show my kids that they can make a living out of doing something they love. Might not ever be a rich man but will have some cool stories to share.

Have you ever had an experience in the ocean that really scared you?

I don't think I've ever been scared in the ocean, I guess, maybe senses that have been heightened but I always love being in the sea. Feels like home. Can you tell me about any crazy encounters with marine life? 

I remember shooting waves on the south coast and having a huge whale and its calf pop up right beside me and just stayed next to me, I remember turning the ski off and just jumping in and admiring how massive and beautiful these creatures are.

Is there somewhere you would love to shoot but haven’t had the chance yet? 

So many places to I want to check out. Tahiti is high on the list.

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Among all your work what is your most memorable capture?

Maybe just one image. I remember shooting in the middle of the ocean and being surrounded by this massive storm, This little pocket of light shine down on the peak of the waves. This wave came through that wasn't that big but just had this perfect circle in the middle of it with this beautiful light shining on it. I will send it to you.

What methods do you use for editing? Can you explain your workflow? 

Mainly photoshop. I usually browse my images and just open ones up that stand out. I typically have about 30 tabs open in photoshop and just work on a certain images bit by bit. I'm easily distracted haha.

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How do you educate yourself to become a better photographer? 

The internet. It is an unlimited source of information, you have a question, it’s on there somewhere. Youtube and learning from others. Just engage with other photographers and ask lots of questions. That's what I do.

Who would you say are your greatest influencers and inspirations? 

So many to list, I am always inspired by those who have pioneered the way for others to follow behind them. Hopefully one day I can be a positive influence or inspiration for those who come next.

Where is your favourite location to shoot? 

My favourite location would be Iceland, That place is insane. It puts you so far out of your comfort zone.

What is the most challenging aspect of being a photographer? 

Being a good businessman and an excellent artist.

You are offering some ocean and drone workshops in Margaret River can you tell me a bit about these for anyone that may want to attend? 

I wanted to offer help to anyone who would like it, I'm still learning, and hopefully, I can help others on their journey. It will be fun, just spending some time shooting and learning.

Ask questions, drink coffee and enjoy it.

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Lastly, do you have any advice you would give someone starting out in photography? 

Always remember why you started. Don't compare yourself to anyone and it takes time, be patient. You never make it, you just get better along the way. Keep the froth. Peace

If you would like to view more of Andrew's work see his website www.andrewsemarkphoto.com 

or on Instagram @anjsemark