Winner of our Action category, Ben Thouard, hails from the south of France.
Not the kind of spot in France with pumping swell, but still, with a sailor as a father and older brothers pushing him to surf, it’s probably only natural that Ben’s eventual subject of choice would be the ocean. Getting into shooting when he was a teenager then moving to Paris to study photography, he began to travel to all the big wave spots from the age of 19. Ben eventually moved to Tahiti to make Teahupo’o’s famous wave his backyard, and it’s still his favourite spot to shoot today. We caught up with Ben for a chat, and were lucky enough to be on the receiving end of some drool-inducing surf shots he’s taken over the years. Come meet your Action winner for ’16.
What are you gonna do with the 5k?
Probably buy some more photo equipment ! When you’re always looking to create new things, you want to use new and different equipment, so hopefully I’ll be able to use that for new stuff soon.
What do you dig most about your winning photo?
It’s been a style of photo I’ve been working on for a long time. Any photographer knows how hard it is to get a sharp photo at such a slow shutter speed (around 1/8th of a second) , especially while swimming or even sitting on a boat like this one. I missed a ton of photos shooting this way, but in the end I was very happy with this one and I’m beyond stoked it ended up winning your photo competition!
Has taking a photo ever gotten you in trouble?
Not that I know!
If you could be on a shoot with any photographer, who would they be and why?
Probably shooting waves with my friend and inspiration Ray Collins. I really love his work and he has been a true inspiration to me. We spent some time together in Tahiti last year shooting waves and he really opened my eyes to another type of photography. I’m trying to find my own way now.
Dream subject/location to shoot?
Waves at sunrise or sunset.