Time Beneath the Surface
An update from April and the start of spring
Welcome to my second blog post. Although I enjoy writing and have done it for many years I have never ventured into the world of blogging. It's something I feel takes me out of my comfort zone, but that's what people tell you to do isn't it?
I've been somewhat busy since my last entry. With the winter swells disappearing for another season and the weather improving, it's been time to ditch the board and pick up the snorkel instead. My recovery from sciatica has been slow but steady and I got to a point a few weeks ago where I was able to get back to some form of normality with getting in the water. I was just able to make the most of the dying swell and had a few amazing surfs on the north coast to get my wave fix. With the waves winding down, the water clarity improved, the clocks went forward and the days got warmer. I'd also recently acquired the new GoPro Hero 9 Black so was keen to see what it was capable of.
"It's a calming experience unlike any other and so addictive"
There's something so peaceful about being underwater amongst the kelp forests. It's a calming experience unlike any other and I find it so addictive. I think it's hard to appreciate how much life is thriving under the surface so close to the shore without seeing it for yourself. Every time I've jumped in with my fins and snorkel recently has been a completely unique experience. From one day finding an abundance of spider crabs to the next being circled by a school of sardines (I think). Every swim is different, from weather to tide and everything in between. It's everything I need to escape life at work and mental health struggles and it's difficult to describe just how truly liberating it feels without experiencing it for yourself.
My latest dip at the time of writing this was yesterday, where my friend Henry had acquired a new wetsuit after crazily using a summer suit all winter. We knew the visibility would be pretty shocking following a week long swell that hit Falmouth and the sky was full of clouds, but we were very keen to get in anyway and see what we could find regardless.
Little did we know we would find more marine life than most of my last few swims combined! Huge amounts of spider crabs, a couple of lobsters, six Dogfish that I had never seen before and a huge Wrasse. I almost didn't bring my GoPro and have certainly learned a lesson to bring it with me as you never know what you might encounter, which just reiterates my point of how unpredictable the ocean is and it is truly another world down there.
I'm not really one for cliches but anytime I get in the ocean it just makes my day. It's a reset like no other and just relaxes any anxieties about all elements of life. As a photographer, it's always great to explore new challenges and aspects of image creation, and shooting under the surface presents completely new challenges and factors you don't experience anywhere else. It's also good to play around with video as opposed to stills, especially when it comes to movement of fish for example, and this is something I shall definitely play with more in the future.
I'm looking forward to many more dips under the surface this summer and hopefully experience some more great encounters with sea life. If I acquire enough footage I may even create a short film about my time in the water this year which hopefully encourages others to explore the benefits of snorkel and free diving in UK waters.
Until next time!