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Photo of the Week: Oct. 5, 2012

Michael Clemmer

Editor's note: Welcome to  Yahoo! Travel Photo of the Week, chosen from the Flickr group created by our readers – you! Each week a professional photographer will select a photo that stands out from the crowd, and explain why they chose it. To have your own photo considered, join our Flickr group and start submitting your own photos!

Check out this waterborne kamikaze, photo-graphed near Honolulu, Hawaii, by Y! Travel Flickr user  Ade Hopkins. Using a Canon EOS 5D Mark II I– which was probably fitted with the Canon EF 100-400 zoom lens – Hopkins tore up some compositional rules and nailed a winner for Yahoo! Travel Photo of The Week.

Famous for some of, if not the, best surfing spots on the planet, Oahu gathers adventuresome men and women from all over the world. Oahu’s North Shore is home of Waimea Bay, Sunset Beach, and the infamous Banzai Pipeline. On the South Shore, Sandy Beach, where Hopkins made the photo, is viewed with a healthy respect, too. Lives have been lost bodysurfing Sandy.

Compositionally, we really don’t want our subjects square in the center of our photos; it’s too static. The eye zeros in on it and quickly tires of looking at just one thing: there’s no visual tension, nothing to pull it away to other interesting parts of the image that, in turn, bring it back to the subject.

In this photo, everything has been stopped by the high shutter speed. We have no tech-nical data for the image, but by looking closely we can see many individual water droplets being flung, both by the bodyboard and the curling wave, indicating a shutter speed of 1/500 of a second or higher. Because of the white water, trailing the bodyboard, we easily feel how fast it is closing on the shadowy image of the person on the left.  We look left to the swimmer, up to the curling wave, along the water droplets to the top right hand corner, then down, to the speeding bodyboarder. We’ve got motion, we’ve got speed, we’ve got super visual tension; we’ve got a winner.

Alabama-based Michael Clemmer has been a photojournalist/travel photographer, landscape and golf course photographer for over four decades. Once a Senior Travel Photographer for Southern Living Magazine, he has also worked as an assignment photographer for the National Geographic Society and his photographs have been used in fine publications around the world. He currently specializes in golf landscape photography — visit his web site at