You’ve probably seen a video of Marc Chambers passing by in your Facebook feed or on your favorite surf websites. If you haven’t, well, you must be blind or something, because it seems like Marc is everywhere these days, and not only capturing moments on video. He’s a photographer from Maui, shooting the waves that we are all dreaming about, but way too scared to go chase. Hawaii has always been an obsession for us, surfers, and is still on my bucket list, waiting to be checked off. What am I waiting for? Probably some money. Until then, I decided to keep thinking about that place and explore the world of Marc, as it seems way better than mine!
Finding a hobby and something you are passionate about can be tricky while growing up, but Marc found photography when he was still in Junior High School. Since then, photography always been part of his daily life and is almost becoming a full-time job. It’s all about opportunities and the chances you take, which he did perfectly. Growing up in Hawaii means that you got the whole world and beauty of it waiting for you, so enjoying the outdoors was something natural for Marc. Hanging out with friends while skateboarding or surfing was his routine, but his life always revolved around the ocean. We don’t even have to wonder why. ‘’When you’re growing up, you are doing things most kids around the globe don’t do on a daily basis. Such as surfing, fishing, paddling, hiking, etc. It’s a very tight-knit community, everyone knows everyone, and there is a lot of aloha spread throughout the islands’’ said Marc while we talked about his life as a kid. ‘’Hawaii was a great place growing up but also very humbling, respect is a must. No matter what island you go to, people are kind, but only if you show the same kindness in return to the people as well as the land. I wouldn’t want to grow up anywhere else.’’
Can we change our life and grow up there too?
Dreaming of being a skateboarder for a long time, Marc finally found where he really belongs: in the water, shooting surfing. No regrets about it, it would have been a shame if he picked skateboarding instead. His pictures bring us into the heart of Hawaii, the hidden gem of the surfers dream. And most importantly, into the life of some of the best surfers of the moment.
Waves are big in Hawaii, especially on the North Shore. Are you always going in the ocean to take photos or you rather be safe on shore?
Maui, when it’s big, is a tricky place. We have some amazing waves, but also a good handful of mediocre spots. Coastlines are rugged, and currents are always pretty strong, as the wind in most areas. Sometimes, swimming out is worth it when conditions are prime! But when it’s big and stormy, it’s sometimes better to shoot from land as the waters could be brown, sharky, and have strong rip currents.
Have you ever felt scared while being at sea? There're a lot of things to think about when you're the ocean!
There’s always thoughts in the back of my head of things that could go wrong in the water, and there are things to be scared of for sure. Sharks, of course, big waves, and dodging a set of fins from surfboards. I just try to focus on getting a good clean shot and usually most things fade to the back of my head.
There are plenty of surf photographers out there, all trying to get the same kind of pictures. Is it something that worries you: the constant competition?
Yeah, surf photography is growing! But I’m super stoked they're a lot of people out there doing it. Some may be better than others, and there are guys I look up to. Without the competition, there wouldn’t be innovation in surf photography. I love seeing my friends getting awesome shots! It gets me pumped to shoot and also take notes of their photos to create something different when I go out and shoot.
Just out of my curiosity, is Hawaii a place still really localizes? Everyone is talking about it once in a while, and it gets quite confusing at the end.
I mean, there are spots on Maui and all islands as well, which are best kept a secret. It’s one of the joys of surfing and an honor to be able to surf in zones that are considered sacred. But in general, paddling out to popular spots with a lot of experienced surfers is all about being patient, humble, and knowing your limits. You may be waiting a while for waves, but the locals will appreciate that you’re not going for every wave. Eventually, you’ll get your turn when you have established good intentions and respect in the line-up. But other than that, surfing is all about fun and with good intentions, you could be catching the waves of your life!
What are your goals at the moment towards your photos?
My goals as of right now are just to progress my work and reach higher levels that I can be proud of. I love what I do and want to be able to create the best photos I can!