10 years ago, Thirroul’s Ray Collins bought his first camera. Today Forbes Magazine is calling him ‘one of the most distinguished photographers of waves and the ocean in the world’. Tonight, he’s launching his second gorgeous book, Water and Light, at Anita’s Theatre.
Growing up a keen surfer in the Northern Illawarra, Ray worked as a miner until he was sidelined by a knee injury. To keep busy, Ray bought himself a camera to take photos of his friends in the surf, and was soon capturing the incredible images of the ocean that have become his trademark.
Now, with a string of awards and credits to his name Ray is a full time photographer whose images are licensed to corporations including Apple, Nikon, Patagonia, Qantas, Red Bull and Mercedes, and his prints line the walls of galleries, homes and businesses around the world.
Ray’s incredible photos capture waves and light as you’ve never seen them before. Water becomes solid, and filled with colours you’ve never dreamed of. And the process of capturing these fleeting moments is incredible. He’s battled massive swells and the freezing waters of Antarctica to photograph the incredible nature of water and wave formations. “It can take six weeks to get the shot,” says Ray. “I do a lot of research into weather, swells and light to be sure I’m there at the perfect time.”
The book also contains images shot in the Northern Illawarra.
Ray says ‘Water and Light’ is a combination of his best photos taken over the past couple of years. “I want my images to cause a reaction,” says Ray. “Art is supposed to make you feel something so I want people who look at these photographs to be moved in some way.
“I expect some will make people feel the deep, dark rumble, and perhaps even make you a bit uncomfortable, because that’s what art is all about.”
The launch of Water and Light includes a screening of the Patagonia film ‘Fishpeople’ which shares the stories of a select group whose lives have been transformed by the sea- including Ray!
You’re sure to recognise a few local landmarks in the movie as Ray’s section was filmed between Stanwell Park and Kiama.
The event will be held tonight at Anita’s Theatre Thirroul from 5.30pm. It’s free to get along and meet Ray. Movie tickets are $10 at the door with 100% going to Surfrider South Coast. The movie starts at 6.30pm