Our Islands, Our Future

Maui big-wave photographer Martin Caprile has a great passion for the sea. With a degree in  communication and media he traveled the world to land the perfect photos capturing some of the world’s biggest waves. With a truly unique perspective on surf and sea, Caprile’s obsession with the ocean made him choose Hawaii as his home in 2013. Here on Maui, his zeal to capture the thrill and beauty of surfing at Pe’ahi ‘Jaws’ keeps growing.

“After spending countless hours in the water growing up, and also teaching kitesurfing, I was in search of something new and decided to buy a camera,” Caprile said. “Instantly hooked, I took photography courses, and realized that I could mix the best of both worlds: being out in the ocean while creating dramatic imagery and artful interpretations of the world’s most magnificent ocean environment. I love shooting at Jaws! It is a thrilling place where everyone takes care of each other. Egos are put aside, and comradery takes over due to the dangers of the huge swells.”

Caprile wants to make people feel they are in the water, looking at what he is seeing through his lens. He understands the importance of knowing the swell to get the best angles for the shot. Some of his recognitions include Big Wave Awards 2018- 2019 nominee by World Surf League for: XXL Biggest Wave Award, Maui’s Kai Lenny photo; XXL Biggest Wave Award, Carlos Burle photo; and XXL Biggest Paddle Award, Billy Kemper photo.

Giving ample credit to both his jet-ski driver and boat captain, Caprile explained, “The ferocity of the waves cannot be captured from the beach, making big-wave photography an adventurous challenge. The driver swings me right into the pocket to get close enough for a perfect shot without being too close to where the wave is actually breaking, which can be hazardous. The action is best documented from out in the channel, often yards or mere feet from where massive chunks of sea realize their full potential. A big-wave photographer must be equal parts artist, technician, and athlete behind the lens.”

Big-wave and family surfing photos are the most exciting things to shoot. A big-wave photographer must be equal parts artist, technician, and athlete behind the lens.

Martin Caprile, Maui Photographer