Graham Hunt is a professional photographer based in Emerald Isle, North Carolina. He specializes in producing stunning and creative images with his camera on land and in the water. I first heard of Graham while vacationing on Emerald Isle a few years ago and became a fan immediately. I knew that I had to meet him. I have always kept up with his work on the various social media outlets in which he contributes. My family loves vacationing on Emerald Isle and we decided to take a last minute trip to the NC coast to close out the summer of 2015. Once our vacation was set in stone, I reached out to Graham to hopefully schedule a date where I could document what he does. He called me back quickly and agreed to my proposal while probably wondering who the hell I was and why I wanted to photograph him while he was busy photographing his favorite subject, the moving ocean water.
I was so curious about his work! Does he wear a wetsuit? How far out into the surf does he venture to capture his images? What type of gear does he use to keep his camera dry? What lenses does he use? How much editing is involved in post processing? I just had to see it all for myself.
Creating original and meaningful photographs is something in which I take a lot of pride. Anyone that uses a camera can surely claim to be a photographer. However, being an original photographer is not easily accomplished. One has to work hard, be motivated to wake up early to catch the best light, understand light, pay tedious attention to weather patterns and perhaps get lucky sometimes among many other things. Seemingly Graham has all of these qualities required to create beautiful art through his photography. Most importantly I believe Graham possesses the ability to bring forth a "wow" factor in which he makes the viewer actually want to be there to experience that moment along side him. I know for me personally I have wanted to jump through my computer screen after viewing his photos and be right there with him. His images bring me a sense of inner peace and show off the beauty of the Crystal Coast of North Carolina so perfectly.
Not only is Graham a talented oceanscape photographer, his portrait work is also outstanding. He is an accomplished family and wedding photographer. Being in the portrait photography business myself, I can attest to the fact that it is not easy. There is an absolute art to portrait work. It is necessary to be good with people as well as with a camera. You also have to understand how to market your business properly. Graham's portrait work speaks for itself. He has a knack for capturing special moments for locals and visitors to Emerald Isle.
Graham and I had scheduled to meet on the morning of Wednesday, September 23rd. When I vacation on the east coast it is pretty much a guarantee that as long as the weather cooperates I will be up early to shoot the sunrise. I was excited on this particular morning to meet Graham and incorporate him into my morning photo session. I knew it was not going to be a typical coastal sunrise shoot for myself, and I always appreciate the opportunity to photograph different subjects. On my drive to Graham's house, I noticed that there were clouds in the sky which stoked my excitement even further. Usually clouds in the sky equal better photographs. I pulled onto his street, and he greeted me. It was still dark. We shook hands, and he asked me if I was ready. I said "yes", and we headed toward the beach which is a short walk from his home. Being a photographer based in Asheville, I was definitely envious of all the beautiful scenery and light he has the opportunity to take advantage of within close walking distance. Most of my photo shoots involve me having to drive to a spot and possibly having to hike to my final destinations.
My images were captured with my Canon 5D without waterproof housing, so I had to be extra careful in the water. I also used my water proof Go Pro Hero 3 for some shots.
Graham keeps his equipment simple. He uses a SPL waterproof housing to protect his camera. He shoots with a Canon 5D Mark III and his go to lens is a Canon 70-200 f 2.8. He also uses a 16-35 Canon lens for wider angle shots. You can visit Graham's website at www.grahamhuntphotography.com . He also consistently shares his work on Facebook at www.facebook.com/grahamhuntphotography. His Instagram handle is @graham_hunt. If you are ever close or on Emerald Isle, I'm sure he'd love for you to consider hiring him for a portrait session. You can also purchase his work at various galleries in North Carolina or through his website.
My time with Graham was short. For me personally it was so great to meet him and share that experience with him. We discussed the personal challenges we both face as relatively young photographers. Even though we are on opposite sides of the state, there was common ground for us to discuss. It was great collaborating and bouncing ideas off of each other.
In this age of technology that we live, it is easy to mistake quality photography with digital art. Graham is a photographer not a digital artist. He creates single exposure high quality photographs which are color corrected and not highly edited via photoshop. He does not use any pre-set image filters for his portrait work. You will only receive hand crafted beautiful photographs from Graham and he takes a lot pride in capturing the essence of his subject with his camera. Not his computer software.
Graham is a master and loves to play with light. He certainly lives in a perfect area of the planet to accomplish this. He has a true passion and is following his dreams which is all too rare in the world these days. Thanks for your time Graham, and I hope to see you again soon!!