How Metal Creates Gorgeous Wave Photography Prints

Maui, Hawaii

Hawaii is the ideal spot for big wave photography. Surfers travel from all over the world to get that perfect curl. Using metal for wave photography prints brings a whole new element to an already spectacular image.


Hawaii is the ideal spot for big wave photography. Surfers travel from all over the world to get that perfect curl, and photographers can use the same waves to capture spectacular shots. But don’t use traditional printing methods such as canvas for wave photos! Using metal for wave photography prints brings a whole new element to an already spectacular image.

panoramic image of the biggest wave in Hawaii,  Jaws located on the island of Maui reaches heights up to seventy feet.  Hawaii big wave photography

When the lighting is right, Jaws just really comes to life! This massive wave is just really something to see in person and being this close is very intimidating and exhilirating

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Why Wave Photography Makes Great Art

Waves fascinate us because of the sudden fury of the ocean's leap toward the sky, then we are transfixed by the calmness of the deep blue of the inner side of the curve. For the art enthusiast, it mirrors the uncertainty and upheaval one can experience in life while reminding us of the immense beauty of life and the world that surrounds us.

I’m sure you’ve seen perhaps the world’s most famous wave art, The Great Wave Off Kanagawa. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...)

“A massive wave threatens to engulf three fishing boats, its foam crown extending like claws, menacing the rowers below. It's an epic scene of human struggle and natural terror that dwarfs the sacred Mount Fuji just behind it.”
“A massive wave threatens to engulf three fishing boats, its foam crown extending like claws, menacing the rowers below. It's an epic scene of human struggle and natural terror that dwarfs the sacred Mount Fuji just behind it.”

This woodblock print is one of the most reproduced and most instantly recognizable artworks in the world. Perhaps my visits to Japan to see my in-laws and my close relationship with the culture also inspired my love of the Japanese wave woodblock print and made me want to capture some waves myself.

I’m lucky enough to live in the Hawaiian Islands, surrounded by the ocean. Maui in particular is known for surfing and has some of the best waves for wave art. These images take patience to capture, as water is constantly in motion. The inevitable breaking that we await creates a tension in the picture.

There’s the light playing off the waves, captured in a single moment of beauty.......

waves collide with each other at sunset along the Na Pali coast of Kauai.  The sunset colors are present in the wave itself

Waves collide at sunset along the Na Pali Coast and make some pretty amazing patterns. This one has the colors of the sunset in the reflection of the wave

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And then there’s the classic curl photo. This image is of Jaws (https://www.surfertoday.com/su...), one of the biggest and fastest waves in the Pacific Ocean. Waves range between 30 and 80 feet high! Surfers beware.

surfer Tyler Larronde surfing the biggest wave in Hawaii Jaws on the north shore of the island of Maui.

Sometimes you just need a surfer in the shot to show how massive Jaws is! This really gives you a sense of scale just how crazy this wave is.

Surfer : Tyler Larronde

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After photographing the power of Jaws up close and seeing the resulting prints, it's easy to understand why the wave has fascinated so many throughout the centuries.


Wave Photography Prints on Metal

Wave prints on metal offer the juxtaposition of metal, an industrial-looking medium, with a natural element (water).

Fine art prints on metal offer a unique, modern look. My preferred print provider offers two types of metal prints, Dibond and ChromaLuxe. Materials like these work so well for wave prints because they create what I like to call “metal fusion”, or the fusion between metal and water.

Metal Fusion Print of "Blue Crush" in the gallery


Dibond vs Chromaluxe

The main difference between these two mediums is that the white part of the wave on Dibond will show as a reflective metallic and reflective surface, giving it a more industrial look. With ChromaLuxe, the white areas of the image show as white, but the metal has a more modern aesthetic than traditional mediums such as canvas or acrylic.

Both are perfect for urban lofts, man caves or modern homes. They also come with the added benefit of being nonporous, so they can be installed in bathrooms, garages, and outdoor spaces without fear of moisture damage.

For more information about the difference between Dibond and Chromaluxe, visit this page (https://artisanhd.com/blog/pro...)

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Maui wave photography prints are a great way to bring a little bit of the islands home with you (https://www.andrewshoemaker.co...)! Wave prints on metal elevate the wave art form and give it a modern aesthetic. Check out a gallery of my wave photography here

Hawaii Wave Photography