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Fish Out of Water

Nicole Mason


Behind the Shot

Oceanside, California—where the weather’s perfect, and it’s always a good day at the beach. Surfing isn’t just a casual hobby in Oceanside. The region’s swells attract pro shredders from around the world to train and compete. Oceanside is home to surfboard makers, annual surf competitions and the California Surf Museum. With an almost 4-mile span of beautiful beaches, O’side is one of the most popular surfing destinations on the West Coast. 

Photographer Nicole Mason was immersed in a spontaneous portrait shoot with her friend Alanna, an amazing surfer who lives in Oceanside. “We had nothing really planned,” Nicole explains. “Alanna grabbed this surfboard from her quiver, and we found this little abandoned area with a beautiful, sandy-beige colored wall.” 

It was a twin-fin surfboard—a favorite of many surfers due to its increased speed, maneuverability and stability compared to single-fin boards. These boards merge style and performance, helping surfers draw unique lines down the face with effortless speed and drive.

“I love images that convey the impression of stumbling upon something that you didn’t expect,” she says. “This shot highlights the simplicity and symmetry of the shape and design of the board against the plain, clean background.” 

This print will create a peaceful, easy feeling in any room. There’s something mesmerizing about the simplicity of surfboard shapes, symbolizing the beauty and simplicity of surfing itself.