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Teahupo’o Silhouette

Corey Wilson


Behind the Shot

“Teahupo’o, Tahiti, produces my favorite waves in the world—the most powerful, most photogenic, the heaviest and the prettiest,” says Corey. Teahupo’o, loosely translated, means “to sever the head” or “place of skulls.” Recognized by Transworld Surf as one of the Top 10 Deadliest Waves in the world, the waves that break near this Tahitian village are fast, heavy and unforgiving.

“I always wanted this angle, and it’s really hard to get. You’re in the impact zone, and in a lot of danger with the reef and the volume of water. From this perspective you can see just how much water is moving out there. I wanted this angle of this wave on a bigger day. This is exactly how I pictured it.

“Then there’s this laid-back, comfortable surfer. He’s a pro surfer, totally top of his game. You have to be a professional to surf here, or at least survive here. The surfer was silhouetted against the wave. It feels stylish and comfortable, and it’s really hard to do that in a wave.”