You know those rare times when you meet someone that just defies the odds in one way or another? Who has the ability to surprise you and leave you speechless? Well, that’s how I felt when I met this whale. At the onset, he looked like any other whale. Big and demanding of the space around him. His presence, of course, loomed large.
I drew in a big breath as I leaped into the water. It’s always a bit of a gamble. Will the shot work? Will I be safe getting up close and personal to this creature? That day, I decided to go all-in and goodness, I’m glad I did. It turned out that this whale was unlike any other whale we had met.
As we were approaching him, he started swimming up and down and in circles like an excited puppy! He was bouncing to and fro and purposely bumping into humans, and the boat! At first, we were all petrified. What if he was hungry? What if we were invading his space and he wanted us out? All very real possibilities.
It didn’t take long for us to realise this was his way of inviting us to play! He was simply having a good time thrashing his tail and fins and almost ‘dancing’ for us. I’d never witnessed a whale acting quite like this. It was incredibly thrilling!
The crew and I nicknamed him ‘Crazy Whale’ and it suits him well!
My ‘Crazy Whale’ is a juvenile humpback whale. An adult humpback whale can weigh up to 50 tonnes (the size of 6 elephants!) with calves weighing up to 2 tonnes. They are about 16m long when full grown and calves are approximately 5m long.
They can be found on the East Australian Coast between April and November depending on the location.
We found our Crazy Whale at Kingdom of Vava’u, Tonga.
Humpback whales were endangered and placed on the protected list in 1966. Since then, the population has increased drastically and there are over 40,000 humpback whales left in the world. Of course, we’d love to see more out there in the ocean.
The ‘Buena Vista’ Vessel
A customer came into the gallery and was interested in the 'Crazy Whale' set for their stunning 60ft Selena vessel ‘Buena Vista’. And I must admit I was thrilled. This beautiful boat had so much character and I fell in love with her straight away, I knew the 4 prints that make up the set would work perfectly!
I did a site consultation to ensure the 4 frames fit the space both visually and functionally. It’s one thing to hang a piece for aesthetic purposes but it also has to have a functional purpose. Does it breathe life into the space? Does it suit the surroundings? Does it communicate well? These are the types of questions I ask myself when working with my clients.
I actually left the set with the client overnight to ensure he loved it just as much as I did. I hung it temporarily so they could get a feel for it before purchasing. This is a little service I love offering my clients. There’s nothing worse than being stuck with art that doesn't make your heart sing.
Crazy Whale hit every mark for the client, so we worked together to install this beauty with intention. We used double-sided tape so we didn’t need to screw holes into their boat and I even cleaned the space!
The Finer Details
Name: 'Crazy Whale' Set
Equipment Used: Canon 5DMIV + 16-35mm L series lens + Ikelite Housing – No Strobe
Sizes: 2x 8x12 and 2x 12x30in framed fine art paper prints.
Process: Black and White conversion from digital raw files using Lightroom.
You can order your custom print here. Only 200 sets will be sold making this a limited edition piece.
There is a great selection of whale-inspired prints, giftware and jewellery available online. Check them out!