First and foremost, the most important thing you can do to get a good water shot is to have a good relationship with the photographer. I’m not saying you guys have to hang out every day, but when you get in the water, you should be friends. That alone sort of sets the stage for everything else.
When you’re trying to get a shot from the water, you need to have a lot of trust in the photographer. And that goes back to knowing the guy. The best water photographers will yell you into waves that they know are gonna lineup for a good shot. Scott Aichner was really good about that. So if you’re dropping into one and the photog is yelling for you to go, then you have to go. You need to trust the photog.
If you’re shooting fisheye, you basically want to try and run the photographer over. For a good shot, you really don’t want to be more than 2 feet away. But be careful here, I actually ran a photographer over last year and got eight stitches as a result.
I think in the past seven or eight years we’ve seen a real shift in what makes a good water shot. Nowadays, a lot of the best photos are shot looking out of the barrel with the surfer actually ahead of the photographer. A lot of the times, I don’t even know that the photographers still shooting because he’s behind me. It seems like that’s the latest evolution of water photography.