Watching ocean waves easily puts me in a trance – the way waves slowly rise up into a shelf wall, the moment when the first white curls dance on the ridge, the rippling effect down the wave as it coils itself around a tube of air, until it finally collapses upon itself and runs foamy fingers up the beach.
Wave after wave, building and collapsing, again and again, until my whole body begins to pulse with the eternal rhythm of the ocean.
What I love as much as watching ocean waves is to photograph them. One of these days, I hope to stand in awe of the really big ones in Hawaii. For now, the smaller ones will do.
The only slow part in the wave formation process is the building up to the crest.
Once, the wave begins to spill down the other side, everything happens really fast. Only the camera can capture the ephemeral shapes and patterns that form spontaneously, determined by any number of variables – perhaps wind, perhaps an undertow, perhaps a preceding wave that folds back into the new wave.
Then there are all kinds of shapes that only exist for the blink of an eyelash.
Can you see the dark body of a reptile gliding through the top of the wave?
A horse’s silvery mane?
A wild hissy fit?
The opening to a cave?
Sometimes, you can see the sand being whirled up into the wave, like sand clouds rising in a landscape:
At other times, the wave sends out little foamy creatures to dance on the beach:
The theme of this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge: Ephemeral.