Take a dive into Hawaiian waters with our new LomoAmigo, wave photographer Kenji Croman.
Kenji is a Hawaiian native whose love for the water stems from this beautiful island. When he was seven years old, he moved away from Hawaii with his father and sister, and traveled a lot. His mother remained in Hawaii and he visited her every summer while he was in his teens.
He moved to New York to pursue his education, and spent his high school and some college years there. Far away from home, he realized that his heart was in Hawaii and he could not stay away too long.
Kenji’s love for the water stuck with him wherever he went. He was a competitive swimmer in high school and in college. And when he returned to Hawaii, he came back home to the ocean.
Kenji enjoys body surfing. “It’s just you, the wave and your fins, nothing else…it’s so pure,” he muses. He had the opportunity to body surf the massive waves at Waimea and Pipe. To him, these experiences were like no other. He would spread his arms to try to describe the magnitude of the wave and make funny sounds with his mouth to describe the thunderous sound that the waves make underwater. The images he saw, the colors and reflections, drew him to photography.
It was his calling to take photographs of these majestic waves and share it with the people around him. He moved to Southeast Asia to focus on photography full-time in 2007. That year, he worked hard to develop his own unique style as both a photographer and an artist. “The people and energy of the land I visited invariably moved me. When I moved back home to Hawaii, I had a completely different understanding of what I was able to do with my camera; I was able to create art.” He took two of his passions, body surfing and photography, and turned it into one great thing; it became his life.
Kenji is incredibly driven and pushes himself to always break the boundaries of his photography. “It isn’t just about taking pictures for me anymore; it is being creative and trying to capture the beauty in nature in an artistic way.” Nothing will stop Kenji from getting the shot, not even danger! He finds himself going to places that are risky and dangerous to surf just to get the perfect shot. His goal with his photography is to have his photographs speak to people, “like I took that photo just for them.”
After talking about his greatest passions, he speaks of his experience with the LC-A Krab, which he tested underwater and on the surface recently.
“[The]LC-A Krab is awesome! It took me a few tries to get the right settings, I would accidentally put a film speed of 400 and put the settings to ISO 100. I also had to fool with the focal length because it’s hard to determine when you can’t see the images immediately but I like the challenge. Film is very cool, it reminds me of vinyl. I have turn tables and I use to DJ (in my home) a lot, the smell of the vinyl, the crackling sound of the music when the needle hits the record, it’s very cool. LC-A Krab and film remind me of that, the images are unique, it has a certain look that gives it life. You don’t need to edit the photos or manipulate it in any way, the photos that I’ve gotten from the LC-A Krab tells the raw story already, I guess people just have to see it. It’s also fun developing film and waiting to see what you get and how your images turn out.”