Breaking Wave

This animation shows a cinemagraph of a breaking wave photographed by Ray Collins. The motion was inferred and digitally added by a second artist, Jersey Maria. The result is hypnotic, as if we are traveling beside the wave and watching it tear apart ever so slowly. The wave seems to be poised on a tipping point, only breaking up along its back edge, when instinct tells us it will keep steepening and tipping forward until its top curl crashes down in a wave of white foam. Surf photography like Collins’ work shows us an alternative perspective on waves, their power frozen into a single instant. Reanimated, it feels like we’re seeing the wave in hyper-slow-motion, watching every tiny movement of water before everything crashes down. Even if it’s not physically realistic, it is an awesome view.  (Image credit: R. Collins / J. Maria, source, original; via Iwan A.)

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