Hayden Richards is the man behind the lens of @sa_rips creating extremely captivating images of nature, wildlife and the raw environment in and around the Great Australian Bight in South Australia. His self sufficient perspective and ability to take the time and energy to put himself into wildly raw elements and scenarios create iconic images that evoke a mystical magic of a place that feels like time forgets.
Hello Hayden, how are you?
Yeah not to bad
We have a huge respect for you, your work and the land and nature you pay homage too in the Great Australian Bight. Your iconic images are a very powerful window into an ancient land that needs to be protected and respected.
Where are you from originally and where do you call home now?
From Port Lincoln. For the last 20 years Bramfield is home, a small town inland not far from Elliston on the west coast of South Australia. Our property sits just above a pristine aquifer, over the years we’ve been self-sufficient having some lush gardens.
What do you love about your homeland?
The Landscape, weather patterns, flora and fauna and the characters that live here
What lead you to become a photographer of nature and the elements of the Great
Australian Bight, South Australia?
Um it kinda just fell into place, I guess surfing and exploring all the time gave me the inspiration
As a photographer do you consider yourself a tradesman or an artist?
An artist I think (lol) I don’t know, maybe the artistic side comes out from being excited and melting into the landscape for long periods of time
Your photography is wild and beautiful and some of the most highly impactful images of nature’s elements, landscapes and wildlife we’ve ever seen. Quite simply mind blowing.
You have a unique perspective and framing eye that is extremely compelling for us as consumers of your photography art.
How did you find that perspective? Is it innate and built in due to your natural up bringing in the area or do you think you found your perspective over time from experiences?
Thank you , cool to hear.
Finding that perspective........Sometimes just being in the zone, opening my hand and raising it to the universe and smiling at how beautiful nature is can give me the warm fuzzies to create something special, once I'm in the groove everything flows from there.
What do you love about creating your images?
I love the whole journey that creating an image brings, the amazing feelings and experiences I feel is why I do it, and I'll do it until I die
How do you get yourself in position for some of your images?
Most of the time ill wake and have an idea of an image I want to create, then I can spend all day either walking, driving, swimming to get that image
A lot of my images require some kamikaze attitude or else the images wouldn't exist
What type of emotive inspiration do you hope people experience for get from your photo Images?
It's about discovering and then sharing images of rare beautiful scenes and experiences not everyone is familiar with.
In my images I hope to bring a great sense of space and connection with natural things, often desolate and windswept or crashing and volatile.
I like to create images where you feel your right beside me in the moment
You can also possibly claim to have the best dog images ever! Tell us about your trusty dog?
Haha Dougles the Maltese Shihtzu king of the sand dunes, he’s such a good dog
You have many great images of Great White Sharks which is obviously an apex predator and a local in the waters you swim. What is your perspective of the Great Whites in your region?
Growing up on Eyre Peninsula Great Whites were renowned as killers of the deep, they were hunted and killed regularly, as I got older, I lost that stigma in my mind and started admiring them, I know the risks , we all do.
Friendly, aggressive, beautiful, old souls?
When I look at your photos I think of the classic Aussie movie Storm Boy and the learnings the boy had from the local indigenous man “Fingerbone.”Can you tell us about your learnings from your indigenous friends at home?
Tread lightly, look after the land and don’t be greedy
Who are surfers that inspire and impress you the most in your region?
As a local of the Great Australian Bight what do you do to protect nature and the environment in your local zone?
More giving than taking is a start
We must look around ourselves and rebuild nature as it once existed.
For all the budding photographers out there what camera lens setting do you use?
At the moment my favourite lens is the 50mm ,I usually shoot at f/16
And what is your post production secret?
I edit my images a tiny bit in light room, highlights down and shadows up and knock the saturation down
Where can we purchase @Sa_rips images ?
Inbox the gram or sarips.com.au
Thanks Hayden for creating the magic and giving us some insight into your amazing world of the Great Australian Bight.