Ocean : Frothers

Brad Malyon spends his mornings capturing the calmness and serenity of the ocean, then goes to work protecting people from the ocean as a Bondi Lifeguard.

A decade ago as a keen traveler and surfer he wanted to photograph the places he visited - his work on super yachts in the Mediterranean meant he would be in a different country every week - and since buying his first Nikon film SLR he hasn't looked back. Upon returning to Australia he worked a few odd jobs before applying to the Clovelly Council for a position on their lifeguard roster, thinking that a job anywhere near the ocean 'wouldn't be a bad way to earn a dollar' and was accepted in late 2005. Learning on his feet he quickly realised that the ideal job on the beach has it's pitfalls, from the masses of tourists inundating infamous Bondi Beach (upwards of 40,000 people on a hot day) to the long days huddled in the tower watching the rain fall with no one in sight. This exposure and access to the beach further enhanced his photography by shooting from the water, with his ocean awareness skills his surf photography skills followed suit.

After hearing first hand from a local surfer who prevented the near drowning of a 3 year old girl by 'giving her a few quick breaths', Brad organised a first aid training course geared towards surfers, with hopes to educate people who are constantly moments from danger on shallow reefs or sand bars. The one day course was an eye opener for the surfers of what can happen during a fun surf in waves of any size, be it fin cuts or concussions, and all of them were surprised at the dead weight of an unconscious person while trying to keep their head above water.

His photography and connection with the ocean has inspired the local community and in turn led him to open the Frothers gallery with his girlfriend Christie and renowned photographer Bill Morris. Their business model supports up and coming surfers with photos and media to help them receive sponsorship and also supports other local photographers by showcasing their work under the Frothers brand.

During the lead up to the gallery opening I found this contrast between the beauty and terror of the ocean interesting, and wanted to find out more about what drives Brad to work with both sides of the ocean and what the ocean means to him.

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