Chris Burkard has built a reputation as an innovative artist whose work has the capacity to seize the viewer into the moment. Burkard has developed a trademark style and composition that is distinctly his, allowing viewers to instantly know his work. Over the years he has visited countless surf destinations and has shared his highlight reel in a new short film.
The 26-year-old Burkard endeavors to capture those magical moments in between surf activity, as well as to document the sport as a lifestyle.
Burkard has contributed work as a freelance photographer for many publications, in addition to being staff photographer for Water Magazine and Surfline.com. Burkard’s journeys extensively to court adventure and locate perfect waves in some of the coldest and harshest conditions known, which includes more than 7 trips to Norway, Iceland and other unlikely locations in Europe.
Surfer Magazine gave Burkard a position as senior staff photographer in 2010, and he has since been with the magazine. He is multi-awarded, with one of the latest accolades being the people’s choice award from the Olympus Pro Photographer Showdown, April 2013 in the action sports photography competition.
Burkard was born in 1988 in San Luis Obispo, California and has been based in the states’ Central Coast region. His work encompasses landscape, lifestyle, surf, outdoor in addition to travel subjects. Burkard approaches his work from a photojournalistic perspective to create large-scale editorial projects that are used on various media for digital and print content platforms.
Burkard favors the use of natural lighting methods which is common throughout his work as well as shooting human interest moments in both natural and social settings. He shares some of his gear in an interview with the Phoblographer:
I shoot a combination of Nikon and Sony gear. My Nikon D300s is my tried and true. It is my workhorse and doubt I would ever part from it. I have been using the NEX-6 & 7 though and loving them. They are small and compact and really fit in line with the type of light gear traveling that I try to do. Other than that I try to keep my lens kit pretty simple with a 50mm, 24mm, 70-200mm, 80-400, and a fisheye.
See one of the few masters in this photography niche in action.