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2023 starboard best inflatable touring stand up paddle boards

Are you a paddleboarding enthusiast looking to take your adventures to the next level? Imagine capturing breathtaking water shots while gliding on your inflatable stand-up paddleboard (SUP). With the rising popularity of inflatable SUPs, more photographers are exploring the unique opportunities they offer. In this article, we’ll delve into the world of inflatable SUP photography and share tips and tricks to help you capture stunning images while enjoying the serenity of the water.

Key Takeaways:

  • Learn how to capture stunning water shots while paddleboarding on your inflatable SUP.
  • Discover tips and tricks to elevate your paddleboarding adventures with stunning photography.
  • Understand the basics of inflatable SUP photography and the benefits it offers.
  • Explore the essential gear required for capturing amazing water shots on your SUP.
  • Master composition, framing techniques, and the art of capturing action shots on the water.

The Basics of Inflatable SUP Photography

Before venturing into the world of paddleboarding photography, it’s essential to understand the basics of paddleboarding itself and the advantages of using an inflatable SUP board. By familiarizing yourself with these fundamentals, you’ll gain insights into the stability, maneuverability, and unique features that an inflatable SUP board brings to your photography experience.

When it comes to paddleboarding, the inflatable SUP board has gained popularity for several reasons. Not only is it portable and convenient, but it also offers versatility in various water conditions. The durability of inflatable SUP boards, coupled with their lightweight design, ensures easy transportation and storage, making them an excellent choice for photographers who want to capture stunning water shots while staying on the move.

The stability provided by an inflatable SUP board is crucial for paddleboarding photographers as it enables them to focus on capturing the perfect shot without worrying about their balance. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced paddleboarder, the stability of these boards allows you to stand confidently and maneuver smoothly on the water, providing a solid platform for photography.

An inflatable SUP board also offers enhanced maneuverability, enabling photographers to explore various angles and locations for their shots. The flexibility of these boards allows for precise movements and quick adjustments, ensuring you can position yourself for the best composition and framing.

By choosing an inflatable SUP board for your paddleboarding photography adventures, you’re equipped with a reliable and versatile tool that enhances your overall experience. Not only does it provide stability and maneuverability, but it also offers the convenience of portability, allowing you to explore new and exciting locations for your water shots.

Advantages of Inflatable SUP Boards for Photography
Portability and easy storage
Enhanced stability for steady shots
Maneuverability for exploring angles and locations

With a solid understanding of the basics and the benefits of using an inflatable SUP board, you’re ready to delve into the exciting world of paddleboarding photography. In the next section, we’ll explore the essential gear you need to capture amazing water shots on your inflatable SUP board.

Essential Gear for Inflatable SUP Photography

When it comes to capturing amazing water shots on your inflatable stand-up paddleboard (SUP), having the right gear can make all the difference. From cameras to waterproof equipment and accessories, investing in high-quality paddleboarding gear will elevate your photography experience. Let’s dive into the essential gear you’ll need for paddleboarding photography.

1. Waterproof Cameras

One of the most important pieces of gear for inflatable SUP photography is a waterproof camera. These cameras are designed to withstand the challenges of shooting in a water environment and capture stunning underwater shots. Look for models that offer excellent image quality, durability, and versatility.

2. Waterproof Housing

Even if you already have a camera, investing in a waterproof housing is essential to protect your device from water damage. Waterproof housings provide an additional layer of protection, allowing you to submerge your camera for those epic shots without worrying about any water-related mishaps.

3. Floating Hand Grip

A floating hand grip is a must-have accessory for paddleboarding photography. It not only provides stability while shooting but also ensures your camera stays afloat if accidentally dropped in the water. This accessory is lightweight, easy to carry, and offers an added level of security.

4. Polarizing Filters

Polarizing filters are ideal for enhancing your water shots by reducing glare and increasing contrast. They help eliminate unwanted reflections, allowing you to capture crystal-clear images with vibrant colors. Make sure to choose a filter that fits your camera’s lens diameter.

5. Dry Bags

Protecting your gear from water is crucial while paddleboarding. Invest in high-quality dry bags to store your camera, lenses, and accessories when not in use. These waterproof bags will keep your equipment safe and dry, even in challenging conditions.

6. Tripods

Using a tripod can significantly improve the quality of your inflatable SUP photography. It provides stability and allows you to capture steady long-exposure shots, stunning landscapes, or time-lapse videos. Look for lightweight and portable tripods that can fit into your paddleboarding gear bag.

Waterproof CamerasCapture stunning underwater shots with cameras designed for water environments.
Waterproof HousingProtect your camera from water damage with a waterproof housing.
Floating Hand GripEnsure stability while shooting and keep your camera afloat if dropped in the water.
Polarizing FiltersReduce glare and enhance color contrast in your water shots.
Dry BagsKeep your gear safe and dry with waterproof storage bags.
TripodsImprove the quality of your shots with stable long-exposure or landscape photography.

Investing in the right paddleboarding gear is essential for capturing amazing water shots on your inflatable SUP. Whether you’re shooting underwater, from above, or at the water’s edge, having the right cameras, waterproof equipment, and accessories will enhance your photography experience and help you create stunning visual memories. Equip yourself with the gear listed above and get ready to take your inflatable SUP photography to new heights!

inflatable water sports equipment

Preparing for a Paddleboarding Photoshoot

Before embarking on a paddleboarding photoshoot, it’s essential to prepare your inflatable paddleboard and ensure that all necessary gear is in place. By taking a few simple steps, you can set the stage for an unforgettable experience and capture stunning photographs.

Check the Weather Conditions

Checking the weather conditions is crucial for planning a successful paddleboarding photoshoot. Ensure that the forecast is favorable, with calm waters and minimal wind. This will provide the ideal conditions for capturing clear and captivating shots.

Choose the Right Location

Selecting the right location is key to creating beautiful paddleboarding photographs. Look for scenic spots with picturesque landscapes, such as tranquil lakes, stunning coastlines, or vibrant sunsets. Consider the lighting conditions and the overall ambiance of the location to enhance the visual appeal of your images.

Plan Your Shots in Advance

Planning your shots in advance can make a significant difference in the outcome of your paddleboarding photoshoot. Visualize the kind of images you want to capture and think about the angles, compositions, and focal points that will showcase the beauty of paddleboarding. This preparation will allow you to maximize your time on the water and capture the essence of this exhilarating sport.

“Taking the time to prepare and plan your paddleboarding photoshoot will enhance your overall experience and ensure that you capture mesmerizing images that tell a story.”

Now that you’re equipped with the knowledge of how to prepare for a paddleboarding photoshoot, it’s time to grab your inflatable paddleboard, gear up, and head out to the water. By considering the weather conditions, choosing the right location, and planning your shots in advance, you’ll be well on your way to creating magnificent paddleboarding photographs that will leave a lasting impression.

Inflatable paddleboard

Composition and Framing Techniques for Water Shots

Mastering the art of composition and framing is essential for capturing stunning water shots while paddleboarding. By utilizing these techniques, you can create captivating images that highlight the beauty of both the paddler and the surrounding environment.

1. Balancing the Paddler and the Surrounding Environment

When composing your water shots, strive to create a balanced composition that showcases the paddler in harmony with the surrounding elements. Place the paddler off-center to create a sense of motion and draw the viewer’s eye towards the focal point of the image. Experiment with different angles and perspectives to find the most visually pleasing composition.

2. Utilizing Natural Elements

Make use of the natural elements present in your surroundings to enhance your water shots. Incorporate the movement of the water, the reflections, and the play of light to add depth and interest to your compositions. Experiment with different lighting conditions, such as capturing shots during golden hour or in the soft glow of sunset, to create a magical atmosphere in your photographs.

3. Creating Captivating Compositions

Avoid capturing generic or predictable shots by experimenting with unique and creative compositions. Look for patterns, leading lines, or interesting angles that can add a dynamic and artistic touch to your photographs. Don’t be afraid to try unconventional framing techniques, such as shooting from a low angle or incorporating foreground elements, to add depth and visual interest.

Composition TechniquesDescription
Rule of ThirdsDivide your frame into a grid with nine equal sections and position the key elements of your composition along the lines or at their intersections.
Leading LinesUse paths, curves, or lines in the environment to guide the viewer’s eye towards the main subject in your photograph.
Negative SpaceLeave empty space around your main subject to create a sense of balance and draw attention to the subject.

By applying these composition and framing techniques while paddleboarding, you can elevate your water shots and create visually striking photographs that truly capture the essence of the sport.

Capturing Action Shots on an Inflatable SUP

Take your paddleboarding adventures to the next level by capturing dynamic action shots on an inflatable stand-up paddleboard (SUP). Freeze the motion and immortalize the energy and excitement of paddleboarding with these tips and techniques.

Experiment with Different Shutter Speeds: Set your camera to a high shutter speed to freeze the action and capture the crispness of every movement. A faster shutter speed will prevent motion blur, ensuring that your action shots are sharp and vibrant.

Explore Various Angles: Don’t be afraid to get creative with your angles. Capture the rush of adrenaline from above by shooting from a drone or a higher vantage point. Alternatively, get up close and personal to showcase the intensity and determination on the paddler’s face.

Adjust Focus Settings: Depending on your shooting style and the desired effect, experiment with different focus settings. Use continuous autofocus to maintain sharpness as the subject moves or try selective focus to highlight specific elements of the action.

Maximize Paddleboarding Gear: Leverage your paddleboarding gear to add an extra element of action to your shots. Capture the spray of water as the paddle strikes the surface or capture the tension in the paddler’s body as they navigate through challenging conditions.

Remember, safety should always be your top priority when attempting action shots on an inflatable SUP. Ensure that you are comfortable and experienced enough to handle the increased intensity of capturing fast-paced moments. Always wear appropriate safety gear and follow all local water regulations.

“Action shots have the power to transport viewers into the moment and evoke emotions. By capturing the exhilaration and intensity of paddleboarding on an inflatable SUP, you can create visually captivating and engaging photos that inspire others to embrace this thrilling sport.”

Editing and Enhancing Inflatable SUP Photos

Once you’ve captured your stunning water shots while paddleboarding on your inflatable SUP, it’s time to take your photos to the next level through editing. With the right techniques, software, and tips, you can enhance and perfect your paddleboarding photos, allowing them to truly stand out.

Exploring Editing Techniques

To begin the editing process, familiarize yourself with various editing techniques that can elevate your inflatable SUP photos. Balance the colors, adjust exposure levels, and fine-tune the details to make your water shots even more captivating. Experiment with different effects such as vignettes, graduated filters, and sharpening tools to add depth and enhance specific elements within your photos.

Software Options for Editing

Choosing the right software for your editing needs is crucial. There are numerous options available, ranging from beginner-friendly applications to advanced editing software. Adobe Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop are popular choices that offer extensive editing capabilities, allowing you to refine your paddleboarding photos with precision. Additionally, other user-friendly alternatives such as Luminar, Capture One, or ON1 Photo RAW can be great options for achieving professional-level edits.

When selecting your editing software, consider your budget, skill level, and desired editing features. Take advantage of trial versions or free software options to explore and find the best fit for your needs.

Tips for Adjusting Color, Contrast, and Clarity

When editing inflatable SUP photos, pay special attention to color, contrast, and clarity adjustments to make your water shots truly captivating:

  • Color: Enhance the vibrancy of the water and surrounding elements by increasing saturation. Adjust the white balance to ensure accurate colors that reflect the atmosphere of your paddleboarding adventure.
  • Contrast: Increase contrast to make the subject and scenery pop. This will help create a visually striking composition and draw the viewer’s attention to focal points within your photos.
  • Clarity: Emphasize the details of the water, paddleboard, and surrounding landscape by applying a subtle clarity adjustment. This will add depth and make your photos appear sharper and more defined.

Remember, editing is a subjective process, and there are no strict rules. Experiment, trust your creative instincts, and develop your own editing style that best represents your paddleboarding experiences.

Testimonials: The Power of Editing

“Editing my inflatable SUP photos has allowed me to transform ordinary shots into extraordinary moments captured on the water. The ability to adjust colors, contrast, and clarity has added a new level of depth to my paddleboarding adventures.” – Sarah Johnson

“With the right editing techniques and software, I’ve been able to create unique visual narratives from my inflatable SUP photos. Each shot tells a story, and editing helps me bring that story to life.” – Alex Thompson

Join Sarah, Alex, and countless other paddling photography enthusiasts in the world of inflatable SUP photography. With the right gear, composition skills, and post-processing techniques, your water shots can become beautiful masterpieces that showcase the thrill and serenity of paddleboarding.


Inflatable SUP photography offers a unique and exciting way to capture stunning water shots during your paddleboarding adventures. By investing in the right gear and mastering composition techniques, you can transform your inflatable SUP into a platform for awe-inspiring photography.

With the perfect combination of stability and maneuverability that an inflatable SUP provides, you’ll have the freedom to explore various water environments and capture breathtaking moments. Whether you’re gliding peacefully across a serene lake or braving the exhilarating waves of the ocean, your inflatable SUP will be your trusted companion in capturing those stunning shots.

Remember to prepare meticulously for your paddleboarding photoshoots, considering factors such as weather conditions and suitable locations. Plan your shots in advance, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in the beauty of nature while focusing on capturing the perfect moment.

Enhance your paddleboarding experience by embracing the world of inflatable SUP photography. Discover the joy of merging two passions – paddleboarding and photography – to create imagery that will amaze and inspire others. So, grab your gear, hop on your inflatable SUP, and embark on a journey to capture breathtaking water shots that will leave a lasting impression.


Can I take photos while paddleboarding on an inflatable SUP?

Absolutely! Inflatable SUPs are great for capturing stunning water shots. With a stable and maneuverable paddleboard, you can comfortably navigate and photograph your paddleboarding adventures.

What gear do I need for inflatable SUP photography?

To capture amazing water shots on your inflatable SUP, you’ll need a waterproof camera or a camera with a waterproof housing. Additionally, consider investing in a floating strap, a waterproof bag for your camera, and a tripod to stabilize your shots.

How do I prepare for a paddleboarding photoshoot?

Before heading out for a paddleboarding photoshoot, make sure your inflatable paddleboard is properly inflated and in good condition. Check the weather forecast, choose a picturesque location, and plan your shots in advance to make the most of your session.

Are there specific techniques for capturing action shots on an inflatable SUP?

Yes! To capture dynamic action shots while paddleboarding, experiment with different shutter speeds to freeze motion. Try shooting from various angles and adjust your focus settings to capture the energy and excitement of paddleboarding.

How can I enhance my inflatable SUP photos?

After taking your paddleboarding photos, you can enhance them further through editing. Use editing software to adjust color, contrast, and clarity to make your water shots truly stand out and reflect the beauty of your paddleboarding adventures.

Can I bring my waterproof gear and camera on my inflatable SUP?

Yes, inflatable SUPs are designed to accommodate gear and equipment. Many SUPs have integrated bungee cord systems or attachment points where you can safely secure your waterproof bag or camera to prevent them from falling into the water.

Is paddleboarding photography suitable for beginners?

Absolutely! You don’t need extensive experience in photography or paddleboarding to capture stunning shots on an inflatable SUP. With a basic understanding of composition and some practice, you can start taking impressive water shots right away.

How can I maintain balance while taking photos on an inflatable SUP?

Balancing on your inflatable SUP while taking photos can be tricky, especially if you’re carrying gear. To maintain balance, try kneeling on the paddleboard or using a low seat position. You can also paddle to a calm area and anchor yourself before focusing on your photography.