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Sweet straight hander. This is me trying to get all soulful in the evening light. I'm glad Bailey got the shot because I probably nose dived and went straight over the handle bars after this bottom turn, stylish and soulfully of course. This was our first surf as the swell was starting to jack. We could see the new swell arriving from the aeroplane windows as we came into land and by the time we had travelled by boat to our accommodating island the swell was in full samba mode. Froth levels were going through the roof after our long journey and there were some classic wobbly traveller legged wipeouts as the sun set on a macking atoll swell.© 2014 Will Bailey / Animal
Fading light but please just one more set up for the inside tube section. Too dark to see at this point, it's all feeling from here on in, but oh man, if you make it, jazz hands all the way back to the boat.© 2014 Will Bailey / Animal
This shot landed me and Bailey a cover. That's rad, but what's even radder is this wave. Inside the tube it's similar to Thurso. You can plant your self super deep and shed all your speed and instead of the foam ball spinning you about it picks you up and spits you out the end. A great tube riding wave with the last section doubling up and getting pretty shallow just for kicks.© 2014 Will Bailey / Animal
The left across the bay was great fun. Long peeling blue walls and a few tube sections to keep you on your toes. It wasn't the easiest wave to ride with lots of different sections. You could turn if you wanted, but trying to keep your speed down the line for the next encounter with the lip left me feeling like every wave was a challenge, a dance and skip across its shifting character. With one mistake it would hurtle off down the line without you. After a long wave here you felt like you really put together something to be proud of.© 2014 Will Bailey / Animal
The hollow right again, this time with one hand on the brake squeezing every drop of stoke out before hitting the channel.© 2014 Will Bailey / Animal
The right was all about simple surfing. Take off scream off the bottom and pull in. Surfing in its basic, unrefined form. It never gets dull, it never gets old, just you a wave and a conversation to be had.© 2014 Will Bailey / Animal
Inside ledge thrills. You can see it coming, you can feel the contours of the wave change as it hits shallower water and a higher gear. You had your fill already from take off till now, but the inside ledge is calling you and it has you transfixed in its cylindrical hypnosis. You quickly ask yourself how much flesh you're willing to sacrifice for this taste of bliss. Your eyes widen and your senses sharpen as you hold on tight.© 2014 Will Bailey / Animal
Find the line of least resistance and hold on.© 2014 Will Bailey / Animal
Will Bailey's got the eye. I meet and work with a lot of photographers. All of them are a talented, hard working bunch of passionate surf crazed fools running around trying to find new angles and perspectives that will capture imagination. It's froth-out epicness on a grand scale. Photography is something that I'm part of constantly, but I love the art. The magic of stopping time for that precise moment always amazes me. And then there are some photographers who appear to be able to see into the future, they have the gift of the photographers eye. Will Bailey has the eye. He can see a photo before it has even happened. Don't just believe me, the proof is in his art.© 2014 Will Bailey / Animal
Flipping outrageous behaviour. I love doing airs. love doing turns too. Hell I just love surfing, but airs seem to hold me in their ever progressive grip. They drive me more than any other part of wave riding. You can always go higher, you can always spin faster. Airs are basically the evolution of the turn; where else is there left to go but up?© 2014 Will Bailey / Animal
Sky turning on a fruity one. If any one finds an orange side fin like the one in this photo, I've lost one. They were my favourite set of water ticklers.© 2014 Will Bailey / Animal
Dress to impress. Hair, check; brush, check; latest rad board shorts, check; fin waft WHAPPA!. Did you see me, eh, hey, did anybody see me?© 2014 Will Bailey / Animal
This caption took ages to come up with: YEEEEEEEEEW!© 2014 Will Bailey / Animal
The water colour and visibility in the Maldives is unreal. This is me and Bailey playing fish bait.© 2014 Will Bailey / Animal
Wilbur Kookmeyer lives.© 2014 Will Bailey / Animal
Alan Stokes no doubt wishes he’d been shipwrecked on this idyllic Indian Ocean island, left in peace to enjoy the playground of waves lying just offshore. His trip to the Maldives was blessed with solid swell throughout, and he exploited those warm-water walls for all they were worth.
Captions by Alan Stokes. Images by Will Bailey.
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