Adventure Photographer Series | Lucia Griggi

A LOT OF PROFESSIONAL ATHLETES ARE KEEN PHOTOGRAPHERS. COMPETING IN THE MOST SCENIC, DRAMATIC, TENSE, AND FRAUGHT ENVIRONMENTS IN THE WORLD, MANY LIKE TO CAST A KEEN EYE OVER THEIR SURROUNDINGS AND TAKE SOME IMPRESSIVE PICTURES. BUT HOW TO GET THE MOST OUT OF YOUR TIME UP A MOUNTAIN, OR ON A TRACK, OR BY A BEACH?

This is the sixth of a series of interviews, where we reached out to some amazing action photographers, to ask them for some tips and tricks that could help anyone competing up a mountain or on the waves, take some incredible shots.

Born, raised and educated in England – with frequent visits to her father's home of Venice, Italy – Lucia moved to California in 2010. With her roots in the surfing, skateboarding and outdoor adventure world, Lucia focuses on lifestyle and adventure for editorial and advertising clients. 

She combines her English precision with Venetian creativity to capture the moment with clarity and wit. Lucia's work is fresh, vivid and full of energy. 

Lucia's work has been internationally recognized and awarded by National Geographic, PDN, Windland Smith Rice International Awards, Black and White photography and the Masters Cup. We had a few moments with Lucia to quiz her on her work and get some photography tips…

Lucia, what is your go-to camera set-up for outdoor/action photography (equipment-wise)?
”I work with Canon predominantly. I use the 1DX MRK 11 as my main camera body and second shoot with the 5d mrk 4. I also use Sony for Film with Canon adapter mounts. Lense quiver includes mostly prime lenses like the 24mm 1.4/85mm 1.2/300mm 2.8. I also use the 70-200 mm 2.8 and the 16-35mm 2.8”

What is your go-to camera set-up for landscape photography (equipment-wise)? “I would use the Canon 5DMRK4 and the 16-35mm 2.8  I also use the 300 2.8  for landscape in Antarctica” 

What non-photography equipment is essential to a good photographers kit? “Its really handy to have a waterproof bag to throw equipment in. Sometimes its hard to manage the waterproof casing offered for cameras these days”. 

As an adventure/outdoor photographer, what is the biggest obstacle (i.e. light, weather, location, time, etc)? “Timing, getting that perfect moment/expression with the athlete or subject. Telling a story in an outdoor situation where mother nature can change your set at any time!”

What is the biggest obstacle to overcome with respect to Landscape photography? “I would say them all! “Time“ because of the weather changes and the light, so when a golden opportunity appears and the light becomes just right its important to get moving and shooting. Time also because it can be exhausting working and there is a lot of waiting around to capture the perfect moment. Locations can be hard to get to as well as sometime sacrifices have to be made as to where the shot can be taken from”. 

What has been your best adventure/outdoor photography experience? “I love working in the Polar regions. Ive spent a lot of time over the last couple of years in Antarctica and the Arctic regions. Its otherworldly and remote. Nature rules the lands and so does the seas. I have had many adventures and each one is also different due to the ever changing landscape”. 


What is the story behind your own favourite photograph/set of photographs?
”The story behind this image taken in Antarctica last year:

I was exploring down in the Antartica Peninsular. Theres an exposed area near Elephant Island. I was in a zodiac and photographing a group of penguins that were about to jump into the ocean. It had a beautiful backdrop and I was lining the shot up when I turned around and started to see this slab start to work. It was forming off a tabular ice berg and was producing a really good wave. I sat and photographed this empty wave for a while! It was such a special moment to have a wave break so beautiful down here in Antarctica”. 

On an adventure/action shoot, you could be out of the house for days at a time; what sort of meals/drinks are you taking with you? How much can you carry with you? “Not too much as I’m used to working on minimal intake. I would have water and then seem nutrition/protein bars. Maybe some seeds or tired fruits! Probably some dark chocolate stashed somewhere”. 

If/when you camp on a shoot, what food/drink do you take with with you? “Instant Mashed potato! Its the easiest. Maybe tins of beans too!”

For athletes on a beach, or up a mountain, what should they be looking for to get that perfect shot? “The most optimum jump or wave-to push themselves as hard as they can. Over emphasis their moves. Or simply just enjoy what they do as this will relay in the shots”. 

Are there any tips you might have for athletes & adventurers who want to improve their own photography in very scenic locations, and any tips for athletes who might be in slightly less picturesque settings? “Go light, Don’t be slowed down my having a huge camera set up. Nowadays the cameras are getting smaller and the is great of action sport and outdoor travel. 

How different is your prep before a shoot, between going to a hot climate & a cold climate? “Its mainly the after care. If I’m in cold or hot climates if its windy and sea like conditions I wipe all my equipment down with fresh water and then dry. Thats what saves my equipment from salt erosion”

Find Lucia online, or on Instagram for more incredible images…