Mountain View based Raiatea Arcuri has been named the 2016 winner of the Young USA Landscape Photographer of the Year competition.
The Big Island native’s award winning shot is of Coastal lava tubes in Kona, which cause the water to flow in and out creating beautiful water motion.
usalpoty-lava-crack
“My USA youth category highly commended. “Lava Crack” ISO 100, F/6.3, 1/80 sec, Sony A6000 + Sigma 30mm DN. I captured this during my second visit to the Kalapana lava flow before it hit the ocean. The active lava quickly cools to a flaky finish and soon starts to crack as a new lava breakout occurs. I captured the lava oozing out just as the brittle surface started to crack. The heat was very intense, but I made due by taking quick breaks in between photos.”

Arcuri said he first found out about the competition when browsing DPReview one day and came across the banner for the USA Landscape Photographer of the Year entries. Says  Arcuri, “I thought it would be a good opportunity to enter, especially because there was a youth category. I entered 20 of my best images in various categories hoping that I would at least win one. I was very surprised to find that 15 of them were shortlisted for the final round of judging!”

A month later he received an email saying that one of his photos won the My USA category. He was understandably “very happy” to be recognized as the best in one of the categories. A few hours later, he received an email saying he was the winner of Young USA Landscape Photographer of the Year 2016.  Says Arcuri, “I was blown away, thinking to myself, did I really just win the competition? A phone call later and it was confirmed. I am truly delighted that my photo was chosen as the winner!”

Camera Info:
Sony A6000, ISO 100, 0.4 sec, F/11, 12mm
(Rokinon 12mm)
Post Production Info:
I adjusted the color and contrast using Lightroom and Photoshop. I stacked photos to smooth out the ocean in the background.
Arcuri’s description of the photo:
This was captured along the Kona coast on the Big Island of Hawaii. What makes the Big Island special is the presence of lava tubes around the island. Some of these lava tubes at the coast will make amazing water motion as the waves push water in and out.
It can be quite an epic experience capturing it. The water can easily surge up to your waist level and quickly recede back into the tube, creating a nice waterfall.
See http://www.raiphoto.com/ for more photos.

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