The Tel Aviv-based photographer Sivan Askayo takes us behind the scenes of our June cover shot.

By Siobhan Reid
May 30, 2019
Credit: Sivan Askayo

There are some images that instantly evoke the fun, carefree days of summer. The photo we chose for our June cover — a beachscape picturing a group of surfers wading into the frothy waters of Portugal’s Praia do Amado— is one such shot. We caught up with Tel Aviv-based photographer Sivan Askayo, who shared details behind her moment of inspiration — including what gear she used to capture the scene.

Credit: Sivan Askayo

T+L: Where did you take this photo?

Sivan Askayo: “This photo was taken in the Algarve at Praia do Amado. It’s a beautiful sandy beach that’s popular among surfers. It was my first day on assignment, and that afternoon stands out as one of the highlights of the trip.”

How long did you spend on the beach, photographing the surfers?

“That day I had driven from Lisbon to the Algarve, passing through the South West Alentejo and Vicentine Coast Natural Park, and by the time I arrived in Praia do Amado it was already midway through the afternoon. Knowing that I’d probably have to come back early the next day to get the perfect shot, I decided to go down to the beach and do some scouting. I ended up staying there for almost two hours, photographing the surfers as they waded in and out of the water. Around 5 p.m. the light became soft and golden, bathing the sand and cliffs in this beautiful warm glow. That’s when I got the shot.”

Portugal has a number of great surf spots. How would you characterize the scene in the Algarve?

“The surf scene in the Algarve is centered on Sagres, a laid-back beach town on Portugal’s southwest tip. The vibe is quieter and more under-the-radar than the scene in more northern seaside towns like Peniche and Ericeira.”

Are you a surfer?

“Sadly, I am not, but I desperately wanted to be when I was at Praia do Amado. Being there, you couldn’t help but be swept up in the sense of adventure and excitement.”

What equipment did you use?

“I used my Nikon D750 with a 24-70 lens.”