Photo Stories with Graham Swindell

This is my 9th year living in Costa Rica.  I met my wife here. We had a kid here and it doesn’t appear that I will be leaving anytime soon. Although it does get frustrating living in a tourist town, I am not complaining.  I have learned to appreciate everything in life and after years of living here you learn to appreciate it even more. My goal is to sit down at the age of 80 with my grand-kids / great grand-kids and reflect on life via my photos. I started photography in 1998 during the film days and have been hording stuff since.  Below are some shots I took in the past couple of years with a writeup about the photo for those who , like me, enjoy reading about what went into a photo.

These photo stories will now be a regular addition to our blog which is happily sponsored by some of the coolest stuff I have tried,  TICO* Organic Hemp Shaving oil


Anyone who has visited Costa Rica is all too familiar with this setup. Early morning I followed Nate (Nosara Paddle Surf) to film his group when we came to an abrupt stop. Living in Costa Rica you learn to accept that you might just have to wait longer than usual for things to clear . Rather than bitching, you sit back enjoy and maybe snap a photo. I have sold this shot a few times in the past couple of years. It is one of my favorites.




This shot was taken around Christmas 4 years back. I believe I was shooting a wedding. The beach is Playa Pelada and besides “La Semana Santa” I had never seen it this busy.



If you have ever visited the main entrance of Playa Guiones you probably have met Gato and his wife.  They are the couple selling pipa and watching your shit. This was his first rig. He sold enough pipas in one year to buy a small truck and business continues to be good but anyone from Nosara knows what that means. As soon as someone sees you making money ten other people are trying the same thing.  I have a post card selection for print and this is one of the images. Another one of my favorites.




I frequent this little cove because of the scenic backdrop. It is a photographer’s paradise. The shots are even better from the water. If the swell and tide is right it has the ability to do this but a lot bigger. The beauty of this is the fact that unless you hike around the reef and caves you have no clue what it is doing.


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This is that same cove from a different angle. We put Fisher Heverly on it and shot him from the land and water. The final images went into our NosaraShack Magazine No.2 issue.



I think they call this guy Chupacabra. He can always be seen with his Ox and cart.  I stumbled on this by accident one day with my buddy Dain. It was at a pulperia (small convenience store)  across the river of Nosara. He gladly let me take his photo.


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Luigui from Nosara Tico Surf school is one of my favorite surfers to watch. We were filming a video for someone and at the last minute Josh packed the car full of people and we headed to Ostional where, to our surprise, the surf was absolutely firing.  I got two shots like this and have used them on many sites. This one was featured on .

rodeo upIoad

Rodeos are a must if you are visiting Costa Rica. Contrary to what people say these bulls are the bread and butter for Costa Rican owners so they are treated like kings back home.  Rodeos are fun and scary at the same time.  This was in Esperanza. My sister came to visit and handed me her Canon camera. I have no clue how to use a canon camera so I put it on aperture priority cranked the ISO up and was still able to frame this.



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