In 2016, Nikki To took a shot of the sea that’s so evocative you can almost smell the salt air. The image, ‘Pool vs Ocean’, is of two bodies of water – waves rolling over rocks at Bondi Beach and the placid turquoise pool at Icebergs. The Sydney-based photographer didn’t visit the restaurant to shoot the pool specifically, but the spontaneous snap ended up being one of our favourites.
The striking composition of this photo is just one of the reasons To’s work is featured in Broadsheet Editions, a new platform celebrating Broadsheet’s photos – and the photographers behind them. For the first time ever, large-scale prints of our photographs are available to purchase and hang on your wall. The online store is now open, if you fancy a browse.
We talked to To about being drawn to the sea and learning to think on your feet.
Who are you and what do you do?
Nikki To. I’m a food and lifestyle photographer and co-director of Sydney-based creative content studio, Buffet.
How long have you been a photographer?
I’ve been shooting for five years now.
Tell us about this photo.
I was on a shoot commissioned by Broadsheet to photograph the beautiful Icebergs Dining Room. It was such a stunning day I couldn’t help but take a shot out from the balcony.
What feeling does it give you to look at?
I love the juxtaposition between the waves and the pool. There’s a calmness to the pool that’s so perfectly contrasted by the chaos of the white wash.
Why did you select this image to discuss?
It’s my favourite shot from that shoot!
When did you shoot your first image for Broadsheet and what was it?
It was some of my earliest work about six years ago. I was shooting a restaurant feature in Sydney. Very early days, I look back at that shoot in shock – I had a long way to go!
Tell us about your approach to photography.
Most days I’m shooting food, drinks and restaurants. They aren’t overly produced shoots and my approach to photography isn’t super technical, so I tend to enjoy the challenge of shooting whatever is presented to me on any given day.
I learnt how to shoot like this largely from working for Broadsheet over the years. I’d get sent on assignment to cover a restaurant and had to produce a set of images in whatever time frame and circumstance I was given. It teaches you to be resourceful, think on your feet and not sweat the small stuff when it comes to shooting!