Santa Cruz photographer and surfer Nikki Brooks loves to document surfers on journeys near and far in search of waves less ridden. She enjoys the anticipation of a building swell, the mystique of big wave surfing, and the grace and style of surfers drawing their own lines.

She enjoys the creative process of photography and the challenge and rewards of swimming around in the lineup to get the shot. While fervently documenting her subjects, Nikki strives to capture images that make a connection between the viewer and the wave. Surfers worldwide have a connection with the ocean, and we can all relate to the common joy it brings us.

The wonder of the ocean is what captivates her heart. She has been a crew member aboard the O’Neill Sea Odyssey catamaran for 13 years, educating children about marine biology and conservation in the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. The words of Baba Dioum, a Senegalese conservationist, resonate with her: “In the end we will conserve only what we love; we will love only what we understand; and we will understand only what we are taught.” She hopes her imagery kindles a similar relationship between surfers and their environment. Nikki is honored to be an ambassador for Save the Waves and is excited to collaborate with like minded surfers and to continue to create imagery that will inspire others to protect the waves, coasts, and shorelines of places both near to home and those far away.

Check out her website at

Find her on Facebook – Nikki Brooks Photography

Follow Nikki’s photos on Instagram @nikkitola