Imaging of shallow waters using high resolution video imagery is described. Common to mono, stereo and trinocular imaging approaches from ground and airborne platforms is the need to validate the surface water wave field measurements, particularly the amplitude and specular reflectance of water surface small gravity waves. A technique for calibration and validation of water surface gravity wave field energy spectra is described. Results demonstrate the value of video imagery where water level staff gauges with approximately with 0.5 cm wave height accuracy are easily sensed using high definition videography. Essentially, a staff gauge placed in shallow water constructed from PVC materials with custom colored line coding are imaged at 30 H or high frame rates, followed by frame by frame analyses in order to detect the water level measured at 0.5 cm height intervals. The image based time series allow the development of shallow water gravity wave energy spectra using standard FFT analysis procedures. Spectral models based upon peak frequency, for example, are then used in a two dimensional water surface wave simulation model that generates radiative transfer based hyperspectral images of the water surface wave field. The simulated and observed water surface wave patch fields are compared by extracting vertical or horizontal transects within observed and simulated imagery. The approach allows one to developed spectral energy model probability distributions at low cost. The novel noncontact video sensing and image analysis methodology used to calibrate and validate shallow water gravity wave models yield a means for ultimately calculating bottom boundary velocities under measured or simulated wave fields. These boundary layer velocities can cause migration and horizontal particle fluxes (g cm-2 s-1), resuspension, settling, and increased turbidity during dredging operations, but not necessarily due to waterway dredging operations and activities.