This was the original destination for our visit to Portland, ME this past weekend.  I had seen a few images of this location online, and finally had an opportunity to go up there and get a shot of my own.  Along with fellow photographers Bob Lussier and Mike Tully of course.

These three shacks are on Fisherman’s Point and can be seen and photographed from Willard Beach in South Portland.  We were fortunate to get some really nice color in the sky just before sunrise, and with the tide just starting to recede, the ocean added a nice foreground element as it held the reflection of the sky.  I’m looking forward to getting back here in the spring to get a different perspective on this wonderful spot.


What a morning I had yesterday.  Bob Lussier, Mike Tully and I headed out early to shoot a different location in South Portland, ME (images to follow in a future post), and decided to visit Portland Head Light afterwards. Although we arrived past sunrise, the light was still sweet, and allowed us time to explore all around the lighthouse to take advantage of the beautiful conditions.

After shooting closer to the lighthouse, we trekked down an icy slope to get down to the rocks and spent some time at this wonderful vantage point as our last spot to shoot.  With my trusty 10 stop ND filter, I was able to get some nice long exposures that added a misty quality to the rocks and waves, while adding nice color saturation as well.


Although I have yet to pick up my camera in the new year, I feel compelled to create my first blog post of 2017.  And I’m doing so with this image from this past summer.  It was taken at the Rachel Carson Wildlife Refuge in Wells, ME during our annual family vacation in Ogunquit.  After catching the incredible pre-dawn light, I came across this perfect little bench at a viewing area along the trail through the marsh as the sun began to come up.

Even though the bench is facing the away from the rising sun, it’s still a beautiful and peaceful spot to watch the sunrise.  And I was not in any hurry to leave.


As we brace for the first real arctic cold of the winter here in the northeast, I thought I’d post an image from warmer times.  This shot was captured this past summer in Ogunquit, Maine along the famous Marginal Way.  This mile-plus path winds it way along stunning rock cliffs  from Ogunquit beach to Perkins Cove, and provides unlimited photographic opportunities.  Sunrise, in my opinion, is the best time to be there – not only for witnessing the beauty of the sun coming up over the ocean and cliffs, but also for the peacefulness and quiet of being there virtually alone. The Marginal Way gets quite crowded during the day in the summer, so I really look forward to being there at sunrise.

I woke up early to a promising forecast, and was certainly rewarded for the effort.  As I walked along the path, I was seeking out some leading lines in the patterns of the rocks that would take the viewer right out to the morning sky, and found this spot which did the trick.  I’m definitely looking forward to getting back there this winter to get some images with snow on the rocks.  Once I’m a little more used to the cold that is.


 

Morris Island Lighthouse

Taking a break from the fall foliage images with a lighthouse shot from my recent visit to Charleston, SC.  The Morris Island Lighthouse, a non-working lighthouse just north of Folly Beach at the entrance to Charleston Harbor, stands just a few hundred feet off the coast. It’s 161 feet tall, and was completed in 1876.  Over time, jetties were built to protect the harbor, which accelerated the erosion on Morris Island around the lighthouse.  In 1938, the lighthouse became too difficult to reach and maintain, and thus became automated. By 1962, the lighthouse was too close to the shore due to continued erosion on the island, and state officials ordered it closed.  It was replaced by Charleston Light on the north side of nearby Sullivan’s Island, and is now being preserved by the state of South Carolina.

While all this history is very interesting, I was drawn to the great compositional possibilities of the lighthouse that include this jetty on the northern end of Folly Beach that leads right out to the tower in the distance.  I used a long lens to compress the scene and bring the rocks and lighthouse closer together.  The sunrise that morning wasn’t too exciting, but did provide a nice pink/red glow to the sky.

 


 

Fog Rising

Today’s image is another one from my recent visit to Vermont.  The village of East Corinth was high on my list of locations to shoot after seeing some images of the town online, and more importantly, after learning that it was the setting for the movie Beetlejuice.  It’s one of Tim Burton’s best movies, and one of my personal favorites, and I of course had to watch it again after photographing the area.

I had arrived here before sunrise, hoping for some nice light on the church and the surrounding landscape.  I was instead greeted by a blanket of fog that obscured anything further than two feet in front of me.  So after waiting for some time with no relief from the fog, I decided to get back in my car and explore the area in hopes of returning later to see the fog rising before the sun got too high.  About an hour later I came back to the same spot, and found gorgeous light hitting the church and colorful trees behind it as the fog began to lift.  It was a truly amazing scene, and I was fortunate to have timed my return just right.  Have I mentioned that I love Vermont in the fall?


Transition

This image is another from the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge in Wells, ME from my vacation in late August.  As I mentioned in my previous post, this part of the refuge is a beautiful 1 mile loop that meanders through forest and salt marsh along Maine’s southern coast.  This particular spot is one of several boardwalks along the loop that provide incredible views of the surrounding area.

Typically on sunrise shoots, I’m packing up my gear once the sun rises high enough above the horizon and the light becomes too harsh to shoot towards it.  Thankfully on this day, I had a scene behind me worth shooting, and simply turned around from where I was capturing the sky to the east and was treated to beautiful warm light hitting the trees and boardwalk to the west.  This location is really quite amazing, and I was taken by the transition of marsh to forest, while also witnessing the transition from dawn to daylight.  And did I mention that I was the only one there the entire time?  An awesome morning all around.


Morning BeautyI just got back from a family vacation in southern Maine, and managed to get out for sunrise on a couple of occasions.  This particular morning presented an absolutely beautiful display of clouds and color with zero wind; perfect conditions for some long exposures.  So where is this, you ask?  It’s the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge in York, ME.  It was my first time visiting the refuge, and I can guarantee I’ll be back again soon.  It’s an impressively large place, with thousands of acres of protected land spread out from Kittery all the way to Cape Elizabeth near Portland.  I chose to explore the southern part, and the trail I was on is an easy 1 mile loop through the refuge that provides several lookout spots along the salt marsh and woods.  Although the tide was low, this little estuary made a great leading line through the image towards the rising sun.  Morning beauty indeed.


Dawn's Early LightA few weeks ago I spent some time in Ogunquit, Maine with my family for our annual end of summer vacation at the beach.  While this is always a family vacation first and foremost, I did make some time to get out and do some shooting, mostly at sunrise before the rest of the family was up.  I’ve been coming to Ogunquit since I was a child, and have photographed it countless times.  This location at the entrance to Footbridge Beach, however, is one that I’ve paid far less attention to than other more popular spots, so I felt it was time to give it some love.

It’s a great little spot with the long footbridge across the Ogunquit River just to the left of this scene, and I was really fortunate to also find this small boat up on the grass which made for a great foreground interest.  I tried a variety of compositions with the boat as the sun started to rise, and this one was easily my favorite.  It was a beautiful sky that morning, and I was also able to get some reflections of its colors in the river.  Now if I could’ve only done something about those mosquitos.


Stronger, Faster, Betterjavascript:void(0);

Words to live by.  At least they are if you’re a rower in the Boston area and you pass by it every day as you train.  This graffiti message is written on the train bridge that runs beneath the BU (Boston University) Bridge over the Charles River.  The Charles is where the crew teams from Harvard, Boston College, Boston University, etc. train and compete, and also home to the annual Head of the Charles regatta.

I had visited this spot recently to get a sunrise shot of the Boston skyline, but was disappointed by too much cloud cover to the east to allow for the image I was wanting.  So instead I aimed my camera at this train bridge.  I love the bright colors of the graffiti against the old rusted metal of the bridge and tracks, and found this angle to get some leading lines through the image.  The glow from the rising sun on the water added some additional color.

On a side note, I believe that this location on the BU Bridge is one of the only places where you can swim beneath a boat, while under a train, while under a car, while under an airplane – all at the same time (at least in theory).