Nick Carver Photography Blog

Photography Tips, Tutorials, & Videos

CONTACT
 

Yet Another Beach Sunset

As I've mentioned, this time of year is primo for shooting sunsets in So Cal. So, I always end up hitting the beach quite a bit to try and get some new material. This is peak season (no pun intended) for what I do. If I were a Santa impersonator, this would be my Christmas.

I went back out to Crystal Cove on Friday. Judging by the clouds all day, I thought the sunset was going to be a winner. But, of course, the clouds were all burned off down by the beach. If you know me, you know I hate clear blue skies - it makes for boring landscapes. It turned out okay, but a sunset brimming with color would have made the shots much more memorable.

I found an interesting rock that looked like two discs stuck in the ground. It was the center of my attention for the evening.

With my RAW files loaded up on the computer, I decided to get a little creative with the white balance and cropping to make a shot different from my usual. I thought the cool tones of a heavy-blue white balance and a panoramic cropping on the following picture worked quite well.

There ya have it. Thanks for stopping by!

Awesome Sunset

I figured out years ago that the most beautiful sunsets in Southern California happen during the season change from summer to fall - a nice relief from the drab sunsets of summer. Well, this year is no exception and we had a breathtaking sunset last Thursday that I was lucky enough to shoot.

The spot I chose in Crystal Cove State Park had wet sand so smooth and glassy it was practically a mirror for the sky. And since the sky was really what I wanted to capture, I figured these reflections would be a perfect way to double my subject for double the impact.

These first 2 compositions are practically the same, but I couldn't decide what I liked better: the untainted reflections dominating the foreground or the water line coming in from the left.

This sunset truly was stunning and the colors represented in the above pictures are very accurate. It was actually that colorful.

After the color faded, I got this shot of an interesting little rock formation in the surf. I heightened the blue colors with a false white balance to help add to the cool and empty feeling. I really like the calmness in this shot.

Great Laguna Beach Sunset

Last night was one hell of a sunset here in So Cal. Luckily, I was scheduled to take a student to Laguna Beach for a lesson/shoot. We picked a beautiful beach just below the Montage Resort where it was low tide and plenty of rocks abound for good foregrounds. It had been a really long time since I've visited this beach for some photos, and when I returned, I kind of remembered why it had been so long.

Although this area at low tide is really interesting, it is a little bit tougher to get a good shot than in some of the other places I've visited. It's actually quite deceiving because the rocks look great, the tide pools look great, the reflections look great, but the problem is just how dark the rocks are and how little variation in color there is. The rocks are really dark brown and the sea life covering it is really dark green. As a result, the subtle textures and colors can be difficult for your camera to capture. Without some practice, careful composition and spot-on exposure, the details get lost and the foreground ends up looking like just a big, boring mass of ugly rock.

Thankfully, that stunning sunset made for some great reflections.