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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.

Surprise Sunset at Crystal Cove

I went out to Crystal Cove on July 1st with a very talented student of mine for a lesson. The weather was overcast thanks to the typical marine layer we get here in June-July. I wasn't going to hold my breath for a great sunset, but then I saw a little break in the clouds above us. That break grew larger until the marine layer burned off to a perfect balance of clouds and sky, resulting in some seriously awesome colors as the sun dropped.

For this first picture (which was taken later in my set), I wanted to highlight the reflections of these beautiful clouds in the wet sand. My intention was simplicity - make the picture all about the clouds and water without any rocks to distract.

I'm a little bit obsessed with wet sand reflections. I try to capture them just about every time I go to the beach for a shoot.

These next pictures are from earlier in the evening. Both are the same composition, but I felt the different wave patterns created such vastly different emotional responses in each that it was worth sharing both.

I felt this first one communicated the power and movement of the waves. Looking at it, you can almost hear the roar of the water as it comes crashing towards you. Gives a feeling of chaos and excitement.

This next one, however, is much calmer. Although the waves are choppy, the lack of whitewater and more prominent reflections creates a more serene feeling for the viewer . Also, the lack of ground in this picture makes it seem like you are further out in the water - as if you are looking at this scene while floating calmly on a boat. Personally, this one is my favorite. I like the emotional response it elicits in me.

Thanks for stopping by!