One of the things that I look out for as I drive along the Southport coast road is an overcast sky. I know that beach goers tend to prefer sunshine, but my favourite images always include a cloudy sky. The darker sky allows the image to balance much more naturally, and even in daylight the result is pleasingly soft.
This is just a simple image with my usual components: marram in the foreground, sand, sea and sky beyond, each element drawing the eye further into the picture. Simple, but deliberately so.
We got to the pier just as the sun was setting. I’ve been aching to get a decent long exposure at sunset and tonight I was just in time to get a 134 second shot – enough to have the clouds nicely streaked across the sky 🙂
Taking a walk around Southport’s Marine Lake the other day I decided to try for a long exposure shot of the lake, pier and bridge. The intense sunlight made it almost impossible to see the image on the camera’s screen, but I could just make out enough to get a few shots. I was so intent on getting the exposure right that I didn’t notice the tram setting off. You can see the blurred movement of the tram along the pier in the centre of the shot.
Having taken a walk around the Marine Lake in Southport recently (and taken a few photographs) I was impressed by the refurbished Victorian shelters. I have to confess to quite liking the old colour, even when it was faded and peeling, but the new dark green colour scheme looks sophisticated and blends well with the gardens. Both these photos were taken recently – the right hand image is from the northern end of the lake that hasn’t yet been refurbished.
With my latest addition to my camera collection I’ve decided to try a little more street photography. I’ve always felt rather self-conscious pointing a DSLR at passers by, but somehow the diminutive Olympus OM-D E-M10 feels less threatening. So, with a bit of sunshine and plenty of visitors I took a few street shots. I love this space between the Ramada Hotel and the Casino complex. Usually I would try and capture the space without any human interest, but I thought the gap with the pedestrians crossing added some interest to the image.
We went for a walk down on the beach last night. The beach, as usual was a mess, more mud than sand, not really pleasant. Also, as usual, the pier was locked long before sunset so I resorted to the usual method of sticking the lens between the bars of the gates. This was a multiple exposure combined to show the foreground detail while keeping the colour in the sky.
At certain times of the year, the sun sets directly behind the end of the Pier in Southport. Sometimes the sky is dramatic, often it can be cloudless and flat. Occasionally the colours are rich and warm (this shot did receive a little help in that direction in post processing).
Timing it right I caught the last gasp of sunlight before it sank below the pier railings. I hope you enjoy the shot!
It’s sometimes possible when editing photos on a computer to look too much at the histogram and not at the actual image. We can focus on highlights and blacks, and on getting a good spread of tones, which is all rather academic. What you really need to do is concentrate on the final image and how you see it. I loved the soft tones of the RAW image for this shot and decided to try and enhance the gentle tones and light…
Seen at Ainsdale Beach, near Southport. The sun was just setting and the marram grass was blowing in the wind…
En-route to see a client yesterday I took my constitutional 5 minutes to stop at Ainsdale beach. There was total cloud cover and not a lot of light. I noticed a few gulls following the shore line so I went for a longer zoom to capture them flying above the fence line.