Bogue Sound

Depending on who’s counting, there are up to seven Sounds along the coast of North Carolina: Croatan Sound, Currituck Sound, Albemarle Sound, Pamlico Sound, Core Sound, Back Sound and Bogue Sound.  Many consider the Croatan and Currituck Sound in the North to be part of the huge Albemarle Sound. Locals will tell you different.

Bogue Sound runs along North Carolina’s Crystal Coast from Back Sound to Western Bogue Inlet.  It is 25 miles long and up to three miles wide.  The water is shallow and calm with slow moving currents and dotted with islands of sea grass.

These views were taken near the Bogue Inlet in the West.  Bogue Sound is situtated more East/West than North South.  It marks the southern terminus of the Northern and Southern Outer Banks.

This  grove of trees along North Carolina Highway 58 at the eastern foot of the Carter Langston Bridge to Emerald Isle seems a fitting parting shot this week.  All of the photographs this week were taken with a Nikon D800E camera and a Nikor 16-35mm f/4 lens.  Thanks for the look. See you next time.

Spring At The Beach

It’s the best of both worlds really.  Warmer weather and still very few people around. Three more shots from the Southern Outer Banks of North Carolina.

All shot between sunrise and 8:30AM.  Nikon D800E, 16-35 f/4 lens. Thank you very much for the look-in and have a good week ahead.  See You Nex Time!

Back To The Beaches

I finally got back to the beach this past weekend. It was my first visit since January and my first use of a new lens, the 16-35mm Nikon f/4.  A few quick images just processed.

The 16-35mm is light years sharper than my old 18-35.  In fact, it ranks right up there with the 24-120mm f/4 as the sharpest lenses in my bag.  If you shop around, you can find a used version in like new condition far cheaper than the price for a new one. More shots next time. Thanks for looking and have a good week ahead.

Walking the Dune Line 2 Months after Florence

Two months after Hurricane Florence scored a direct hit, much of the beach front debris left in the storm’s wake has been cleand up.  And much of what’s left is in the process of being covered up by the timeless push-pull of the ocean.

Nature, it can be said, is its own best recovery agent.   We can help it along but at the end of the day, nature will always have its way. Thanks for the look and have a good week ahead.  See you next time.


Back to Duck

The Village of Duck on the Northern Outer Banks of North Carolina is a study in photographic contrast.  Overrun by runaway development in the 80’s, what was once a place to buy bait and a soda before heading for the beach has been transformed into a southern version of the Hamptons with upscale, trendy stores, overdone beach front “cottages” and pricey cars.  Even so, the main event is still the oceanfront with its own unique energy and dynamic.

Contrast this with the shoreline of the Currituck Sound where time seems to stand still and one can breathe.  Over the years, the village has built a boardwalk along most of the shore.  The views are pretty spactacular.

Getting to Duck is quite simple.  Head north on highway 12 and it will announce itself with a very classy, if overdone sign.  Parking for a walk on the boardwalk is not a problem.  Beach access is pretty much limited to property owners and renters.  Honestly, beach access for day trippers is a problem up and down the Outer Banks.  Parking for public access is quite scarce.  The best advice, check the maps and gps and leave early. Trust me, it’s worth the trouble.  Thanks for the look and have a good week ahead.

3 Takes On a Dune


These three shots were all taken within the span of about a minute.  There isn’t much time to waste when shooting at sunrise.  The light changes very quickly so it’s important to have some idea beforehand  of what you are after in terms of composition and framing.  At the moment of sunrise, I was on the beach to grab a few shots of the sun coming through the clouds over the ocean. In television, we called them establishing shots.  I then moved back from the water’s edge to a position behind some sand fences for a couple of additional views then retreated behind this particular dune.  I had chosen it because it had a nice crop of sea oats growing on the top of it.  I used pretty much the same routine moving down the beach toward’s Land’s End.  Some views like the three shots above, required little movement at all, just a zoom with the 24-120 mm lens.  By the time I called it a morning about half hour later, I had more than 90 quality shots.   I love just roaming around with the camera and snapping away at whatever moves me, but aging is the mother of invention.  With arthritic knees, I have to think ahead of what I want and the quickest way to get it.  The luxury of walking several miles on the beach is a distant memory. As Clint Eastwood said in the classic western, “Unforgiven”,  “We all got it coming kid.”  Thanks for the look. Have a good week ahead.  See you next time.


The Challenge of Mid-day Photography At the Beach

I have a rule about photography at the beach.  I make it a point to be there either at dawn before the sun rises or in the late afternoon just before sunset  I seldom, if ever, drive to the oceanfront during the balance of the day, but, of course, there are exceptions.  One came this past weekend. My wife was going to a noontime reunion of her cousins at Pine Knoll Shores, one the small beach towns on the Bogue Banks.  “Want to ride along,” she asked.  “Sure,” I said, knowing full well that the worst time for photography at the beach is mid-day, but the beach is the beach and I was weary of taking pictures of cotton and tobacco rows.  It’s not a long ride to the ocean from our farm, 45 minuits or so and we arrived a few minutes after noon.  Of course, it was blazing hot and the glare from the sun directly overhead was retina frying.  So what to do.

This is my usual routine. First,  I make certain I’m shooting in the RAW format.  RAW is essentially a digital negative.  It records everything the camera sees. Jpegs are compressed images. RAW files are not.   Every DSLR has a RAW setting though the camera makers use different names for their version.  Nikon RAW files are called “NEF.”   The big disadvantage to shooting in RAW is that the files are huge, they eat up a lot of storage space.  To me, it’s worth it.  RAW allows me to change the White Balance and make other adjustments to the image in processing that are not possible with Jpeg.  To my mind, it is essential for photography at any time and particularly so for mid-day shooting.  Next, I dial the ISO down to the very lowest setting. For me that is 1.0.  Third,  I closed down the lens. to about f/22.  I  used center weight metering.  The histograms on each shot looked okay,  so I decided to leave well enough alone.

Had I not been pressed for time,  I probably would have taken a few additional shots of each scene using spot metering but doing so requires rechecking the exposure after every shot and I was in a hurry.  In order to preserve domestic tranquility, I needed to get back to the cottage to mingle before lunch time.  Anyway, not too shabby for shooting at high noon in high heat.

An aside.  I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to continue with this blog.  WordPress, the host site, notified me Monday morning that they had frozen my account because my password had been corrupted.  They sent me a password reset code to my hotmail site, but for some reason it did not show up. It took me two days to learn that microsoft’s hotmail email service, for some reason I cannot fathom,  sometimes blocks transactional emails  such as the  reset code for changing my password.   After figuring this out, WordPress then sent me a code which apparently bypassed Hotmail allowing me to directly reset my password.  As you might guess, I am in the process of changing the email service I have registered with Wordpres..   All’s well that ends well but at my age, I don’t have two days to waste!  Thanks for the look.  Comments are certainly welcome.  See you next time.