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.
It was a cloudless, no drama day with a high sky and bright sun, but I figured I would drive to the oceanfront anyway, thinking that perhaps I could grab some arty close ups of the wind’s artistry in the sand. It had been windy on the coast most of the week since the last Nor’easter ; they come with seeming increased regularity now, and I hoped to find some interesting patterns along and behind the dunes. I wasn’t disappointed.
I lingered after taking the shot with my eye focusing just below the clump of sea grass to the right. It looked like some miniature Zen garden.
After processing the raw files back home, I uploaded the shot above to my web site and immediately sold two prints. I also got an email asking if I had taken a larger view of the scene. I had. I uploaded that photograph and it sold right away to one of the buyers of the closeup shot. She wanted to display both together. Lesson learned! Always hang on to the larger view of a cropped scene. You never know. Thanks for looking and have a good week ahead. See you next time.
Another Nor’ester has plowed up the Atlantic Seaboard and while North Carolina largely avoided scenes like that in the Boston suburbs of the ocean breaching seawalls and flooding homes and businesses, all along the Atlantic coast, the storm claimed millions of cubic yards of sand. A quick visit to the Bogue Banks of North Carolina quickly confirmed the beach erosion.
Further north, along the southern Outer Banks, North Carolina Highway 12 was again temporarily closed due to ocean overwash. All along the coast, sand fences were erected to hang onto what was left.
A shot of the vital dune line at Emerald Isle, North Carolina is a vivid reminder of what’s at stake.
Since 1979, the minimum oceanfront setback requirement for permanent structures in North Carolina is 30 times either the historical long-term erosion rate or two feet per year, whichever is larger. It’s measured from the seaward line of stable dune vegetation. That’s why when you visit the beach, you’ll see signs posted every one hundred feet or so up and down the coast that read, “Stay Off The Dunes.” Thanks for your visit. See you next time.
The Bogue Banks and its neighbor, The Shackelford Banks, lie just south of Cape Lookout off the North Carolina Coast. Unlike the Outer Banks which runs from Corolla in the north through the Cape Hatteras National Seashore to the Cape Lookout National Seashore, the Bogue and Shackelford Banks are pretty much positioned east west rather than north south. This means the sun is overhead throughout the day from sunrise to sunset. Here, the beaches are wider and they are growing. The beach you see above which rounds the point was not here ten years ago.
The dunes along this section of beach have largely been built up due to the careful positioning of sand fences which dot the landscape.
The Bogue Sound and the town of Swansboro are visible in the distance. Beach erosion and the loss of sand and dunes due to nor’easters and hurricanes along the Outer Banks, appears to have been to the benefit of Land’s End on the Bogue Banks. Thanks for the look and have a great week ahead.
The Sea Oats on the Barrier Dunes bend South as near gale force winds buffet the Outer Banks of North Carolina.
After multiple attempts to get the light on the ocean where I wanted it, I finally came close to what I had visualized. Of course, if you’re like me, you’re never satisfied and so you keep going back time and again for the perfect shot. I’m not sure I can do any better than this. But, I’ll keep trying.
Particulars: Nikon D750 Camera, 24-120 f/4 lens. Shot with manual exposure, f/8 at 1/640, center weight metering, auto white balance, focal length 65mm. No filters. I used a Slik tripod for the shot.
My thanks to those who stop by for a look. I appreciate your taking the time. See you next time if not before.
This shot of the Stars and Stripes and the State Flag of North Carolina flying on the barrier dunes along the Outer Banks at Sunset was chosen by the Eastern Council of the Boy Scouts of America to be awarded to selected friends of Scouting for their outstanding support. Exquisitely matted and framed by Shenandoah Printing and Graphics of Greenville, North Carolina, it is a most impressive presentation. It was a real honor for the Scouts to select my shot. I cannot think of a better organization to be associated with. Thanks for the look. See you soon.
The ubiquitous Sea Oat telegraphs a very calm dawn along the barrier dunes on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. It is very unusual to encounter such a quiet Atlantic this time of the year. Am recovering from surgery so will leave it at that. Nikon D600/ 24-120mm f/4 lens. Have a good week and thanks for the look.