It’s easy to forget that a photograph is a period of time captured and immortalized. I always strive to make a good photograph – something that conveys a sense of place, a feeling, an emotion or elicits a reaction. There are definitely an infinite number of ways to approach a shot, a scene, or a moment…and I often gravitate to the ways I have become most comfortable with. This shot definitely does not fall within that range…it’s two minutes and sixteen seconds of recorded time at Fort Foster in Kittery, Maine during a muted sunset over the pier and Portsmouth in the distance. When you’re using tools to experiment with capturing a scene, it can be stressful…especially when so much time is at risk and you’re on the sidelines until the exposure is complete. I happen to love the shot and the overall softness of the scene…and with the unfamiliar texture of the water, thanks to the duration of 2 minute and 16 seconds of setting sun and rolling waves at high tide.
This interesting landscape/cloudscape is courteous of my 24-105/L lens and a 10-stop neutral density filter. The clouds are moving through the frame, in what is about a 2-minute single exposure. The morning had been pretty gray, and I thought would be a total wash…but luckily, there were a few minutes of interesting color as the sun rose over the horizon and lit up the sky above the clouds. This longer exposure captures some cloud movement and the soft morning light on the Memorial Bridge and what looks like a very calm Piscataqua River.
It’s close to the end for the Memorial Bridge – or so it seems. It was announced this week that the bridge would be closed for 4-6 weeks for repair, or even indefinitely according to Foster’s. I don’t think this surprises anyone ’round these parts, but it’s sort of a sad moment. Things will get better and the bridge will eventually be replaced with either a very similar looking one, or a drastic departure if some of the initial design critics get their way. One thing is sure, this original lift span bridge with all of its character isn’t really safe for vehicles anymore. It’s going to be damn cool for photographers and pedestrians to enjoy its architecture and some steady decks for a while (you can’t get a sharp image with dozens of cars driving through).
Spending time at Fort Foster during the first minutes of daylight was a great decision this weekend. I spent equal parts of the morning running around to try and get great shots & strolling around just enjoying the view. There was something about this lone tree along the coast that struck me as majestic and very peaceful. I grabbed the 10-stop neutral density filter and made a 65-second exposure, getting some dreamy light on the tree’s bare limbs and some soft water texture with the movement of the tide. Whaleback Lighthouse is a nice treat in the background.
On another note, I would like to acknowledge all of the wonderful people who bring a positive vibe to the photography community, and recognize those who provide their feedback (whether good or bad – as long as it’s constructive). If you know me or have ever taken the time to chat (which I’m ALWAYS up for doing), you’ll know that I definitely don’t know everything there is to know about photography (and don’t profess to) – but I am always happy to share what I do with those who want to learn, and always encourage others, while seeking growth for myself. This weekend’s sunrise shoot with some very talented gentlemen (who seriously humble me) was a great example of that….I came back with a few shots that I’m happy with, but have seen some iconic and epic landscapes that made my jaw drop. At the end of the day, I think it’s important to pay it forward, always be appreciative, and always strive for better. A sincere thanks to all those who deserve it – I’m glad you stopped by to read today and hope you enjoy the tree.