It has been over two months since I last made a landscape photograph (due to a mixture of no camera, weather and other commitments) so I decided to go to Balmedie Beach for my first landscape shoot as I know the beach really well. I think having a local location which you know intimately is an absolute must. Before I moved to Aberdeen my intimate location was Lossiemouth’s East Beach, now it is Balmedie Beach but I have a long way to go until I really understand the rhythms and soul of the place like I do East Beach. The repeat visits to locations forms one of the corner stones of my photography.
I parked the car and headed out over the dunes heading to my favourite location on the beach as the band of clear sky started to saturate with wonderful dawn colours. The noise of the surf echoed all over the dunes heightening my anticipation. I crested the last dunes to find a beach awash with a very high tide, my favourite stream completely over run by the large waves.
I headed down on to the beach and quickly and efficiently set up the camera, tripod and filter holders as if I had been taking photos every day for the last two months, it felt great!!! I had only walked along the beach for a minute or so when I had my first microwave moment (can’t remember who coined that phrase) – when you are not really looking for a photo when all of a sudden BING!!! One finds you.
That part of the beach was being protected from the huge waves by a large ridge running along perpendicular to the sea, only the very large waves could get over the ridge, charging the sunken part behind the ridge with water, which was running into a channel and racing away behind me to the South. The running water then created amazing ripple patterns which I wanted to take full advantage of.
Once I had the initial photo set up I then started to tweak and settled on this composition and simply waited for a large wave to breach the ridge before releasing the shutter. The photo is looking North and was made 34 minutes before sunrise.
Tags: Landscape and travel
Sunrise beach dawn
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