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Above the Clouds

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Good grief, where on earth have I been, it's been so long. Don't ask because I don't even know myself. I think I may have been whisked away by Dr Who to another dimension, sadly I didn't grab a camera so couldn't photograph any of this parallel universe I may or may not have visited.
After all that, I hope you are all well.

A friend of mine phoned me the other day and asked if I wanted to go out and take some photo's, the answer came quickly and was a big YES.
I got all my gear together, collected my friend and off we went. Seaham beaches here we went.
We made our way down to the beach known as chemical beach, I was a little bothered that I may grow webs between my toes or fins or something. Anyway, I was willing to risk it for a good shot.
After making it onto the beach we found some fantastic worn posts sticking out the ground, they were everywhere. Sadly the tide was out so although I got some shots of them I would have preferred to have had water swilling around the bottom of them for that little bit of extra drama. I will return at another time.
We then headed for the next beach known as Blast Beach. This is where the coal mine was, well both beaches were the mine, but this one in particular is still strewn with coal. There is also a pill box from WW2 on the beach which once again would be really good if it were sunrise, or if the tide came that high.
What I did find fantastic was the colour of the rocks on the beach, they were all reddish orange and had weird textures. I am guessing they have been burnt at some point or maybe the massive amounts of what could be iron ore is causing the colouration.
At areas the beach looks like an alien wasteland. Apparently, some scenes from the film Alien 3 were shot on that very beach.
I took some shots and then we headed for the car, this is where I began to hate my bag or the Ark of the Covenent as my friend affectionately call it. I have a largish camera bag as I like to take my digital camera, film camera, lenses, filters, in fact a huge list of gear. You never know when you might need it. The problem is the bag is a little bit heavy, 2 stone heavy to be precise, oops!
By the time I got to the car I think I was crawling along the floor. I finally got home and fell into the chair. It was then I decided to do something about it, internet engaged, favourite catalogue shop brought up, trolley reserved, dragged my weary self into the car and collected. Fantastic, the trolley is actually designed for transporting camping gear around a campsite, it can carry just over 4 stone in weight, so my lightweight camera bag will be no trouble for it. I tried it out as soon as I got home and found the bag fits the carry plate perfectly. What a find. I am now looking forward to going out on a shoot, no more tiredness caused by the weight of my bag.

Todays upload is from the Chemical Beach, I used one of the many important filters that I carry in the Ark, err, I mean my bag. The filter was my ND32 which gives me 10stops.
I converted it to mono as there wasn't much colour in the photo anyway and I felt it suited it better.

Thanks for looking and for any comments you may leave me.

Camera:Nikon D700 Check out Nikon Nation!
Lens:16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0
Recording media:JPEG (digital)
Date Taken:15 Aug 2012 - 9:51 AM
Focal Length:35mm
Lens Max Aperture:f/4.0
Shutter Speed:30sec
Exposure Comp:0.0
Exposure Mode:Manual
Metering Mode:Spot
Flash:No Flash
White Balance:As Shot
Title:Above the Clouds
Username:Hop-A-Long Hop-A-Long
Uploaded:22 Aug 2012 - 6:15 PM
Tags:Beach, Black & white, Filter, Long exposure, Sea, Waves
VS Mode Rating 101 (60% won)
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Voters:mrswoolybill · woolybill1 · CarolG · gwynn56 · NaturesHaven · SlowSong · Rapido57 · bwlchmawr · fentiger · franken · taggart · clive burrow · AnneWorner · Badgerfred · morpheus1955 · sweetpea62 · WhiteRose1 · DenKeene · mikbee · KarenFB · AnnChown · NDODS · Glostopcat · Rende · PhillipMinnis ·
Unique Views:40


mrswoolybill Critique Team 9830 forum postsmrswoolybill vcard United Kingdom1314 Constructive Critique Points
22 Aug 2012 - 6:21 PM

Rocks floating in the clouds...
Fond (I jest... ) memories of carrying Bill's camera box for him in the old days (I'm convinced this is what men get married for...) It was wood, covered with leather, and would pass as a small wardrobe.

Last Modified By mrswoolybill at 22 Aug 2012 - 6:24 PM

A wonderful capture, Andy, I can see a slightly deformed tortoise rising up out of the clouds Grin Carol


Until I read your intro. I really thought you had been away on a flight in the air; fortunately it was just a flight of fancy ("more firma, less terror', as my mother-in-law says).

There is a lovely, ethereal quality to this, dreaminess enhanced by a Big Stopper. You must be very patient.



Looks like you have made good use of your wide angle lens here to produce this moody and atmospheric image.



A wonderful dreamy picture!



Super image Andy,


A great dreamy picture well captured.your write up really made me smile..Lin


I read all the way to the end and never found out why it was called chemical beach!!Tongue I remember the sea coal on the beach, quite amazing. The long exposure makes this look like it's on chemical beach with the whispy tendrils of some poisonous gas licking up the rocks..


DenKeene  3 United Kingdom
22 Aug 2012 - 10:39 PM

Great LE image.


mikbee  8 Scotland8 Constructive Critique Points
22 Aug 2012 - 11:25 PM

Chemical beach is well named Andy.
Looks like you dropped about a ton of Alka Seltzar tablets in the water !!
Good shot.


This is very beautiful - for me it's because there's no other beach or sea paraphernalia included: just rocks and water. Lovely stuff - it works really well!


A rather informative and interesting post narrative, supported quite superbly with this gorgeous long exposure image. Simply quite breathtaking, and somewhat enchanting

Regards Nathan


A wonderful long exposure image which is perfectly suited to monochrome. You'll find that trolley is a good investment, Ade Osmant has one and finds life much easier now that he can pull his camera gear along behind him rather than hump it about on his bad back


Very inspiring use of the ND filter Andy.

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