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Stormy Sunset - Santa Cruz, California

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Hoping against hope for a break in the clouds, I headed out for sunset after a very cloudy sunrise earlier in the day.


I've been having a good time blending images using some of my black and white filters from Alien Skin, so I figured I'd have another go at it. This is from a beach just south of Hole in the Wall beach, but north of Four Mile beach. There are some really cool rocks there that will guarantee I return for more shoots, possibly sunrises as well.


I hurried down the trail to explore the area as it was my first time here. In my haste, I forgot my filter holder in the car. I got my first opportunity to hand hold my neutral density filters. Normally, I think this would be quite easy, but today, I decided to try out my rain fly for my camera, and between avoiding waves, hand holding my filter, and trigger the remote, one could say my hands were full.


For this shot, I placed on leg of the tripod on the rock in the lower right and the other two on the shelf on the lower left. This image doesn't quite translate the difficulty in pulling this off. First, the rocks were covered in a very slick algae. Just ask Stephen Oachs about just how slick it is. Second, there is about a 4 foot drop between the shelf and the rock. One slip of me or my camera and the incoming waves would have had a field day. Luckily I avoided such a disaster...this time. A few seconds after this shot, the rain started to fall, and I packed it in for the day.


Nikon D300

Tokina 11-16mm @ 11mm

4 exposure blend @ f11

B+W Polarizer

Lee .6 Hard Stop ND Grad Filter

Two Black and White filters blended for best effect. Slight contrast bump for sky and water

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Taken on February 8, 2009