I wasn’t thinking of going out on another sunrise for a few weeks given that it’s around 5am ATM. However a fellow tog Neil Porter was going to go out and so the idea stuck. I set the alarm for 3.15am but I didn’t sleep well and ended up leaving home at 2.45am. I had decided to go to Watcombe Beach a few weeks ago but hadn’t got around to it so the morning seemed a good time. It only took me 19 mins to drive to the car park which on a normal day would have taken twice that. Driving around in the wee small hours is quite refreshing although I couldn’t/wouldn’t do it every day LOL.
When I arrived it was pitch black and quite humid and as I walked down to the beach, down the steep track, it was kind of eerie as the owls were hooting and there was a hazy fog shining up in the beam of my head torch. I arrived at the beach and there was a tiny bit of early light on the horizon. As I unpacked the warm still morning turned a little chilly as a light onshore wind drifted in.
Then from no where I felt some drizzle, looking up no cloud? Weird! Then 20 mins later all hell broke loose. The wind whipped up and 20 mins of torrential rain fell. I managed to get a little shelter unto the eaves of the disused shop and was a bit despondent thinking of making a quick exit and go home. I stuck it out as “I was here might as well wait till sunrise”. Well mother nature came good. The bank of cloud passed over and steadily disappeared into the horizon.
Some cloud remained on the horizon so had to wait 10 mins after sunrise for the red glows and sun rays to emerge but I was not disappointed as some huge glowing rays emerged from the tops of the clouds and some great red glows from the clouds were emitted. Would have been nice with a little more cloud over the rest of the sky but beggars can’t be choosers.
I tried to get some sunbursts but I don’t think the sun was powerful enough to get them at f/18. I tried several POV’s making the most of the bright green seaweed and the sand, pebbles and rocks strewn on the beach. The only issue with using grad filters on the beach with cliffs comes when you process. You are left with a great sky and the foreground is OK but where the grad cuts across the scene the land is very under exposed. The only way to deal with this is to go with it bu angling the grad so one side looks like it is in natural shadow or to over expose a could have shots and you can blend this in to removed the dark areas which takes quite a lot of processing esp if there are trees etc.
All in all a tiring but pleasurable visit to the Torbay coastline again esp. when it is so serene and quiet. I arrived back at home at 6.45 in time to make my wife breakfast, have a shower, get changed then cycle to work – I’m not sure my mornings work was as productive as it normally would 😉