Arched Rock Cove, a Study in Black and White

A few days ago, during the tail end of hurricane Patricia, we had some large surf here on the north coast.  I wanted to continue my experimentation with black and white photography so I headed down to Galleon’s Point on the south end of Arched Rock Cove here on Sea Ranch.  This spot is right down the path that goes through the meadow in back of our house.  I can shoot there from some fairly wind-protected spots, which I needed for the long exposures I had in mind.

I shot all these images with a 10-stop ND filter (“Black Glass”) in late afternoon using exposures from 6 to 30 seconds.  The large waves crashing against all the rocks in the cove produced a lot of sea spray (spin-drift) which is evident as soft white clouds in some of the longer exposures.  The massive rock towers are a great feature to contrast against the ever-moving and turbulent surf as it makes its way to shore.  The end result is a more abstract expression of what I saw, especially when mixing the long exposures with B&W.

I realize that fall is a time of great color change, but here on the north coast fall is more about changing ocean conditions and abrupt weather changes, at least for me.  We have our share of changing fall colors, don’t get me wrong, but having grown up in the northeast it’s just not quite the same thing.  But I revel in the differences and take each day, and wave, as it comes.


Equipment:  Nikon D810; Nikkor 24-70mm f2.8 lens, Oben Tripod wit Kirk ball head; Hoya 10-stop ND filter

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