Although Hurricane Sandy happened many seasons ago there still lies evidence all along the coast of New Jersey. Closest to my home is the quaint town of Ocean Grove. And here the keen observer can see the direct effects of Sandy’s strength on the fishing pier that previously (see the last minutes of the pier here) jutted out into the Atlantic.
These submerged pilings await funds from reluctant government agencies to rebuild the pier and now can only support a stalwart in the town, Ralph. He’s been around for over a decade in one form or another and symbolizes the steadfast theme of many shore towns in New Jersey….
Down The Shore, Everything’s Alright
I never want to be driving towards a sunrise while looking at a cloudless sky. This was the case last weekend on my way to Belmar, not a cloud to be seen for 95% of the 20 minute drive.
But, you never really know until you turn onto Ocean Ave and have a clear look at the sky over the Atlantic. On this morning the closer I got the more optimistic I got….
The clouds barely moved, staying just south and west of our intended sight line. Luckily, what features the sky presented this morning hung around long enough.
Long enough to allow us to record it’s beauty and the blues.
Until the very last minute…
Black Clipping, Clarity and Cropping in Lightroom
Got out today for an extended shoot today with my good pal Dave Gardiner and we covered a rather large area of the Jersey Shore. More specifically, South to Belmar and then north to Sandy Hook. A good trek on a rather cold day.
This shot was from under the bridge where Highlands and the entrance to Sandy Hook meet. A pretty cool location with diverse shooting opportunities.
I wanted to present a picture which would show intensity of the cold wind this morning. The temp was approx. 36 with 20-30mph winds. Tough on any exposed skin. I’m totally done with this weather!
Export single shot to Elements, process in Topaz Adjust to accentuate the clouds on the right, mask out the effect on the rest of the scene, export to Analog Efex Pro 2 for blue color cast, back into Elements to burn sections of the overpass and then back into Lightroom for sharpening and crop.
I’m looking forward to the feeling of a warm sun on my face.
I can almost feel the heat coming off this shot. You too???
Anxiously awaiting my new softbox to continue my portrait and head shot work. Probably just in time to go outside and shoot. Better late than never I guess….
Exported to Topaz Impression, dodged parts of the boat, burned most of the sand, added a bit of saturation.
Being subjected to so much “in your face” audio and video in today’s world I find myself sometimes seeking refuge from this over-stimulation.
There’s no better place here in New Jersey than Island Beach State Park (in the shoulder seasons anyway) to just get away from it all.
The park is visually stunning without being in your face.
This photo depicts it perfectly…
Validating that sometimes “less is more”.
Minimal… cropping, saturation and contrast
If you’re interested in seeing some great minimalist photography please click here. Photo’s a submitted by some talented people of this Facebook group.
Of course…. you lure them in!
The convention hall in Asbury Park has hosted many big names in the music business since the late 50’s. The Stones, Black Sabbath, The Beach Boys, and most recently has been associated with Bruce Springsteen for many years. I also just learned that Led Zeppelin played here after rejecting an offer to play Woodstock. Certainly a big name in the music world for a long time!
Well, on this day, a fishing flea market was the big draw and they were lined up 50 deep to get in off to the right of this shot.
Different strokes for different folks I guess.
Single shot exported to Topaz Adjust and I utilized one of the HDR presets to bring out the details in the shadows. Imported back into LR and used 2 graduated brushes to “burn” the right and left edges.
So how else is one to make shoveling snow a bit more fun?
By shooting a time-lapse of course! After looking at the shots I’ve decided to put together a composite instead. The processing workflow is detailed below…
- Exported 9 of my preferred shots to PSE.
- Layered and masked each shot starting with the exposure with me relaxing in the chair.
- Cropped the photo to the current dimensions.
- After completing the composite I decided to export the merged layer into Topaz Impression and finally decided on the Oil Painting by Jim LaSala preset.
- Imported back into LR and made final adjustments to whites, blacks, clarity and color temperature.
- Export with preset for wordpress blog.
All in all it took about 30 minutes to complete the composite. Not bad I say!