The Story Behind the Shot
Portland Head at Dawn
Having photographed Colorado in the fall many times, Tyler was ready for a fall change of pace. In the fall of 2015 Tyler spent two weeks photographing the fall color in Colorado then boarded a plane to Boston.
Landing in Boston Tyler couldn't help but get excited as he looked out his window to a world of oranges and reds. Knowing the shots he was after, Tyler headed up into the White Mountains of New Hampshire. He then worked his way over through Maine to the coast and back to Boston.
Tyler knew he wanted to photograph Portland Head Light though it is the most photographed lighthouse in the United States. The trick became photographing it differently given there were really only two vantage points. Tyler knew what his composition was going to be before he ever arrived; however the one thing he couldn't control was the weather.
Digging through hours of the same image from countless photographers Tyler picked up on one thing; every photographer wanted and had clouds and drama galore. This was the break Tyler needed; he knew he wanted to photograph the lighthouse with a perfectly clear sky.
Now this is where photography gets tricky, planning a shot like this from thousands of miles away you can only do so much. The rest of the shot is purely left to chance, luck, and God. Well as you can see above Tyler got his wishes and had his perfectly clear sky. However the wind was terrible and the waves were quite large. Tyler needed the shot to be very peaceful and Zen to match the sky. He slowed his shutter to thirty seconds to smooth out the water. The small amount of orange comes from the rising sun coming up through the clouds on the far horizon pushing in over the ocean.
A lesson Tyler has learned many times, you can plan all you want, but you can never control Mother Nature. But really why would you want to? That is simply what makes it so fun! Worth noting, Tyler's favorite shooting conditions are 50's, overcast, and lightly raining.
Camera: Sony A99
Lens: Sony 16-35mm 2.8 @ 16mm
Shutter: 30 Seconds
White Balance: Auto
Editing: Lightroom CC
Notes: Tripod Mounted, 2 second timer