Copper Coast, Co Waterford, Ireland by Brian McDonald

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Picture Story

After a pretty uneventful sunrise shoot earlier that January morning 2019 from the cliffs above this area, myself and 2 photographer friends scrambled down the steep grassy cliff to the a small cove and the magnificent view of these sea stacks. The Copper Coast is plentiful in natural rock formations and a little hiking is all that is needed to venture further than the more popular shooting viewpoints.

Once in front of the scene, with two experienced photographers set up to my left and right, you have to up your game! I studied the water flow of the incoming waves and the receding swash flow. I noticed one little channel was flowing around some rocks so this was to be the foreground interest with immense sea stacks as the main subject.

To our delight, the fast moving clouds were opening up on the horizon with rays of sunlight shining through. Conditions were exciting and after some frantic shooting at different shutter speeds while using a grad filter to darken the sky, the image came to life. Many images were captured in quick succession while the light rays came and went as fast.

This landscape excursion was a great lesson in two areas. Not to heavily rely on golden hour periods for the best light and to stay around for a while while the sun rises further as you could miss a golden opportunity to capture a unique scene. Ireland has some fantastic moody skies which are constantly changing due to adverse weather fronts rolling in from the Atlantic. The coasts make for a splendid place for seascapes all around Ireland with hundreds of shooting locations to choose from, whether it be the Copper Coast in the South East, West Cork and Kerry in the South West, Mayo and Donegal in the North West and the Causeway Coast in the North East, the options are endless.

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