St Mary’s Lighthouse, Whitley Bay, England by Peter Coombes

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Picture Story

Brought up in the UK but now living in Canada it took a second vacation to Scotland and the North East to have an opportunity to take the photo, or several hundred of this iconic lighthouse that I wanted. I had seen the shot of this lighthouse online on a friend’s website and had tried to visit on an earlier vacation, but the tide wasn’t favorable. The photos I got were ok but not what I was after. For the second trip back a year later I planned my arrival around the high tide on the morning after my arrival to Whitley Bay. I scouted and took shots on my arrival before getting some interesting Blue hour shots then left hoping for the right conditions in the morning. I awoke to a cloudy overcast day with light rain. Thinking that was ok, I headed out and got to the right spot to get this composition then waited for the tide to get high enough to cover the fore ground and cause the posts to become surrounded.

The photo I wanted was a long exposure around the eight minutes, to get those long drawn out streaky skies. Using my Lee Filters App and calculating backwards I needed my 15-stop filter. So fitted that to the front put black electrical tape over all the possible light leakage points and took the shot. I also played with longer and shorter exposures to see how the clouds looked. I preferred the 8-minute shot.

After getting back home to Canada I did a reasonable amount of post processing to get the image to look like the finished image.


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