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Waking up super early can be hard to do, but it sure makes it easier when there is a view like this waiting on you. In March 2021, I joined a group of photographers on a workshop at the Outer Banks of North Carolina. This morning was the last day of our trip and we were pretty much exhausted but decided to give it our all for one more outing. We met up at the beach around 4:00 AM to shoot the milky way and then moved down to Jeanette's Pier to watch the sunrise. Just before heading out to the pier, we had the pleasure of witnessing the Space X Falcon launch out over the ocean and a couple of us managed to snag a quick photo of it. As we walked out onto the beach, I saw the beautiful bands of color on the horizon, and I knew we were in for a treat. The sunrise did not disappoint, and I was able to capture many beautiful images.
There are so many beautiful places to photograph along the rugged North Carolina coastline and Jeanette's Pier seems to be a photographer favorite. It's easy to access and has plenty of parking available. It is also a great place for 'under the pier' shots as the pier supports create some nice framing.
For this image, I set up my tripod fairly near the highest point of the surf but not quite in the water. I set my Sigma 24-105mm lens to the widest angle at 24mm in order to capture the full length of the pier as well as the beautiful gradient of color on the horizon. A 5 second exposure gave me the look I was going for. I love how the light in the sky is reflected in the receding waves. This was shot about 30 minutes before sunrise and if you look closely, you can still see a few stars in the sky.
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Dimitri Vasileiou • Editor