Living in Dorset I am spoilt for choice on photographing locations as a landscape photographer. It is a great situation to be in. But with Dorset being home to the only world heritage site in the UK, the Jurassic Coast, as well as so many iconic locations, it can be challenging finding a unique composition. Nonetheless, it is a challenge I try to take up every time I go out with my camera.
Old Harry's Rocks is one of those iconic locations which has been photographed thousands of times. The most popular shot is from the top of the cliffs with a wide angle lens as the sunrise casts a warm morning glow on the white chalk.
Knowing that the stacks and cliff face are visible from Swanage, a nearby town, I had planned to try a shoot from there. The only thing between Old Harry and my chosen location is the sea and there wasn't a cloud in sight. So, my main challenge was getting a picture that doesn't look flat and uninteresting. I was maxed out on focal length using my Sigma 70-200mm so my next challenge was keeping my camera and telephoto lens as steady as possible for the long exposure I was planning under the windy coastal conditions.
I like the way the rocks and the city merge together and the fact that this catches you by surprise when you look closer. I also like the simplicity of this picture that comes into its own with the colours of the gradient sky merging in the horizon and, eventually, the milky blue sea.
It is possible that this composition isn't unique at all, but the internet is vast and I know I have never seen anything like it before.
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