The Eternal Dance of Elements

I haven’t done really long exposures in a while, and I was hoping that the marine layer would be supportive when I headed out to La Jolla’s Hospital Reef early last week in the morning – overcast means flat, even light and longer exposure times, which works quite well even in daylight with the aid of neutral density filters. But, as I got closer to La Jolla, it began to burn off already, so I only scouted a little bit – I was particularly looking for the somewhat famous “potholes” that are featured in many photographs. (found them, and they’re far less impressive in real life;-)

That morning it was low tide and the area did not look particularly appealing, which is why I returned for a rising tide yesterday evening – to find then that reef probably really looks best after high tide, when the water is receding, so that the rocks are all wet. I think that mornings must be best for this approach, when the rocks are also washed clean from the high tide, and with few if any footprints of people and pets in the sand around. There’s a lot to consider when you want to be in the right place at the right time!

Nevertheless, as daylight was fading (this photo was made 40 minutes past sunset) and with the tide further rising, I managed to find a spot where the rocks were all-wet already, and the almost organic, alien-like shapes and structures of the reef worked to my liking despite being quite the complex and chaotic mass. The clouds were racing quite fast across the sky, giving a nice and soft, blurry counterpoint to the hard and twisted edges and shapes of the foreground in this 2 minute long exposure. I hope you like it.

Black & white long exposure photograph of a reef at La Jolla's coast, San Diego, CA, by Alexander S. Kunz
The Eternal Dance of Elements — Hospital Reef, La Jolla, CA. June 2013.
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