Thursday, July 6, 2017

Wild Coast Adventures ~ Bandon Beach & the Southern Oregon Coast Workshop

The southern Oregon coast features some of the wildest, most dramatic ocean scenery in the United States.  There are rugged peninsulas and secluded coves.  Sea stacks eroded from the rocky headland lie on the beaches and just offshore.  Storms lash it all and the light and scenery are constantly changing.  I teamed up with fellow API staff instructor Joe LeFevre to lead a group to Bandon Beach and points north and south, photographing a wide range of marine conditions.  The light was spectacular on our first four excursions.  At Meyers Beach we shot a colorful sunset over the many sea stacks.  At Otter Point sunrise fog encased the peninsula in angelic light.  Spiral-shaped clouds gathered over Samuel Boardman State Park at sunset on the second night, and fog suffused the sea stacks at Meyers the following morning.  Each was magical.

Sunset over sea stack and peninsula, Samuel Boardman State Park.

The look and feel of the West Coast is vastly different than the East Coast, and different photographic strategies are required to showcase the best of both.  Joe and I led instructional sessions with tips and techniques specific to shooting the coasts.  We covered reading weather and photographing diverse lighting situations, varying shutter speed to obtain different textures in the water, how to shoot waves for maximum impact, and shooting and blending multiple exposures to control a wide range of light, depth of field, and expand image resolution.

20-minute exposure of stars over Bandon Beach sea stacks.

This was the third workshop we've led to the West Coast and we're anxious to go back next year.  The scenery is so magnificent.  Watch the API website for our next workshop adventure out there.