The quote everyone knows about photography is 'The camera never lies!'. In one sense that is true, but in many others it rarely tells the truth. Why can both possibilities be true. The answer is because photography is an expressive art form, as all art is. What I mean by that is that the photographer can express through his or her print, both what is occurring in the physical world (the world outside the camera) and the internal world of the photographer (their emotions, thoughts, beliefs, likes and dislikes). This is why you can take a number of photographers to the same location and each produce images that are different to the others.
In the last few years, with the increasing range of very dark neutral density filters, there has been a tendency for seascapes to look misty and calm. They capture that feeling of peace, that many of us feel when we take a stroll along a windswept beach. But in a storm the beach can be a dangerous place, with huge waves surging in, crashing onto the beach only to be pulled back by the next wave. Every year people get into trouble, caught out by its power and its ability to surprise.
I wanted to make an image that captured the more menacing side of stormy beaches. With a front surging in to the coast and the waves growing in strength and size, it looked perfect. The turmoil in the clouds above, promising that this was just the start.
When I first thought about going to Castlepoint and looked at the possibilities, I looked at Google Earth and saw the moon rising over the reef. In fact the image on Google Earth that day looked pretty close to the image above. Virtual scouting is a valuable tool to have in your kit bag.
Today has been the coldest of the year so far, with wind, rain and a cold southerly working up the country. But as the day has gone on the rain has faded out and at sunset, even though there was thick cloud on the western horizon the fading sun lit up the eastern sky.