20 Jul 2015

Stormy weather-part 2.

The previous story with the Stormy Weather photo has probably created more emails than any other story on the blog.
Rather than answering the questions individually I thought that I would write a postscript to the previous post explaining the background.

I should explain that I did not take the photo for the blog.The Sydney Morning Herald has an online photo group-Clique-which has a monthly competition and the July challenge is "Landscape and weather".
Entries have to be taken within the last 4 weeks so I had to shoot specifically for the competition.
I had visualised the shot I wanted -although I am still not certain whether my seascape qualifies as a landscape.The location is literally five minutes drive from home.All I needed was the right combination of wind-to generate a heavy sea-and the right clouds and light.I drove to the location late on thursday afternoon and the sea was up but it was just too sunny and the clouds lacked drama.I watched the weather on friday morning but it was too overcast however all the elements came together really well late on friday afternoon.I was very lucky -particularly with the threatening clouds and the rain squalls out at sea.

I had decided I wanted a black and white shot for drama.I planned to use a 20mm lens to get the widest possible field of view on the rock formation and this dictated that I used the Sony a7.I would have liked to have used a Leica but the 28mm lens on the X Vario was just too narrow.
I wanted to freeze the waves so I needed to use a fast shutter speed but I also wanted a small aperture to give me a good depth of field.I did not want to use too high an ISO as this would have given me too much "noise" on the file so I decided that 1/640th sec at f11 at 1600 ISO was the best compromise.

I took just 12 shots at the location-all on the same settings.I was just waiting for the right wave formations.After 12 photos I reviewed them in the electronic viewfinder and decided that I had struck lucky and that two looked promising.This decision was hastened by the very strong,cold wind and some heavy spots of rain.

When I arrived home I downloaded the all shots into my computer and this confirmed that two looked likely candidates.I then processed them in Lightroom.I did a one click black and white conversion on both and decided that black and white did not work for this shot and that colour was the way to go.I then set about "fixing them up" them in Lightroom and Color Efex. This took about 30 mins.

I compared the two shots and decided that one was the better of the two because the water flowing over the rocks looked so good and the sky was bigger and looked more dramatic.The rejected photo is shown below.

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