Rodney Campbell's Blog

Dawn Seascape Shoot – Long Reef @ Collaroy…

by on Jul.23, 2010, under Life, Photography

This is my second dawn seascape shoot (inspired to try this type of shooting somewhat by the awesome work of Xenedis and Brent Pearson) – also many thanks to the folks from the photography forums for inviting me on both occasions.

Note: Click any of the images below to see larger versions in an inline overlay gallery viewer.

It was another very chilly 5:30AM start in total darkness at the carpark at Long Reef (behind the Golf Club) at Collaroy – scrambling over a couple hundred metres of extremely slippery rocks and low water in the pitch dark to get to the edge of the reef was “invigorating”.

I should note that I don’t own any of the essential tools of choice of seasoned landscape and seascape shooters (ND’s or GND’s – Neutral Density and Graduated Neutral Density filters) (and there is no filter thread on my Ultra Wide Angle lens so it would have to be handheld even if I did) so I have to make do with what I can. I also discovered the gradient tool thingy in Adobe Lightroom so had a bit of a play and got much better results adjusting the single RAW exposures (rather than using HDR).

Firstly Way Pre Dawn – this is a 3 minute exposure I took looking back towards the City – so the ambient light in the sky is coming from the main city. I didn’t have my remote with me so this is a three minute hand hold the shutter button down – not ideal but it appears to have basically worked although I did have to heavily post process this image to bring it back…

D90 + Sigma 8-16mm @ 16mm, 177 sec at f/11, ISO 200

Pre Dawn (the very long shutter speed misty water look) [6:20AM]:

D90 + Sigma 8-16mm @ 8mm, 30 sec at f/11, ISO 200

The next two shots are the slower shutter speed flowing water shots – the first at 6:35AM and the second just after 7AM:

D90 + Sigma 8-16mm @ 12mm, 2 sec at f/13, ISO 200


D90 + Sigma 8-16mm @ 13mm, 1/13 sec at f/16, ISO 200

Looking Back (this is the headland we walked down and the rocky reef we walked across in the darkness) [7:15AM]:

D90 + Sigma 8-16mm @ 12mm, 1/25 sec at f/16, ISO 200

The edge of the reef in the early morning light [7:35AM]:

D90 + Nikon 18-200mm @ 31mm, 1/80 sec at f/9, ISO 200

A Panoramic shot of the headland and beach (this is a single ultra wide shot cropped):

D90 + Sigma 8-16mm @ 8mm, 1/200 sec at f/11, ISO 200

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1 Comment for this entry

  • Gladys Rigor

    Hi Rhodney,
    My husband shared your site to me. This is awesome. and Great work and inspiring, love it:)

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