While I certainly appreciate the benefits of capturing images during the ‘magic hour’, I very rarely get up early in the morning to specifically do so. During our recent Nova Scotia photography tour I did plan a morning visit to Louisbourg Lighthouse Point Park.
NOTE: Click on images to enlarge.
The road leading into Louisbourg Lighthouse Point Park is picturesque in its own right, yielding a number of images on both legs of my morning visit. The image above was captured on my way into the park.
The morning started out dead calm which allowed me to capture the image above on my way to the Louisbourg lighthouse at a shutter speed of 1/30. This particular photograph took a bit of extra work in post to get it into a usable state. Suffice to say that the corresponding jpeg was very ‘muddy’ and flat looking.
Due to the position of the Louisbourg Lighthouse and the angle of the rising morning sun, I ended up capturing more seascape images than lighthouse images. Nevertheless, it was an interesting morning, even though I arrived too late to capture the rising of the sun in its entirety.
The rocky topography of Louisbourg Lighthouse Point Park affords a wide range of composition options. I spent my time quickly experimenting with various parts of the coastline as the sun continued on its morning trajectory.
After arriving at the Louisbourg Lighthouse Point Park a very light, but inconsistent breeze started up. I kept my shutter speed at a minimum of 1/50 as anything slower could have resulted in some modest image blur. Being conscious of the somewhat limited dynamic range and colour depth of my small sensor camera, I adjusted my ISO throughout my visit. My goal was to maintain an appropriate shutter speed while using lower ISO settings.
Having the sun at my back when composing images of the Louisbourg lighthouse eliminated any risk of lens flare. It also helped to brighten up the surface of the lighthouse and accent the colours of the surrounding foliage.
The photograph above was one of my favourites from my morning visit. I liked the balance created by the lighthouse on the right and the rock outcropping on the left. I was also able to use a dirt footpath as a corner exit. Equidistant composition was used to position the lighthouse in the frame.
On my way out of the Louisbourg Lighthouse Point Park I noticed the scene above. I was intrigued with the juxtaposition of the dead tree trunks and the bright foliage closer to the road. I also loved the unusual pattern in the clouds.
My final Louisbourg Lighthouse photograph of the morning was the one above. I found the details in the sky of particular interest, and used a large evergreen tree in the foreground to create a sense of distance with the lighthouse.
I noticed this pair of sign posts out of the corner of my eye as I was driving back to our motel. They will likely have some kind of sign mounted on them in the future, but the posts served as unusual details for this image and helped to anchor the right side of the photograph.
I found using the Spot Weighted DxO Smart Lighting tool was particularly helpful when processing these sunrise images in post.
Louisbourg Lighthouse Point Park is one of the featured locations in our Nova Scotia Photography Tour eBook, which is available for $12.99 CDN.
All photographs in this article were captured hand-held in available light using Nikon 1 camera gear as noted in the EXIF data. All images were produced from RAW files using my standard process of DxO OpticsPro 11, CS6 and the Nik Collection.
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