Photographing a surf zone can be challenging! This is due to the constantly changing conditions in these areas like weather and tidal cycles. The first day I scouted Cape Perpetua along the Oregon coastline, I felt like I was in a water park! Cape Perpetua is home to some fascinating power surf zones created by jagged volcanic outcrops that resist Nature’s relentless fury. Here, the geologic features funnel the waves energy into chasms and compresses them until they detonate in dramatic explosions of sea and foam. Some of the unique water features that can be found here is the Spouting Horn, The Devil’s Churn, and my favorite - Thor’s Well - also called the Pacific Gateway to the Underworld.
I realized that to get the full effect of Thor’s Well on camera, I would have to come back at high tide. And when I did, Mother Nature decided to push me around, literally. The wind was up and overcast skies squeezed out intermittent drizzle, causing me to put my equipment away a few times. But the water’s energy was on full display, charging Thor’s Well with huge swells of seawater. This was the time. Other onlookers and photographers fled. It was still a little too bight for long exposures, even though it was overcast and dripping, so I stacked a couple dark lenses to “slow down the light.” I clicked away one exposure after another (wiping my lense off often) before heavy rain came back and wind flared up again. By standing in between the camera and the wind I was able to get enough images to call it a successful visit before the weather completely took over.
“Into The Blue” is photography project that captures a still time lapse environment of Thor’s Well at high tide. By preserving the bluish overcast color and using a slower shutter speed, I created a photograph that is all about motion and reveals this areas deceiving side of mysterious serenity.