September 12, 2005

Ingrid at the Coast

Ingrid and I have not often had the chance to head out and work together on our own for a variety reasons; this isn't to say that working with her when other models or photographers are present is a problem in any way but I have no doubt that it does affect the tone of a session. On this day, however, it was just Ingrid and me planning to work along the coastline of Polly's Cove, on what I expected to be my last chance to work outdoors in Nova Scotia for the year.
Digital infrared original
 The day was perfect; the air was a pleasant temperature and it was sunny with a scattering of high clouds moving through the sky, providing occasional shade to the shoreline if I was patient. The first set of images Ingrid and I made was a couple of stitches of her posing with the rocks at the top of the bluff overlooking the ocean, but these felt as if they weren't taking advantage of the magnificant scenery around us, so we picked up and headed down to the coast. I'd hoped to work on the rocks beside where the ocean met the shore, creating images of the breaking surf behind Ingrid. It took a while to find the pose and camera position, but once all was in place, it took perhaps two minutes until the right wave presented itself, throwing a fan of foam high into the sky behind Ingrid.

After finishing with the ocean surf (our experiments were cut a little short when a wave actually broke over Ingrid, soaking her thoroughly) Ingrid and I spent a little time exploring the massive bedrock forms along the shoreline, making a series of images in the crevasses and cracks in the stone. At this point, the sun was dancing between the clouds, and the images were swiftly changing between being harshly lit, and delicately described, which made it a little frustrating to work (with every change in the light, a new exposure was called for, which dramatically slowed down the working process, and caused a number of images to be lost, as I couldn't get the right exposure before the light changed for a second time).
Digital infrared original
The last portion of our day was spent working on the seaweed, working with the hard lines of the direct light, and the luminous quality that infrared sensitive cameras give to dark brown rockweed. By this point, the sun had settled high above the clouds, and the light was even and consistent, if a little contrasty. Most of the images we made on the seaweed were multi-frame stitches, with and angle of view wider than that of my widest lens (12mm, equal to 18mm on a 35mm camera). In most cases, I was stitching less for resolution than composition, as the spread of the seaweed and sky before me was just to dramatic but, for a couple of the images, I used a longer lens (50mm) and made higher resolution stitches to facillitate printing at much larger final sizes.
Digital infrared original, 6 frame stitch
The end of the session came somewhat reluctantly. I still had a three hour drive back to Moncton ahead of me, and the afternoon was growing cooler, so as the tide slowly drew the seaweed back under its blanket, Ingrid and I climbed back to the high ground and headed back to Halifax.

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