August 28, 2019

Esme at Sunset (Bay of Fundy, Nova Scotia)

Two weeks after Ingrid's solo session at Burntcoat Head, I planned to return with both Ingrid and Esme to continue our explorations, but as things happened, Ingrid wasn't able, so Esme and I headed out on our own (the real irony of this is that Esme had hoped to come on the previous session, but was unable to attend for somewhat similar reasons).
Digital infrared original

As seems to be the weather this summer, the day was both sunny and hot, but unlike the previous Fundy session with Ingrid, I spent much of this session working with the direct evening light, taking advantage of the angular light closer to sunset. One of the first set of real successes was of Esme standing on a rock ledge, set against a shadowy cliff behind her. The light flooded across Esme's figure from the side,
Digital infrared original
As the session progressed, Esme and I moved further down the beach then I'd ever explored previously, which game a lovely feeling on exploration to the session, for all that we were working in a space I'd previously photographed in. The greatest find of this venture was a broad sweep of rock covered with fine green seaweed. Our first images here were made in infrared, focusing on a small rock at the edge, with a fan of lines in the sand flowing out from it. After some experimentation, I suggested Esme try arching right across the rock, with her hands flowing into the lines - and the above image was born.
Digital original, two frame stitch
Both Esme and I felt that the shock of the delicate green seaweed was too usual too unusual to pass by, so we spent some time working with it, both on the sun-lit side, and over the ridge in the shade. Both sets of images worked, but I decided the above composition, which presented a more delicate scene overall was the best counterpoint to the previous image, which drew heavily upon the contrast of the evening light.
Digital infrared original
By the time we finished working with the seaweed covered bedrock, the sun was approaching the horizon, so Esme and I began to move towards the shore, to make our final images of the session. On our way, we stopped on a small line or rocks that rose out of the sea of sand, to make some images of Esme against he distant horizon - the evening was quite breezy, so we had some fun with Esme holding her hair up and letting it fly free!
Digital original, 3 image exposure blend
As has been the focus all summer long, we ended the session working at the shoreline, with the incoming time at sunset. The challenge of doing this on the Bay of Fundy is further increased by the speed at which the tide comes in. Over the eight minutes I worked with the sunset, Esme had to move inland three times, as the rising water made each space she posed in too set to continue working with. As a result, I worked far faster my usual approach, but the results were worth the rush! While the sky lacked some of the drama I was hoping for, the bright yellow sky provided some lovely highlights on Esme's figure, and made the rock below her look like molten gold in some parts.

After making the last image, Esme quickly dressed as I packed up the camera and tripod, and we rushed through the darkening dusk to the car, as the tide continued to lap at our heels. All in all, a great way to spend a lovely evening!

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