Smoky Water Effect

Creating Smoky Water Effect

Alas, so little time for fun! I did manage to get to some images from our Pismo Beach trip this year and quite a bit of fun working on this one.

Creating smoky water effect takes a lot of patience and a lot of practice; sure, I’ve gotten lucky sometimes and got a beautiful shot withMotion Blur, Ocean Waves the first click, but in order to get consistent result, you just have to click away. Ocean waves are especially unpredictable, they break unexpectedly and each and every image is unique; it’s best to know what effect you’re looking for before you begin.

My approach is counting seconds: how long does it take for the wave to break and recede, that becomes my starting point for timing. Since I really like to see the delicate texture waves create, I time the shutter to open just before it hits shore and to close before the wave recedes completely. I started out at 7 second exposure with these gentle waves but ended up extending the time until I got this one at 10 seconds at f/18 and experimented all the way from 1 to 60 seconds just to see what happens. Of course, this set of numbers means nothing on another shoot but the counting strategy does and I take it with me everywhere I go.