On our third evening in Bandon we made the drive to Bullards Beach State Park to spend some time shooting….
the Coquille River Lighthouse.
That evening we had overcast skies and after a few minutes the wind picked up to a substantial level! More on that later!
As I walked toward the Coquille River Lighthouse I realized I had the perfect subject for this exercise.
The other thing that came to mind as I took a look at the gray sky was I would be doing some sky replacements once I got back to my computer!
My first perspective was from a distance, using an old piece of driftwood as a leading line!
I also thought this one would be a great candidate for a sky replacement and some change in “lighting”!
Next, I walked in closer to get a “detail” shot.
From here I backed up for a more full image of the lighthouse. I ended up replacing the sky on this one as well.
Sky replacement has gotten really easy recently. You can do it in Photoshop but I personally prefer using Luminar AI. The AI is getting better and better in that it does the selection of the sky so well, that it would be impossible to do the same thing by hand! Each of the sky replacement programs gives you a selection of skies, there are many sources of skies online or you can shoot your own skies to use.
To get another perspective I walked out on the rocks to get this image. Again, I decided to replace the sky.
At this point, I decided to switch to my Nikon Z6 that is converted to Infrared and get a few IR images.
Into the Wind
There is a jetty that goes out into the ocean along the final section of the river. I had to climb over the dunes and driftwood that is along the shore to get to the jetty.
As I came over this natural barrier, the wind picked up tremendously. But I wanted to get a wide-angle image of the lighthouse with my IR camera so I trekked on through the wind and sand!
Once on the jetty, I set up my tripod and worked at getting the image I was after.
You can’t tell from this image but the wind was blowing so hard it was moving the tripod and unbeknownst to me (I was in the shooting zone), the sand was blowing off the beach like a sand storm. I noticed sand gathering on the Nikon Z6 and reached into my pocket for a lens cloth and came out with a handful of sand. I was carrying all 3 cameras so the two on straps I pulled around under my vest and hoped the best for the Z6 on the tripod!
I was able to get the sand out of the crags in the camera but my 16-35mm lens ended up with sand under the zoom and focus rings! $400 plus to get that fixed!
I tromped back over the dunes to where the wind and sand were not such a problem.
Back to the Safe Side
I went back up to the lighthouse and worked on some more perspectives. This image of the window was shot in color but converted to Black & White for a more graphic image.
Next, I got quite close and using the gritty 16-35mm lens on the IR camera, made this image.
I just had to pull out my iPhone 12 Max Pro and try a couple of creative images.
The one I liked was a multiple exposure made using the Average Cam Pro app.
I went back to the Nikon Z7 for an in-camera double exposure.
Most cameras have a Multiple Exposure setting in the menus. I have mine set to save the individual images but also to create a JPG of the images together. This is a fun and creative way to use your “fancy” camera. If you don’t like what the camera did with the images, you have the RAW files so you can combine them in Photoshop to your satisfaction.
The light was starting to get dark and there was no hope of a sunset so we packed up and headed to dinner!
The Coquille River Lighthouse is a picturesque and easily accessible lighthouse. It is a must-see when on the Oregon southern coast.
For more details on the Coquille River Lighthouse and Bullards Beach State Park, visit their website.
My next post, Part 5, will be about our visit to Devil’s Kitchen, Bandon, OR.
That is all for now.