Final tips from our professional photographer
No need for a graduated ND filter to hold back the sky… With such long exposures, Jonathan simply dodges this area with his bare hands!
Be mindful of sea spray
Getting salt spray on your ND filter is an occupational hazard when shooting slow-shutter seascapes. Jonathan always carries several spares with him so that he can change filter when one gets caked in saline crystals – cleaning the expensive filters carefully, when back at home, with a glasses cleaner and a microfibre cloth. Handily, Jonathan’s three main lenses all have 77mm filter threads, so all focal lengths from 16mm to 200mm can be covered with same square filter adapter or round screw-in filter.
Specks on a filter show up clearly in long exposures, so you need to change filters if you get seaspray on one.
Sand is an unstable surface, but with a cable release Maria wouldn’t accidentally move the camera.
Look for alternate views
Turning the other way from the dunes gave Maria the opportunity to shoot minimalist seascapes, with a smooth foreground and unbroken horizon. What could have been a boring scene if shot at a conventional speed and in colour becomes a fascinating study in light and shadow when done using a long shutter speed and in black and white. The long exposure smooths out the sea, bringing the play of light on the water to the fore.