Welcome to my 2018 Twelve Days of Photos, where I look at one of the images I chose to include in my best of year selection and talk a bit about it. To see the entire list of images I chose and learn more about my year in photography, please check out my 2018 Best Photos of the Year post. You can also look at all of the images over on my Smugmug Portfolio Site, and I’ve embedded a slideshow at the end of this post. To see a larger version of the image, you can click on it.

Newport, Oregon

Laurie and I often take vacation in September after Labor Day when things are starting to settle down, the kids are going back to school and we miss out on the worst of the tourist rush hours. This year, after discussion, we decided to hit a well-worn path for us, and headed up the Oregon coast, hitting some of our favorite spots. In Newport we’ve found a great little place, the Agate Beach Motel, which is on the bluff overlooking Agate Beach just south of Yaquina Head. Yaquina Head Lighthouse is just past that bit of land, just out of sight from this property, which I thought might happen but hoped I could find a way to get it into the images from here. I did do some scouting and I think there are some nice images to be had in future visits.

The first night in, I thought the light might have some potential and I wanted to do some experimenting so I grabbed the gear and went out to see what I could do. As it turned out the sunset light never happened, but I hauled out the ND filters to play with long exposure, and went fairly deep into the blue hour, and ended up with some shots I liked, including this one. Nerdy details: 8PM, 10 seconds at F/14, ISO 200 with about 10 stops of ND on it.

Whenever I stop and shoot long exposure, the question I always have is why I don’t do it more (answer: I am an idiot? Or let myself get too busy? Or…?), they seem to be my favorite landscape images in the last few years, when frankly my overall output on landscapes has been pretty mediocre to putrid. This is one that months later I still really like, and I really ought to take it as a hint on things to do moving forward in the landscape universe.

Will I take that hint? well, ask me this time next year…