I never even imagined sunrise along the SoCal OC coastline until I joined a photography buddy of mine for a meetup.
I have been to Laguna beach several times in the past and have visited Heisler parka couple of time. All I usually would do is just take a stroll. I would find some compositions that seem intriguing in my mind. But, I never really took the time to take those pictures as I thought they were simple and straightforward and didn’t want to spend time coming back to take them.
But I have not seen this spot at sunrise, so when the meetup was organized, I thought that would be a good time. We met about 30 minutes before sunrise by the park gazebo and found a perfect spot overlooking the Laguna Beach. We know the sun will come up from behind the mountains so it’s going to be a simple and a straightforward composition with a few palm trees to our left and ocean to the right with the shoreline leading towards the mountain and the sun.
We took a few pictures as the sun started peeking from behind the mountain. The sunrise was beautiful and was all over in a few minutes. After the sunrise, we decided to take a quick walk along the trail to look for other photographic opportunities. I went straight to the spot that I had scouted earlier on in my last visit.
I am glad I decided to go that day as the weather was perfect. There were nice layers of thin clouds in the sky and with a mild breeze. Everything was perfect weather-wise for the composition I had in my mind.
I quickly set up my camera, did a few test shots to make sure my settings and the composition are to my liking and set up my Lee foundation kit to do some long exposures. I checked the settings once again and calculated my exposure time for the 10 stop ND filter that I was using and started taking my pictures.
I took two sets of pictures just in case one of them didn’t come out right. I also managed to get a nice long exposure panorama shot. I actually didn’t think that it would come out the way I envisioned, but I am glad I tried the shot.
Overall it was a fun morning hanging out with friends and taking sunrise pictures. We then went to Urth Caffe in Laguna beach to have a cup of coffee and breakfast before we split for the day. It was a great way to start the morning.
More pictures from this place…