beatin’ the heat

This week at I ♥ Faces, it is a celebration of summer!  Since I just posted these photos which say summer to me, I thought I’d join in the fun.  Go check out the links for more stories and photos of summer.  :)

To say it’s been HOT around here lately would be an understatement.  I’ve felt like we have been back in Longview, TX.  I mean…101?  103?  107?  All in a row?  Are you kidding me?  It was 80 at midnight on Wednesday night!  You know it’s bad when the predicted high is 92 and you think… “Oh good, it’s cooling off!”  This year, we have a window AC unit in our bedroom, and we’ve had Ethan camping out on our bedroom floor this week so we can all get some sleep.  But the rest of the day is pretty much lived in a house that just cannot cool off.  At dinner time Thursday night, it was 91…inside.  We couldn’t open the doors and windows yet because it was still 95 outside.  We are not cut out for this!  And neither is our house.  Someday, we hope to have central AC.  We put AC in our first house, and no matter what people say about the Pacific Northwest not needing AC, we ran that thing, at least a little bit,  from April to October!

So, when a friend invited Ethan and me to go to the beach with her and her kids on Wednesday, we were all over that!  Oh, how fun it was to watch the car thermometer go down, the further west we went.  As we pulled into the parking lot at the beach, we were struck with an odd sight.  It was completely foggy.  We couldn’t see the ocean at all!  But right behind us was clear blue skies.  And right in front of us was a wall of white.  But the temps…oh, they were perfect.  Somewhere between 65-75 and no wind.

After grabbing some lunch, we hit the sand.  After a while, we could start to make out the water…

From the water, looking east…you can see the blue skies.  They just weren’t breaking through directly above us.  No, this isn’t a sandstorm, it’s a fog storm!

I really enjoyed taking pictures in this stuff.  It provided a kind of soft, dreamy, light effect that worked well for the photos, I thought.  And it must have messed with my brain, because for some reason, sunscreen just didn’t seem as urgent when I couldn’t see the sun.  But, I’ve lived in Oregon most of my life.  I’ve been sunburned before in cloudy conditions.  I should have known better.  The stuff was sitting in the backpack right next to my beach chair, but did I use it?  Nope.  It was the fog, I tell ya.  It infected my brain, which now resides in a sunburned cranium.  I did spray some on Ethan…about an hour before we left!  Thankfully, he didn’t get burned.  And my face and arms aren’t all that bad now.  But, wow, did I feel like an idiot when I looked at myself in the mirror that night.

But, these photos are making up for it.  They make me oh so happy.  Here are a few of my favorites from the day.  In fact, these are some of my favorite images.  Ever.

siblings…


39 Responses to “beatin’ the heat”

  • Janey Says:

    WOW!!! You did an awesome job, these are such great photos – I am taking you to the beach with us, the next time we go = like maybe next year?

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    Elaine replied:

    Sure thing! :) Try and order up some of this warm fog, OK? It was surreal and splendid.

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  • Erin Says:

    Those are amazing Elaine!! They make me feel happy! =)

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  • Julia Heasley Says:

    These look like contest winners to me. I love them!!

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  • Heidi @ Mt Hope Says:

    Those are insanely terrific photos, Elaine! That first fog photo is wild. That must have been so strange to see.

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  • Angie from theArthurClan Says:

    Amazing Elaine! Absolutely amazing…I can completely see why these are your new favs.

    I never think to turn beach photos into B&W. I’m going to have to start thinking about it though because these are stunning. WOW!

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    Elaine replied:

    Thanks, Angie! I think the fog really enabled these shots to happen and brought something to the conversion. The light was so soft and even, in the middle of the afternoon! So cool! I processed these completely in Lightroom and used a free preset called Creative Catalyst 10 as a starting point.

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  • Yelena R. Says:

    OK, these are seriously amazing! I can totally see why they are your favorites. The contrast is amazing and a couple belong on canvases!Good luck beating the heat :) The temp here in New England is only in the low 80s but with 70-80 percent humidity, it is almost unbearable!

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  • Life with Kaishon Says:

    Oh my gosh. I am in LOVE with your beach pictures. They are brilliant. What perfect processing. And what delightful children. These just made my day! So much joy and excitement. I feel as though I am right there with you!

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  • Me-Mo Says:

    These pictures are amazing! I am surprised at how much I love the b&w beach pictures…I usually associate the beach with bright colors, but your b&w are perfect!

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  • My Two Seasons Says:

    Wow! Those are some amazing pictures!! The fog on the beach is so eerily beautiful.

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  • Foursons Says:

    Amazing…all of them!

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  • jen@ourdailybigtop Says:

    What amazing shots! I’m going to have to try and turn some of my beach pics into b&w too. Love the ones of your daughter standing in the bucket.

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  • patti Says:

    what beautiful pictures…the light in the black & whites is just perfection! you’ve captured summer bliss quite nicely!

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  • Andrea Says:

    I love the look the fog gave these photos. Your black and white conversions are amazing!

    I sure hope the heat is nearing its end for your. It sounds nearly unbearable.

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  • patti h Says:

    wow those photos are beautiful. The black and white are so crisp just love them

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  • Tammy Says:

    Life has been so busy…it’s so nice to come here and scroll through your pictures, Elaine, as I catch up. You are so good at the art of photography and I admire your talent :-)

    There are very few homes that have air conditioning where I live, so we’d be roasted alive with that kind of heat! In fact, the summer has been soooo cool that I often throw a sweatshirt on in the mornings until the sun warms the house a bit. Such a contrast with your HOT!

    Do take care!

    Blessings,
    Tammy ~@~

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  • Puna Says:

    My goodness these photos are gorgeous.

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  • Susan Says:

    Elaine!!!!!!!!!!!!!! These are awesome! I love the surreal sand ones and every. single. image. that. follows. You must have been grinning from ear to ear as you pulled each of these up on your screen! :-D

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  • Marla Says:

    Those are fabulous fabulous shots! They all look so happy.

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  • Mandy Says:

    I just love all these photos. The black and white are breath taking!

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  • Deborah Says:

    Such sweet photos. Glad that you guys had fun and were able to cool off at the beach! Smiles, surf and sun…not much else is needed.

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  • Julie Rivera Says:

    Oh, these are simply gorgeous! Really, some of the purest, most spectacular B&Ws I have seen in a long time. I love the smoothness of them…I know, a highly technical term “smoothness.” These would make a tremendous wall gallery.

    [Reply]

    Elaine replied:

    Thank you, Julie! That is such a nice compliment, especially coming from you! I do hope to get some of these on the wall. :)

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  • Heather Says:

    So beautiful. The B&Ws are so rich and beautiful. These really look timeless!

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  • emily Says:

    This is so amazing.. the processing is stunning and the whole set looks like a coffee table book. Simply perfect. Big ‘ol pat on the sunburnt back!

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    Elaine replied:

    What a nice thing to say! Thanks for dropping by and commenting!

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  • Heidi @ Mt Hope Says:

    Psssst! Kindred spirit whom I haven’t yet met…. you do know we aren’t all that far from each other, right? :) Someday we’ve got to meet up!!

    [Reply]

    Elaine replied:

    Yes, I agree! :)

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  • TidyMom Says:

    B.E.A.U.T.I.F.U.L.!!!♥♥♥♥
    I LOVE the processing, the shots, everything about these!!!!

    I’m just getting started with my first dslr, can you tell me what lens you used for these shots?

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    Elaine replied:

    Thank you very much for the kind words. I use a Canon 40D and shot these with the Canon 17-55 2.8 IS, which is a great workhorse of a lens! Thanks for stopping by!

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  • Natalie Says:

    You’re pictures are absolutely beautiful!!! How do you get the back and white pictures so crisp and perfect????

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    Elaine replied:

    Thank you, Natalie! I think these photos turned out well and crisp for a few reasons:
    - I had wonderful subjects in a wonderful environment! :)
    - The lens I used is very sharp (Canon 17-55 2.8 IS). A high quality lens is extremely helpful in capturing crisp shots!
    - I made sure to keep my shutter speed fast enough to freeze the action. I was between 1/640 and 1/2000 all day.
    - I made sure to not use too shallow a depth of field. I stayed between f/3.5 and f/5.6 all day. This isn’t all that deep (or narrow of an aperture), but I normally like to shoot with a shallow DOF (aperture of f/2.8 or wider). In this case, I knew a shallow DOF would not give me the look I was after. I let the fog bring softness to the images rather than a shallow DOF.
    - The fog was a wonderful sunshine diffuser, supplying non-squinty light without harsh shadows. Yay!
    - I landed on some processing that I was really fond of for these shots. I used a free Lightroom preset called Creative Catalyst 10 as a starting point and tweaked each image to get what I wanted.

    Hope that helps! Thanks for stopping by! :)

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  • Hannah Says:

    Your beach pictures are AWESOME, esp. in black & white…such contrast! Wish we could load up on a hot day and spend it at the beach! :)

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  • Mary Says:

    AMAZING. and worth the sunburn. I miss takling shop to you, Elaine! A few of my pictures from India are up on this site if you want to see them:
    http://www.hopeinkmagazine.com/2009/08/beauty-in-chaos/

    [Reply]

    Elaine replied:

    Thank you, Mary! Oh, how we’ve missed you! I love seeing your India photos. Thanks for sharing the link – just terrific! I’ve enjoyed seeing your photos on FB as well. I’m guessing you’re off to college now. We look forward to seeing you sometime soon, I hope. :)

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  • mary beth graff Says:

    these images are spectacular!!!!! wowwowowowo!

    how did you process them? the black and white and contrast levels are perfect! nice nice work!

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  • Kim Nodurft Says:

    Simply amazing!! I loved everyone of them. Makes me wish so bad that my son was still a little boy.

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    Elaine replied:

    Thank you very much for stopping by and leaving such a nice comment! :)

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