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ameboid sunrise

ameboid sunrise
Photo Information
Copyright: Bob Harrison (BobH) Silver Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 40 W: 8 N: 192] (650)
Genre: Landscapes
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2006-09-09
Categories: Sky
Camera: Canon PowerShot S2 IS
Exposure: f/8, 1/15 seconds
Details: Tripod: Yes
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Sunrises, Sunrise & Sunsets [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2007-12-05 3:42
Viewed: 4215
Points: 12
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
There are few things more universally appealing than watching the sun rise or set, especially over water. On the mostly east facing Maine coast, catching sunrises over the Atlantic Ocean is easy and sometimes produces wonderful images such as this one. This post is the flip side of my previous one of "sunrise surf & gulls"; it shows what can happen when you point the camera in the other direction.

This day the forecast was for hot and hazy, which usually means a red sunrise, but beyond that it's difficult to predict what the air far out over the ocean will produce. Sometimes the sun doesn't appear out of the sea surface murk until it is a diameter or more above the horizon, too late to see anything but a colored disk. This day was different- the haze attenuated the light just the right amount. I decided from the first glimpse of color to shoot right at the sun with full optical zoom and to catch a full time sequence. Most of the original 28 frames were interesting individually, but when assembled into a sequential composite, the total effect was amazing.

The atmospheric layering obvious here was marginally visible while shooting, clearly visible in the downloaded individual frames, and astonishing in the full 28 frame composite. In a rapid slide show presentation of all 28 frames, the sun looks nearly alive as it morphs and oozes its way through the layers. The six frames selected here capture some of that almost ameboid movement.

Photographers are generally aware that distortion of shape and color occur right at the horizon because of reflection, refraction, and filtering. But how many people look closely enough to see the hidden structure such as revealed in this image? As usual, there can be a lot more present than initially meets the eye. As with any transient phenomenon under difficult lighting conditions, such as sunrises, the camera can capture it for more careful examination later. This describes my original goal, which was obviously met. But I also got the bonus of an unusual and aesthetically pleasing image. Hope you enjoy it.

Tech note- no filtration or color modification was used; slight brightness adjustments for frame edge matching (using sea surface, not sky) were applied in PS, overall slight contrast increase was also applied. Otherwise no editing beyond the obvious cut and paste. The full zoom used here was 432 mm (35 mm equivalent). The time interval from left to right was 2 min 46 sec.

XOTAELE, Norte, saguzar, gondox, NinaM has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To foozi: thanksBobH 1 05-06 06:33
To NinaM: babble about "babbling"BobH 1 12-07 02:41
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Critiques [Translate]

Estupenda presentación, con magníficos colores.
Buena nota.
Saludos, JL.

  • Great 
  • Norte Silver Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 32 W: 0 N: 45] (184)
  • [2007-12-05 9:25]

Very interesting and decorative picture!
Its could also be used in a book about light phenomenas, the effect of the atmosphere on the view is striking.
Composition and colors are very good.
Best regards

Hi Bob,
A very interesting and superb composition with multiple exposures. I like the effect of the atmosphere on solar disc. 10 points

  • Great 
  • gondox Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 356 W: 65 N: 342] (1585)
  • [2007-12-06 15:41]

What an idea! With very good implementation. And your detailed notes make it complete!


  • Great 
  • NinaM Gold Star Critiquer [C: 773 W: 3 N: 1157] (4077)
  • [2007-12-06 18:56]
  • [+]

Hi Bob, what an interesting note of yours and how beautiful and interesting this photo is. I looked at it with a lot of curiosity after reading your note and I agree with you, it's always interesting to venture and find out hidden structures or phenomenon. To have captured the sun setting is one, but you reminded me how the sun "moves" and babbles when it sets sometimes. Thank you so much,


  • Great 
  • foozi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2791 W: 0 N: 6696] (25839)
  • [2009-05-06 2:36]
  • [+]

Hi Bob,
Thanks for liking my butterfly shot and you marked it. I really appreciate it.
Your rising sun is a very special capture of the sun. Nicely composed with a strong visual impact.
i like the composition of the horizon. The rising amber balls of the sun is magnificent.
You really posses a good skill in presnting this unique shot.
A beautiful and simple one.


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