Coney Island Sunday

I have been wanting to photograph Coney Island at sunrise for some time now.  This past Sunday the procrastination monster didn’t win and I headed out on my journey before dawn.  The weather was to be overcast with with drizzle predicted to end before 9am.  This was actually a good thing as I thought that would make more interesting photos.  I had high hopes for some ominous skies.  

Well, sometimes the best laid plans have to change.  The sky was not as sinister as I had hoped.  The rain didn’t stop until noon.  I was not dismayed, I had finally made it to Coney Island in the early morning hours and I would turn lemons into lemonade.  So I had hoped…

Funny that I thought that the more interesting images would be of the amusement park.  That’s what I had set out to do.  I had taken many angles of the Thunderbolt, the Carousel, Parachute and the boardwalk all in the morning mist.  But when I got home and uploaded the photos into Light Room those photos were just OK.  Nothing jumped out at me as that interesting.  It was a little disappointing.  I then looked at my pier shots.  As I separated out just those images, that’s when I became quite pleased.  

When creating a group of photos I try to develop them all in a similar style.  If it works, I also try to crop them in the same ratio.  This gives my images a more cohesive look when telling the story.  The rainy sky created a misty atmospheric haze, so I wanted the photos to have a natural watercolor look.

I captured a seagull as it flew towards the pier with fisherman casting their lines.  Off in the distance on the left is a ship starting on what is most likely a long journey.  This is a small speck in the scheme of things, but I love these little details that you don’t really see unless you really look.

 FLYING HIGH

FLYING HIGH

The rainy pier had wonderful reflections that would not have been there on a sunny day.  The wet planks created mirror like reflections.  Off in the distance was the perfect anchor point, a person with an umbrella in black silhouette.  I love the color that was created in this image as it looks like a sepia print with pale shades of gray blue.  This is how it really was, no photoshop tricks, a graphic effect from just natural mist and diffused light.

 PIER REFLECTIONS

PIER REFLECTIONS

One can only imagine the story of this fisherman.  You just had the sense that he was a local who goes to that pier all the time, especially early on Sunday mornings waiting to catch the big one.

 WAITING FOR THE BIG CATCH

WAITING FOR THE BIG CATCH

When I saw this group of fishermen and fisherwoman lining the pier, I noticed that I had two yellow bookended slickers.  A dot of the red hat in the middle of the composition created a story of the primary colors, yellow, blue and red.

 YELLOW BLUE RED

YELLOW BLUE RED

Finally, what would a trip to Coney Island be without a walk on the beach.  This seagull managed to get a shellfish for its Sunday Brunch.  His watery reflection was cast in the wet sand as he walked along the shore with pride over his treasured find.

 SUNDAY BRUNCH

SUNDAY BRUNCH

I will be going back to capture the rides and the excitement of the amusement park.  But that will have to wait for another time.  I look forward that.

Susan Marie