If you like to go to the beach and feel almost all alone, I highly recommend going when there is a threat of rain. That worked for us during our recent beach visit before our Disney Cruise.
As you can see here, Laura walks with her board out into the waves at Cocoa Beach, Florida, with seemingly no one else around. Yes, there were actually a few other people out at the beach at the time, but they were not anywhere near us. Even with the ultra-wide angle of the fisheye lens, I did not have any trouble getting photos with no one else in them.
Of course, you can probably guess the reason that there were no people around, if you take just a moment to look at those clouds. During our stay at the beach before our cruise, there was a weather system parked right over Florida that kept bringing serious-looking clouds and occasional rain. Apparently, such things keep lots of people away from the beach, because it seems that many people just want to go to the beach on a sunny day.
Not us, however. We want to go to the beach whenever we can. And this was when we could go. There was no rescheduling until another time. The local folks have it nice, because they can just pick and choose when they go to the beach. We go when we can go, and we deal with the weather when we are there in whatever way that we can.
How we dealt with the weather on this particular day was to get out there early, hoping to avoid the rain for as long as we could. The forecast had been calling for rain around 10:00 or 11:00 AM, so we were out there by 8:00 AM, hoping to be able to stay for an hour or two. And by trying to avoid the rain, we also avoided all of the people. Apparently people don’t want to get out to the beach that early, especially on a cloudy day, so the early hour was also a contributing factor to the lack of people.
It worked out in our favor, however, because the rain held off for several hours, and we were able to stay out there until around 1:30 PM or so. I even ended up going back to the car and getting our beach umbrellas, because the clouds cleared up enough that the sun started to come out a little bit, enough that we were thankful for a little bit of shade. We had not brought anything for lunch with us, thinking that we would not be out there all that long. Fortunately, we had brought some bottles of water and some snacks, so we survived on M&Ms and Pringles, which really is not a bad way to live, unless you are one of those health expert people.
With the partially clearing skies came more people, but not before we had enjoyed a good bit of almost alone time at the beach. In this photo, you can see Laura and Jaylin out in the water, and you can also see a few other people out in the distance to the left if you look hard enough, but there still were not all that many people there.
Don’t get me wrong - I don’t mind sharing the beach with other people. There is nothing wrong at all with others being there. But sometimes it is nice to have a little more room all to yourself, and we choose to enjoy those times when we have them. Even if there are lots of clouds and a few sprinkles involved.
He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. - Mark 4:39
About the Photos
I have said this a few times before, but cloudy sky photos are almost more fun to work on than sunny sky photos. Sunny skies are nice, but cloudy skies are dramatic. The clouds here may look a little worse than they did in person, although not too much in this particular occasion. The trick is to find the right balance between not enough processing and too much processing, although that balance actually depends more on the observer than on the one doing the processing. Hopefully, you as the observer will not think that these photos are too much over the top.
Here is a before-and-after comparison of the first photo:
Photo: Each photo is a single Raw exposure, processed in Photoshop. Read more about photography tips, photo software, camera gear, and more at Steve’s Photography Tips.
Camera: Olympus OM-D E-M10
Lens: Rokinon 7.5mm f/3.5 Fisheye Lens
Date: June 6, 2017
Location: Cocoa Beach, Florida