Wave Blur at Cocoa Beach

Slowing Down

motion blur on waves rolling in onto the shore at Lori Wilson Park in Cocoa Beach, Florida

Some motion blur on waves rolling in onto the shore at Lori Wilson Park in Cocoa Beach, Florida.

During our 2019 Florida Summer Vacation, we drove over to Cocoa Beach, Florida, to spend a day there enjoying the sun and the water. Unfortunately, the sun did not stick around all day, and the water started falling from the sky. Not exactly how we had wanted to enjoy the water. We waited around for a while to see if the rain might pass quickly, but it did not. So we called it a day.

But it was not all bad. We got to stay out there for over four hours. That was probably enough sun exposure for me anyway, even with heavy sunscreen and our beach umbrellas. We had plenty of time to enjoy everything. But when you live far from the beach like we do, you any amount of time never seems to be enough.

As usual, I wanted to get some beach photos to add to my collection, even though I already have lots and lots and lots. I wanted to do something a little different, so I tried to get some slight motion blur in the waves. Nothing too drastic, as you can see above, but just enough to look a little different from some of my other beach photos. Read the “About the Photo” section down below if you want to know more.

Even without the rain, it was a good day at Cocoa Beach!

Busy Days

Vacations are nice to get away from everything and enjoy living with fewer responsibilities for a while. It was nice not to have to worry about much besides whether we might need to go inside because rain was coming or whether my sunscreen had all washed off.

We came home from our relaxing week and jumped right into Vacation Bible School at our church. That meets at night each night, which when coupled with a day at work makes for a few long days. But it is worth it.

Some people might want to have their relaxing week after their busy week instead of before it. Maybe we should try that sometime. But at least we were rested up going into the busy week instead of already worn down from normal life!

So I am not complaining about it at all. After all, VBS is a very good cause and definitely worth a little bit less sleep for a few days.

Complaining never accomplishes much of anything. So instead, use that energy that you would have spent on complaints to do something good. That will make a better difference in the long run.

Bible Verse

Do all things without grumbling or disputing, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world. - Philippians 2:14-15

About the Photo

As I mentioned above, I wanted to have a slight blur in the waves instead of having them appear crisp and sharp as they usually do in my photos. But that can be a little tricky at a sunny beach.

To get motion blur, you have to have a slower shutter speed, leaving the shutter open for more than a very small fraction of a second. The downside is that more light enters the camera that way, usually leaving the photo overexposed, or too bright. You can compensate for this somewhat by closing down the aperture as much as you can and going with the lowest ISO setting possible.

But on a sunny day with the sunlight reflecting off the water, you still get a good bit of light. I adjusted for this by using a neutral density filter. In simple terms, that is a darker filter for your camera lens, and the darkness of the filter lets less light pass through the lens. Sort of like sunglasses. The particular filter I used is adjustable, and you turn it to the left or right to make the filter brighter or darker.

With my filter, I chose the middle setting. I set the aperture at f/19, and the ISO at 100. In aperture priority mode, that gave an exposure time of 1/20 second, which was enough to give the motion blur that I wanted.

Just a slightly simple trick to give a slightly different look.

Photo: A single Raw exposure, processed in Luminar. Read more about photography tips, photo software, camera gear, and more at Steve’s Photography Tips.
Camera: Sony Alpha A7 II
_Lens: _ Sony FE 28-70mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS Lens
Date: June 11, 2019
Location: Lori Wilson Park, Cocoa Beach, Florida

Motion Blur at Cocoa Beach