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Admiralty Head Lighthouse on Whidbey Island

Two of the great features about Whidbey Island are the unique locations for photographers to photograph, and the quality of the light. Both of these came to bear when I took my “Stretching Your Frame of Mind” workshop there for a week last June. As I always say both in my workshops and my online class with the PPSOP, LIGHT IS EVERYTHING!!! You find the light and you’ll find the shot. In this case finding the light at a wonderful location is just about as good as it gets.

We were shooting at one location late one afternoon in June when the sun disappeared behind a large bank of dark clouds, and it looked like we were done for the day. We were heading back to Coupeville (where the offices and classroom of the Pacific Northwest Photography Workshop are headquartered) when I looked over and saw that there was a small hole between the horizon and the dark clouds. One of my students that was familiar with the area told me about Admiralty Head lighthouse, and that it was high enough in elevation to catch the sun break through the clouds before it set.

I immediately thought to myself about Eddie Adams, a famous Pulitzer Prize winning photographer. He once said, “When you get lucky, be ready”. This has been my mantra for the last forty-two years, and it has helped me take some incredible photos; so off we went chasing the light, my favorite pastime!!!

When we arrived, the temperature had dropped significantly, and the wind was howling at us. It was mighty ‘freakin’ cold up there that night and I have to take my hat off to the students that went with me. As they say in Texas, “Sometimes you just gotta cowboy up”!!!

Larry could "cowboy up"!!!

Second version a few seconds later.

While working with another one of my students I said  that Light is so fleeting that it will change in just seconds. I took this shot and had her run with me around to the other side to show that the time it took for us to get there the light and color  had changed dramatically.

As I always say, “Never stop shooting until you can’t see anything, because as long as you can see it, you can photograph it!!!

Visit my website at: www.joebaraban.com, check out my 2012 workshop schedule at the top of this page and come shoot with me some time. This year, I’ll be back with my workshop on Whidbey Island for a week starting this next August 27th. Much warmer this time!!!


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    { 2 comments… add one }
    • Jeri G April 13, 2012, 11:06 pm

      Hi Joe!  That truly was a spectacular happening, and I’m so glad to have been there with you, to learn important lessons from you.  I’m really looking forward to this year’s workshop with you on Whidbey Island – a great place at a perfect time of year – though it still might require us to cowboy up at night!  Jeri

      • Joe April 14, 2012, 3:37 pm

        I hope it goes!!! I just sent out a blast e-mail to everyone on my list.

        I’m all about ‘cowboying up’!!!


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