Shallow Seas

Barge poles and exposed shoreline. Lake Champlain. Burlington, Vermont

It’s no joke that I have waited about a year to make this image under the right conditions! I have been scouting this particular composition many times over the course of 2011 waiting for the water to be low enough and the weather conditions to be just right so I could get the perspective in today’s image. The day before I shot this image I was here in the same spot shooting the same thing only with clear blue skies and the first light of sunrise striking the rocks. However I wasn’t crazy about that shot and when the conditions changed overnight and I saw the gloomy clouds the next day I rushed out to shoot this one.

If you notice in the image there is a white band on the rocks and barge poles and this is where the water level is normally. We are in a bit of a dry spell so the water level has graciously decided to drop enough to give me some more interesting compositions along the lake. When the lake and the waterfront in the city of Burlington flooded back in the spring the water level was up and over the top of the piers and the rocks of the shoreline here! The area here is still quite damaged but I wanted to give some perspective on how the water levels in Lake Champlain can change from season to season.

If you follow the shoreline a bit and look back at these piers they are actually lined up in two distinct rows. A challenging spot to shoot as good compositions take a great deal of time and patience but if you wait long enough the reward is well worth it.

Image Data: ISO 100. 17mm. F14 @ 67 seconds. UV Filter and a Lee Big Stopper neutral density filter.

Here is the cameras position. It's a tight shot because the camera and myself are on a very small exposed rock! Thankfully the water is calm otherwise I would be one wet photographer! The camera is slightly tilted down.


8 thoughts on “Shallow Seas

  1. Nice shot Andy, so well suited to black and white.
    I really like that fact that you are adding an image of the camera in position too.
    It’s a nice addition for the technical geeks like myself to be able to see.
    There is no chance of a such a thing as a dry spell in Ireland here, tends to rain non stop throughout the winter months, I don’t get much of a chance to get out and about at the moment.

  2. This looks really good in B&W. I can see what attracted you to this. That small island (?) on the horizon really helps the balance. Strange sometimes how something as insignificant as that detail can make a disproportionate difference. The foreground rocks are tremendous

  3. I really like how you’ve composed this image Andy! I think its cool that you can see the rocks beneath the shallow water on the left, it works as a great anchor to that side of the frame.

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