If you find yourself looking for something memorable to do in California, consider a day trip down the southern California coast!  I guarantee you’ll not soon forget the breath-taking views from both the beaches and the cliffs overlooking the vastness of the Pacific Ocean.  So many times I’ve enjoyed this journey on my bicycle, but on this day I had decided to go further than a bike would take me.

Retracing my steps from my Huntington Beach starting point, I decided to stop in Laguna Beach for my closing sunset shot.  As is my custom when I’m shooting sunsets, I arrived a good 3 hours before the sun was scheduled to make its descent into the Pacific.  This gives me plenty of time to survey the very best perspective for my shot. Remember, perspective and timing are two of the most important aspects of landscape photography.

Selecting a new perspective, I began my set-up procedure.  Once I was ready to go I worked through my pre-shot routine, which includes experimental camera settings and minor perspective changes.  Adjusting the camera settings is crucial in a sunset shot. Without the correct settings, your time will likely be for nothing.  I usually shoot my sunsets in shutter priority or manual mode to maintain maximum control of the image capture.

Of course when you’re shooting a sunset over the ocean, you’re always at the mercy of the ever-changing weather patterns.  And believe me, they can come quickly!  I’ve set up to shoot what I believed would be a perfect sunset, but in less than an hour it was completely obscured by a thick marine layer of clouds.  But on this evening, the conditions were very cooperative, as you can see from the image.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this incredible journey down the California coastline.  


~ by photographyfree4all on April 5, 2012.


  1. Perfect ending!


  2. I have to agree!


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