I had been back and forth with the idea of heading out to the coast to photograph the king tides for weeks. November and December are a very busy time each year anyway, but it felt especially crazy in 2020 as I was getting absolutely crushed by the seemingly endless barrage of challenges in executing our first annual calendar.
As much as I wanted to get away from it all and capture the waves, I was afraid to leave everything for even a day. It felt like I was paddling a kayak viciously upstream, and if I stopped rowing for even a second I would fall way back.
An email came through that shifted my priorities. I was onto Phase 2 for the Pure Gold CEO selection and needed to begin collecting photos and footage for my field test. The forecast was for clear skies in the morning, which meant golden light. I suddenly had all the incentive necessary to load up and head out.
I drove into the night, arriving at Samuel Boardman around 11pm. An alarm was set for sunrise in the morning, though the west coast isn’t exactly known for sunrise. I know this coastline well, and I knew that this particular spot received some pretty amazing golden light.
The morning came quickly.
I hiked down the ridge to my favorite overlook on the entire west coast known as Natural Bridges. The light was still nowhere near what I was hoping for, but the waves were thundering in nicely. I set up a tripod, composed my frame, and began experimenting with different photo ideas to include the Michelob product.
As the sun began to rise, the fog and haze caught the golden atmosphere I was hoping for. Beams came shining through the trees and suddenly, everything came to life.
At one point, the camera was firing non-stop on a timer while the drone whizzed back and forth. Sophie was still in the UK at this time, leaving me to try to film and photograph everything on my own. Occasionally, someone would happen by and inevitably laugh (or cringe) at the lunatic running around the rocky cliffs with a beer at 8am.
A couple hours and a few dead batteries later, I finally packed up the shoot. If I didn’t have it yet, I was never going to get it.
After recharging and a much-needed power nap, I spent the remainder of the day running around the cliffs of Samuel Boardman photographing the waves from various places. Rather than focusing my attention on the landscapes, I observed the colors and textures in the waves themselves. The waves curled and crashed poetically, dancing and tumbling in time while the seagulls sang to the sweet ocean music.