Since my return from Cayman Brac in the Cayman Islands I have been busy processing the images created during my two weeks on the island as well as getting caught up on a backlog of work. The terrain of Cayman Brac is mostly that of what is referred to as the “Iron Shore” however, there are a few sandy beach locations and also a very rugged cliff on the east end of the island. Cayman Brac is roughly 12 miles long by about 1 mile wide so getting around the island to photogenic locations is never really a challenge.
For my two week stay on the island I rented a villa on the south shore that has a lovely sandy beach with a few strewn rocks that were often my subjects for sunrise imagery due to their photogenic appearance.
For the sunrise imagery over the Caribbean Sea my number one, go-to filter was the Singh Ray 3-Stop Reverse Graduated Neutral Density Filter. A reverse grad filter has the darkest density in the center of the filter and will transition to the lighter density has you approach the top of the filter, therefore, it does an excellent job of holding back the brightness of the sun when it is on the horizon without over darkening the upper portions of the sky.
On the morning I decided to make way up to Pollard Bay for sunrise opportunities on the eastern end of the island I was rewarded with a beautiful sky, and I was immediately drawn to the numerous tide pools reflecting the sky’s colors. The iron shore here is also adorned with lovely green vegetation. After the sunrise image opportunities ended I walked along the shore towards the base of the brac – a Scottish word for bluff.The walk to the base of the bluff was relatively easy, with only one section that would have been treacherous during rough seas, but the seas were not too bad and all I had to contend with was a touch of ocean spray as the waves crashed into the rugged shore.
The north shore of Cayman Brac provided nice opportunities for sunset images, however, on most evenings as the sun was setting the skies were uncloudy. With little interest in the cloudless skies it was often best to have a minimal amount of sky within the compositions and concentrate on foreground details. Lengthy exposures would blur the ocean’s wave action into a pleasing misty appearance.
Often during my morning sunrise sessions the sun would end up rising into a bank of clouds and present a lovely display of crepuscular rays – below is one of my most favorite such displays that I witnessed.
Please do remember to click on each image to view the larger, sharper versions.