On the southwest side of Mount Desert Island, far from the tourist-laden areas of Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park, is the easily accessible Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse.
Since it’s just a short walk from the parking lot down to the rocks, it’s probably one of the most frequently photographed lighthouses in Maine. I can safely suggest that on this evening, at least 100 pictures were taken, judging by the small crowd that crammed into nooks and crannies on the craggy rocks. As the sun began to set, more and more people filtered down the steep steps, looking for a place to shoot the lighthouse while simultaneously avoiding having other people in the frame. Not an easy thing to do…
I rather quickly tired of maneuvering with the crowd down below and decided to move up the hill a bit for a different perspective. I had my heavy boots on, so it was pretty easy to scramble over the rough rocks and set the tripod in a safe place to catch the sun behind the pine tree. Even that didn’t stop one intrepid couple from hiking directly into my frame, causing me to throw out one of the exposures.
It’s a jungle out there, but the rewards are great.
Since so many images have been taken of this lighthouse, I wanted my version to be as distinctive as possible, so I pushed the ‘painterly’ feel in processing rather than keeping it hyper-realistic. For this scene, I like how it worked out.
HDR from eleven exposures +/-1EV, f/22, 31mm, processed with HDR Express, Photomatix Pro, Nik Color Efex Pro 4, Photoshop CS5