While we were in California, for my son’s Marine Boot Camp graduation, we took in as much beach time as possible. I love the ocean and surf, and my photography bucket list was to take photos of the sunset over the Pacific and the sunrise over the Atlantic, and I have accomplished them both.
The ocean skies remind me of the midwest and big sky country. With the right lighting the sunsets are amazing and it feels as though you can see to the end of the earth.
To achieve the golden oranges of the sky and clouds under expose a half a stop, your subject matter will be dark, but silhouettes against the sky can be very attractive. follow the rule of thirds by placing your horizon in the upper or lower third of the photograph, depending on what is more appealing, the surf or sky. Focal points such as people, a sunburst, or landscape try and place in the 2/3rds of the frame.
The San Diego Pier is one of the most famous photographic landmarks in Southern California. We didn’t have enough time for me to hike and get the photograph I really wanted, but this year I will have another opportunity when my step son graduates from Marine Corps boot camp.
My goal is to duplicate the below images.
My daughter and I could both live at the beach very easily, something soothing about the consistency and rhythm of the waves. Although the water was very cold, my daughter just had to go swimming, hey she’s sixteen, she knows enough to come in when she’s cold. Next day she learned to body surf, and did a pretty good job of it too. She was so proud.
San Diego is a popular location for photographers and there even tutorials and guides to photographing the California coast. I am starting to take trips specifically for photographic purposes and with that quest comes preparation. Such as knowing the time of the sunset and when the lighting is best for certain landmarks, buildings and iconic landscapes. If you take your photography seriously then utilizing such guides is highly recommended.
Tips on Photographing San Diego
PhotoSecrets San Diego: The Best Sights and How To Photograph ThemPhotoSecrets San Diego: A Photographer’s GuidePhotoSecrets San Francisco & Northern California: The Best Sights and How to Photograph ThemThe Photographer’s Guide to the California Coast: Where to Find Perfect Shots and How to
This picture of my dear friend makes me smile. Why were we laughing? Who knows, who cares. This is the epitome of a carefree summer day on the beach at Block Island.
This is my idea of summer. Sand, water, sun and the time to relax and enjoy it. I’m a sun worshiper at heart. I gauge a successful summer by my tan line. Most summers I fail, but I do have some good weeks. I do not buy into the myth of sun exposure.
My heritage is Native American, I have a lot of melanin in my skin, I tan easily, rarely burn (with the exception of the first of the season) and I just feel better when I’ve had some natural vitamin D exposure. No, I do not do cloudy winters well at all, I’ll leave that to those with European heritage
Myth About Sun Dangers
I honestly believe (based on the New World, Old World monkey vitamin D research requirements) that certain people require more exposure to sun to stay healthy, and sane. New World Monkeys (Tamarins and marmosets) lived in the tree tops, with more exposure to the sun and need more vitamin D supplementation than the Old World Monkeys (macaques, and baboons), who live primarily on the forest floor.
I believe the same thing happens in humans. People who are from areas of the world that receive more sun exposure have adapted to physiological nutritional needs according to their environment. The color of the skin is a prime example. People who tan easily normally have Mediterranean ancestry (Italians, Greeks, Middle Eastern) or Native People ancestry such as Native American, Eskimos, aboriginal descent and commonly have vitamin D deficiency and seasonal affective disorder.
This past winter my daughter was diagnosed with severe vitamin D deficiency, she is dark skinned like me and suffered through various health issues this past winter. She was also living on her own for the first time and I’m sure her diet and nutrition wasn’t the best.
Her vitamin D serum test result was 20 ng/ml which is extremely low. She is now taking Vitamin D supplements, but has increased her sun exposure.
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Symptoms of Vitamin D Deficiency
Here are a few signs and symptoms of vitamin D deficiency, check with you doctor before self diagnosis, but if you have dark skin, get depressed during the winter months and feel better during the summer it’s something to consider
- Wintertime depression
- Sweaty head
- Bones aches
- Overall tired and achy (fibromyalgia, fatigue syndrome??)
- GI issues, trouble digesting food (mimics gluten sensitivity)
This last symptom, stomach issues is actually quite interesting. Diseases such as Crohn’s, celiac and non-celiac gluten sensitivity, and inflammatory bowel disease “may” be in part to a Vitamin D deficiency.
Benefits of Vitamin D
Get some Vitamin D in your system, kick the kids outside to play, go for a walk in the sun and DON’T use sunscreen. Vitamin D boosts the immune system, helps ward off colds and infections, and is important in heart health.
- Increased heart health
- Boosts immune system (autoimmune diseases)
- Fights bacterial and viral infections
- Helps prevent colds and influenza
- Helps prevent and fight cancer
The Northern Europeans had limited exposure to sunlight and did not need melanin as skin protection. Think about it,..yeah, makes sense.
So with that I’m out to enjoy my Nebraska sun at the only beach within driving distance. Louisville Recreation area, where I can lay on the beach, listen to good music, and take a dip in the water when I get too hot. Perfect. If only it were an ocean beach, oh that’s right, I wish I could be sitting on Block Island right now!
Have Fun in the Sun Again
So everyone enjoy your summer and if you enjoy the sun, and feel like you need it, then you probably do. If you’re pale and freckled, douse with sun screen and take precautions. But don’t hate on us sun worshipers, it’s in our genes.
More Information About Vitamin D