If you've looked around the site, you already know I have an affinity Lighthouses. The reason, however, might not be what you'd expect. And while I know a million other photographers have done the same, it still feels personal to me when I shoot them.
While it's true that Lighthouses are one of the images that thoughts of New England conjure up, what draws me to them has more to do with the job they perform than what looks good on a postcard. I look at Lighthouses and I see guardians. They stand alone amidst jagged rocks and pounding seas- warning ships, while at the same time serving as a beacon that guides them home. That's what's intriguing to me. To the stranger, they are a warning that land, and rocks, are near. Yet, for the local, it serves as a beacon that guides you home. Danger, and comfort. That's a pretty cool combination.
Portland's Head Light is reportedly the most photographed lighthouse in the world. One visit there and you will understand why. I just added some new shots I took there over the weekend, and even though I had been there a few times before, it still felt like a new experience. Much of that has to do with the weather. The sky, that changes in an instant, can be as much a character in an image as the subject itself. At the Head Light, there are a million different angles from which to shoot, and each one gives you a new perspective. I highly recommend visiting to any amateur photographer. You won't be disappointed.
Closer to home for me is York's Nubble Light. The Nubble is a legendary light I have visited way too many times to count, since I was a kid. And while there aren't as many different places to shoot from (like the Head Light), every shot offers you something different. Whether you're shooting it's reflection in a puddle, or the swirling tide as it rushes in- The Nubble gives you something different every time.
This past weekend, I stood out on a rocky ledge at The Portland Head Light, in Cape Elizabeth Maine- in subzero wind chill for 45 minutes, waiting for the sun to rise. To my left was a 30 foot drop (without a fence). To my right, an icy path to an established viewing point. My face was raw from the wind, and my fingers were so numb they hurt. But when that sun crested the low lying clouds along the horizon, and revealed itself.......all of that disappeared.
Danger and comfort.
And that's pretty cool...