How It Happened - The Long Beach Lighthouse

A few days prior to this photo being taken, I asked my dear friends in The Wild Life if they wanted to do a quick promo shoot. I hadn't taken any creative photos in a while and I had an itch. We planned for a Saturday, but Anthony had work at around 11am or so if I remember correctly, so we decided to do a sunrise shoot in downtown Long Beach. I don't often wake up early enough to watch the sun rise. But the idea of catching a few shots as the sun came up sounded like fun so I went with the idea of a way-to-early-to-be-awake meet time. I got to the docks in downtown Long Beach a few minutes before the sun began to rise. I wandered around the area looking for potential spots to shoot and found myself at the foot of a hill that lead to The Long Beach Lighthouse. I had never been there before. I had seen it in pictures but never looked at it with my own eyes. I grew up with a strong appreciation for lighthouses as they are one of my dad's favorite things, so I sat there for a while in the morning cold and silence while I waited for Kevin and Anthony to arrive. But the longer I sat there, and the more the sun started to peak up from behind the hill, the deeper into thought I fell. I don't remember how long exactly that I sat there, sipping my Redbull and smoking my cigarettes. But I remember thinking that I wished it would never end. I started to notice the little things around me. The sound of the boats rubbing up against their respective docks. The birds chirping. The light morning haze hovering over the grass. A man at the base of the lighthouse enjoying the morning view of the port and the Queen Marry. It was breathtaking. It felt like I sat there forever. Pondering my life's decisions and the hardships I had overcome, and the ones I was in the process of overcoming. I was lost in thought, half asleep and completely dazzled by what was in front of me. I noticed the sun perfectly sitting behind a tree in front of me silhouetting everything and I remember thinking wow, that would be a great photo, not realizing I had two cameras sitting right in front of me. Again, it was early. Kevin called me and told me that he had arrived so I picked up my cameras, one a 35mm film camera, and the other my dslr. I took a couple quick shots, not expecting much but hoping for the best as my landscape game needs some serious work, and I went to grab the boys. We went about our shoot for a couple hours, Kevin and I went and got some lunch and I went home.

When I got home I started scrolling through the photos from the day, picking the ones that I liked and stumbled on the shot of the lighthouse. I was amazed at how beautiful it was. I tried to edit it but everything I was doing was taking away from the shot. So left the shot how it was taken. Completely raw. And now it's one of my favorite shots I have ever taken. I had it printed and framed and gave it to my dad and now it sits right above the living room TV for all the world to see.

Lighthouse
Lighthouse