La Jolla is a lovely seaside area north of San Diego. La Jolla is pronounced La Hoya; there are many word challenges in Southern California – j is pronounced h, l is pronounced y, but not all the time.

I visited La Jolla with my photography club (Inland Empire Photography Club) for a workshop led by Bodhi Smith who is an awesome photographer, teacher and mentor. Bodhi Smith Photography Bodhi loves working with filters and really long exposures. This brought attention to the fact that I need a neutral density filter or three (always some new tool needed). 😉

We arrived at dawn hoping for color, but the marine layer wasn’t even there to light the sky, there was no color in the images. BUT, once the sun came up, it was a glorious sunlit day with beautiful colors.

Photographers at Work!
Photographers at Work!

Surprisingly for a water baby like me, I had not been in the ocean for several years – not even the Atlantic Ocean that I left in 2012. So, once the sun came up, off came the sneakers and socks. Bodhi brought his waders for early in the day, as he’s quite used to standing in the frigid ocean for hours at a time to get the right shot.

Bodhi warned us that the black algae was extremely slippery (like black ice that causes so many accidents in cold climates). We were tiptoeing along not wanting our cameras and lenses to crash on the rocks and along came a lifeguard training contingent. The teacher placed them on one of the slippery rocks where they put on their flippers and had to go quickly to the edge of the rock and jump into the most recent wave that has come in – in flippers! Not one of them fell – ah to be young and fearless again.

Lifeguards for Summer 2014
Lifeguards for Summer 2014
Tiptoe through the black algae
Tiptoe through the black algae

This photo caused me to get wet almost to my waist (thank goodness for quick drying pants). Bodhi and crew were on top of the rock by this time, but I liked the Chartreuse color of the algae straws and the aquamarine sea beyond. The tide was coming in by this time and it felt wonderful to feel the sand slipping out from beneath my feet, and the force of the waves nearly knocking me (and my camera) over. The sea was much warmer than I expected given that the jet stream is the exact opposite of the Atlantic Ocean which brings warmth from the Caribbean. Here, the jet stream brings icy water from Alaska along with whales, sea lions, seals and sharks.

Algae straws
Algae straws
Ah, the colors
Ah, the colors

I was in this sea cave when three children and their dad happened by. These little girls were just plain joyful!

Seaside cave
Seaside cave

After I went home for the day and uploaded my photos, then I could see that this surfer had a different kind of photography in mind – yes that’s a camera in his mouth.

Another type of photographer
Surfer photographer

All along the coast are vast stretches of Ice Plant, planted by the state to hold banks and sand dunes. It’s been found though that because it’s a succulent and its leaves hold so much moisture that in rainy seasons it can actually cause landslides. Pretty though!

Honeybee gathering pollen
Honeybee gathering pollen
An ocean view
An ocean view

After a late lunch, we traveled to Scripps Institute of Oceanography Pier – part of the University of California San Diego. A popular place: lots of sunbathers, children, dogs, two (maybe three) different weddings. This is where my lack of filter shows up. Next time maybe I’ll get the effect I want. A beautiful day.

Scripps Pier
Scripps Pier

12 Replies to “La Jolla”

  1. Hi, Barb! I love the photos! What a beautiful spot. I LOVE the one of the pier. I think it is the muted tones of blue and the swirling look of the water. Just lovely!

    Hope all is well with you and Andy. Can’t wait to see more photos!!


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