RS7_PHOTOGRAPHY

Cromer, Norfolk, 1st December 2019

12th January 2020
Written by: Rob Slusar

 After a relaxing 1st full day, I intended to get up early, see in the sunrise and possibly go somewhere else for some more photos. Saturday night meant that plan was knocked off a bit.

After falling asleep fairly quickly, at around 1am the fire alarm went off. Jumping out of bed I grabbed some clothes (and my cameras obviously) and started to make my way downstairs only to be greeted by the hotel manager telling off a rather sheepish looking resident. He had chanced it and tried to vape in his room and it had set off the fire alarm. Annoyed and now wide awake, it took me time to drift off and what followed was a mostly broken night of sleep. Nightmare

Sunrise

I got up at a similar time as the day before, had a shower and loaded up with tea as I had the day before. I’m not a morning person and at this time I was even less of one.

I looked out the window and it had clearly been raining. Waves were crashing up as the tide came in, it was windy and I wasn’t in the mood for it. Regardless, I dragged my arse out of the hotel, loaded my car and set off towards the spots I had taken up the day before.

The sea was incredibly choppy and the scene much more aggressive than the day before. The tide was rushing in but I dived down onto the beach to try and get some shots from a different angle before retreating up the slipway. It was a very different vibe to the day before and it led to some very different colours and images to those I had taken just 24 hours earlier.

There was a lot more cloud in the sky and it was darker and moodier. That said, it made long exposures much more dramatic

The same angle as the day before with largely the same settings. It was a much less calm day than the day before.

The sea wall.

As the sea rushed closer to the sea wall, it was splashing up over the top throwing all sorts of debris up with it. With the best of the colours from that angle moving on, I decided to go and take some pictures of the pier itself in the morning light.

The pier.

Groyne.

The Beach

With the colours in the sky being different to the day before, I decided to take another walk along the beachfront to the huts. This time I would aim to take in some more of the details of the beach, like the fishing boats for example. Here they are.

There are some old tractors, clearly rusted by the sea that are on the beach to pull boats in and out of the water.

There are no big trawlers here, only small boats.

Lobster nets.

The huts in a different light.

More huts.

This was what I intended to be my last shot. To me, it captures everything about Cromer in one picture. The coloured beach huts, the pier sticking out into the sea. This is one fo the wall at some point.

Final Thoughts

I packed up my equipment and began the walk back. I was tired and not at that point wanting to go and take more pictures of the town. Yawning, I trudged back to the car, sure that my work was complete. Mother nature had other ideas.

As I approached the pier the sun broke through the clouds, bathing the pier in the sunshine. I had to catch it, so I rushed to a viewing angle, frantically unpacked my camera and snapped a few images before the light disappeared back behind the clouds.

The sun always shines on the righteous.

What a way to end the weekend.

Feeling a bit more buoyant from that sudden intervention, I walked back to the top of the pier to maybe try and catch the light from the other side. It wasn’t there. Whilst walking back I got splashed by a stray wave over the top of the sea wall. I only just managed to keep my camera out of it.

With the rain moving towards me I decided that would be a good time to call it. I made my way back to the car and started my journey home. As luck would have it, much like on Friday, as soon as I got in the car it started to rain. Clearly, I’m finally learning to trust my gut.

So here ends a busy, tiring but ultimately rewarding weekend. I went outside my comfort zone both in having a trip dedicated to photography, but also in the content of the images.

I’m not sure why I never did seascapes before. I love the sea and seaside towns and I love the unmatched power of the sea. I learnt a massive amount and I am already planning to head to other coastal areas to do the same there. Perhaps in time, this form of photography will replace my aviation.

Recommendations

This is something I have started doing recently but feel like trips like this fit well for it. Here are some recommendations of places to stay, eat and enjoy your time in Comer.

Sandcliffe Hotel – A no thrills budget-friendly hotel overlooking the seafront and no more than a 5-minute walk into town. I’ve stayed here a couple of times and it is a relaxing place to locate yourself if you want to enjoy Cromer.

No.1 Cromer – By far my favourite fish and chip restaurant in Norfolk, if not the country. It has a takeaway, a casual fish and chip restaurant and a more formal dining experience upstairs. Not pricey, great food, well worth a visit.

The Wellington – A friendly pub with a collection of local beers and a cracking BBQ restaurant to boot. Good food, good beer, good service. Really worth looking at if you fancy a break from fish and chips.

The Red Lion – Located above the pier, The Red Lion is another pub which does food. There is a vast range of ales that are both local and international. Friendly bar staff make this pub a must-visit.

Finally, I would like to recommend the photographer. Justin Minns is an East Anglia based landscape photographer who has for several years focused his work on the region. Last year he authored a book about photography named “Photographing East Anglia”. This book and his images inspired me to rethink how I looked at my local region and to admire the beauty it possessed. Historically I had driven all over the country to try and get decent landscape photos when really I could do it locally. You can see his work here and I would highly recommend the book (available from his shop)