Photographing Cape Cod

It was the perfect combination: good friends, great weather, great food, andCape Cod.  It was a late summer weekend onMassachusetts’Cape Cod.  For those of you not intimate withMassachusettsgeography, it divides into five distinct photography zones: Boston, the North Shore, The Berkshires, Northwest Mass, and theSouth Shore andCape Cod.

Provincetown, MA photographer on the beach

For photographers the two words, “Cape Cod,” conjure up images of Photographer “Joel Meyerowitz” and his two magnificent works: “Cape Light” and “Red Heads.”  Meyerowitz has made an art form of the apparent but deceptive “snap shot.”  Meyerowitz is also now famous for his important chronicle, “Aftermath,”of the World Trade Center terrorist attack and the subsequent rescue efforts.  A century from now this will be recognized as a significant photochronicle.

The Little Store, Provincetown, MA

This Saturday we wandered up to Wellfleet and Provincetown.  The first stop was the PB Boulangerie Bistro  in Wellfleet.  According to Zagat: “This has to be the best restaurant on the Cape and definitely on par with the best in Boston.” I have no photographs from PB.  I was too busy eating the wonderful French sandwiches, soups, and pastries.  Screech to a halt and leave your camera in the car.  Although Chef Philippe Rispoli might allow you to take some pictures of him cooking in the wonderful open kitchen.   In the meanwhile check out their mouth-watering photogallery!

Pedicars, Provincetown, MA

My first photograph of the day, or more accurately photo-disaster was a picture of a woman photographing a seagull on the beach.  I always set my camera for the next likely shot.  And I highly recommend that you do so.  Whatever your shooting mode, anticipate the light.  But I had just gotten out of the car…  Actually there’s no excuse.  At the very least I should have set the camera on one of the auto modes.  So instead, I got an over-exposed.(should have set compensation by at least  a stop because of the bright sand) and I certainly shouldn’t have had the ISO set at 6400.  So I wound up with a pretty substandard silhouette.

Spank the Monkey, Provincetown, MA

Provincetown on a late summer’s day is a symphony of color; vivid, sometimes bordering on the garrish, but always fun.  You can start with the very bright red “Little Store,” and then move on to the pink “P-Town Pedicars,” and the piece de resistance of color is the wonderful Joey Mars murals that now adorn the “Spank the Monkey” Art Gallery.  Check this graphic pop artist out at his website.  It is well worth the visit.

Ocean View, Provincetown, MA

I also stopped to photograph some glass in a shop window that was particularly bathed in sunlight. These weren’t too successful, because despite the best efforts of my polarizing filter reflections from the window glass were overpowering.  I had to console myself with a picture of an ornamental frog to add to a photoessay that I have been doing for several years now.  There is a special appeal to frogs.  Maybe it’s the smile or the eyes.  Or maybe it’s childhood recollection of Kermit and “it’s not essay being green.”

Ornamenal Frog, Provincetown, MA

Of course, on Cape Cod you’re never far from the dunes and the ocean accentuated by sun and atmosphere.  Everyone in P-Town, including us, was having a good time.  We must have seen at least six weddings.  And every time a couple was wed, the street erupted in applause.  It was a most excellent day.

This entry was posted in Technical Aspects of Photography.


  1. rajn September 24, 2012 at 6:12 pm #

    Wow! Ocean view is so lovely! You have captured it with right colors. Did you have to use filters? I would like to add it to my favs in Flickr…

    • David September 24, 2012 at 6:54 pm #

      Thanks, glad that you like it. And, of course, feel free to add it to your favs on Flickr. As for filters, I used a polarizer to deepen the sky. I never use color compensation filters. I did darken the image somewhat and accentuated the magenta a bit with photoshop. A bit, means no more than 10 % after that it stops looking real. So it pretty much captures the light of the moment. The goal is to capture both what I saw and what I felt from the light. David

  2. Suzy September 24, 2012 at 7:11 pm #

    I have to agree with rajn – “Ocean View” is gorgeous. The colors are absolutely amazing. Thanks for sharing! I must admit, I was hoping to see the newest installment of the “Statue Collection” on here 😛

    • Suzy September 24, 2012 at 7:13 pm #

      Also – I’m putting PB Boulangerie Bistro on my list of restaurants!

      • David September 24, 2012 at 7:24 pm #

        Sorry, Suzy, only frogs this time. Thanks for the comment about Ocean View. I’ll get busy on the statues. I’ve got quite a few of these but copyright laws prevent me form publishing them.