The rain closes in on Whitstable Harbour on Christmas Eve, 2012. A working seaport on the north Kent coast of England, Whistable is an ancient town settled as early as the paleolithic era and well known for its oyster industry.
Whitstable Harbour on the edge of the Thames Estuary
As you look out of Whitstable Harbour into the Thames Estuary, trawlers lay dockside having unloaded their cargo of fresh shellfish. People have harvested Oysters from these waters since at least Roman times. Two types of the shellfish make up the population of Whistable Oysters. The Ostrea edulis (Native oyster) and Crassostrea gigas (cultivated European oyster) are only found in the oyster beds in the vicinity of Whitstable, Kent. You can sample fresh oysters in numerous restaurants throughout the town.
Living near St. Michael's on the Chesapeake Bay, which is also a port town well known for its oysters, it's interesting to visit the two towns museums and compare their histories. Whitstable has a much longer history, whilst the Oyster industry throughout the Chesapeake Bay area was much larger. One big difference between the two towns is that Whitstable has pebble beaches that enable the partial farming of oysters with tractors during low tide whilst all the Chesapeake oysters have to be trawled from the bay by boat.
We were visiting family in the town so I took an opportunity to get in some shooting with Pentax k-R. As you can see the weather was rather overcast but there were enough breaks in the cloud to bring out the greens of the water. And the heavy gray skies accentuated the bright blues and reds of the boats.
This is an HDR composite of three exposures taken at -2, O, 2, processed in Photomatix and touched up in Adobe Lightroom. These overcast days are often great for HDR imagery because the processing enables photographers to bring out subtle changes in color in lower light conditions.