Our First Rhode Island Photo Adventure!

Hooray!  We finally added another New England state to our accomplishment list!

As you might have noticed, we have loads of photos from Connecticut and Maine, and a few from Upstate New York (I know it’s not New England, technically, but it feels like it to me).  But, as coastal New England photographers, we still have loads of places to visit.

This past week, we managed to pull off a visit to Rhode Island–Newport, specifically.  The hour and a half drive to Ocean Ave was well worth it, as we got a nice set of photos of the Castle Hill Lighthouse.



Castle Hill Light – Sun through the Lens

Castle Hill Light in Newport, RI is a great place to watch the sun set. This historic lighthouse, located on Narragansett Bay, is an active aid to navigation for ships entering the East Passage. This lighthouse was completed in 1890.  It’s a bit tricky to find, since it is off the beaten path (accessible via a trail through the woods near Castle Hill Inn).

When we got on site, the first thing I noticed was that the sun was peeking through the clouds at just the right spot to let me take a shot with the sunlight blasting through the lens window of the lighthouse.  I haven’t seen a shot like this before, and I rather like it!

The light was fading quickly, so we moved down the cliff face a bit to line up a second shot.  For this one, the sun was warming up the rocks in the foreground, which lent a nice touch to the scene.


Since it’s December, the plant life on the rocks is a bit on the dead / dormant side, although the slightly desolate and cold feel of this image works (it is Winter, after all!).  Still, it might be worth coming back in the spring to get a livelier shot.

The sun was moving below the cloud line, and the light was changing rapidly.  Still, I managed to capture a series of three bracketed shots before the light went away all together.  Combining exposures produced an interesting HDR scene.  I wish I had been a minute faster at getting in position for this one…the light would have still been playing over the rocks!


Castle Hill Light Landscape – High Dynamic Range (HDR)


It would have been nice to stay longer and view this lighthouse at night, along with the other ones (there are a bunch scattered around Narragansett Bay).  But, Kirsten, Will, and I were tired and hungry, and the New Year’s Eve traffic was starting to crowd us out.  Kirsten did manage to get an amazing shot of the Newport Bridge, though (she saw the awesome lighting on the way in, and we pulled over to get the shot).


Newport Bridge

The drive over this bridge offers a spectacular view of the Bay, and was well worth the $8.00 in tolls required ($4.00 each way for a car).

The funny thing about this trip is that we picked Castle Hill Light to go visit, which is sort of in the middle of the stretch of lighthouses…since we were successful in pulling off this trip with our 1-year-old, we should be more than able to go visit Watch Hill Light and Point Judith, since they are much closer.


Framed prints of these photos are available at our store!  Check it out…



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About Chris

I'm a science-fiction writer, landscape photographer, and engineer living in New England. I'm also a husband, father, and a Christian. When I'm not busy with all of these things, you can probably find me asleep, dreaming of mountain biking on an alien planet.
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4 Responses to Our First Rhode Island Photo Adventure!

  1. Stunning use of the light. You truly show how this time of the day is great for taking dramatic images.

    • Chris says:

      Thanks! We were actually hoping for a colorful sunset, but the bank of clouds blocked out the sun as it set, so that didn’t happen. Still, the low angle made for some gorgeous shots!

      • Chris, they sure did. Sometimes that obscured light is better than direct. All part of the fun of seeing and capturing.
        May more NE images such as these be in your future.

  2. stan2606 says:

    The lighthouse pictures are great. I’d love to see them in B&W, especially the third one.

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