The Grays Harbor Lighthouse Stairs

When I sat down to write this blog post my first thoughts were that I would write about the Grays Harbor Lighthouse and how it now sits about 3000 feet away from the high tide line and how it was only 400 feet when built. I also thought about writing about the “golden mean” and how it applies to art, but when all was said and done I decided to write about being a courteous photographer. The truth is, you can follow either of the links above to find out more information about either of those subjects than I could possible put into my little blog.

This image was captured from inside the base of the Grays Harbor Lighthouse and is shot straight up center of the spiral staircase that leads to the actual light. There are actually a number of things that are technically wrong with this image, and things that I would do differently if I would have had more time to shoot it, but as I said, this post is about being courteous as a photographer.

As you can imagine, the building at the base of the lighthouse is actually quite small, 3 or 4 people can fit in there, but any more than that and you will be close to the person next to you. When we shot there that afternoon there were actually 8 or 9 people visiting the site and all of them were wanting to get this same shot, the caretaker was actually quite helpful in assisting people with where they should stand for “the best shot” of the structure. While as a photographer it would have been so easy to jump into the space and start firing off brackets for an HDR, or to shoot the scene a dozen different ways, I really wanted to grab a quick shot or two and get the heck out of the way for the next person to get their shot. I live fairly close to this lighthouse, I can come back and shoot it pretty much any time I want, many of the people waiting for their shots traveled a pretty decent distance.

With all of that said, I don’t know if I will shoot this scene this way again. As I mentioned, there are a number of technical issues with this image, but I like it the way it came out. I could shoot a technically better image, but don’t know if I would actually get a better shot.

I always say to click on the image for a larger version or to order prints, but in this case I really hope you do click on it, I think this image presents so much stronger when it is a little larger than can be displayed here on the blog.

This entry was posted in Photography.


  1. Bryan Snider March 6, 2013 at 6:02 pm #

    Beautiful shot Scott! Until I read your blog, I thought this shot was looking down. Now that I know that it’s a lighthouse, the photo becomes that much better!
    Bryan Snider recently posted..The Moon Rising Over SedonaMy Profile

    • ScottWood March 6, 2013 at 10:09 pm #

      Thanks Bryan, I really apprecaite that.

  2. Erin Duke March 7, 2013 at 6:22 am #

    These spiral staircases are truly fantastic, especially those found in a lighthouse! I love this shot, Scott! :)
    Erin Duke recently posted..Bonaventure: A Closer LookMy Profile

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