Wow I have a lot of posting to catch up on! Have been shooting like a mad woman and have so much to share!
Storms can make for great photography with moody dramatic skies and big waves at the beach. The conditions are usually miserable and it's a lot more fun to do it with friends. Funny how I'd always been a solo shooter my entire life, but once I found others who share the same level of passion and dedication (and are great people) I found that I really like spending time shooting with them. The weekend before last I had so much fun with some friends shooting at the beach in Laguna during the storm. We actually got lucky and didn't get rained on until the very end (and then we got soaked), but the sunset made a poor showing despite what initially looked promising. That's okay, we had an awesome time getting soaked together and then wrapping it up with clam chowder and hot coffee to get warm.
Even with a weather sealed camera, when you are shooting in the rain with big waves crashing all around you (especially if you like to get down low to the action like us) it's a good idea to give your camera and lens some extra protection. A fancy expensive rain cover isn't necessary, especially if you don't frequently shoot in harsh conditions. My favorite trick is to put a plastic bag over my camera and lens, lens first, then screw on the lens hood. Screwing on the lens hood usually is enough to cut a hole exactly the size of your lens, and for extra security you can use some gaffers tape to secure the bag to the hood. A plastic grocery store bag will do the trick, a gallon-size ziplock gives heavier protection and is a good size for your camera and wide-angle to moderate length lens. Using the hood gives the front of your lens extra protection from rain drops and splashes. In the past two weeks I can count six photographers I know who had their camera or lens get a soaking while shooting the ocean during a storm so you can never be too careful.
I'm still working on my favorite image from the outing but wanted to share a couple others taken that day.