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Scouting Photo Shoot Locations – Pine Ridge Park, Edmonds, WA

It was a downright balmy 70 degrees and sunny here in Seattle today, a perfect day for us to get out of the studio to scout a location for an upcoming photo shoot at Pine Ridge Park in Edmonds, Washington. We’ve been in the area for almost eleven years and never knew about this very well hidden park just to the North of us.

Whenever we do an on location session, even if we know the location really well we always scout it out ahead of time and check in with whomever runs the location when possible to let them know we’ll be there, make sure it’s open, no conflicts with other photographers, events, and so on.

 

There’s Lara and the Jeep in the lot at Pine Ridge Park. Mmm… if it wasn’t for that gate we’d have gone right down that trail in the Jeep.

 

Ah yes, the Jeep would love to amble down this trail. Good thing that gate is there.

 

Here’s a densely wooded side trail.

 

Believe it or not, we’re actually working. My job is to snap photos of spots that we think seem interesting. Lara will look at these photos later on, for inspiration and for things to be aware of. For instance, while this scene might be interesting, the background might be a little cluttered and distracting. That doesn’t mean we can’t use this location, just means we have to use care when we compose our shot.

 

Who wouldn’t love to have a family portrait in front of a giant overturned tree stump?

 

That giant tree stump is a perfect example of something that I think is interesting but might not be the best spot for a photo.

 

Mandatory crew selfie. Somehow we managed to traipse off into the woods wearing nearly the same colored shirts.

 

Neat shot down the main trail at Pine Ridge Park. It’s great except for the dappled light.

 

Whenever we’re out scouting photo locations, I usually learn something new. Today’s lesson was about the evils of dappled light. Dappled light makes the forested background busier and more distracting and creates all kinds of visual issues when it falls on the subject of the photo. Again, it’s not that we can’t use this location, it’s just that we’ll have to carefully compose our shot. We’re going to bring our strobe lights, maybe an extra scrim or two, and hope for an overcast on the day of the photo shoot.

 

Here’s an interesting wooded area without very much underbrush below the trees. This could be a cool location but again, the dappled light is something we need to be careful with.

 

This might be a cool spot.

 

Here’s an action shot of Lara actively scouting Pine Ridge Park.

 

Here’s the big pond at Pine Ridge Park. It’s a pretty big pond and there’s tons of ducks around. The downside is this is pretty much the sum total of accessible shoreline. This is a perfect example of why you always want to scout your photo shoot locations ahead of time.

 

A shot of the sky through the treetops. The sky today is crystal clear and impossibly blue.

 

We made it all the way to the other end of the park.

Well, we pretty much got to see what we needed to see. We took lots of snapshots, made lots of notes, and had fun in the dappled sunlight of Pine Ridge Park. We’ll use all these photos and notes to further flush out our plan for this photo shoot.

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