Ending silence

Black & white impression of a brewing sky above a breakwater in the North Sea

Ending silence
December 10, 2012 Johan Peijnenburg
In Photography
Long exposure seascape with a brewing sky above a breakwater in the North Sea in Domburg, The Netherlands (Johan Peijnenburg)
70mm – f/11 – 82 seconds – ISO100 – D3x with 24-70mm f/2.8

It’s been a while since I posted a long exposure seascape image, so here is a new one. I shot it early July, when I met up with Joel Tjintjelaar and a few other people near Domburg in Zeeland, The Netherlands. The weather that day was a disaster. It was raining way too hard during most of the day and when the rain finally went away it was way too windy. I shot this image during a long-awaited short period of relatively quiet weather … which inspired the title. I like how the contrast between the brewing sky and the silky water came out. Hope you like it as well!

To create this long exposure seascape image, I used a Lee 10-stop plus a Lee 2-stop ND filter to stretch the exposure time. I processed the image with Adobe’s Lightroom 4.2 and Nik’s Silver Efex Pro 2.

Comments (204)

  1. Lovely lines and loneliness feel Johan.

    • Author

      Thanks Christophe! I can assure you I was one of the few people on that rainy beach 🙂

  2. It’s beautiful Johan !! I love the wonderful quiet mood! It’s gorgeous!!

  3. Patrice PVK 7 years ago

    Indeed. It’s been too long. ;)

  4. Jerry Johnson 7 years ago

    This amazing photo is built, in my opinion, around the lovely transition of the light and tones along the horizon which is perfectly placed in this scene and emphasized in just the right way, by the dock on the right! :-)

  5. Joel Tjintjelaar 7 years ago

    I love it Johan! I remember that day: it was the day that Kees Smans went out swimming:)

    • Author

      Really glad you do Joel ! Yes it was that day. I am still trying to get the sand out of my bag 😀 Next time I want to organize something on the beach with better weather!

      • Joel Tjintjelaar 7 years ago

        Count me in Johan, but let’s wait till winter’s over:)

        • Author

          Was counting on you already 🙂 It will probably be April or something like that. By the way: will come back on your email soon … been busy!

  6. Stefanie Loges 7 years ago

    Sorry for the many vexations Johan, but I am glad that you got at least one image out of that morning. Beautiful transitioning tones with the light centered right at the end of the wave breaker!! :)

  7. Aileen Sorenson 7 years ago

    This is beautiful work, Johan! Really love the minimalism! 

  8. Author

    @Stefanie: thanks for the kind words Stefanie! Yes, it was one of those days 🙂
    @Aileen: thank you very much Aileen!!! 

  9. Gerard Charmley 7 years ago

    Super minimalist shot Johan 

  10. Vishal Kumar 7 years ago

    So minimalist, Lovely composition & Stunning shot 🙂

  11. Author

    @Gerard: thanks! Wow that has been a long time Gerard! Everything done and dusted with the new house?
    @Vishal: many thanks Vishal!! 

    • Gerard Charmley 7 years ago

      Almost a year Johan 🙂 it’s taken a hell of a lot of work and we still aren’t quite there but the majority is done. Just got the basement studio to do but that will have to wait till early next year now :D. How’s things been with you?

      • Author

        Good to hear and glad to see you back! All’s very fine here thanks. Getting ready for what hopefully will be a great winter season in the Alps :)

        • Gerard Charmley 7 years ago

          I always was envious of the winter scenes you get to experience and photograph. One year, I’ll come over and visit. Until then, I will enjoy your wonderful shots :)

          • Author
            Johan Peijnenburg 7 years ago

            They will be coming soon 🙂 And make sure to give me a buzz when you decide to come over! 

          • Gerard Charmley 7 years ago

            Will do one day Johan :)

  12. Beautiful LE minimalistic work Johan! Love the composition!

  13. Nikola Nikolski 7 years ago

    Great photo and work!

  14. Tom Tran 7 years ago

    Lovely shot, Johan. I didn’t know there’s swimming involved in your photowalks. How fun is that. :)

    • Author

      Tom thanks! Yes swimming, building sand castles in photo bags and fogged up eye pieces 🙂 

      • Tom Tran 7 years ago

        Bwahahaahah! That sounds perfect, Johan. 

  15. Steve Hambley 7 years ago

    Wonderful shot, a real treat!

  16. Author

    @Tom: it just proves that any day is good for photography 😀
    @Steve: thanks for the compliment Steve!! 

  17. jany viala 7 years ago

    She is very beautiful you did a good job.

  18. Peter Maris 7 years ago

    This is a sweet shot and reminds me of getting a 10nd stopper. gives a great effect, something I see possibilities for around my own home.

    • Author

      Thanks for the compliment 🙂 You will love LE photography. Make sure to get a 10-stop plus a 2 or 3-stop … you often need more then 10 to get nice effects! 

  19. Athena Carey 7 years ago

    This is nice Johan. Glad you got something out of the day even though the weather was bad. 🙂

  20. Yasmin Simpson 7 years ago

    This is adorable as most of your pics. Like I told you before it doesn’t matter weather, place, time you always create awesome things friend Johan.
    Have a great week!!!

  21. Philipp Weimer 7 years ago

    Great picture Johan! Being at the sea helps with these long exposure… Just an endless horizon.

    • Author

      but I do like a hint of mountains in the background of LE’s Philipp! Didn’t have a choice in this one though:)

  22. Fabrizio Vignali 7 years ago

    Nice Johan

  23. Fantastic

  24. Javier Esvall 7 years ago

    Beautiful minimalist shot.

  25. Markus Rienzer 7 years ago

    Great light and tones!!

  26. Peter Vooijs 7 years ago

    Beautiful work

  27. Dominique Dubied 7 years ago

    Very nice shot Johan! Quite successful despite the weather!

  28. Carolyn Fahm 7 years ago

    At some point we get input fatigue, where so much comes in that our ability to appreciate and thoughtfully interact becomes completely overwhelmed. 

  29. David Robertson 7 years ago

    Nice pic, bold and honest .

  30. Don Spenner 7 years ago

    This looks like the edge of the world, Johan , very nice range of tones and light.

    • Author

      The Netherlands is a bit on the edge of the world Don 😉 Thanks for the kind words !

  31. Domique Hilbert 7 years ago

    Oh I so much more enjoy looking at such beauties as the one that you present here!

  32. Very pleasing LE image. Great to be able to make such a nice image on a day when maybe conditions were not so great. Best Regards.

  33. Author

    @Dominique: good point Dominique! Thanks. Glad you like it 🙂
    @Michael: thanks for the kind words! Sometimes we don’t have another choice then just wait it out. Glad I did this time 🙂 

  34. Michel paulin 7 years ago

    Très beau élégant et mystérieux.
    Great shot Johan

  35. Beautiful and very serene scene, Johan. I’m glad that you were able to find enough of a break in the awful weather to capture this one!

  36. The image is fantastic, as usual Johan :))

  37. Debby Vos 7 years ago

    Better! You definitely improved the image since last week 😉 :D

  38. Beautiful work, Johan! … glad you shared it with us!

  39. Nurcan Azaz 7 years ago

    Great work!

  40. Dalibor Pačić 7 years ago

    Considering the weather, photo is wonderful 🙂

  41. Will S 7 years ago

    Great simplicity here !!!

  42. Brian Spencer 7 years ago

    Love the contrast of the groynes against the silky smooth water Johan! :)

  43. Kurt Harvey 7 years ago

    Gorgeous capture Johan! I’m very glad you got some time to in between the weather changes to take some LE shots.

  44. Didier Demaret 7 years ago

    great work!

  45. E.E. Giorgi 7 years ago

    love the minimalism!

  46. David Orr 7 years ago

    Fabulous LE !!

  47. Michelle Potter 7 years ago

    Floating on beauty and shadow!

  48. Sandy Schepis 7 years ago

    Cracking photo Johan! Nicely done! 

  49. aditya Sharma 7 years ago

    This is awesome 🙂 

  50. Nathan Wirth 7 years ago

    That’s really quite wonderful Johan! 

  51. Shirren Lim 7 years ago


  52. Lilia Lin 7 years ago

    Beautiful…. it does look silky and very peaceful Johan :)

  53. Mikko Tyllinen 7 years ago

    Absolutly stunning atmosphere, so beautiful!

  54. Author

    @will s: many thanks Will!
    @Brian: glad you do Brian! Thanks for stopping by 🙂
    @Kurt: thank you Kurt!

  55. Author

    @Didier: merci Didier!
    @E.E. Giorgi: thank you Elena! 🙂 

  56. Author

    @David: thanks David 🙂 Hope all is well in Japan!
    @Michelle: thanks Michelle!! 

  57. Author

    @Sandy: I love the word “cracking”. Thanks Sandy!
    @Aditya: thank you!
    @Nathan: thanks … yup! 🙂
    @Shirren: thank you Shirren! 

  58. Author

    @Lilia: hoi Lilia 🙂 Alles goed? Thank you for your kind words 🙂
    @Mikko: nice to hear that from you Mikko! 

    • Lilia Lin 7 years ago

      Hoi hoi, too much work, too much rain, too few holidays… the usual… 😉 but ja alles goed :))

      • Author

        sounds like you are having fun 😉 Glad all is wel over there! 

  59. Johan – A very accurate shot with well paid attention to every detail. A closer look is rewarding!

  60. Subra Govinda 7 years ago

    Beautiful work Johan, like the composition!

  61. Francesco Gola 7 years ago

    marvelous work Johan !

  62. John Dunne 7 years ago

    Wonderful LE Johan, I love the juxtaposition between the drama in the sky and the ‘silence’ of the water and peer.

  63. Vitor Ferreira 7 years ago

    Very nice image!

  64. Author

    Thank you Subra !!
    @Francesco: many thanks Francesco! 

  65. Author

    @John: thank you very much John!
    @Vitor: thanks for the compliment!! 

  66. Meg Rousher 7 years ago

    This is Gorgeous 🙂

  67. Paul van de Loo 7 years ago

    wow Johan this is really great !! Love the minimalistic story telling approach :)

  68. Author

    @Meg: Thanks for the kind words 🙂
    @Paul: thank you! Glad you do. I kinda like it as well once in a while 🙂 

  69. Sandra Canning 7 years ago

    Johan, masterful minimalism!!

  70. Mady Sach 7 years ago

    beautyful horizonpicture

  71. David Shield 7 years ago

    I like how the old pier appears to be floating on air. Minimalistic excellence Johan !

  72. George Marquardt 7 years ago

    Beautiful image Johan!

  73. Monte Trumbull 7 years ago

    Beautiful image Johan! Perfect.

  74. Nice minimal art photo Johan 🙂 Like it!
    Is that a big difference between 10 stops and 10+2? Never tried…

    • Author

      thank you! For long exposures I tend to work with something in between 10 to 16 stops, depending on the light. On a bright day 16 stops ( 10 + 3 + 3 ) might be needed to achieve an exposure time of 4 minutes. And I sometimes want 4 minutes to give clouds enough time to move and to blur water enough 🙂

      • Thank you Johan for your advice, it seems I need to buy one more ND filter to get better results 🙂 Regards!

        • Author

          yes .. but after the next one you will buy another one 😀 

          • Grzegorz Piechowicz 7 years ago

            So is not easier just buy next 10 stops? ;)

          • Author
            Johan Peijnenburg 7 years ago

            lol, maybe 🙂 Just talking from experience. I started with a 10 and a 3. After that I added a 2 to give me 12 and 15 and recently added another 3 because sometimes I need 16 😀

            … ow and I also have 2 spare 10 stops ;)

          • Grzegorz Piechowicz 7 years ago

            Haha, I won’t make this mistake, better once and good 😉 Thanks for you alert Johan 

          • Author
            Johan Peijnenburg 7 years ago

            you’re very welcome and I am looking forward to your LE images!

  75. Author

    @David: thanks David! And no mountains this time 😉
    @George: thank you George!
    @Monte: glad you like it Monte!!

  76. Armand Dijcks 7 years ago

    Nice to see this minimalist seascape in your stream! I really like the composition and the fact that you left some texture in the clouds, instead of going for an extreme long exposure look. I think this could actually work very well in color as well…

    • Author

      thanks for the feedback Armand and glad you like it! By the way: think you were there as well when I shot this 🙂 

      • Armand Dijcks 7 years ago

        Thought it looked famailiar 🙂 But I think you got one of the best shots of this location, because it’s the less obvious one.

  77. Johan – the photographic filter industry thanks you for singlehandedly ensuring its continued profitability! :)

    • Author

      Lol Lorenzo 🙂 I will shut up about any other filters I might have then 😉 

  78. Gemma Costa 7 years ago

    wonderful shot, a perfect vision

  79. Robby Bowles 7 years ago

    Love it. Simple, complex, and beautiful. All at once Johan!

  80. Stunning!

  81. Dedi Suparman 7 years ago


  82. Author

    @Grzegorz : you’re very welcome and I am looking forward to your LE images!
    @Gemma: many thanks for the compliment !!
    @Robby: great description and compliment Robby! Thanks 🙂 

  83. Author

    @Patricia: thanks Patricia! 🙂
    @Dedi: glad you like it Dedi!
    @Lilia: sounds like you are having fun 😉 Glad all is wel over there! 

  84. Javier Esvall 7 years ago

    Congrats, Johan.

  85. Steve Hambley 7 years ago

    Wow… congratulations on the PhotoExtract selection Johan – well deserved!

  86. Wow, what a beautiful minimal Johan. Love the milky atmosphere and the dramatic sky and I think I know that pier 🙂

  87. Dan Ballard 7 years ago

    Very nice and clean. Nice job.

  88. Author

    @Javier: thank you. You to! Really loved your portrait!
    @Steve: many thanks Steve 🙂 

  89. Author

    @Julia: thank you! You might know that peer indeed 🙂
    @Dan: thanks Dan! Nice to see you drop by 🙂 

  90. Rick Gutierezz 7 years ago

    Beautiful Photo!

  91. Paul Turkowski 7 years ago

    great work Johan, very nice!

    • Author

      Hey thanks Paul! How is the snow coming along over there in Austria? 

      • Paul Turkowski 7 years ago

        snow is great here Johan, you should come over the border and try it ;))

  92. Tobi Harriman 7 years ago

    really nice! 

  93. Grant Murray 7 years ago

    Awesome slice of minimalist LE goodness Johan!!

  94. Sumit Sen 7 years ago

    Awesome image!

  95. Aline van Weert 7 years ago

    It’s a beautiful LE, great black and white processing Johan.

  96. Carsten Kopp 7 years ago

    Wonderful minimalistic photo – excellent work, Johan !

  97. Author

    @Aline: thanks Aline!
    @Carsten: glad you like it Carsten! Thanks. 

  98. kamal deep singh 7 years ago

    wonderful capture…thank you…

  99. Gaurav Mittal 7 years ago

    Love the minimalism here!

  100. Bill Wood 7 years ago

    Beautifully minimal and stunning Johan!

  101. Michael menefee 7 years ago

    Great long-exposure work my friend, stunning lines!

  102. Author

    @Bill: hey thanks Bill!
    @Michael: thanks a bunch Michael! 

  103. can’t believe I never commented on this one Johan. I remember seeing it (and smiling for seeing it again in the plusextract), but I never interacted. Sorry … it is really great and exactly the style I like!

  104. Paul van de Loo 7 years ago

    Congrats Johan ~! Well deserved too ;)

  105. Congratulations Johan.. Great photo, deserved to be selected Johan 

  106. Ingo Meckmann 7 years ago

    great LE – congrats Johan 

  107. Subra Govinda 7 years ago

    Congrats mate , well deserving capture !

  108. Thierry Bouriat 7 years ago

    Bravo Johan, well deserved. Je suis content pour toi :-)

  109. Author

    David, Ingo , Subra: thanks guys!!

  110. Margaret S. 7 years ago

    Congratulations Johan! A magnificent photo, well deserved to be picked out. 

  111. Sandra Canning 7 years ago

    You deserve it my friend!! You work is stellar!!

  112. Stan Showalter 7 years ago

    Congratulations – an image well deserving.

  113. Author

    Thank you all very much Margaret, Sandra and Stan !!!

  114. Hope OHara 7 years ago

    congrats Johan, this capture really is very inspirational and ever so peaceful

  115. Rohan Reilly 7 years ago

    Stunning comp and tones Johan

  116. Great shot Johan, and real nice to meet you in Domburg, and it would be really awesome to meet you guys again in the new year to come. Have a merry christmas with your family 🙂 

    • Author

      thank you!!! The pleasure was mutual. Would indeed be cool to meet up in the new year again. Happy Christmas Heine! 

  117. kamal deep singh 7 years ago

    merry christmas johan….and thanks a lot….

  118. Merry Christmas !…

  119. Larry Hartshorn 7 years ago

    Ah, so much fun to outsmart Nature. Catch her at her weakest moment. Nice!

  120. Very beautiful:)

  121. Richard Franco 7 years ago

    Dramatic weather makes for some of the best images. Nice minimalist scene Johan.

  122. Baldur McQueen 7 years ago

    Beautiful shot, Johan!! Lovely, calming composition.

  123. lizett Beltran 7 years ago

    wonderful ….. pure perfection !!!!! :)))

  124. Author

    Thanks again Baldur !
    @lizett: thanks !!! 🙂 

  125. Ada M 7 years ago

    this is so impressive and amazing!!

  126. Pushybs Sangweni 7 years ago


  127. Anna Rimovska 7 years ago


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