Dawn from Ellis Creek Bridge on James Island

This morning was one of those mornings I really considered rolling back over in bed.  The only thing that saved my photography effort was my first cup of coffee.  Yesterday I made my way over to James Island to shoot an image of Charleston with docks in the foreground and the Ravenel Bridge in the background but the conditions weren’t right, so I wasn’t able to capture anything worth writing home about and the few images I took I just deleted.  I will return another time when the light is better, maybe for a twilight shoot.  With that said, while there it dawned (no pun intended) on me that perhaps a cool image to take would be with the drone flying behind the bridge up high enough to show the “S” curve in the creek leading out to the Ashley River and facing downtown.  This shot would probably work in the morning or evening but since I didn’t get my shot yesterday I was itching to get up early and see what I could do.   I shot from dawn until after sunrise and the image below is probably my favorite because of the reflection from the cloud and beautiful colors just before sunrise.  If you live on James Island or have been over the bridge in the photos you know how great of a view you get while driving over it.  Happy weekend!

Ellis creek 1-Edit

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Morris Island Lighthouse Sunrise

I am often asked my favorite places on the Charleston Coast to watch the sunrise.  While there are many great spots, it’s hard to beat the northern end of Folly Beach looking toward Morris Island and the Morris Island Lighthouse.   After a short (5 to 10 minutes) walk down an old closed road or along the beach you get to the end where you will find lots of old driftwood trees, rock jetties, marsh, wildlife and of course the best view of the lighthouse in town.  Make sure to arrive at least 30 minutes before sunrise to give yourself enough time to walk out and find the perfect spot.  This is an image I captured on June 1, 2018, as the sun rose next to the lighthouse.


Image available for purchase at Donnie Whitaker Photography.

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Pitt Steet Bridge in Mt. Pleasant

A nearby favorite spot of mine to visit is Pitt Street Bridge in Mt. Pleasant.  Pitt Street Bridge once provided access to Sullivan’s Island but was eventually closed and turned into a scenic walkway for residents of the Charleston area to enjoy.    Although not much of a secret to locals, it’s not exactly a spot tourist visit making it a somewhat hidden gem.  It is a great spot to walk, take your dog, fish, bird watch, bike, or just eat lunch and take in the beautiful scenery.  Here are a few recent images of mine from the location!  Next time you are in town make a point to visit.  Just keep it on the hush hush!


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Cloudy Days are for Black and Whites

The alarm went off at 5 AM and even though the weather forecast was telling me it was a day to stay in bed I decided to head out the door anticipating them being wrong.  Anyone who has lived on the coast long enough knows how hard weather is to predict and sometimes the best days come from the worst forecast.   As I got to the beach it became apparent there wasn’t going to be a beautiful, fire in the sky type sunset I was hoping for, but when life doesn’t give you exactly what you want to shoot you shoot long exposures in black and white.  After messing around with a few compositions I found my spot just under/beside the Isle of Palms Pier shooting 1.5 to 2 seconds exposures as waves quickly rushed in with the rising tide.   Below is one of my favorite images from the cloudy but beautiful morning.


*image available for purchase with different print options at my site.

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Spring Clouds on Sullivan’s Island

Nothing but rain in the forecast on Monday and Tuesday they said.  Well, I am glad the weatherman was wrong because on both Monday and Tuesday we had amazing clouds and for the most part (minus the humidity) beautiful weather.  Here are a few pics from Sullivan’s Island at Station 18 I thought I would share.

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