Orchard Beach Maine

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Old Orchard Beach, Maine,

Photography Hot Spot Location


Orchard Beach Maine
Orchard Beach Maine

Orchard Beach, Maine, Photography Hot Spot Location

Located on the inner side of Saco Bay on the Atlantic Ocean, the town is a popular summer beach destination. The downtown contains many tourist-oriented businesses, including clam shacks and T-shirt shops. A wooden pier on the beach provides many other tourist businesses, including a variety of souvenir shops. The seven-mile (11 km) long beach stretching away from the downtown is lined with many beach residential properties, condominiums, motels and bed, and breakfasts.

Old Orchard’s Pier extends almost 500 feet out over the  Ocean. You can eat on the pier, go shopping, dancing or listen to music. This beach town has lifeguards, and we were told by a local it is the first sandy beach in Maine you come to when leaving Canada. They said it is a major tourist destination for that reason. At the time of our visit, we did not see the milky way, but we have seen images where this is a milky way location to do photography on the web.

Where to do Photography in Maine

Photography,Maine photography, where to do photography, locations, areas, destinations

The Crest Motel

The BEST place to stay when in the area photographing Orchard Beach is the. Crest Motel. We loved it here. It was within walking distance to the pier and the price was fantastic. The indoor/outdoor pool with a hot tub made our night. It took all of our aches and pains of the days hiking/photographing away.

  • Indoor heated pool
  • In-ground hot tub
  • Playground
  • Gas grills & picnic tables
  • Popcorn
  • Free WiFi
orchard beach maine photography locations

The indoor/outdoor pool with a hot tub is easily accessible from each room. The motel is very family friendly and only a few steps from the beach. The rooms are spotless.

orchard beach maine photography locations

PHOTOGRAPHY INFORMATION

AT A GLANCE

Lens: Wide Angle but you may find a bird or two. Not much wildlife here.

Gear List at a Glance: Circular polarizing filter, neutral density filter, tripod, shutter release, wide-angle lens.

When to Go: This is a milky way location. Go during a new moon if you can, but otherwise, it is still an incredibly dynamic place to do photography, even without it. It is a significant tourist destination, so the weekdays and off-season are the best time to go. It gets brutally cold here in the winter, so keep that in mind.

SHUTTER PRIORITY

If you have moving subjects, you will want to shoot in shutter priority to assure your shutter speed is high enough to have your subject in sharp focus. For people walking by, approximately 1/250th of a second is appropriate, and adjust your ISO accordingly. If they are running fast, increase your shutter speed to about 1/500th of a second. A fast bird flying by would be shot at about 1/1000th of a second. If it’s a bright sunny day, go as high as  1/1200th of a second. Remember, the higher your shutter speed; the less light comes into the camera. It should not be an issue outside during daytime hours. For More Details, see our Shutter Priority Page.

MANUAL MODE

You have moving waters here. You can do your long-exposure running and milky water shots. You will have to use a tripod for this effect. Your settings will vary depending on the lighting and your neutral density filter. You will shoot in manual mode for the milky waters. ISO is always 100 or as low as your camera will allow. The aperture is f22. Your shutter speed will be the only variable depending on the light. Roll your shutter speed until your meter reads zero. (In the center)  Use your shutter release or your 2-second timer to prevent camera movement when exposing. You will want at least a 2-second exposure for milky water. If you don’t have a neutral density filter, you may not get more than 1/15th of a second in the sun. 

If you don’t have a neutral density filter, you can buy one here. We highly suggest you do not go anywhere without one. It makes all the difference between lifeless images and outstanding, dynamic images.

APERTURE PRIORITY

Aperture Priority is often used to blur the background of your images and control your depth of field (how much from the subject to the background is in focus). For more information on this – see our Aperture page 

ISO

The higher you set it, the more light comes in when exposing an image. The higher the number, the more digital noise, so if possible, stay below 800. If you need to go higher to get the shot, you can use Topaz Denoise to filter out the digital noise later.

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How to Shoot Milky Way and Night Sky Photography

What you will need:

Light pollution map – light pollution map

Camera – You will need a camera to control your ISO, shutter speed, and aperture manually.

Lens – A fast wide-angle lens of 1.4 – 2.8 is ideal. If you use a 3.5 or higher (slower lens), you will have to increase the ISO. The higher the ISO, the more grain or digital noise or grain in your photos.

Tripod – A good sturdy tripod is essential for night photography. If it gets windy, you will need a sturdy one. Keep that in mind; when you buy one, it should be sturdy enough to withstand the wind but small enough to fit in your suitcase.

Sky Map – Sky Guide is available through the iTunes Store for $1.99. It has a 5 out of 5-star rating on both the current (3.2) version (1200+ ratings) and all previous versions (8600+ ratings).

Flashlight –  Our choice is Coast brand for flashlights. The ideal flashlight will have high lumens, and you will be able to zoom in and out on the amount of light emitting from the flashlight. Get the HP7, PX45, or the G50. Ideally, go with the  HP7.

Moon Phaze Map – The best time to go is during a new moon, and you want to be in the darkest area possible. The week before the new moon, when the moon has not risen, is a perfect time to go, so check the moonrise chart to see when the moon will be up.

Remote Shutter Release – When painting with light and you want to go over a 30-second exposure, you must have a shutter release to use your bulb mode. When exposing your pictures in general, you can use the remote release, or you can use your camera’s built-in two-second timer.

Use a Tripod – First, you must be on a tripod. A good sturdy tripod is necessary if it is windy. If the tripod moves, your picture will blur.

Focus – Use live view. Use your camera’s live view to focus in the dark, hit the zoom button, and focus on a bright star. You can also use the infinity setting on your lens but do several test shots to see if it is accurate. It can be off a little on some lenses. You can also light it up with a flashlight, focus, then gently, without touching the focus ring, put the camera in manual focus so it will not search for the focus. Each time you move your camera to take your next angel, you would have to do this.

Camera Settings

ISO – Start with ISO 1600 – 3200. This is just a common starting point, and you will adjust from here.

Shutter Speed – Remember, the earth is rotating. If you leave the shutter open for too long, you will see star trails that will not make for a crisp image. We want crisp non-star trail images. Here is the formula to avoid star trails. The 500 rule – Divide 500 by the focal length of your lens. So, if you have a 24mm lens on a full-frame camera, you will set your shutter speed to 20 sec. (500/24 = 20.83). If you are using a crop sensor camera, first do the math of the crop sensor to find the focal length. Cannon is 1.6, and Nikon is 1.5. Convert to full-frame focal length, then use the formula. Nikon 18mm x 1.5= 27mm – 500/27 = 18.51 seconds.

Aperture – Depth of field isn’t critical in these shots, but letting the light into the camera is; therefore, you should shoot wide open. If the depth of field is essential to you, try not to go too high. (wide open =the lowest aperture your camera will allow). You will have to increase the ISO some, which will give you digital noise.

White balance suggestion: Use live view mode to change your white balance settings and see what it will look like. You can shoot in shade or cloud mode as a standard-setting and adjust things later.

Area Information ♦ Hotels ♦ Restaurants ♦ Camping ♦ Weather

area information - photography

AREA

INFORMATION

Info

GOOD CAMPING

CAMPING

Where to camp

Do you want us to send our photography and ghost-hunting friends to your campground to stay during their ghost-hunting trip? Put your campground information here. We will put a picture of your establishment, the website link, the phone number, and your information on your campground to make it easy for our photographers and ghost hunters to find you. They are good at getting there in the dark.

Would you like to be featured in an article as a place to stay while doing photography or ghost hunting? If so, please send us an email. You will be surprised at how affordable our prices can be.

FOOD & DINING

FOOD & DINING

orchard beach maine photography locations

The best place to eat is right on the entrance to the pier at Pier Pizza for a quick meal before or after shooting photography. They have great sauce. Facebook page link. The Pier, Old Orchard Beach, Maine 04064

Add your Restaurant here!

Do you want us to send our photography and ghost-hunting friends to your restaurant after their ghost-hunting trip? Put your restaurant information here. We will put a picture of your establishment, the website link, the phone number, and your information on your restaurant to make it easy for our photographers and ghost hunters to find you.

Would you like to be a featured restaurant like in this article? If so, please send us an email.  You will be surprised at how affordable our prices can be.

orchard beach maine photography locations
The best hotels while doing photography

HOTEL

INFORMATION

The Crest Hotel – book your room here.

Old Orchard Beach, Maine at 35 East Grand Avenue. This Old Orchard Beach motel sits on a 7 mile sandy beach. Area attractions like Palace Playland and the Pier are just a five minute walk away. If you’re planning on doing photography here and are looking for an affordable motel near the beach, with great amenities and a friendly staff, look no further than The Crest Motel.

They offer free WiFi for our guests along with a heated indoor pool, hot tub, as well as in-room microwaves, refrigerators, air conditioning.

Add your hotel here!

Do you want us to send our photography and ghost hunting friends to your hotel for their photography or ghost hunting trip? Put your hotel information here. We will put pictures of your hotel, the website link, the phone number and your information on your hotel.

Would you like to be a featured hotel like this article or this one?  Please send us an email.  You will be surprised at how affordable our prices can be.

WEATHER

 WEATHER?

Check out the weather

Don’t forget that you can use a rain sleeve on your camera if it is raining. If it is bright and sunny, you want to use a low ISO such as 100.

If you are doing photography along with your ghost hunting on cloudy days, you can do running water or waterfall photography to avoid the glaring sun. You can also use an ND filter to get a long exposure for dramatic effects, even in the sunshine. If you ghost hunt indoors in abandoned places, be careful!

Go to our Photography Store after reading all about waterfall photography or neutral density filters.