I've never been up to watch a sunrise (that I can remember - certainly never photographed one). Thanks so much for the inspiration - it was an amazing feeling - in fact I went back again a few days later. I've captured a few others, and plenty more still to process (https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/albums/72157659761383682 - down the bottom, it seems to be sorted by ascending datetime).
This is actually the sea - it was just really calm on these mornings. So I am trying to emphasize this, to give a sense of tranqulity, and in the case of this image, an almost ghostly quality of this decayed/abandoned boat ramp and attendant pilings.
Governor's Bay, Christchurch, New Zealand
3 exposures (1/4s, 1s, 4s) @ 12mm, ISO 100, f/7.1.
The sun was going to rise between the harbour heads in the distance (although obscured by cloud this day), and I have placed the subject in front of this to get some dramatic high contrast.
Processed using free open source software (DarkTable for RAW conversion, GIMP for exposure blending).
This was my second visit to this spot, and the tide was high, allowing me to capture these pilings along with their reflections. The sea was very calm, but I used a longer exposure (for the foreground) to emphasize the calmness. Through exposure blending (I don't have grad filters) I have brought in a band of warmth in the distance, and combined this with a cooler foreground to mix in some twilight colouring with the blueness of blue hour. I've tried to keep this mirrored in the sky to match the mirroring of the subject (pilings, boat hoist) which I was trying to emphasize as they connect water to sky.