Weekly Photo Challenge: Texture

By Vladimir Brezina

This week’s Photo Challenge is Texture.

Waves sparkling in the afternoon sun in the Lower Bay of New York Harbor

As kayakers, we pay close attention to the texture of the water around us.

Typical summertime conditions in the East River
In the hole in the East River

After all, the water texture—more nautically termed the “sea state”—is a major factor in whether we remain safe and comfortable—or not.

The other major factor is the wind. But before wind speeds could be measured reliably, they were inferred from the sea state. In the traditional Beaufort scale, the sea state is thus an all-round indicator of the conditions at sea.

The water texture shows us where the tide rips are

Tide rip off Governors Island, New York Harbor

reveals wind against current :-)

Wind against current in the Hudson River

and sometimes tells us that, just maybe, we should stay home…

Frozen Hudson River

And the water texture is pretty to look at. We look at it all day!

Sun-reflecting ripples in the Florida Everglades
Silver sea during the 2014 Everglades Challenge
Sparkling in the sun during the 2014 Everglades Challenge

61 responses to “Weekly Photo Challenge: Texture

  1. Phoenix Tears Healed

    Hi, love your pictures :) I was wondering, do you have to wear sunglasses against the glare reflection of the sun off the water, or is a hat with a brim enough? thanks.


  2. That first photo, especially, is beautiful.


  3. I love these shots…(I am actually at work- alone) my fav is the one of smooth water, the red kayak in the forefront, following along…I am actually transported. Thank you!!!


  4. pretty amazing photos – shared them with my son, he agrees looks like a blast!


  5. The water is so beautiful–especially the ‘sparkly’ water. But this also tells me that it will be a long time before I come out of the bayou!


  6. That is a very intimate look at the water around NY city. Last I made that trip in a small boat, the water looked a lot worse. Good that something looks better somewhere.


    • That’s definitely one of NYC’s success stories. Just yesterday Johna and I kayaked with long-distance swimmers from Manhattan down to Sandy Hook (post to come!), and all survived to tell the tale, and most didn’t even complain. And whales (and sharks!) have experienced a dramatic resurgence in the last few years in the waters around New York :-)


  7. I love all your shots of the ocean. So shiny and sparkly, it looks magical out there. Looks like a bit of choppy seas that day, I hope you had fun :)


  8. I can hear the waves lapping :-)


  9. I always enjoy my visits here – visually pleasing and I always learn something. I love the concept of the “sea state” – it fairly pulses with metaphorical possibilities :-)


  10. Very nice, Vlad. I would prefer the calm water any day. The photo where you can hardly see the person in front of you is a little scary. Yikes!


  11. vastlycurious.com

    This is beautiful but terrifies me! Kudos to you both! (AGAIN) I found this blog and thought you might be interested. http://vanerpaddel.com
    Maybe you know them already but you have the same interests?


  12. Scared of ‘black’ waters! Scared of ‘what lurks beneath’ (shivers)!


  13. Sweet as a Picture

    Wonderful example of the theme. Love it!


  14. A trough wide enough to accommodate the boat’s entire length — delightful! Seldom happens here.


  15. Wow! Amazing pictures of the water! Beautiful as always!


  16. This is truly refreshing to see! Good job! :)


  17. I always enjoy your photos and the pictures of NYC! :) It looks like you guys have a lot of fun! Thanks for sharing the fun with all of us!


  18. One of the few awesome texture posts! Well done!


  19. Olga Brajnović

    I love your pictures and the story behind them. You seem to have a lot of fun kayaking. That view of the skyline from your kayak is so beautiful! The first one and the one of frozen waters are sublime for texture. I love them all.


  20. WOW! The skyline is stunning. For a non-kayaker it’s amazing to know how the water texture can reveal so much. Love your photos!


  21. I can see where the textures would be endlessly fascinating, like the sea itself, or any tidal body of water.
    For me though — watered silk is the only acceptable texture to be in or on –
    which tells me “calm and serene” ahead. Anything else, and I revert to land creature!


  22. Your first photo is wonderful, the cross chop, the riffle of wind on the changing sea… I can feel the wind, the sun, the bumps and tugs on the hull…

    Iaskota (phonetic spelling, pronounced eye-as-co-ta) is an Ojibway word for “sun on the water”, the image captures that state of light on the sea and adds another aspect of texture.
    Apparently light has mass the physicists say, and if it has mass it can have texture, yes?



  23. We are sailors so I can read the water texture too. I could almost feel the waves.


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