This photo has sound effects

Edgewater at sunset, originally uploaded by jatherton.

Sometimes when out shooting, the scene that I am trying to photograph will have a sound that I would love to be able to attach to the photo. To that end I have bought myself a small portable sound recorder and I have been experimenting with how to make field recordings, edit them, and upload them somewhere so that I can link them to a photograph. This post is to test out using combining audio and photos; the photo and audio were captured last Thursday at Montrose Point on Chicago's Lake Michigan shoreline.


To be honest I much prefer being behind the lens to being in front of it. Having a camera pointed at me makes me uncomfortable and awkward. But every now and then I decide to try a self-portrait. The two shots below were both taken on the shore of Lake Michigan in Chicago, the first one yesterday and the second in 2008. Both are single long-exposure photographs with no photoshop work (except for sharpening & brightness/contrast type adjustments). Self-portrait with lakeshore (© 2010 Jeremy Atherton) A Haunting (© 2008 Jeremy Atherton)

Montrose beach

From the first time that I drove into Chicago back in April 2003 Lake Michigan has captivated me; and on that visit Jan and I stumbled upon Montrose Point, a place that has since become a particular favourite of mine—walking out onto the break-wall surrounded on all sides by the lake gives a feeling of peace that is hard to come by in the city.

Chicago skyline from Montrose Point, 2003

The sand held back by the break-wall forms Montrose beach; a popular place in summer for families and dog-walkers.

Montrose beach, 2006

But for me it is during the winter that the beach comes into its own… The wind-blown sand forms amazing natural sculptures:

December 2007

January 2008

The wind also can push the waves up onto the beach forming pools of water that then freeze and crack:

January 2008

Last weekend a storm passed over that whipped the lake up into a frenzy. The winds, waves and cold have left the beach as an alien landscape. Today I was lucky enough to visit the beach with Tim. It was quite an effort to climb out onto the ice, and we probably went a bit further than it was safe to go, but it was worth it.

Wave ice, December 2010

Alien landscape, December 2010