At the end of what has officially been the wettest year on record, it seems appropriate to end with an image full of the wet stuff. It has been a frustrating couple of weeks, with rain falling heavily almost every day but at last a dryish afternoon was predicted so I headed to Nash Point. The roads were awash after the day's rain and I had to drive through some pretty deep pools to get there. The wind was howling across the beach, the tide was on the flood and the waves were impressive. I chose to use the big stopper filter to get an exposure of over 1 minute to try and smooth everything out and get a little movement in the sky. The hardest part was keeping the camera steady with the strong wind but I managed to find a slightly sheltered area and braced the tripod low. With the tide rushing in quickly, I only managed to expose one frame before I had to change positions but fortunately the exposure was ok. The Big Stopper is not the easiest filter to use; firstly you can't meter with it in place so you have to work out the exposure yourself from an unfiltered view, and secondly, it is so dense that you can't see through it, so you have to compose before adding it. Then there is the waiting - usually at least one minute of exposure and another minute whilst the camera processes it. Added to all this I usually find that it gives a strong blue colour cast to the image and causes vignetting. I will have to speak to Lee about this as I may have a duff one! If you can get over all of the above, well they do add a little atmosphere and drama to otherwise flat images, but they should be used sparingly. I decided to convert this image to black and white as it seems to sum up the bleak and miserable end to the year (weather wise). You can see it in all its glory in the Black and White gallery. This is probably my final image and the final update of the year. Let's hope 2013 is a little dryer.