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Oceano Dunes

Kyle Huber


Behind the Shot

Located about three hours’ drive north of Los Angeles, the seaside town of Pismo Beach is home to some of the most picturesque beaches anywhere on the California coast. The beach town’s popularity is mainly due to the active pier and boardwalk, the many bars and restaurants, wineries and, just to the south, the world-famous Oceano Dunes. Campers come from all over to camp on the beach beside the dunes. Open to off-highway vehicles, large portions of the dunes can be driven on with motorcycles, ATVs and 4x4 vehicles. A mellow, relaxing beach getaway this is not.

On occasion, though, the dunes are closed to vehicles. The winds quickly clean up the tracks and seemingly heal the dunes in short order. Kyle was able to visit the dunes on one of those days and captured this tranquil moment. “We were really anxious to get this shot. We were essentially alone on the dunes, and there were so many great angles this day. I was focused on the contrast and the shadows, and the scale and perspective. In the afternoon the sun really accentuated the lines in the dunes, and created contrast and drama.

“I try to have a centered subject in my shots. It’s satisfying and creates a strong sense of scale, especially for a scene like this.”