The colour of water

We all think of water as being more or less colourless, its appearance being dictated by the surroundings. Well, that’s true enough – think of a fiery sea at sunrise, grey sea on a cloudy day and blue or green sea on a sunny day.

Purple and orange sea at sunrise

But just sometimes, you get to appreciate its own colour – a soft shade of pale blue. And so it’s been recently – several weeks of dry weather and relative calm mean the sea is unusually clear here, without the usual murk of stirred up sediment. For those of a technical bent, the colour derives from the preferential absorption of the red end of the spectrum, leaving bluer shades to predominate. Scattering or reflection from suspended particles can alter the precise shade, depending on what they are.

Anyway, I took advantage of the conditions to make some studies of the water’s edge from above – not quite David Hockney, but I was pleased with them.