This collection of photographs had its origins on the Winter Solstice, 1996 — the day I discovered that on the shortest day of the year, the sun, at least as viewed from Balboa Pier in Newport Beach, California, rises over the Pacific Ocean. This discovery was celebrated with breakfast on the pier at Ruby’s Diner, accompanied by the Christmas crooning of Bing Crosby.
Every few years since, I have returned to Balboa Pier on the shortest day of the year to once again witness the rising sun over the Pacific. This, in fact, is what prompted this series of photographs, captured on December 21, 2008. Arriving at dawn, I set out to chronicle the pre-dawn setting, the rising sun, and another Christmas breakfast at Ruby’s. On this particular day, a short stop at Lookout Point Park in Corona del Mar (also in Newport Beach) was also captured.
The day concluded with a trip to Downtown Los Angeles to meet a friend for dinner. Just as the beginning of the Winter Solstice was captured, so too was its ending. What follows is a journey from the coast to the city on the shortest day of the year.
— Jerry Lofquist