The Big Picture

Flying over surf and sands on Cape Cod

During the season of crowded beaches on Cape Cod, photographer David L. Ryan provides a visual respite of the shoreline during an assignment in a fixed-wing Cessna. Although familiar with shooting from the air, he often flies in helicopters that can fly lower to the ground and provide more stability and control for the photographer. On this summer afternoon, he captured a unique and stunning look from above of where land and sea meet off the town of Chatham.
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Seals congregate on a sandbar off the coast of Chatham. (David L. Ryan/Globe Staff)
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A fishing boat heads into Chatham. (David L. Ryan/Globe Staff)
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Sand, sealife and ocean create interesting patterns from above. (David L. Ryan/Globe Staff)
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Two boats have the beach to themselves in Chatham. (David L. Ryan/Globe Staff)
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Oyster beds in shallow waters. (David L. Ryan/Globe Staff)
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A view from above of Chatham harbor. (David L. Ryan/Globe Staff)
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A boat photographs the seals off the shore. (David L. Ryan/Globe Staff)
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The wind creates lines of ocean waves off the shore. (David L. Ryan/Globe Staff)
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Tourists view seals in the water. (David L. Ryan/Globe Staff)
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A line of boaters enjoy the beach. (David L. Ryan/Globe Staff)
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Oyster beds off the lush land. (David L. Ryan/Globe Staff)
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Tubing in the waters off Chatham. (David L. Ryan/Globe Staff)
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A boater parks on what looks like a desolate island. (David L. Ryan/Globe Staff)
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