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Posts tagged ‘dusk’

Sky on fire…

Sky on fire

 

Sometimes, as photographers, you just gotta indulge in a moment of passion. I say that because once in a while, there is nothing more succulent than pure, natural color. We humans are drawn to it like moths to a flame. Last night’s fleeting pre-dusk sky was a masterful stroke by Mother Nature, comprising every succulent color from indigo to gold in her palette. You could not help but step outside and, well, just stare… After a moment or two of silently drinking this scene in, I grabbed the first camera I saw and pointed it heavenward. For once, no post-processing was required. Nature, got this one exactly right. Hope you enjoy…

Star light, star bright…

IMG_7319-1   Tonight my daughter and I looked up and saw the brightest, most dazzling star in the sky. I stared at it for a few moments before I was galvanized into action. Coat, shoes, tripod: Check. Camera, card, settings: Check.  Test shot one, two, three…. and action. Every day offers a new photographic opportunity if you are ready and willing and able. I love discovering something new, or visualizing something ordinary in a new way. It’s like breathing, and I can’t imagine a day without that creative motivation. Tonight, just after twilight, that motivation was the star, Sirius–a truly magnificent beacon a mere 8.6 light years away… For all my readers and followers, may you find your creative light, as well. Hope you enjoy…

Wistful thinking…

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School officially started today in my neck of the woods, and that first day of school always plays havoc with my emotions. I am excited to see my children embark on a new beginning, another year of growing into the adults they’ll soon be, but I have to be honest and say I hate to see those magical days of summer slip away. This image was taken earlier this year, when summer was a fresh raw, experience, and you felt like it would last and last and last… Hope you enjoy.

Big sky country…

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There is nothing more dramatic, more magical, than a winter sky. It’s truly the season of the “big sky” and if you are photographer and you don’t get out and shoot from December to February, you are truly missing one of nature’s most wondrous achievements. The problem for me in the winter is that am generally working til dark, and I usually glance up and out my window right about the time the “big show” begins… only to realize that by the time I grab a camera, fit a lens, jump in the car, and stash my tripod, the magic will have passed. There is more leeway to make this all come together after work in the summer, but unfortunately, the skies just don’t seem to have the same magnificence in July. This image was taken a couple of evenings ago at a park just across the street from where I live. I was prepared to come away with nothing, or next to nothing, but I forced myself to go through the motions and see if I’d get lucky, somehow. While the spot I was shooting from was far from ideal–no sweeping vistas here–once I saw what was happening in the cosmos, I just sat down and shot. I tried about a dozen different angles and hoped for the best. In the end, I think I captured a bit of the majesty I enjoyed in person, which in truth, is always my personal photographic objective. So while the sun may be warmer in June, I’ll always be able to look back and appreciate this gorgeous mid-winter sunset. Hope you enjoy…

Winter’s WOW factor…

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Autumn seems to be all about color. Once those green tones of summer begin to evolve into shades of orange, red, rust, and yellow, photographers (me included) leap to our feet, run about madly and try to soak up the color like a sponge–often shooting hue, instead of true composition. You can’t help it, and I am as guilty as the rest. But then December kicks in, and those remaining leaves are dull brown, the skies often turn blustery or gray, and we are left wondering where it all went.

Luckily, the onset of winter brings another dazzling subject–those dusky winter skies. I am no meteorologist, but I assume the tilt of the earth’s axis as we enter the winter solstice gives the sun’s rays that searing ability to blaze through the clouds and offer some of the most gorgeous, breathtaking sunsets of the year. No matter what the scientific reason, I am literally gasping for breath every time a scene like the one above explodes on the landscape, making even an ordinary setting like my backyard look like a scene-stealing broadway star. Now, that’s WOW factor! Hope you enjoy…

Peace in the valley…

 

There is a Canadian photographer whose posts I read religiously. He is not a name that people will know by the best-selling books he’s authored, or the classes he teaches, or by the covers of Nat Geo he’s  graced. But there is a soulfulness to his work and a sense of inner poetry that draws me in every time one of his posts hits my inbox. In this day and age, with hundreds of emails, tweets, posts, etc that bombard me every day, the fact that his work makes me stop what I am doing and thoughtfully enjoy it for 5- 10 minutes, really says something. In fact, if I could do that for anyone else, with either my words or photography, that would be a rare honor, indeed. The reason I am mentioning this is because one of the tenets of this photographers’ work is to learn to find art and beauty around you, wherever you are… rather than feeling like you have to travel somewhere far away — to the “beautiful places.” I agree 100%–there is artful, miraculous beauty all around us.

Case in point. I went out last Friday night to shoot a dazzling sunset. It was a crisp early fall evening, clear, but with just enough clouds that I was hopeful they would make a dramatic evening sky composition. I had scouted several areas earlier that day and had settled on one overlook spot I felt had potential. So I got there at the proverbial hour, set up the tripod and shot, shot, shot. I captured some OK scenes, but all in all, nothing spectacular. Just when I thought perhaps I had exhausted my possibilities, I decided to walk just a little further, look beyond another patch of trees, and try one more lookout point. Lo and behold… I realized I had “the shot” in front of me. The light gleaming off this spire, as an anchor to the dazzling fire sky truly made the image work.

Later, once I began editing my collection from the evening, I realized that this was indeed the shot I had been after when I had set out. It’s a wonderful feeling, to look at an image and feel as if you’ve been given a gift. No one else has to love it… I don’t necessarily shoot for “likes” and “thumbs up” — this is just for me, and that passion–combined with execution–makes me feel like a real photographer. Peace, in the valley, indeed. Hope you enjoy…

Evening color…

 

The dusky scene outside my front porch, several days ago. An evening silhouette, in a palette of pure, rich color. Peaceful. Hope you enjoy…

Evening repose…

Winter skies… gotta love them. This is another shot from my backyard in suburbia. Nothing profound; however, it’s just nice to be able to step outside my back door and know that nature’s wonders are bountiful and ever-present, if you just stop, look, and shoot. Hope you enjoy…