I saw this photo idea on Pinterest and remembered a nice place to get a wide shot of skies. My purpose? To show SK skies transforming from fluffy clouds to a majestic magenta sunset. We aren’t called “Land of the Living Skies” for nothing.
I staged my spots so I would take the same photo each time. I didn’t touch the legs on my tripod and I used environmental cues like leaning the tripod against a special fence post or lining my camera button up with the tree line.
I also happened to stumble into an area with a nearby wildfire where firefighters were out in full force. I am learning as a photographer that you have to answer the door when opportunity knocks because you don’t just get to photograph open flames and smoke every day! I took some photos then casually swung my camera the other way to photograph the creek.
My afternoon shots were good but evening not so much. I realized this is what I need to do next time: map out a good spot OF A SUNSET and take a quick photo to remember. Then come back the next day to start business. Work backwards because my purpose was a nice sunset… So find nice sunset and track its time first. I did not check the weather or my location and overall it was just not good for a sunset. Also next time I thought I should find a more interesting foreground with a specific point for the eye to focus OR I should find a way to naturally frame it (as I crossed the railroad tracks I realized the two vertical bars would make a perfect frame and possibly silhouette).
I Googled whether or not there is a good direction to take sunset photos. I never found an answer but this site did confirm my thoughts about planning ahead and showing more sky than I did in this shoot, and about focusing on a foreground object. I had completely forgotten I could do silhouettes too (would not have worked with the weather and lighting anyway). Also a further investigation into this string of posts uncovered this beautiful Suncalc app that gives the sun’s exact location anywhere in the world! Check it out, it is a cool visual!
Wish me luck on future sunset endeavours. For now check out my timelapse photos minus the spectacular sunset.
Here are two different blending versions I did:
I also documented how I set them up to rotate them. I did not explain blending – it seems straightforward to me, erasing/deleting where artistically necessary!
Overall I did not like the final product, BUT I liked the process. Another day I will take better photos and try this again. 🙂
To end on a good note: Here is a beginning-of-Spring plantlife shot I took while crouched on my gravel walkway. UNEDITED! Out with the old, in with the new!
The next day I thought about what I had reflected on (using silhouettes, waiting for a nice bright sky, finding the right direction to take photos, having focal points) and saw a bit of pink sky out to the West, so I packed up and headed to the train tracks. Completely spur of the moment (no tripod or remote shutter or anything) I got this snap, as a train was coming towards me. Like I say, you really gotta be an opportunist, and strike when the moment is right.