Sunday, December 05, 2010

Early morning light

click photo to enlarge
As I said in one of my early posts on this blog, I'm a morning person. Of all the times of day the morning is the one that I value most. It seems to hold in its grasp the promise of the day to come, to have a freshness that afternoon and evening cannot match, and the first light of the day is incomparable. It has been said that if you want to take photographs that catch the viewer's eye, then go out with your camera in the early morning. If the sun is present, with or without clouds in attendance, its low angle allows you to make silhouettes, add drama, and simplify your images. Those three things are important in making your photographs noticeable. Often when you include the sun in the image the results are not quite what your eyes see, and can be quite unpredictable, but that's part of the fun!

The other day I strode out into the snowy morning just as the sun was rising. The temperature was -8.5 Celsius but there was no wind, and the crispness of the air was matched by the sharpness of the light. I set off down a lane that I don't use very much, largely because it holds less visual interest than others that I favour. However, at this time of day it allowed me to walk towards the rising sun. Hares scattered as I walked along, their feet throwing up powdered snow as they dashed away, and I stopped periodically to frame trees against the ever brightening sun. The photograph above is one of the best I took. It's not much of a subject, but for me (though maybe not for everyone!) it demonstrates the power of light to transform the ordinary into the interesting or extraordinary. I liked this one because as I progressed down the lane a bank of fog made an appearance, and it added a diffuse quality to the image that contrasts with the the harder outlines of the branches.

photograph and text (c) T. Boughen

Camera: Canon
Mode: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 45mm
F No: f8
Shutter Speed: 1/1250
ISO: 100
Exposure Compensation: -1.0 EV
Image Stabilisation: On