My next assignment in finding my eye was to do a photo shoot in a lighting situation that is different from what I normally use. As usual, the assignment asks that we notice our reactions throughout the experience.
I decided to take my photos at the end of the day as the sun was getting lower in the sky. Now, I actually do use that sort of light fairly often, since I love to head for the beach at the end of my work day. But since I’m on the East Coast, that means when I’m looking out to sea, the setting sun is behind me. This time I decided to stick close to home, and take photos along the narrow strip of riverbank behind my building. That put the sun in front of me and to my right, perfect, I hoped, for some nice backlight and sidelight effects.
I think the only ones who really enjoyed my “new light” photo shoot were the mosquitoes. (Has this been an unusually bad year for them, or is it just me? I can’t step outside without getting nailed!) I just wasn’t finding subject matter I was inspired by, and the light wasn’t all that interesting, either. I love sunset photography, when there are clouds to fill the sky and reflect colored light back to the ground. Sometimes, even when there are no clouds, the atmosphere at the horizon fills with beautiful, soft color. But on this occasion the sky was very clear and there was little atmospheric effect to be found.
Despite all that, I did get a few shots that pleased me. The photos below are not necessarily my best work, but they do show the effects of the low slanting sunlight.
The evening did have one final surprise in store. When I walked back around to the front of the building to go inside, I discovered this unexpected light effect. I love the contrast of the cool gray shadowed building and the last warm rays of the sun painting the tower.