Saturday, September 20, 2008


That Magic Moment

Photography is about communicating an emotion. Taking it one step further, one of the most important aspects of being able to communicate emotion through a photograph is the proper use of light. While there are, certainly, many other aspects of photography, if the light is wrong, nothing else will work! "What is the best light?" That depends entirely on what emotion the photographer is trying to produce. A photographer that wishes to communicate the delicacy of a flower will choose a different light than one who is photographing cars.That being said, a large number of images are taken in the outdoors where the photographer, and this would be myself on most mornings, wants to communicate the beauty of the natural environment or the animals within it. In this case, the best light is often a soft, warm, directional light that creates saturated colors and soft highlights and shadows. Some of the thoughts that were coursing through my mind as I watched the dawn through the windshield of my truck as the lights of Calgary faded in my rear view-mirror.I have mentioned this many times before and say it again for those that are joining me for the first time. If your thinking that it would be nice if you knew when you could expect such a light. Then, you could anticipate the light and get in position ahead of time to take advantage of it. Actually, there is a time when such light occurs -- this time is known as the magic hour.Actually there are two times during the day that this occurs. The first period is the half hour after the sun rises above the horizon in the morning. The second period is the half hour before the sun sinks below the horizon in the late afternoon. During these periods, the light that is generally produced is a beautiful light that is a favorite of landscape and nature photographers. I had planned on being in Mossleigh for this magic time of day, however as I came up on Carsland, that magic time of day was upon me and with a beautiful layer of ground-fog lying before the rising sun, I was in photographers heaven. Still, I managed to arrive in Mossleigh before the light was gone and shot photographs of some of the last standing elevators in Alberta. In the 1920's there were over 1700 elevators located throughout the province. Unfortunatly, today the numbers are down to 125 remaining elevators. Mossleigh is fortunate, as these 3 P&H (Parrish and Heimbecker) elevators have been privately purchased and continue to welcome visitors making the approach into Mossleigh on Highway 24. With harvest just getting underway, I plan on returning soon and will make it happen during that magical time of day.
Upon my return to Calgary up Highway 24, I came upon geese feeding in a field bordering the highway. I turned my truck around and driving back down the road a ways, I found this tree-line to frame the geese as they took to the sky, they also having lost the light.

Of Course - all photos expand

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