Tag Archives: sky

Unimaginative Sunset Shot

One evening I was up at Everett for an aviation opportunity and, things were not looking good because the shot I was after was looking like it was going to be thwarted by a late arrival and the setting of the sun.  As it turned out, that provided a far better shot than I expected.  The sunset illuminated the clouds, and they provided great light for the arriving aircraft.  While I was waiting, I did look behind me and saw that the sky was glowing beautifully.  There was no way I wasn’t going to get a shot of that.  Sunset shots are rather passé but why not?

Wispy High Cloud Sunset

A good sunset requires some nice high clouds.  I was up at Arlington watching the recovery of the Alice prototype after it had done some off-roading and the light was fading fast.  The clouds were quite high level and not terribly extensive so they provided a nice canvas for the low setting sun to illuminate.  Sunset shots always seem like a lazy shot but it looks so good so why not photograph it?

Mistake with a Polarizer

I have been using the polarizer a lot during the summer with my photos.  The high sun provides harsh lighting and a lot of contrast and I have been using the filter to cut down the light and to try and reduce glare from white aircraft fuselages.  It has mainly been used on my longer lens also helping to get shutter speed down to provide some motion blur in backgrounds.  However, I did put it on a wider lens when some planes were taxiing past me.

This proved to be a mistake.  It did take out some of the glare and make things a little more balanced from a contrast perspective but, when used on a wide angle lens, it did result in some unintended effects in the skies.  The polarizer effect is quite varied depending on your angle relative to the sun and this results in quite a dark sky in one part of the shot and a brighter sky in the other.  The result is an odd effect which distracts from the plane itself.  Consequently, I have avoided using this filter for these shots more recently.

Strange Sunset Light in the Sky

Sunsets are a regular theme for photographers since they provide a scene that resonates with people.  I have shot plenty of them myself.  However, while on Orcas, I saw something in the sky which I was quite baffled by and taken with.  The sun was setting in the west and, looking off in that direction, the sky was lighting up as you would expect.  However, looking directly south, the sky was doing something very odd.  I don’t know exactly what was happening but my guess is that there was a lot of moisture in the sky in that direction and it was reflecting the setting sun back in our direction.  It was a localized effect and quite something to see.

Night Skies on San Juans

One great feature of traveling to more remote areas away from the cities is the clear skies you can get at night.  The ability to see plenty of stars when the sun has gone is great.  With summer approaching, the sun takes quite a while to go down so I had to wait until quite late to get a shot that I wanted.  I could have waited even later but I wasn’t that committed to the shot.  I wasn’t using a fast lens so, even with higher ISO, I was still using a 30 second exposure.  Even at 16mm, this still shows up some motion in the stars.  Ideally, I would have taken a fast wide lens but I didn’t bother renting one for the trip so this will have to do.

Stormy Skies Over Lake Washington

One damp weekend day, I went to Kenmore to visit the camera store.  After browsing in there for a while, I headed down to Log Boom Park just to take a look at the Lake.  A storm shower had just passed through so I decided to try my luck in staying dry.  As I walked down to the water, my gamble did not pay off and it started to rain again.  However, I was able to stay out of the worst of it and take a couple of shots across the lake.  The clouds near us were really menacing but there was clearer sky in the distance.  Quite a range of exposures to accommodate.

Sunset Over The Beach in Tofino

Three nights in Tofino meant three chances at sunset.  Actually, it was more like two as we got there the first evening just a bit after sunset itself but the sky was still really lovely.  The second night things were a bit more subdued as the sky was rather clear and there was little to reflect the last rays of the sun.  The last night was far more impressive with some cloud on the horizon but obviously more in the atmosphere to glow.  Here are a few shots of the sun dropping down and the lovely sky we had to enjoy as we relaxed by the beach.