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I woke later than usual, that morning. What I saw took my breath away. It was a wide, bright band of orange-gold along the southern horizon. I left the window to wash the pixie dust out of my eyes. By the time I got back, minutes later, the wide band had shrunk to the narrow, pale gold strip you see in the photos. I shouldn’t have dallied, knowing that such spectacles are almost always short-lived.

Yet, the photos I did get are rewarding for their subtle, faintly luminous colors. Later, I came back again to record the interplay of sun and clouds in the early morning sky.

The scene that first greeted me that morning was dramatic, certainly, although a bit pale. Taking some artistic license, I manually overrode the camera’s light meter, and reduced the light entering the camera. The result was to increase contrast and intensify color, thereby adding drama and interest to a scene that otherwise would have been a bit bland.

“Isn’t that cheating?” you may ask. Only if wearing glasses to read a book is cheating. I simply made more visible what was already there. As I’ve written before, I’m not a documentarian; I merely try to capture the beauty of nature as I see it.

The photos were taken on January 30, 2012. The time is noted under each.

See related post: December Dawn.

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