For several years running, the Christmas day sunrise has been nothing short of spectacular here, to the point of becoming an almost spiritual thing. Not This year. We were greeted this morning with an overcast sky and patches of misty rain, the result of a warm front that marched through late yesterday and overnight. But the Christmas weekend was not a total washout.. Christmas Eve morning was a keeper. With the colder air, the scene could be from October. There were just enough clouds to reflect the warm morning light. I had seen the clouds moving in over the tall lob lolly pines from my kitchen window and grabbed my camera. No filters. Nikon D750 fitted with a 24-120mm f/4 lens. Iso 400, custom white balance, though Automatic on the 750 is quite good. Manual exposure. Spot metering. 1/125th of a second at f/22 which explains the slight flare to the sun. Best wishes to all for a great holiday and a safe and prosperous 2017.
The end of the day brings a congregation of clouds from the northeast. Within minutes, the entire eastern sky was filled with cotton like clouds brightened by the setting sun. There was little wind and so the normally angry Atlantic was rather calm that afternoon. I rather liked the look of things so snapped several shots. I chose this one to post because of that last little patch of blue winking out of the cloud cover. One never goes lacking for subjects to shoot along the coast. On this day, the sky stole the show. Have a good week and thanks for the look. Nikon D600 18/35mm lens.
This scene is on our farm and if you’ve been following this blog for a while, you have probably discerned that I am constantly drawn to it, particularly during the late fall and winter months. The sun’s daily arc moves to the south during the winter months which lines it up perfectly behind the tree line for a pleasing composition. Cloudy mornings are an added bonus and we have been blessed with many this year. As was the case with the billowing clouds above, they are usually a prelude for violent weather. This shot in early March was followed by several days of heavy downpours and powerful winds that pummeled the farm, flooding the fields and toppling a few trees. This was taken with a Nikon D800E camera and a Nikon 24-120 mm f/4 lens. No filters were used. Thanks for the visit and have a great week ahead.
To say its been an unusual winter in coastal and eastern North Carolina would be an understatement. To say its been an usually warm winter would not be. Many mornings, its seemed more like late summer than winter with clear blue skies and temperatures in the 70’s to the low 80’s. When we’ve had clouds, more often than not, its been all clouds, overcast with no sun. Those kinds of days are not conducive to spectacular dawns like the above.
I’ve often thought that we have more picturesque mornings when colder weather prevails in advance of a front which brings clouds and precipitation and that was the situation heading into this weekend. A heavy frost and broken clouds welcomed the dawn with a fabulous show. I took 20 shots or so as the sun moved closer to breaking the horizon. The shot above was number 10 and marked the zenith of the light show that morning.
There isn’t a lot of prep. I have an app that tells me the position of the sun, the time of the dawn and sunrise etc and I always check “Weather Underground Radar” for the zip I’m in. A walk to the field takes maybe 10 minutes. I seldom use filters on morning shots. Sometimes if the dawn is very bright, I’ll use a split neutral density filter. As for settings: As low an ISO as possible, f/22, manual exposure and spot metering particularly after sunrise. I also remove the UV filter from my lens. It helps cut down on the number of sun flares on the glass. The most important setting is probably your alarm clock. You’ve got to be there before the show starts. There’s a very short window for getting good dawn shots. If you see it happen before you’re on location, its over. Thanks for the read and the look.
The rising sun still below the horizon signals its imminent arrival on a huge dark cloud coming in off the ocean. The red sky at dawn was a sure warning this time. We had another tropical downpour. Several inches Sunday. Nikon D800e camera. Nikon 18-35mm lens. Thanks for the visit and have a great week ahead.
One of those mornings when everything seemed to come together for a memorable shot. The sun below the horizon caught the low clouds and lit them up like neon which the thick veil of gauzy shrouded the field and boosted the color like a natural polarizer. Within a minute or so, the color was gone as the sun came over the horizon. Nikon D800E with an 18-35mm lens. Thanks for the look everybody.
Back on the farm for this one. The cooler air temperatures seem to draw clouds into the dawn sky which can trigger some spectacular colors as the sun moves close to the horizon. This shot was taken with a Nikon D800E and a 24-120mm f/4 lens. Manual mode. f/22 with an iso of 400. Those are soybeans in the foreground. Thanks for the look and have a good week ahead.