More often than not it seems that I go out after landscapes with a plan in mind. Nevertheless, it is the unexpected that seems to provide the greatest reward. So it was this late afternoon after our first real December snowfall.
I had three places in mind that I thought would offer opportunity for some nicely composed shots. However, when Millie and I arrived at Runestone Park it quickly became obvious that the planned shots were just not going to work. Reflections from the snow and the clear and cloudless sky combined with the harsh light and long shadows of early winter had changed the whole scene. Plan B kicks in and we walk or run towards slipping sun. Sunset comes rapidly and the golden hour seems definitely reduced to minutes in the winter. Thus it was a rush through the woods to a couple of points that I thought might work. Nope. They weren’t looking good either. Finally I just stepped back a few paces, composed the scene, took a couple of test shots and clicked off what I hoped would be a couple of keepers.
As we walked through the woods the process was repeated a few of more times, then the light was gone. As it turned out, this shot of winter beginnings on Eng Lake was likely the best one of the night. The contrasts of light and shadow, the pastels and the sun burst and icy reflections seemed to work in harmony. The lesson learned is to keep your head about you, observe the light and be ready to experiment. Who knows; you might get a keeper.