I had been sitting watching the pastels in the sky as the sun was rising over the hills between Selah and Yakima. The sun rays struck the eastern face of Yakima Ridge. The color and brightness glowed over the shadowed hill side. A few moments later it was gone. Time to get my first cup of coffee.
I love the early morning. I am usually up an hour or two before sunrise at this time of year. I anxiously await for what each new morning will bring. Today, my gift was this beautiful pastel painting over the “Gap”. Looking ninety degrees to the east, the sky was on fire. It was quite a contrast with the soft pastel color looking south over the Gap.
Since moving back to Selah almost 2 years ago, I have photographed this view hundreds of time. Each new sunrise or sunset presents a new gift. It is a wonderful way to start the day.
Today is the sunrise of a bright New Year. For me, each New Year is full of hope, opportunities, explorations and adventures. It is a time to enjoy and nourish family. It is a fresh start to make new friends, renew past friendships, and continue great experiences with old friends. Each New Year is an instigator to renew my “inner self”, rethink what is most important in life, learn and explore new things, and thank the Lord for His gift of each new day and live it to its fullest.
Happy New Year 2018!
Today, December 31, is the sunset of 2017. Looking back over the year, it has been a good one. It was a year of travel: Orlando, Central California Coast, Phoenix, Palm Desert, Hawaii, Yellowstone, Grand Tetons, Washington Coast, and Oregon Coast. It was a great year to be back close to my family in Central Washington. Many fun times were had with old friends (the Whizzies). Several old friendships were reestablished.
I do miss close friends from our wonderful years in Pennsylvania. Hopefully next year I will make it back for a visit!
As the sunset of 2017 passes, many happy memories of a great year remain!
Driving home late in the afternoon, I looked back in my rear view mirror and saw golden sunlight patches on the ridge dividing Selah and Yakima. They looked like patches of gold. The sight stopped me in my tracks. I stopped my truck, got out, pulled out my I-phone and received this beautiful gift. A few minutes later it was gone. I have never seen (recognized) such a pattern on these hills before.
Lesson Learned: When I see a gift, stop and receive it. It may never present itself again.
The few days prior to this were beautiful orange and pink sunrises. The previous days in late November had been warm. During the night, the temperature had dropped. I was drinking my morning cup of coffee looking out over my back yard, waiting for another brilliant sunrise. I was surprised as the sun creeped over the horizon exposing this misty view of the valley below. Each morning has its unique beauty.
I received this beautiful gift yesterday morning. The combination of a brilliant sunrise reflecting off beautiful lenticular clouds … I couldn’t ask for a better way to start the day. It inspired me to get out and spend several hours walking around my yard taking remnants of the fall colors with my macro lens. It was a wonderful morning, full of discovery and exploration!
Part of what intrigues me with Black and White long exposure photography is the ability to really work with tones to create different moods. I shot this image underexposed to present a deep calm mood. In post-processing a dodged the sky slightly around the center sea stack and burned the corners of the frame slightly.
When an unique opportunity presents itself to me, I try to drop whatever I am focused on and create an image from that special gift. This evening, I was practicing Black and White, long exposure photography. I was struggling with the waning light. As the sun dropped below the horizon, this wonderful gift appeared before my eyes. I immediately pulled off my 15-stop neutral density filter, refocused, reset my exposure and was able to capture and create this special moment. This wonderful light lasted for just a few seconds.
Lesson Learned: Always be ready to immediately step back and take advantage of the wonderful gifts that are presented to me