A powerful December sunset smolders deep. Burning yellow, orange red flame reflected atop the derelict ruins of Rands Marina. The entire Great Bay Boulevard Wildlife Management Area salt marsh burns bright as colder temperatures and winter weather approach. Cards on the table this is my best sunset photograph in five years.
The winter sunset, man. My favorite photograph to make. A holy ember unique unto herself in the pantheon of seasonal sunsets. The depth and vibrancy of color coupled with a singular clarity to the air creates the perfect environment for striking cloud colors. These are cold moments made to leave you breathless.
Where does the writing go when you set out with nary an end nor a goalpost. How does it flow? Set out on The Union Market deck I let my mind snake its way through the labyrinth at the tip of ten fingers. Is this how one gets into creative writing?
We find help for our mind, body, and soul in many places. Some planned and intention, others serendipitous and seemingly sent by coincidence if not fate. It is important to avail ourselves to help, especially in the times it is most difficult to do so. And no matter how hard it gets we can always come back to our breath. It’s the one thing nothing but death can take from us.
This democratization of technology has taken photography from a cloistered craft of the few into a pastime of the many. The equalization of this skill makes us all richer. Smartphones have become the great leveler, bringing high quality picture making devices to so many. This has allowed experimentation and practice by people in places who otherwise would have had no chance to learn the trade.
As humans we invest significant time and thought in self discovery. In so doing we present ourselves to the world as what we think the world thinks we are. It’s a trap. This dissonance stunts self discovery and leaves us mired in an inescapable loop.
I’ve demonstrated some modicum of skill with photography, flat horizon sunset photography in particular. And yet it is not enough. It’s no longer getting it done for me. It all feels like a wash, rinse, repeat exercise in both futility and repetition. Like eating the same dry piece of toast each morning with the same familiar disdain of a routine unwanted.
Leave it to a sunset to bring pause to a racing mind. A pause long enough to strike the muse and leave the photographer trying about lines of poetry. The result may not be great, but the effort is always worthwhile.
Whether by fall or by autumn, people love this time of year. I counted myself among their number as a child, but as an adult it has not been so. This has proved a season of struggle. I seek to recapture the magic I once knew. I yearn to dance again with Autumn.
Sometimes what we need is a little push out the door. A small dose of unexpected encouragement to get us off the couch, literally. Jon Carr provided said encouragement when he reached out to let me know 4 September’s sunset meant business. Thanks to my friend I got out and got this shot.