I am really lazy!
Before I go to bed I have all these fantastic ideas of how I will get up long before sunrise so that I can head to some fantastic location to capture a perfect sunrise. The only problem is, I can’t get my lazy backside out of bed in the morning and with sunrise currently set at around 6:15AM, and a five o’clock alarm call is enough to send shivers down the spine of any budding photographer. Today was no exception and even though my eyes sprang open long before the sun crested the horizon I still struggled to make it out of the door before a more respectable time registered on my clock.
The reason I have been hankering an early morning call is the prospect of capturing some silhouettes against the majestic colours of dawn; this was a subject we covered last week during my Exposure: Understanding Light course and being a fan of this type of imagery I have been keen to give it a go.
A waterside park [Daewangam], close to my apartment seemed a natural place to try my hand at these images, especially as I know from experience that people go there to fish, although I really do not understand why this is the case as the park sits at the mouth of one of the largest shipbuilding companies in the world, so the water is fairly polluted and I don’t hold much hope for the fish that swim there. That said it is a good location to find interesting things to photograph, so off I headed to see what I could find.
Photographing silhouettes is often down to luck over judgement, however there are a few technical aspects that can assist in capturing a good image; first the subject should be interesting with a prominent outline that can be rendered against your bright background. The sun should be fairly low in the sky and placed behind the subject, exposure should be concentrated on the background, paying particular attention to the light’s dominance within the frame so that the image is not radically under or over exposed, it will probably take a few test shots to make sure you have it right and getting this right should throw your subject into shadow. Shooting silhouettes at either sunrise or sunset can produce stunning images filled with colour and spectacle and if shooting near water you may be able to capture the effect of hundreds of tiny jewels strewn across your landscape.
Now, it was my intention to capture as much of this detail as possible, but unfortunately arriving a little too late to find the strong colours usually associated with sunrise, I had to make do with what was on offer. Thankfully I was able to find a workable situation and I really like how these images have turned out – not bad for a first attempt and something I would like to investigate further.
Perhaps sunset would work better for me, I wouldn’t have to set an alarm clock to make it for that!