Sunny, 31 Degrees, Light West Winds.
I awoke this morning feeling pretty awful; sluggish, nauseated and just generally miserable. I knew I would make the walk with Jamie no matter what, but doubted that I would do much picture taking. I felt badly that I would be letting myself and the project down.
When I got outside, the day was beautiful. Cool and crisp without a cloud in the sky. Though I was not in a mood to celebrate, I set out to get the walk done nonetheless.
When Jamie and I got to the woods, I took my usual shot of the road before turning into the woods. As soon as I stepped up into the woods, I noticed the sun streaming through the trees and took a couple of shots. I love that look of back-lit trees.
I mostly just looked at my feet as I dragged myself along the trail with the sun at my back—until I got to where the trail descends into the woods. Then, there it was again, the sun streaming through the bare trees. It looked great through the viewfinder and I took a few shots there.
Then I moved on to the place where the trail skirts the edge of the marshes. There, the sun was pretty high in the sky and again looked spectacular coming through the trees. I took several more shots in that area before setting aside the camera for the walk home.
I always think of the french term for this kind of shot when I’m shooting this way. I don’t know why, but I just like the words. The term is contra jour or against the day. It means to shoot against the sun or into the sun and I love the look, the feeling of these shots. Turn around with the sun at your back and all you see are sunlit trees. Absolutely boring. I never shoot that way.
The sun was notably higher in the sky this morning. In part that’s because I was slow getting up, but part of it is the approaching spring and summer. I am sure today’s shots will be visibly different from those taken a month ago in the same place. It certainly felt different. That subtle difference is one of the great pleasures of a project like this. We all feel the changes of the seasons unconsciously, but what exactly does that difference look like? Now I will know.