“Am I crazy?” I thought as I awoke at 2:30 a.m. and then quietly slipped out the door, only waking the dog. But while on the Beltway heading toward our meeting spot in Potomac, Maryland, I thought, “I’m really not that tired.” Duh. I’m not a morning person at all, but, really, getting up so early was like a night owl taking a short nap.
My trek was so worth it, though, as I attended a Blue Ridge Photography workshop today held in a two-acre field of sunflowers in full bloom. As we set up our equipment in the dark at 4:45 a.m., the nearly full moon hovering over the field helped us with tripods, lenses and settings. As the moon slowly set in the west, the sun crept up, eventually adding hints of gold to the yellow field. Dew drops glinting on the flowers and leaves provided us with an incredible backdrop for macro work, and bees, birds and butterflies provided accommodating, although fleeting, models.
By 9 a.m., harsh shadows from a strong sun chased us home, but not before we experimented thoroughly with lenses, settings and composition thanks to the advice from instructors Elliot Stern and Geoff Archer.
I have to admit, it was difficult to choose just one image for my blog today, but this is one of my favorites. Taken just before sunrise, I employed a slow shutter speed and used the zoom on my camera during exposure for an artsy effect. Spending the wee hours in a remote field near the Potomac River wasn’t something I ever imagined doing, but perhaps my days of sleeping through the sunrise are better off behind me.