Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Photographing the edges of a storm.

It rained one early-spring day in Napa. Actually it poured. Tourists and locals (except drought-stricken farmers) groaned and moaned. Even the day laborers in the St. Helena grocery store parking lot waiting to be hired, huddled under their gray hooded sweatshirts, complained that the rain stopped most work projects.

I, on the other hand, was ecstatic.

The tempest would be short lived. Hey, this was Spring in Napa. It doesn't rain for long. And then, at
the storm's puffy edge, shafts of sun would blast through holes in the cloudy roof. The God beams would rake like a giant spotlight across the landscape. As a photographer, I can't afford that kind of large-scale dramatic lighting.

I raced up Spring Mountain to huddle
with my tripoded camera beneath an undersized umbrella. I got soaked. But I got an amazing series of images at the edge of the storm.

Just in case someone didn't get this photo tip: photograph the dramatic light at the edges of storms.

Please respect vineyard and property rights. I had complete permission to enter this vineyard area. But I've had the misfortune to follow in the footsteps of photographers who entered vineyards without permission. That ruins it for all of us who follow. As a thank you, I gave the winery some photographs.

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