As you’ve likely noticed by now, March was a big jump into the sunset experimentation. I learned a lot about my photography skills during this time: what I liked and didn’t in terms of composition while I continued to work on mastering the art of the sunburst, more about choosing the right camera settings for the scene, and my [in]ability to manually focus.
I loved the long, golden rays that peeked around this corn crib as the sun set. But the challenge on this particular night, and ultimately the hardest part of shooting this scene, was focusing. The brightness of the sun prevented me from being able to successfully use my camera’s autofocus feature and I’m kind of awful at manual focus, especially at longer distances. This shoot was not only a lesson in how to manually focus in low-light situations, but also how to not let the situation get the best of me. I was becoming so frustrated that I nearly threw everything back in my car and drove home. But, I’m not a quitter and regardless of how irritated I get, backing down from a challenge just isn’t me. So, I sucked it up and soldiered on. And I’m pretty glad I did.
I also managed to catch a pretty great full moon as it was rising above the horizon. And, as I continued to make my way home, I caught its glow on some water that was ponding in the corner of a field from the recent snow melt. I wish I could’ve gotten the moon with more detail (I hate that it’s just a bright yellow blob), but it’s all part of the learning experience. Either way, it was a beautiful little country scene.
These photos are by no means perfect (they are a lot more grainy that they should be), but they are going to be a good barometer for learning. Hopefully, I’ll be able to go back a year from now and see just how far I’ve come from these early attempts. Remember: It’s ok to fail. It’s going to happen. And I truly believe that you can’t learn if you never fail. Embrace it. Learn from it. Become better because of it.