Lens-Artists Challenge #186 – Low Light
“I believe in the photographer’s magic – the ability to stir the soul with light and shape and color.”Amyn Nasser
I gave some serious thought to my opening image for Sofia’s Low Light challenge this week. It’s not as amazing as some others might be, but it represents a special moment for me. At sunset one evening I came upon a lagoon where literally hundreds of egrets, perfectly reflected on the water, had settled in for the night. I had only my iPhone, but for me it was more about capturing the moment and as they say, the best camera is the one you have with you.
“The water rolls, the clouds move and light reflects off all it touches. How wonderful this world is.”Steve Coleman
From our little island here on Kiawah we move all the way across the world to Shangri-La China. One evening my husband and I were headed out for our evening meal when we came across this bucolic scene. A small orchestra was playing in the center of a lighted pagoda, with lanterns spread about and everything reflected on the still waters. How wonderful this world is indeed.
“I have always loved light… Its manifestations serve as symbols of the greatest secrets of the unknown.”Wayne Bullock
From the quiet of a concert in Shangri-La to the lights and frenzy of Hong Kong, both fond memories of our time in China. When capturing scenes such as the one above, a tripod is a photographer’s best friend. Although you wouldn’t know it from the image, so too is the photographer’s ability to navigate through the crowd to an elevated area where one can shoot over the heads of the hundreds of people attempting the same shot!
“The camera captures light, our minds capture images.”Anonymous
Back on Kiawah, I’ve included one of my favorite beach scenes. The full moon created a path across the sea, while the distant lights of two shrimp boats on the horizon further enhanced the vista. Hard not to smile on an evening such as this.
“I am forever chasing light. Light turns the ordinary into the magical.”Trent Parke
I did not adjust the long length of the image above because of the amazing stars on the evening of the capture. It was quite a few years ago and I was participating in a class on light painting with our local photography club. I did love the blue light we created in the window, but it seemed to me that Mother Nature’s own efforts far outshone our own.
“It is the photographing of ordinary things, in extraordinary light, which results in extraordinary photographs.”David Young
I‘ll close today’s post with an image I made this past year, which I posted not long ago. I believe it exemplifies Mr. Young’s belief that it is very much the light that turns the ordinary into the extraordinary. A couple of palmettos, which are found throughout our island, are reflected in one of our many lagoons. In the light of the setting sun, with the full moon’s reflection beside them – they become a photographer’s dream.
Thanks to Sofia, whom we welcome as one of our new Lens-Artists team members, for the opportunity to explore the magic of low-light photography. Please remember to use our Lens-Artists Tag with your responses, and to link to Sofia’s original here. Thanks also to John for last week’s Change challenge, and for your many creative and interesting responses. We look forward to seeing your Low Light images this week and to your joining us next week when Anne leads our challenge on her Slow Shutter Speed site. Until then, as always please stay safe and be kind.
Love all of your pictures Tina and especially the last one of the two palmetto trees with the moon! Such beautiful colors.
Thanks Sylvia – that was a magical sunset as I was leaving Osprey one evening after golf. Happy I had my iPhone with me!
Amazing, so beautifully taken! 💕💚
Thanks very much Chaymaa, glad you enjoyed this one.
Tina, there is something special about coming upon a scene that takes your breath away, whether it be the egret colony, the Shangri La concert or the moonlit Kiawah beach. Those three are my favourite by the way.
Thanks so much Tracy, you’re so right!! I think the egrets, while not my favorite image, was definitely my favorite moment. But all three are truly fond memories.
A grand collection. The photo of the egrets was magical. Before I read, I thought maybe it was a photo from the holidays. To think it was an iPhone capture. Awesome.
The Shangri-La was my favorite. Honestly, I loved how the mountains were the backdrop, but to hear you say there was a small orchestra playing “just for you” brought it to a different “light”. What a treasured moment in time. You are right, we live in a most amazing world. Donna
Many thanks Donna, a treasured moment indeed. And a memory forever captured in mind, heart and in print😊. I actually just had a custom mousepad made with that image in sepia tones. Can’t wait to see it!
Beautiful, beautiful – as always you have captured every moment in the best of ways, Tina! My eyes keep returning to the first one, always. I wish I could have been there to see this moment, be in that moment. Ethereal. Otherworldly.
You know Ann-Christine, those are the perfect words to describe that sight. I was literally stopped in my tracks. Sometimes Mother Nature is too good to believe! This was one of those times.
It really was.
What stunning images. I love your opener and the ones in Shangri-La and Hong Kong too. And Kiawah Island seems to present many gorgeous scenes!
Many thanks – your comment reminded me of how much beauty there is in the world and how fortunate we are to be able to experience it.
What a lovely capture of the Egrets!
Thanks Teresa – I was just glad to have my iPhone with me that evening!
Nowadays, we always have to have some sort of camera with us!
I’ve begun reading ‘Where the crawdads sing’ and your picture of the two palmettos reminded me of its setting immediately. Honest confession-each time the book describes the marsh and I think of your pictures of Kiawah. Capturing such fine pictures in low light setting is tough and yet there was the orient charm, the urban scape, nature lighting up spectacularly. Beautiful post, Tina!
Many thanks Sheetal – I’m happy to hear you’re reading Crawdads. that one really reached out to me as so many of the scenes reminded me of home. I’m so glad my images came to mind while reading it – that makes my heart happy ❤️
Gorgeous post, Tina. So many fine images, but my favorite is the opener. What an amazing moment that must have been, seeing all those birds. You captured it so well.
thanks so much Dianne – not surprised you chose that one as a true nature lover!
Hey my All
Great images, Tina!
Thanks Svetlana, glad you enjoyed these. Some fond memories.
Wow, you’ve come up with some excellent shots this week! I fully understand why you chose that opening shot but my own favourites are the Shangri-la concert and the last shot of the palmettos – both stunners and perfect for this theme 😀
Thanks Sarah, the Shangri-la evening was a wonderful surprise. Always great to happen to have a camera with you when the unexpected happens! Got lucky on that one.
Beautiful photos and post!
Much appreciated Donna, thank you!
Stunning photos Tina!
Thanks very much Aletta.
Lovely photos. I really like that spectacular moonlit sea in Kiawah.
Thanks I.J. It was an amazingly beautiful evening – much more so than an image can convey but worth a try LOL.
I am in awe, Tina. Perfection!
You are VERY kind Sofia, many thanks!
Very difficult clicks but you made it with ease Tina Schell.
Love the Egret one, resembling lovely pearls.
Adore the light painting oh with those stars!!
Thanks Philo, glad you enjoyed these. Loved your comparing the egrets to pearls, I’d not thought of that and it’s a wonderful analogy.
You are welcome Tina Schell
wow. It’s amazing how the egrets are popping out of the trees. Also, the pagoda and the two palm trees are mirroring in the calm water. Very calm and serene scenes! Top choice!!
thanks very much Andre – yes, those egrets were really amazing. I’ve seen many areas where they roost but that was by far the most I’ve seen in one place.
This is a great challenge to shows the photographer’s skills. Well done, Tina (as if I had any doubt). Loved the egrets pic because you made the egrets pops.
Thanks Frank – I had some fun with this one and am enjoying the responses as well. Low-light shooting can be really challenging so it’s nice to see so many successful efforts.
Pingback: Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #186: Low Light – Calling-all-RushBabes
I love all of these!
Many thanks Nora
The two palmettos at sunset, very nice. Your header image, that’s a nice one too. Colorado?
Hi David – yes Colorado in the header – good spot! Glad you enjoyed.
Beautiful low-light images. I love your opening image of the egrets nesting for the night. Your experience in China reminds me of our visit there in the 90s. It was so crowded everywhere except for the countryside.
Thanks Anne, yes the countryside vs cities in China is an amazing dichotomy – probably even more so than when you were there. I truly loved the remote areas which were so beautiful and the people were so friendly. They were so curious about seeing us too!
So good Tina. I love the light painting 🙂 🙂
Many thanks Brian – it was a fun evening learning about playing with artificial light while the natural light was so amazing!
These are gorgeous Tina! Keep up the amazing photography. I love seeing your posts! Sandy
Sandy! How nice to see your name pop up. Thanks for the comment – hope all’s well with you.
All absolutely stunning…
Many thanks Laurel!
These are all striking for different reasons. And all so atmospheric
Many thanks Margaret – enjoyed the challenge on this one.
Too hard to pick a favorite. Enjoyed them all. 😊
Thanks very much!
For me, your Shangri-La capture is certainly on the top for this theme.
The Kiawah beach is certainly mesmerizing as well 🙂
Thanks so much Hammad – that one was a beautiful surprise for us. Our beach, happily, is always beautiful. That night was especially so.
Those egrets! Amazing!
Many thanks Anne, they were indeed. I should go back to that spot to see if they’re still there. I wonder if they’ll nest there this spring. That would be so fun!
Wowww. Always superb, always superb…
Awww, you’re making me blush John! Thanks my friend.
All gorgeous photos, but I’m stuck on the first one. That photo just makes me smile. What a sight!
Many thanks Judy, it was quite a site indeed! Stopped me in my tracks!
Unbeievable the number of egrets in that opener, Tina! I love the whole idea of Shangri-La, but at the end of the day I’d be happy to join you for a Kiaweh sunset.
You know what Jo? I feel much that way myself 😊. Thanks very much.
What a gorgeous gallery! It’s impossible to pick a favorite. The cityscape, the egrets, the pagoda….all of them! I’d love to know how you created the blue light in the window. Is there an easy search term I can look for on the web? I’d love to do that in the window of my monk’s cell image. Have a great weekend and week ahead.
Thanks Patti! Funny you asked about the blue light. It was quite a while ago and our photo club had a local professional showing us how to do it. As I recall, he put a blue cellophane filter over a flashlight and we took our images while he focused the flashlight on the window. Definitely takes 2 people. I imagine it could be done these days in post-processing with selective color but I haven’t tried it.
Um….I’ll do some more research. Thanks!
Oh Tina, your photos are so beautiful with the low lighting 😀
Many thanks Cee, glad you enjoyed these!
Beautiful images Tina. I especially like the egrets!
Thanks Jim – that was quite a sight!
Beautiful images Tina, the egrets settling for the night and their reflections in the water is my favourite too 💚
Oh, those egrets! What a beautiful capture. Also love the stars and moon, and then your final shot – nature providing everything we need to find beauty!
Many thanks Lindy – Mother Nature is indeed the best artist around, isn’t she?! Have your new pups arrived yet???
Such a beautiful low light photo selections, Tina. I love the evening concert, what a beautiful setting. The reflections of the last image is amazing!
Thanks Amy, The concert scene was an unexpected gift!
Excellent photos. The last one is sublime.
Thanks so much Jude – the evening scene was indeed sublime. I was glad to have the iphone with me.
Loved your selection and sentiments, especially the picture with the egrets. I would be in seventh heaven if you saw something like this myself!
Thanks very much KJ. It was an amazing sight although they tell me when a large group of them roosts in one place over time the environment is eventually ruined.
Those were beautiful, Tina. I especially liked the Egrets and the Palmettos.
Thanks Sharon. Your soft spot for the lowcountry is showing 😊
Photographing in low light is always a challenge, but your make it look easy, Tina! The image of all those egrets is astounding! All that low light brought out plenty of amethyst hues and is perfect for my color challenge today. Feel free to link to my post! have a great day!
Thanks Terri, it is a challenge but always a fun effort!
I’m so glad that you saw all of those Egrets and posted your cell pic of them. Superb capture. Here, I have never seen more than one single Egret at a time. Your image is what Eagle Heaven must look like!
LOL, thanks Babsje.Bird-lovers’ heaven for sure!
That image of the egrets is certainly special. Lucky you had a camera with you to capture the moment. I am most impressed, however, with the pagoda. Such a serene scene. It makes me want to put on some appropriate music and just meditate a few moments!
LOL re the meditation John. We never did hear the music – I suppose they hadn’t started yet. That image was made with my big Nikon which I no longer own but the egret image was on my iphone, They’ve really improved dramatically.
These are beautiful, Tina. The egrets and that evening concert–magical, both photos.
Thanks Lois – glad you enjoyed these.Both the concert scene and the egrets were unexpected gifts!
Lovely post! You light up our lives with your magical lens! Thank you
Many thanks for your very clever comment Ms Linda!
Tina, thank you for all of these fabulous images! I love your egrets at sunset and all of the others but my favorite is the two palmettos.
Thanks Beth, it was the most beautiful evening and although I’d have loved to have a “real” camera with me, the iphone was surprisingly good at capturing the scene.
Oh, excellent images, as ever, Tina!
These really are spectacular