As I continue my developing relationship with more early morning photo shoots I am quickly discovering the importance of planning. I am trying to become a better planner in general but for sunsets I have the advantage of being able to watch the weather during the day and decide if the conditions warrant a hike to one of the local locations on my list. But for sunrises I have to decide ahead of time based totally on my advanced planning.

For this week's sunrise pics It quickly became apparently that storms were headed our way. So I picked Monday, the 30th of November. My thought was that the storms coming in from the west might give me some nice clouds which could make for a nice reflection shot.

After checking in with one of my favorite planning tools, The Photographer's Ephemeris, I choose to shoot Hummel Lake on Lopez Island.

I've shoot Hummel Lake many times so it didn't take long to find a compelling composition for my anticipate light. So I quickly setup and took a high iso test shot.

This predawn shot, about an hour before sunrise, is pretty flat and lifeless. But everything look ripe for something pretty special. There were "holes" in the clouds towards the rising sun which I hoped would let the sunrise paint the clouds and water with vibrant color. In addition waves of fog were rolling thru the scene and, although they wouldn't cooperate, there were Swans on the Lake.

Finally the sun rose enough to start lighting up the clouds and the lake and I proceeded to capture periodic shots.

The light, the reflections and the birds on the lake all changed subtly as the morning wore on. I choose this one as my "keeper" but it wasn't easy.

As the sunrise continued over Hummel Lake I started liking the light less and less so I pack up and headed home. On the north end the sky was clearing and the morning color was really opening up. All in all another beautiful winter morning on Lopez Island.




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