Sunrise photos don’t always work out as planned. Yes, the sun does rise, but does it capture your breath and tell a story that speaks to you in a thousand words once it’s been printed on canvas? Usually not. You plan the best you can and you leave the rest to fate. My alarm goes off and like a zombie I find my way to a coffee machine and pants, two necessary things in life. My camera gear is all set so like a school kid I grab my back pack and head out the door to conquer the world. My set of directions was lacking to say the least, “go straight” said the valet at the hotel. OK, straight… in pitch black. I got this. I do not have this. “Is this a road? Can I even turn here? Why don’t I see this on a map?” All valid questions, all get the same answer, “I have no idea.” When in doubt, head east, you will eventually hit water. An outline of live oaks strewn with Spanish moss highlight the path and we travel to the end of the road. And now, a walk in the dark through an area I have never been to. Kids, this is an example of poor planning, but considering I didn’t get in until after midnight you’ll have to forgive me. A few minutes of walking and then I find it, like old ruins surviving the crushing waves and harsh salt air, here lay fallen trees bleached from the sun resembling bones of giants cast across the beach. Now to find the perfect spot. 20 minutes of playing around in the sand and I find where I want to set up my tripod. Finally some company arrives at the beach. A man comes over, “you have the perfect spot!” he says. Indeed I think I do. A few minutes pass and we talk about Florida and sea shells and then showtime, the sun starts to rise.
I go to take my picture and the friendly couple with the dog decides to get directly in front of me. His friend yells out, “she’s trying to take a picture!” and his reply “I know, but sunset happens so fast!” Yes, yes sunrise happens so fast. Before I know it I have zero pictures, but the couple on the beach, they got their dog on a branch with a sunrise. Nothing to do now but mess around and slowly head back to my car while mumbling obscenities under my breath. And there it is, all the best shots that I never could have planned.