Several times when I have been in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, the predawn sky has put on a spectacular light show. I am always pleased and thankful to witness this natural display of beauty, but I have yet to capture what I consider an equally dazzling image of the city skyline set against a dramatic morning twilight sky.
For example, as you can see here, the sky looked incredible during a recent visit. Moments before I shot this image, there was a mirror-like reflection of the skyline and sky across the water. In the few seconds it took to get my camera adjusted on the tripod, a light breeze developed and erased the full reflection that was there only seconds before. I waited a few minutes in the hope that the breeze would abate and the crystal clear reflection would return. Unfortunately, the breeze became a wind; the movement of the water erased even the shadowy reflection you see here; and the incredible pink, red, purple and magenta colors faded from the sky. The full reflection would have given the image a sense of depth or dimensionality. Without it, the buildings and foreground appear flat, and this lack of dimension makes the image appear dull … even with the gorgeous sky.
A passing boat may have enhanced the visual depth of the image, but there was not even a kayak in sight. Oh, well.
You may be wondering why I am sharing what I consider a lackluster image with you. There are three reasons. One, I want to demonstrate that to create a great image you have to have a great subject, which the skyline and a spectacular sky certainly could be, as well as have optimum conditions. The light breeze blew the image I had envisioned (sorry, I could not resist the pun). I was patient and waited for conditions to improve, but it was not to be that morning.
Two, persistence will pay off. I will continue to visit the Inner Harbor on a regular basis. Early some morning I will finally capture that so-far-elusive image of the skyline and a fantastic, colorful twilight sky clearly reflected in the Harbor waters.
Finally, it was a rewarding experience. The clouds were gorgeous. The breeze brought cool relief from the summer’s high temperatures and humidity. And, there was a pleasant aroma in the air, wafting in I presume from the bread bakery across the harbor in Fells Point. Sometimes it is okay to come back from a photo outing with only a dazzling mental image … in particular when that outing produces a good story and an educational photo.