Light, Three Kinds

Dappled, bounced, and refracted light.

I’m glad my bathroom has a window. It’s one of those things that you don’t really notice if you don’t have, but come to appreciate very much if you do.

I was having a shower and happened to glance out the window. Despite having lived here for nearly 19 years, I saw something in the alley I’d never seen before. The late afternoon sun was bouncing off the apartment building next door and sending watery, turquoise reflections into the covered parking space across the alley from me. It was an otherworldly wash of color on the concrete.

So there I am, franticly rinsing off and drying and throwing on some clothes so that I can rush out back with my camera before the phenomenon disappears.

Well, it had changed by the time I got there. The watercolor cast was now confined to the left side of the garage area. But something even better had happened: the sun was now sufficiently low to also be passing through the foliage at the back and dappling the pavement. Light from two directions!

As if that weren’t enough—the first photograph I took, some stray light from the sun entered the frame by raking the filter I use to protect my lens. Bonanza: refraction rays!

I am very happy with this flawed image. I love that it seems perfectly ordinary ’til you look a little longer. That dried leaf in the patch of sunlight slays me. And the heavenly ‘rays’ which illuminate (except, of course, they don’t) the pool of watercolor light that shouldn’t be there make it even more uncanny.


A Year Ago: Talisman

SIdewalk litter.This image stands as a reminder to me to never go out without my camera
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