July was supposed to be the month to see the comet Neowise. Unfortunately, between the evening thunderstorms and the clouds that occluded the stars at dawn, I didn’t get a chance to venture out and look for this occasional visitor until it had gone around the sun and headed back to the world of Pluto and beyond. When I finally got a chance to look for the comet, the light pollution near a major city, in conjunction with the fading luminosity of an object zooming away from our planet made the search for a near eighth magnitude object a rather daunting task. And a futile one at that. Still, I needed to take a picture of something. And so it was that late really was late, but as with everything else, you make do with what you have. Or in this case, what is easily seen.
I spend a lot of time trying to avoid flare when shooting towards the sun. In many instances, however, flare adds to the beauty of the shot. This picture could have been just a picture of a house with the sun rising behind it. With the flare creating diffracted sun rays (and the more pronounced oblong shaped projections towards the bottom of the image), life is injected into the light, so to speak. While flare is not always a desirable feature in a photograph, it can be used to great advantage.
Two of three isn’t bad, but the missing part made this event special. In the early morning of the last day in January, the second full moon of the month was setting. The eclipse – well, that was for other people to see. This is a composite image of two different images. The first image exposed for the clouds, the second image exposed for the moon. This combination was then converted to a black and white image.
We went to Times Square hours after the parade ended. Near midnight, the crews were busy cleaning up the trash (and there was A LOT of TRASH!) and the police were moving the barriers down. People still milled around in copious quantities, buoyed by the food that rests deep inside their stomachs, the frenzied energy of the holiday season beginning to take root. A man plays his saxophone while countless people mill about the food trucks and billboard signs that drown out the stars in the night sky. New York, the city that never sleeps. Frenzied strolls along the well lit avenues. Electric is the word.