Once again, I find myself shooting the sunset. Every time I sit down to process photos of the sunset taken from our building, I promise myself I will find a new perspective and not create yet another 100 shots that look like the thousands I’ve taken before. But then, I look out the window, see amazing things, and grab my camera.
There are several problems with this. For one thing, I tend to get a very busy foreground with a lot of crap in it I’d really like to get out of my pictures. I can’t crop the crap out because I would lose much of the sky, which is the whole reason I wanted to shoot in the first place.
The choices that must be made when shooting! Wouldn’t it be nice if I could just arrange the buildings and landscape with a remote control to best fit my vision? More realistically, I keep thinking I will run across the street and up the mound so I can shoot over the trees. But do I ever do that? No. I panic when I see the sky and don’t want to miss the perfect color even though I almost always end up deleting the first 10 minutes worth of shots because the color gets better as the sun disappears.
I believe I suffer from “Don’t Want to Miss This” syndrome. Besides shooting sunsets from bad view points, I also find myself eating foods that no human should ever touch, attending events that are of no interest to me, and taking unreasonable risks (ask me how I once ended up in an ultralight crash). I wonder if I were in a flock of sheep I would follow them over a cliff just to find out what that was like?
Restraining myself to the subject of photography for the purposes of this post, I find the “Don’t Want to Miss This” syndrome causes an all or nothing kind of pursuit of photos. It just depends on whether my phobia of missing a shot is outweighing my phobia of missing an experience because I’m too wrapped up in camera gear to participate. What I need is balance.
The thing about sunsets is that it’s easy enough to find out what time the sun will set. And, I’m getting pretty good at predicting when we’ll have a great one (which is pretty much about 75% of the time), so seems like I should be able to just plan to go across the street at the right time and shoot. Perhaps scheduling shoots a few times a week would help balance out the equation? While I might still grab shots when I notice a sunset, at least I wouldn’t always be shooting from the same place.
Is it too late to change my New Year’s resolutions?