One of the shots I really wanted to capture while in Victoria was an amazing sunset over some part of the city. Ideally the shot would be over the Empress Hotel or Parliament. However, in the three nights we were there none of the shots I had visualized actually happened. However, I did get this shot and I like it almost as much as the one I had in mind.
We were at dinner with a group of friends and I could tell the light was changing. My beloved, ever patient, long-suffering photography widow of a wife knew that I wanted to be out at sunset to catch the light. In fact, we had made our dinner plans accordingly. As dinner was winding down, my eyes must have been fixated on the windows of the restaurant because I heard her say, “Why don’t you get going before you miss the sunset?” Now, there are a lot of reasons that I love my wife, but those types of words are high on my list of endearing qualities she possesses.
I made my good byes and I was out of the restaurant about as quickly as my feet could carry me. Fortunately, our restaurant was on the Inner Harbor and the areas I wanted to see at sunset were close at hand. I set up for my shot over Parliament hoping that the sunset would materialize there. As it turned out, that part of the sky never really turned. But, as I looked to my right, the clouds were really starting to glow. So, I started looking for another foreground. The harbor itself seemed an obvious choice. I set up a little farther down the harbor on some steps that led down to the boat slips. That turned out to be the right choice.
It was one of those sunsets that seemed to go on forever and got better and better over time. I snapped a series of images, but became glued to my viewfinder as the light became more and more vibrant. It quickly became apparent that the latitude of exposure necessary to capture the image I was seeing in person could not be held by one exposure of the camera. I set up to do a five shot group with one stop separating each image. By blending those together in Photomatix, I captured the full range of light that was visible to the naked eye. I love the glow in the sky and the reflection of that glow in the water of the harbor. I don’t have the iconic buildings in the image, but I do have the ships of the Inner Harbor and the hotels in the distance. If you look closely you can see Canadian flags, a flag marked Victoria, and the whale watching boats marked Prince of Whales.
It was a fun way to cap off a great stay in Victoria. I’m already looking forward to my next trip there. Enjoy.