Quieting Time

CA-EastSierras18When I am doing a workshop in a natural area, I often tell my students that we will stay out past sunset. It is really true that the light changes then, and you can never predict exactly what you will get.

This photo was taken at Lake Tenaya in Yosemite after sunset during a workshop. Some of my group had come down here by the lake before sunset, then the rest of the group came later. Everyone was photographing after sunset, well after sunset. Obviously, the sun is still hitting the top of the mountain in this image, but everything below is well past sunset. This lake sits by a road and this is the time that everyone is leaving the park. You have to frame your image so that you do not pick up headlights along one shoreline.

There is something very magical about this time. Maybe in this case, the feeling was enhanced by feeling apart from all the people leaving the park now that the sun had set. They were missing something very special.

My group spread out along the lake. I could not help but think of God. Yes, you could hear cars, but being outside at this time was a quieting time. I felt at peace, yet also excited to watch the colors change and dark descend upon us. This is always such a peaceful, yet energizing time for me. I know that sounds contradictory, but it happens just that way. I feel like God is there telling me that this is a beautiful world to be excited about and also a time to relax and enjoy it. I cannot explain it all, but for me, I feel enveloped in God’s world and in God’s care. I think that comes in part because there is nothing around to take away from this — no cell phones, no e-mail, no traffic. Some ¬†people might be disturbed by the cars on the road, but for me, that created a stronger contrast to what I was experiencing and made it all the better. These are times I truly feel close to God.

— Rob