A couple of weeks ago I decided to take sunrise pictures in Ogden Valley, Utah. This small valley is tucked away just over the mountains to the east of Ogden City. These outings are always the time I take my Sony A6000 mirrorless camera, my 18-105mm zoom lens, and tripod. Using the Photographers Ephemeris App I identified a location for my sunrise pictures with a good view of the mountains on both the east and west side of the valley.
Getting up long before dawn I drove over the mountains and to the place I had selected. Yet as so often happens on these outings, plans go awry because tall grasses lining the fence lines blocked the camera line of sight. Now I was in scramble mode. Driving up and down nearby country roads I looked for an open field to set up my tripod. Providentially, I noticed a small dirt track leading off the paved road and past some trees and seemingly towards an open field. Bouncing up the track in my compact car I passed beyond the trees; and jackpot, I was at the edge of a recently plowed field where I had a clear view of the mountains both to the east and west. Even better, to the north of the field was a small outbuilding and to the south was a rustic old barn. What a find. So, I set up my camera and tripod and waited, and waited, and waited, and it was very cold.
Finally sunrise, and seeing the image above it's obvious the morning scramble was worth all the effort.
However, this was not the only beautiful scene the morning conjured up for me to photograph. As the sun rose it made both the large tree and outbuilding to the north gleam in the light. I composed and took a number of images using the curved lines made by the dirt track and the plowed rows to lead the eyes north into the scene (above).
Next, turning south I also took numerous images trying capture the perfectly illuminated barn you see above and the large tree behind it. Once more I used the curved lines of the plowed field and the narrow track to draw attention to the main subject. Above is one I really liked how it turned out.
Now, with the sun rising even higher it began to brush the lower hills of the eastern mountains with beautiful golden light and black shadows. It was like taking photos of a watercolor painting. This image above was my favorite.
Finally, frozen, I called it a morning and maneuvered my car back around and down the narrow track to the road. What a morning, one I won't forget thanks to the photographs I was able to make after a wild and crazy change of plans. So when your plans go wrong or the light changes don't give up and go home. Remember, you can find something to photograph at anytime of day and in any light.