When Things Don’t Go To Plan

It’s great to have a plan with photography. There are always locations I want to shoot in my mind. Often I have in mind the kind of light I’d like to shoot these locations in as well.

After work the other day I had some time free, so I decided to cross one of these locations off my checklist. The weather was beautiful, but as I got closer and closer to the location, I could see the top of the hill I wanted to get to was completely covered in a grey cloud. Having been up these conditions previously and had no interesting light to work with I decided to turn around.

Luckily I was keeping an eye out before then though and had already stopped to take an image from the side of the road. It involved a fairly sketchy stopping maneuver and possibly getting the car stuck, but you gotta do what you gotta do to get a shot sometimes. I know I have missed some cracking shots in my time because it’s easier to keep driving.

The light was exactly what I wanted from my ideal location, but because I was flexible, I’d get at least one image to keep my Flickr stream turning over.

Still with some extra time and usable light, I headed to another location from my mental checklist that suited my time constraints. This time I wanted to head to pretty cove that had a lot of rocks. One of which had a dramatic hole through it. A sunset shot with this as the foreground would be stunning. I had only been to this location in the evening once, but thought I must of just missed the light.

Unfortunately after a bit of a walk to suss out the location and get to the desired spot, it turns out that the hills behind the bay completely cut off any evening sun. Everything was in a boring shadow. Mentally I have reshuffled this location to one I need to get to for dawn – if I ever get up that early.

Despite the rush I was in worried about light, I did manage to get the following shot from the car-park.

I guess the point of this post is that even if you have a specific shot in mind, keep your eyes open for other opportunities. You may or may not get what you really have your heart set on, but you may just get something worth keeping.

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