Sunday, August 08, 2010

Chase the Setting Sun

Chase the Setting Sun, originally uploaded by escher....

I've not been chasing the sun much recently as there has not been a sun to chase. It's been hiding behind a thick layer of cloud for weeks only punctuated by periods of damp drizzle.

I managed to get a picture of what I made yesterday in the sun but it was only dappled with its light for a few moments then it was gone again. Such as it has been for most of July and August. When it has appeared I've been working and I've looked longingly out the window wishing that I could indulge my passion for leaves on sticks, translucency and colour. But I've had to wait and wait and wait.

This is a practice piece for something else more involved that I have in mind and - I won't give too much away - but I want to depict the sun in different forms. I needed to investigate some leaf colours as preparation and collected some this morning under yet more grey cloud in the hope I could discover their sunshine induced colour.

Finally the sun made an appearance this afternoon so I dashed off with circles, reed grass and thorns to find a particular dappled spot amongst the trees. After stepping in yet more dog **** I found a suitable place.

Little did I know but the symbolism of the setting sun would be very apt. I found a spot in a very dark corner where just a few leaves were lit up deep beneath the canopy and as I got the circles positioned right in the light a cloud must have drifted across and the bright leaves went out like a lightbulb popping with a flash.

I tried again and the same thing happened. I tried once more and took just these two pictures and the sun was gone once again.

The clear sky punctuated with wisps of fluffy cloud had all but hazed over in just a few minutes. The sun's light was now soft and scattered and was not casting strong shadows and creating contrast like I craved for this sculpture.

It must be a specific atmospheric event. I've seen it happen before where all of a sudden the atmosphere is filled with thin cloud and the moisture thins the sun's rays into a watery haze. This was now set in and those few seconds when I managed to depress the shutter with the light piercing through the leaves was it. A chance moment snatched and then gone in an instant. A lot of my land art is just that. A snapshot of a moment when the height of vibrancy is reached and the colours come alive. There have been so few chances to see this over the last few weeks that I feel lucky to have grabbed this one.

So as the sun sets through thickening haze it's colour changes from white to yellow to orange until its final moments are witnessed in deep red before she is gone again until the next day.

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