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Waiting For Splendid

Waiting For Splendid

"One must wait until the evening to see how splendid the day has been." ~ Sophocles

On the final day of a photography scouting trip to Bryce Canyon National Park, I found myself frustrated with the day’s weather and lighting. While inclement weather is often what a photographer looks for to create dramatic imagery, there seemed to be just too much of it and I found myself wondering if I would have much to show for all my troubles. As I carried all my equipment with me yet again to the edge of Bryce Point and studied the stormy and solid overcast sky, I felt resigned to finishing this trip without any dramatic skies – yet I pushed on, setup my equipment, and waited yet again for day to turn to night. With only 5 minutes left before the sun was due to escape beyond the horizon, and having still not seen any bit of color in the sky, or any evidence that the sun may show itself, my fleeting attention turned towards thoughts of the day and the trip, as if it was already over. I was suddenly snapped back into the moment by the gleeful report of others nearby, indicating there was something to behold. I looked up to see the circular shape of the sun, slightly diffused, creating a colorful imprint of itself on the delicate veil of thin clouds on the horizon. How bizarre to be able to look directly into the sun, to see its shape turning to bright yellow surrounded by red, to not be hurt by it, and all the while being able to simultaneously see the detail of the shadowed canyon walls. For the next two minutes, I worked with inspired fervor ignoring everything around me until the sun disappeared as quickly as it appeared -- and only once the evening arrived while packing up my gear, did I suddenly become clear just how splendid the day has been.