I know some of you – even within the past week – will have seen already a photo very similar to this : I hope you’ll not mind me posting today with another photo of the same ilk. This photo was, in fact, taken less than two minutes before the one published before, but the clouds had already been rearranged to give a quite different arrangement of light and dark. It was a magical experience, watching the light play over the darkening land and sea, that I ended up with numerous photos, from which it is difficult to determine the best. I discarded all but two. In this photo, the attention is more on the smaller islands between Uist and Barra. The dark sea in the foreground serves to accentuate the distance, and to make the light in the distance more exceptional.
I have been asked whether I took the photos in ‘black and white’ (strictly, greyscale) or converted them. The answer is that they were taken as colour, but the natural lighting produced a scene that had so little colour that when I converted it to greyscale format the change was scarcely perceptible, and I kept undoing then redoing to confirm that the software had indeed made the conversion! As to the contrast between the dark sea and the light, this image is true to what the camera captured, without any processing (other than conversion from RAW to JPG) ; and it does seem to genuinely recreate what I experienced. As clouds advanced across the sky from the Atlantic (of the photo, to the right), piling into each other and becoming ever denser, the ambient light dropped away dramatically, and that was what signalled to Tilly and I that we ought to turn homeward. But as the clouds jostled together, small gaps allowed shafts of soft sunshine to illuminate patches of land and sea.