Cosmic Photo Challenge: Playing with Light

This is my contribution to the Cosmic Photo Challenge: Playing with Light.

The photo was taken in the winter, that’s frazil ice on Lake Huron in the foreground. Which means it also works with the Winter’s Breath challenge.

Mother nature is playing with light supported in a very minor way by me. This is Chantry Island and its lighthouse with a giant sun pillar behind the island. Chantry Island is just off the Lake Huron shoreline in Southampton, Ontario, Canada.

Sun pillars form when the sun is on or below the horizon at sunrise or sunset. The pillar is the reflection of the sun in ice crystals suspended in the air.

My contribution to the playing with light is timing the exposure to coincide with the flashing of the light in the lighthouse. I would count seconds after a flash and release the shutter at five seconds just before the light flashed again.

Cosmic Photo Challenge: Playing with Light

Week 49. A weak sun pillar.

Wednesday morning of week 49 saw me down at the Colpoy’s Bay shoreline before sunrise.

As the sun came up a weak sun pillar formed over the Niagara Escarpment. Sun pillars form when there are suitable ice crystals in the atmosphere. The pillar is the sunlight reflecting off the crystals.

The sun pillar is the perpendicular beam of light in the centre of the frame above the Niagara Escarpment.

Sun pillar over Colpoy's Bay.

Just to side track for a minute, my week 29 photo ‘A bird in the rain‘ is featured in a 2019 birds calender.

An unlikely evening

The Daily Post Weekly Photo Challenge is Unlikely.

One winter evening I went down to the Lake Huron shoreline for the sunset. The lake was covered with frazil ice and there was some nice layered clouds over Chantry Island. I positioned the tripod on the shoreline so that the sun would set to the right of the Lighthouse on Chantry Island.

Shortly after the sun had dropped below the horizon it illuminated the clouds nicely.

Chantry Island at sunset.

I learned long ago not to put the camera away until the last light has gone from the sky and this evening justified the rule. Shortly after the above photo was taken the largest and most spectacular sun pillar I had ever seen appeared behind the island. It made me think of a special effect in a science fiction movie.

A giant sun pillar.

Two towers.

This week’s Cosmic Photo Challenge is Comically Created Colour!

I have seen and photographed a few sun pillars over the years but this was the most impressive by a huge margin.

I was down at the Lake Huron shoreline for the sunset and had positioned my tripod so that the sun would be setting to the right of the Lighthouse on Chantry Island. The section of Lake Huron in the foreground was frazil ice which was also interesting.

The sunset was fairly spectacular but I learned long ago not to put the camera away until the last light had gone from the sky. Some time after the sun had dropped below the horizon this sun pillar appeared. By far the biggest and brightest I had seen made even more impressive by the fact that I was using a telephoto lens to pick out the Lighthouse on the Island.

Sun pillars are caused by ice crystals in the air.

A giant sun pillar.