Some photographs are planned with painstaking detail using PhotoPills, the Photographer’s Ephemeris, Google Earth and the plethora of other resources available online and in apps downloaded to our tablets and phones. Of course if you’re an outdoor photographer (and if you’re reading this you presumably are) you know that Mother Nature can wreak havoc on your best laid plans in a heartbeat. For me, the most recent epic fail was when my brother and I attempted to photograph last January’s lunar eclipse only for it to be completely obscured by thick clouds. But sometimes Mother Nature combines with a little dumb luck to give you some of your best images. This is one of those shots.
A couple of years ago I spent a few nights in Venice, Italy, and immediately fell in love with the City of Canals. Photo opportunities could be found around every corner and although I normally shoot landscapes, Venice gave me a chance to try my hand at street photography. I had spent the afternoon photographing around the Piazza San Marco but as sunset approached I decided to head over to the Rialto Bridge. Along the way a rainstorm suddenly moved through so I ducked under an awning along the Salizada San Lio. Although my main motivation was (in order of priority) keeping my gear and myself dry, I wasn’t about to turn my back on the opportunity to set up my tripod and photograph the Venetians with their brightly colored umbrellas. The storm lasted only a few minutes, allowing me to make it to the Rialto Bridge where the rain gave way to a beautiful sunset over the Grand Canal. But this unplanned shot – the result of being lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time – is one of my favorite images from my all-too-brief stay in Venice.
Sony a7R II, Sony FE 24-240mm f/3.5-6.3 OSS Lens @ 101mm, ISO 800, 1/13 sec. @ f/8