Springtime in Vermont and all its splendor, this year has brought sunshine almost every day in May. I love spring; who doesn’t? This year though, I greet each brilliant blue sky morning with mixed emotions.
Following a dreary, cold, cloudy April, spring finally arrived in May and with it came more consecutive sunny days than I recall from any past year. Perhaps it’s because while I normally long for those perfect days of cloudless skies and cool crisp air, this year as my main focus is photographing the Vermont landscape, I would prefer filtered sun, or at least enough clouds in the sky so that occasionally the sun slips behind to create that beautiful soft box lighting one can easily attain in a studio. When I started this journey, I knew that at times Mother Nature could be my biggest challenge, but I never actually thought it would be the sun I’d be lamenting.
Still, there have been many days where while it has seemed like an obstacle, I’ve returned home, offloaded the images from the day, and have been pleasantly surprised by the effect offered by the brilliant sunshine backlighting a flag or a bed of tulips. There have been as many days though that I’ve shortened my trip, needing to return to a place because the low angle of the early morning sun has back lit the important scenes of a particular town, or the harsh shadows cast by the sun behind the fully foliated trees has made it impossible to get a single decent shot in an entire town.
Today is one such day. I leave my house at 5:45. Arriving in Essex an hour later I am glad to see little traffic, and the east facing municipal building perfectly lit by the morning sun. Next, moving on to Jericho however, the situation is quite different; not a single shot. I continue driving from Jericho to Jericho center to find the entire village green under a dark shadow. Ugh! At this point I’m looking for a place to stop and consult my map so I can plan a different route for the day. Before I know it though, I’m entering Richmond, which I’ve already visited. Looking at my map I see I’m completely surrounded by more towns I’ve already visited. And to reach one I haven’t, looks to be almost an hour of driving. So instead I jump on the interstate, southbound, and head for home. I guess instead of taking a chance on more back lit towns, I’ll take the rest of the day and just enjoy the glorious springtime sunshine. I still need to plant my potatoes after all, which this year, in spite of the beautiful weather, will be the latest I’ve ever gotten them in the ground.