The Golden Hours and Showers of May

Recipe: Add sunset to an ordinary juice bottle and as a topping sprinkle some magic with your OMNI filters. Including raindrops are highly recommended. For extra perks, adding pampas grass is optional.

Created with Lensbaby OMNI Colour Expansion Pack + Sigma 50mm f1.4 ART

We are having an unusually cold spring in the UK. 

The other day, during my morning walk in the little garden (next door to my apartment), someone asked me: “Are you enjoying the weather …?” 

It was a typical gloomy day with soft rain falling from the grey clouds. I was pretty much alone in the whole garden, only this lady and her dog walked past me. I nodded and smiled at her: “I actually don’t mind rainy days. I learnt to appreciate them.” She gently smiled back at me and said: “You’re probably the only one.”

She was probably right. I had the whole garden for myself. There was peace and quiet. I had no distractions. How could I not enjoy it? Of course I wouldn’t mind if the weather was warmer and I saw the sun more often, but rain makes my surroundings so peaceful. I can hear the birds and I can truly embrace the beauty of the trees and the green of the grass. Living in the overcrowded city of London, these moments are so special to me.

River View of the City of London – Created with Lensbaby OMNI Colour Expansion Pack + Sigma 50mm f1.4 ART + Canon 5D Mark III

Rainy days somehow feed my inspiration too. While I’m working at home, I light some candles and listen to relaxing jazz music. These also boost my creative flow and focus. I love the sound of the rain, and I admire watching the gorgeously round drops rolling down on my window. On days like this even magic can happen.

One evening we had a storm passing through the area with heavy showers. The sky was almost black, and the wind was howling … The last thing I could imagine was to see the sunset that day, but life is always full of surprises, isn’t it? As the thunder was fading away the sky finally opened up at last, just in time for the sunset. It was such a magical moment to see not only the sun saying goodbye, but to witness those gorgeous rays lighting up the raindrops on my window, and making them glow like thousands of tiny diamonds.

Created with Lensbaby OMNI Colour Expansion Pack + Sigma 50mm f1.4 ART + Canon 5D Mark III

I feel so incredibly fortunate that I was at the right place and at the right time. I immediately reached for my camera! The set up was already quite extraordinary, but I decided to give some extra sparks to it  with my Lensbaby OMNI Colour Expansion Pack. To create extra glow, I used my Crystal Effect Wands. These are my absolute favorite tools to create a surreal and a fairytale like atmosphere.

Created with Lensbaby OMNI Colour Expansion Pack + Sigma 50mm f1.4 ART + Canon 5D Mark III

I wish I had more time to photograph the vision of the sparkling raindrops, but unfortunately it only lasted for a few minutes. I can tell you for sure it was a one of a kind experience. The spark might have disappeared quickly, but it got replaced with amazingly glowing colours and smooth silky / velvety like textures, so I thought it would be rather silly to call it a day just yet.

I added an ordinary glass juice bottle to my composition, and the game was ongoing until the sun completely disappeared behind the horizon.

I tend to keep glass bottles (water / juice etc.). Why? Very good question! I actually have no idea why I am so drawn to glass objects. After the bottles are empty, I peel off the labels and I wash them. I quite often use them as props in my photography. I admire how the light hits them and gives them a precious glow. (I also keep the glass dishes of candles after they burn down completely, and I collect the little glass pebbles on the shore.)

I think it is safe to say that I have a certain obsession for glass. Gloom or glow, I always find happiness in photographing them.

On those rare occasions, when we get to see the sunset in London, I always try to make most of them. I find beauty in simplicity, therefore my subjects are quite ordinary most of the time. Shooting in the golden hour and using my OMNI filters is a chance for transformation, in which even the most average object turns into something extraordinary.

For instance, take a look at a composition of a juice bottle with some pampas grass stuck into them. Sounds rather boring, right? BUT according to W.B. Yeats “The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.” I think this is 100% true.

The pandemic has been depriving me from so many precious things, but at the same time it has definitely made me grow as an artist, and it has been sharpening my senses immensely. I have been bending and stretching my creativity to get the most out of my days, and to find beauty in the most unusual places. Even in something as plain as a juice bottle.

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