Campus Life

Institute Double Take

“Red sky at night, sailor’s delight.” This especially beautiful sunset was brought to my attention shortly after 7 p.m. and was already a wealth of reds, oranges, and golds by the time I got out to Kresge with a Nikon D800 and 24-70mm f/2.8 lens. As someone who has only been shooting for a few months, my thought process is usually something along the lines of “Ahh! Colors! Button!” and most of my photos accordingly consisted of a visible foreground and blown out sky or a reasonable exposure of the sky replete with black landscape devoid of detail. Sunsets can be difficult to capture since the most radiant colors tend to last only 20-30 minutes, and this one was no different.

I was on my way back to return the equipment with not much to show for it when I saw the sky was still a beautiful mix of purple and blue behind Simmons Hall. The brightness had lessened enough that the foreground was nicely exposed while still allowing me to capture the richness of the sky. Additionally, lights from the outdoor track helped prevent the immediate foreground from being too dark and added a bit of extra vibrance on the right side with the bushes and American flag. If you’re enthusiastic about photography and want to get a jump on these extraordinary sunsets, keep an eye out for scattered clouds to the west/northwest in the early evening.


Exposure Time:
1/15 sec.

ISO 5000

Effective Focal Length:
32 mm