Tokyo: Dark & Light

I walked in the door this evening and, even before feeding Sumi (which is the first thing that gets done because he’s a very demanding cat), I caught a glimpse of a patch of light in the storm clouds. The city lights were coming on and I knew the window of opportunity was 10 minutes maximum before it all changed.

This is the main thing I love about living up high: I’ve become a real sky watcher. I’ve always loved looking at the sky (who doesn’t, really?), but I can’t say I was such a keen observer of the sky until I really got into photography in a serious way.

As your eye become more trained, little changes in light levels begin to leap out at you and you begin to see opportunities that exist for very short periods of time; there is a lot of carpe diem in the process or you miss an opportunity you might never have again.

I highly doubt, for example, that I will ever look out my window and see this again:

Giant cloud looms

So, this evening was, again, a dash for the tripod and the right lens with an excited cat weaving between the legs of the tripod and tripping me up (eager because he’s been alone all day and he thinks we are now playing a “chase-the-tripod-legs” game) in order to get a shot of one little patch of light almost directly above the towers that now flank Tokyo Station’s Yaesu Exit (click on photo for a better view):

Not quite night, as the city lights come on and daylight seeps through the clouds...

For the technically curious: 3 exposures at ISO 200; 30mm, f/11 taken with a Canon 50D and a Sigma 30mm f/1.4 EX DC HSM (a kick-ass lens for the cost).

And this, by the way, is my lovely assistant:

Sumi the Russian Blue gawks - his usual "Who, me...?" stare

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

  • These are beautiful! I love taking photos of clouds as well, but I live in the basement so I usually can’t take them from my window 🙂

    • Thanks very much! Yes, definitely one of the disadvantages of a basement place…it probably makes you slightly more creative in your seeking of cloud shots… 🙂

  • Jay

    OMG those are sooo good! I love the flat bottom cloud. And hello to the handsome Sumi-das. Such a good looking boy 🙂

  • Thank you, Jay!

    There is definitely something about that flat-bottom cloud that captivates: it is my most-viewed photo on Flickr (approaching the 9000 mark).

    What’s funny is that it was taken on my birthday: we were out on the balcony in the November chill having a festive birthday breakfast with some mimosas when the cloud rolled in from behind and, yet again, I had to run inside for my camera…