There is something magical about December. Perhaps it's because here in the northern hemisphere the days are getting shorter. Or rather more to the point, night comes earlier and lasts longer.
Candles, twinkle lights, fire light - they all owe their enchantment to the dark. Without shadow the light would would be undefined. It's the contrast that makes things interesting.
The Christmas Market in Toronto's Distillery District is charming. We arrived around 4pm and wandered around enjoying all the displays and poking in the stores. But as night fell and the shadows grew, the lane ways lined with glowing gas lamps and twinkling lights morphed into a more captivating world. Even the horses on the brightly lit carousel seemed to come to life.
As photographer, I find I'm always paying attention to the light... but my newest discovery is that there is magic in the shadows.
Of course I'm not the first to consider this. I recall Trey Ratcliff talking about this with regards to processing HDR photos. A side effect of producing photos with a high dynamic range of light is that often the shadows can be completely eliminated. This is what allows one to see greater detail in an image. Trey cleverly recommends making adjustments to bring some of that shadow back into your image. And I agree it makes a big difference... you need a bit of shadow to define the light and to bring the magic. (By the way if you haven't already - check out Trey's latest magical endeavour www.thearcanum.com)
So embrace the shadows of December my friends and have a magical weekend.