A trumpeter swan spreading her wings on Lake Ontario. These are some of my most favourite photos that I’ve taken. The lighting was beautiful on this afternoon and this gal here was the most perfect model. And to think I almost didn’t bring my camera!
I ended up taking these photos by chance. My family and I were off to Ashbridge’s Bay for some fresh air when we happened upon this view while looking for parking. I couldn’t help but be drawn to the colour of the sky and the way its colours reflected off the frozen Lake Ontario. Sunset wasn’t due for another little while but if I didn’t know any better, I would think it was already happening.
On January 17th, Toronto was hit with record snowfall. Some areas accumulated a whopping 60cm of snow! We definitely were snowed in at my house and I knew that there was no way I’d be going anywhere for days to come. A part of me is still dejected that I wasn’t able to get true blizzard shots but I also know it would have been unsafe to venture out. The conditions were terrible. But in the same way that an intense sunset is more likely to happen after a summer storm, the same can be said for snow storms!
I was indoors when I noticed the sky above the backyard was turning orange. The snow had lessened by that point but my heart sank to my stomach knowing that I wouldn’t be able to travel to get photos of what looked to be a promising sunset. I ran to the front of the house to look outside and sure enough, the sky was transforming into a beautiful mix of red and orange. While it wasn’t ideal, I wasn’t about wallow in self pity when I could get my winter gear on, and take photos from the street. And that’s exactly what I did. I’m so relieved that I was able to capture the beautiful sky without having to go out of my way.
If you read my previous post, I mentioned that my next would contain the sunset from that same evening. What I was expecting was definitely not a sunset this vibrant. I ended up shooting these photos at another spot a little ways off. To get down to the shore to achieve that, I had to go down a steep and snowy hill. I’m so glad I wasn’t alone as that made the trek easier lest I fall on my face into the snow.
When I looked up at the landscape before me, I felt like the main character in a movie. It was so unreal, I couldn’t believe it. I was also really relieved I had this vantage point, as I wouldn’t have been able to see the sunset in its entirety like this had I stayed in my original spot. Shout out to my brother who found this area while I stayed to take photos in the other one!
When the swans came out to play, I couldn’t help the smile that spread across my face. A vibrant sunset and two swans playing around in the lake? How lucky was I? I really wanted to get a photo of the both of them above the water but it’s almost as if they were teasing me. When one would resurface, the other would lower its head into the water. After a while, the sunset faded enough that there was no point in waiting any longer. But even so, I was far from disappointed!
A trio of another few of my favourite images. This frozen landscape felt so quiet and serene that I almost felt like an intruder being there. I found a spot to sit and observe the beauty around me since these aren’t sights you can experience year round. In the back of my mind, I was hoping be treated to a sunset but I didn’t want to ask for too much, either. Truthfully, with the current cloud cover, I wasn’t expecting a memorable sunset at all. But since I was already there, I figured might as well wait. Even if I got some blue hour photos, I wouldn’t have been disappointed. You won’t see it in these images but in the next just how vibrant the sunset turned out to be. The glowing horizon only added to this landscape but honestly, with ice textures like this, any time of day would yield beautiful results.
A frozen and icy landscape during a deep freeze in Toronto. It was around -20°C on this evening and it didn’t take long for exposed skin to turn pink. Observing this landscape, I felt so calm and at peace. All I could hear was the gentle lapping of the water in the distance, restless birds, and the sounds of the ice cracking from one side of the shore to the other. I thought it was super interesting how the ice resembled water lapping up the shore. Obviously, this was the way the water froze but the jaggedness of the ice was fascinating to me as other frozen areas of the lake consisted of smooth ice. When we visited after a few “warmer” days, the ice had melted a bit, so I’m very glad I got these shots when I did.