Plan B: An alternative plan of action for use if the original plan should fail.
In photography and in life in general, unexpected things can happen during ones day. We all have plans on how to go about our daily lives. But at random times things my not go as originally planned. In such an extreme example, it’s defined as an “accident.”
The definition of the word “accident” is the following.
Accident: An unforeseen and unplanned event or circumstance.
As I mentioned before this is an extreme example I feel, due to the following two words within the definition of the word accident. Those words are “unforeseen” and “unplanned.” On a lesser example if one plans for the “unforeseen,” then it becomes a “situation.”
Now the definition of the word “situation” is the following.
Situation: Relative position or combination of circumstances at a certain moment.
In photography if this is your line of work, or just an enthusiast/hobby, one does have to plan for the unexpected. It could be something as simple as bringing extra batteries, or even extra memory cards or film. We all try our best to plan so that these little things don’t spoil a photowalk/outing.
And during a recent photo shoot that I had planned for days in advance, lets just say that I had a “situation.” A few weeks back I had traveled into Manhattan, New York to photograph an event that only happens twice a year. It’s called “Manhattanhenge.” It’s an event during which the setting sun aligns with the east–west streets of the main street grid in the borough of Manhattan in New York City. You can read the full details here. Manhattanhenge
I have photographed Manhattanhenge a few years back, and I must say that it’s an awesome sight to see, and it is worth taking the time to photograph it. But this year the weather was not on my side. For the sky that day was cloudy and it did look like as if it was going to rain, but the rain never did come. However there were low clouds in the sky that totally blocked the setting sunset.
In photography there are three stages to a sunset, they are in the following order. “Golden Hour,” “Sunset” and then “Blue Hour.” The best colors happen in the sky happen during golden and blue hour. And they really can make a huge difference if one is trying to photograph a sunset. But due to the very low clouds all we were able to get was a dark grey sky with no sight of the sun in sight.
At one point it did look like the sun was going to show, for some of the clouds did break in the sky. But they came back to block the sunset half hour before it’s start. Once I had noticed that Manhattanhenge was not going to happen, it was time for “Plan B.”
Plan B being street photography, a style of photography that I do enjoy doing. There was quite a few people waiting for the Manhattanhenge event and lots of random people walking around, so I did have quite a few subjects to shoot.
My camera configuration for this event was the following: Canon EOS 600D with a Canon EF 80–200mm f/ 4.5-5.6 II lens with a ultraviolet-coated (UVC) filter.
Most people were going about out their day, like this one woman waiting for a taxi cab to pick her up.
She was clearly more into her cell phone than catching a taxi.
Or this woman who was in a taxi cab wondering what was going on with all these people with their cameras.
Quite a large number of people were waiting for the Manhattanhenge sunset, some with and without cameras.
And of course they were some people using cell phones to try to capture the event.
Myself I was standing in the middle of the street with full rush hour traffic trying to set up my shot, one driver did not mind me being in her way in front of her car to take a photo.
As you can see from the photo above that New Yorker’s are nice people. Unlike all those Internet rumors that mention how they are all rude to people. Actually we are a nice bunch of people, you just have to get to know a New Yorker to understand us all.
But as time went on, hope was starting to fade, with people wondering if it was going to happen.
Sadly to say that due to poor weather, with low clouds in the sky, the Manhattanhenge sunset was not going to happen that day.
But fear not people! Manhattanhenge will make a return in July for two nights. Those nights are the following.
Friday, July 11 8:24 P.M. EDT.
Saturday, July 12 8:25 P.M. EDT
You can read the details here at the American Museum of Natural History website. Myself I am planning to attend both nights. Hopefully the weather and odds will be in me and everyone’s favor.