Sunset at home

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The Date: 2nd April 2001

The Place: West Kirby hill (apparently it's really called 'Grange Hill')

The Occasion: Sun


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So I peered out of the window while working on the computer (I have a pretty good view outside my window, which is very good when my eyes need a rest) and saw what I thought were the makings of a great sunset. I'd already missed a very respectable sunset on Saturday when I went out to Liverpool and I wasn't sure whether another opportunity would present itself before I went back to university at the end of the week.

There wasn't any other option, so I quickly got together all my gear (camera, tripod... and that's about it, really) and walked up to the nearby hill (Grange Hill, after the TV series) and set up at my usual spot, and this is the first photo I took.

At 7:40 PM. Facing west, obviously. If you were interested.
Same scene, same place, one minute later, fully zoomed in. Results in altogether different and still very nice colours. I like the effect when the sun passes through the clouds. It's also good that the sun isn't overexposed like it often is on my other pictures.
Ten minutes later, from about two hundred metres away. The sun is just about to dip under the horizon and we get the absolutely classic 'West Kirby' photo where the wind is coming towards us (or away, I can't remember) and the clouds are swept back. Incredible, how you can get so different colours at two slightly different times.
I didn't actually think that this photo was going to be any good - I just wanted to give an impression of the place I was taking this photo from, which is right at the top of the hill on a stone pedestel with this compass marked on it. Very peculiar colours. Another few hundred metres away from the last place, and about 20 minutes on.
Now this is what it really looked like from the compass place. I love these dark orange colours. I also thought I'd give using the timer mode a try out, since I never get to be in any of the pictures I take of sunsets. I think it turned out fairly well - yes, you can't actually see much apart from a silhouette but that was inevitable. I was facing out to the sea here.
While I was out there, I was thinking to myself that it would be a shame if I couldn't convey the sheer sweeping arc of the clouds across the horizon - you can't see it in my other pictures because I don't have a wide-angle lens, and so it hit me; I should use take a load of overlapping photos (well, four) and stitch them together using a bit of software. It's not perfect but maybe it'll give you an idea of what I saw. Still, it's not as visceral an experience as actually being there and standing high up on the hill with the wind blowing around and the rich colours saturating everything you can see. It always disappoints me that most of the people I know who live nearby haven't been up on the hill to see these sunsets, not properly. But what can I do, apart from put these photos up and hope someone realises that they might want to see the real things after all?