Blowing in the wind

spider webs blowing in the wind partial solar eclipse
Blowing in the wind. © Bruce Stambaugh 2014.

Photography keeps you on your toes. It enables you to always be on the lookout for that unexpected moment in time that will change in an instant. It forces you to focus on what’s right in front of you when you really intended to capture something else.

Such was my situation on the evening of Oct. 23, when we could view the beginning of a partial solar eclipse just before sunset. An Amish friend of mine, who is a real stargazer, invited me to watch the partial eclipse with him. I picked him up at his home near Charm, Ohio, and we drove a half mile up to the top of a ridge where a long limestone driveway wound down to an Amish farm. Three strands of barbed wire fence kept the livestock in the pasture west of the drive.

While we waited for the eclipse to begin, we tried to stay warm even though the sun shone brightly. Our ridge top viewing spot also exposed us to a persistent and chilly northwest wind. It was the combination of the sun’s slanting rays and the invisible wind that illuminated an amazing phenomenon. The sun exposed hundreds, if not thousands, of spider web strings that blew horizontally away from the barbed wire. Stitched to their barbed wire anchors, the strings glowed like silver thread in the setting sun.

I began clicking away. However, my first few shots were too close to the fence. The webs stretched out so far that they looked like scratches across the digital photo. I stepped to the left, and lowered the camera to capture my Photo of the Week, “Blowing in the wind.”

© Bruce Stambaugh 2014.

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