The Sunrise photos

One of the great things about getting up early and going out cycling, walking, or jogging, is that you absolutely cannot fail to take fantastic photographs because the light is so magical at that time of the morning.

So these photos were taken between the hours of about four thirty to six thirty a.m., mostly from the flood-prevention dykes by the river near our house, and I didn’t need a digital SLR or any kind of fancy equipment, just an iPhone with a fixed, wide-angle lens.

Smartphone cameras as a rule don’t work very well in very low light, so the night photo series that I will post on this blog in due course did require a marginally more sophisticated – or rather, dedicated – digital camera that enabled long exposures. But these are literally point-and-shoot.

This one was taken on New Year’s Day and a friend of mine remarked on Facebook that it makes it look as if I live on Mars.

One or two of the others were taken when the temperature was approximately four or five degrees below zero.

On the other hand, many were taken in mid-summer when, even at that time of the morning, the temperature was probably 15 or 20℃.

Some are not of the sunrise as such, but rather the dawn…

…and as well as the light, another thing that I like about the early morning is that there is often mist drifting along the river and through the trees. This is nature’s smoke machine, which if I was making a movie would require a lot of time, money, and effort to recreate. I suppose because our house is on a plateau and I go downhill and through the rice fields for my walks, jogs, and so on, mist is more likely to appear because the ground is essentially at sea level and next to a river.

One thing that is much harder to do is for a morning excursion to coincide with a time when there is fog around our house, up here on the plateau. I’ve taken many photographs in the snow, which is of course very photogenic, but hardly any in the fog because it appears only occasionally.

I should also say that several of these photographs – namely the two or three that are cropped to be square – have already been posted on my Instagram account.

Instagram is, I think, a lot like Twitter, in the sense that it’s very hard to generate followers who are going to bother looking at your photographs. On Twitter I have fewer than 30 followers and on Instagram a little more than 100. Whereas on Facebook I have more than 300 friends and although I don’t know exactly how many people visit this blog on a regular basis, its reach is almost certainly much greater than my Instagram account.

But should you wish to see the occasional photos that I post there, this is a link to it. Among other things, you will be able to see pictures of my beloved children, who are only rarely featured here at

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