I’m not really a morning person (Laurel here – Brian bounces out of bed at the first thought of sunlight), but one of the best ways to lure me awake is to promise a pretty photographic opportunity. (The smell of very strong coffee works too, FYI.)
One of my favorite morning photos was taken when I was on a study abroad program in Salamanca, Spain. I was in high school and away from home for the first time. I’d heard about that fabled Spanish morning light, and a friend convinced me to wake up early on our last Sunday in Spain to roam the city with our cameras. Most of my photos were documentary – shots of the beautiful archways and buildings that make up the Salamanca landscape to show my family when I returned home – but one photo was taken by accident and is still one of my favorites
I don’t know who he is, where he was headed or what his story was, and I certainly didn’t mean to take a photo of him. I’d intended to photograph the light streaming through the archways, but as soon as he crossed in front of my camera my friend said “I hope you got that”. I did, and this image has been a fixture on my wall ever since that Spanish summer when I was sixteen. It reminds me of why I love to travel, and of the unexpected moments we find when we’re willing to wake up early to explore a new place. If we’re lucky enough, sometimes we even manage to document these moments in images.