“You Complete Me”

“You complete me.”  With those three words, Tom Cruise, as Jerry McGuire in the 1996 movie of the same name, professes his love to his wife and comes to the realization that without her in his life, he is incomplete.  This idea of completeness holds true in any relationship as life is much more fulfilling when shared with others.  Every single person in one’s life has influenced them in a way, become part of them and made them who they are today.  We are always searching for things that complement each other, someone or something that adds something in a way that enhances it and brings it to perfection.

This notion of completeness is not just limited to relationships, but food and drink, complimentary colours, nature, and, of course, photography.

In landscape photography, there are many different ingredients to make the perfect photo—good lighting, a main subject, an intriguing background, and an interesting composition.  When these core elements come together to complement each other, than the picture reaches a level of perfection.

So on this particular frigid winter morning in Bath Ontario, I was rather enthused when I saw the hint of some great cloud formations covering the sky.  I also noticed a break in the cloud cover in the distance and hoped it would allow the sunlight through to light the clouds from the bottom.  While i was waiting for the magical moment, I busied myself to get ready for the several compositions since I knew this would be a relatively short period of time I would have while the lighting was optimal.

There were a few rocks to be used as subject matter, but what drew my attention most was the sheet of ice on top of the water near the shoreline complete with trapped bubbles of air in the ice.

As the sun begin to hit the horizon, I began taking pictures and recomposing.  I ended up with four shots in a span of 10 minutes of perfection and you can see the progression of the colours in the sky and the eventual dissipation as the sun rose beyond the cloud cover.


“Rise Over Icy Lake”
This is the first image I took, with the trapped bubbles of dissolved air very prominent in the shape of an arc at the bottom third of the picture. The horizon is glowing red, but the cloud cover has not yet been kissed by the light of the sun.
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You Complete Me

“You Complete Me”
In the second image, taken 5 minutes after the first, the clouds are completely under lit from the light of the rising sun. While the composition of the photo lacks the typical rule of thirds, it makes up for it with the reflection of the clouds on the ice on the water.
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Sky Fire

“Sky Fire”
Taken two minutes after the previous image, this one is similar just recomposed to give the sky two-thirds of the frame.
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Rise Over Icy Lake

“Fire and Ice”
Taken ten minutes after the first image in the series, in the final image you can already see some of the clouds are no longer being lit by the rising sun.
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In a word, it was perfection..everything coming together at the right time.

And at that moment I felt, if the land could speak, it’s whispered words carried in the breeze to the sky above, it would say these words:
“You complete me.”

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