My life has a superb cast but I can't figure out the plot.
~ Ashleigh Brilliant

Friday, July 6, 2012

SkyWatch Friday: Oh Beautiful for Spacious Skies

Our 4th of July "Independence Day" sunset was better than any fireworks display could ever be! No loud explosions to hurt the ears and terrify critters, no gunpowder stench and smoke to sully the air, no fire or injury hazards, and no litter all over the ground afterwards. Just serene, amazing beauty. I'd never before seen a setting sun with bands across it like this one had. It made me feel like I was on another planet, watching its alien sun sink below the horizon instead of our own. So naturally I grabbed my camera to record it, and these are some of the SOOC results...

Celebrate more beautiful, spacious skies at...

And have a wonderful weekend!


  1. That IS amazing,happy you weren't so awe struck that you couldn't use the camera.
    Jane x

  2. The sun is bright pink. What a spectacular view! Thanks for sharing and nice blog.

  3. Gorgeous scenes! We had a similar sunset that night, too, but I couldn't get any good photos of it.

  4. Wow! These are spectacular!

  5. Gorgeous sky shots and photographed so well.

  6. You certainly have the most beautiful sunsets of any place I have lived. enjoy them -- great phtography -- barbara

  7. I would certainly agree with you..Beautiful sunsets and you captured them beautifully.Have a great weekend!


  8. Beautiful sunset shots. And I learned a new word today: SOOC.

    Though, I have to admit part of the fun of photography for me is using Photoshop.

    I thought about this when I started my blog and decided since I'm not a journalist, I don't need to post an unprocessed image like a newspaper or wire photographer.

    And if you think about it, "SOOC" doesn't mean an image is unprocessed, it's just that you don't do the processing, the camera's software does it for you.

    Have a great Skywatch Friday!

  9. Jane ~ LOL, that's one reason I love my "point-and-shoot" camera. It would be hard to be too awestruck to use it. :-)

    The Write Girl ~ Thank you! That sun gave "hot pink" a whole new meaning! :-)

    Jeannelle ~ I'd gone on a bike ride with Willow (one of our dogs, who loves to trot along beside my bike) when I got to an areas with a good view of the sky and immediately turned around and came home for my camera. The sky I first saw was silver, gold and blue and full of gilt-edged clouds and tons of bright rays shining down. It was gorgeous! But by the time I got home, grabbed my camera and biked to the best vantage spot, that scene had transformed into this one. I wish I could have captured both, but that's what I get for not having my camera velcroed to my face at all times. :-)

    ladyfi ~ I'm glad you enjoyed them!

    Carver ~ Thank you so much!

    Barbara ~ We do get some doozies, don't we? Though I must say, I see plenty of sunsets (and sunrises) all over the world that rival ours when I visit SkyWatch Friday. You should check out today's batch, there are some stunning ones! And thank you for your compliment on my photography. Honest, I just point and shoot.

    NatureStop ~ Thank you, Shantana! And I wish you a great weekend too!

    Clueless in Boston ~ Thanks, and I'm glad I linked to that term (it was an afterthought). I don't have Photoshop, but I do sometimes enjoy playing with various editing tools like those on PhotoBucket. Usually I just use the "auto fix" and crop features, though. True about the camera's software - I've seen that point made on blogs and discussion forums about "SOOC," but using the term makes for good shorthand when wanting to let people know the photos weren't manipulated with tinting or any other editing enhancements.

    Happy Skywatching to you as well!

    Kerri ~ Thank you! I love your enthusiasm! :-)

  10. That is amazing Laurie - just gorgeous!

  11. Gorgeous sky and very colorful as well. Mine is gray colored but soothing. :)

  12. Beautiful sunset, I would be happy to be there watching this beautiful sunset scene. Lovely photos.

  13. Beautiful!
    Have a great week-end!
    Lea's Menagerie

  14. Absolutely incredible photography! I figured you did some serious photo editing until I read you post.

  15. A beautiful sunset to celebrate 'Independance Day'.

  16. Barbara (UK) ~ Thank you, it really was an amazing sky that night. I love how a sunset or sunrise like that seems to change by the second, especially when it just keeps getting more beautiful (though that usually means I come home with a LOT of photos to download and sort through!) :-)

    Antonina ~ Yes they were, especially that hot pink sun!

    Kim ~"Adorable?" :-)

    Nisha ~ I will check out your soothing gray sky shortly!

    eileen ~ And it would have been nice to have you there watching and photographing it with me. :-)

    Lea ~ Thanks, the same to you!

    Spare Parts ~ Thank you! But honestly, all I did was point my little Kodak at it and press the button! :-) Sometimes the skies out here have such incredible, vivid colors (especially at times like these, with so much smoke and dust in the atmosphere), that I'm afraid people will think I edited them to look like they do. But I don't, never have - never need to! What I saw is what you get. Only the real thing is always prettier, taking up far more of the sky around me than I can capture - and in this case, the sun wasn't "muzzy" like it is in my photos. I just could't hold the camera steady enough to get a really clear photo of it.

    thomas ~ I thought it was pretty appropriate to have all those colors in the sky on that day! (We haven't had a colorful sunset since that one, but that's good, because it means our skies are no longer so smoky since getting some rain! Yay!)

    Kusum ~ Thanks!

  17. Wow, that does look like another planet or something on another planet! So beautiful. I wonder what caused the bands. Better than fireworks anyday!

  18. Wonderful photos. Love this colours.
    Wish you a great weekend.

  19. SO beautiful! I agree- fireworks have nothing on Mother Nature!

  20. Rose ~ I wonder what caused those bands too! They didn't line up with any clouds in the sky that I could see, so I couldn't figure it out. A beautiful mystery.

    Hilda ~ Thank you, and I wish you one as well !

    Molly ~ Thanks, and they sure don't! :-)

    NH ~ It was a beauty of a sunset, wasn't it? We get a lot of beautiful sunrises and sunsets here, but each is unique and I never tire of them. And the bands across the sun made this one unusual! Thanks for stopping by!

  21. I love to see you get so many comments for your skywatch photos - they deserve it.

    It is so hard to pick my favorite - they are all so wonderful. In this case it's not just the photos that are all so special but the Creator's art work too.

    Because of the pink bands on the sun, I think I like the third one best and I agree that it is looking at something alien. Those bands are so vivid and pink.

    The last one is the one that looks most incredible to me because you got that full arc of the sun at the bottom. There is no landscape to hide part of it and that is just amazing.

    We of course never see more than a little piece of beautiful sky and I get excited about skies far less interesting than this so I really appreciate getting to enjoy these photos.

    Make sure to order some when I come to visit next year!

  22. Jo ~ Thank you! The sunrise and sunset shots definitely get the most - those are always the ones whose thumbnails catch my eye on the SkyWatch page too).

    I couldn't choose a favorite either, which is why I ended up posting about a third of the ones I took! :-)

    The sun didn't look exactly like that in real life - it had dipped completely below the horizon by that shot, and did leave a bright glowing arc of glowing light behind, but my camera's software made it a bit more pronounced and defined than I remember it looking. But it's similar, and was beautiful both ways.

    I'm glad you enjoyed these so much! I took these from the top of the hill above the elk statue, by the way - told you that's a great spot for viewing sunsets! :-) I'll definitely order some for your visit next year, and we'll even ride bikes to the cemetery one evening when it looks like we're going to get a beauty.

  23. You are post very beautiful sunset photos. We will bookmark your post here on Digg.


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  • THE HUMANE GARDENER ~ Nancy Lawson
  • THE WORLD WITHOUT US ~ Alan Weisman

There is still strong in our society the belief
that animals and the natural world have value
only insofar as they can be converted into revenue.
That nature is a commodity.
And that the American dream is one of unlimited consumption.
There are many of us, on the other hand,
who believe that animals and the natural world
have value by virtue of being alive.
That Nature is a community to which we belong
and to which we owe our lives.
And that the deeper American dream is one of unlimited compassion.

~John Robbins, "The Food Revolution"

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