Wittnauer Challenger, tripod
Fixed 50mm 2.8 lens
Kodak 100
Exposure unrecorded
Every once in a while you get lucky
university lake boaters

No, I'm not referring to the couple in the boat with that header, but to myself. Immediately after moving to North Carolina in 1990, the only camera I had was an old classic rangefinder with a fixed lens, no meter, and a really poor focus system. Photography was largely hit or miss.

Wandering around University Lake in Chapel Hill, NC, I chanced upon an area that framed the sunlight reflecting off of the lake nicely within a break in the trees. I wanted to use it, but there wasn't a strong subject.

Almost immediately, I heard the splashing of oars, and discovered these obliging boaters were going to pass right through my composition! I set up my tripod and just guessed at the exposure, knowing nothing about flare, so no hood and no attempt to shield the lens. Click!

Amazingly, I think the deep flare from above actually works, and the lack of a meter probably allowed me to get a better exposure than one that would have tried to compensate. A few years later, I got another surprise when I reprinted the enlargement myself, and discovered that the original lab had trashed the colors pretty badly — there were some great blues and greens that hadn't appeared in the first print.

And the final thing I like about this shot is… you'll notice it's the woman that's doing the rowing…  :-)