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the evening is tranquil, and dawn is a thousand miles away

July 28, 2011

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at the end of a sunny summer day, there’s a particular quality of the light just after the sun sets. it is most pronounced if you’re in a park, or in the woods, or even sitting on a lawn. it’s the blue hour, the light of dusk, gloaming – but combined with the green foliage in summer, it’s really distinctive to me.  it’s hard for me to put into words – it’s a feeling more than anything. i think about being a kid during summer vacations and playing outside with friends until late, summer humidity, a walk after dinner outside, cicadas, stillness, the day fading into quiet, a hush.

(title of this post comes from the title of the poem by charles wright)

  1. July 28, 2011 2:56 pm

    The only thing missing (and you won’t get that in Britain) is the sound of a radio broadcasted baseball game. Took me right back. Thanks!

    PS — I just posted a series on my website: Destruction/Inversion the Inverted Blue series!

    • July 28, 2011 3:00 pm

      yes, the sound of a baseball game! that’s perfect.

      (you also won’t get cicadas, summer humidity or a sunny day in britain, either – but a guy can dream!)

  2. July 28, 2011 3:02 pm

    My fondest memories of the blue hour are playing outside with all the neighborhood kids, pretending not to hear my mother as she called my name. She would call it in a long, drawn out way, “Je- si- caaaaaaa” (Jessica). As the light faded into darkness her call became more pronounced and I could ignore it no longer. It was time to stop playing and go home.

  3. July 28, 2011 3:10 pm

    Your love for summer is quite evident and reading your words over these past couple of months has helped me to appreciate this season even more. The poem is wonderful paired with these photographs. Beautiful post.

  4. July 28, 2011 3:43 pm

    You captured that quiet wonder perfectly with these photos.

    I’ve always found the sound of cicadas deeply comforting.

  5. July 28, 2011 3:47 pm

    I love that poem, as you know. Makes me think of summer in Berlin. Thanks for this today, Brian.

  6. July 28, 2011 4:16 pm

    i know exactly what you’re talking about. i love it too.

  7. July 28, 2011 4:17 pm

    That last shot is beautiful! I’m finally understanding the blue hour. :]

  8. Sil permalink
    July 28, 2011 4:35 pm

    I will add fireflies and the smell of gardenias. Love the shot of the window. I really love the photos of small everyday moments. Thank you for sharing!
    Sil from Buenos Aires

  9. July 28, 2011 5:01 pm

    this post is like a poem, visual and written. beautiful, brian.

  10. July 28, 2011 5:26 pm

    Your pictures are like a poem, and let your words in my almost forgotten childhood evenings of yesteryear. Thank you.

  11. July 28, 2011 6:57 pm

    I understand exactly what you’re talking about. It’s a time of day that I long for and constantly seek out. It only lasts for a brief time before it gets too dark. To me, the blue hour feels calm, safe and sweet.

  12. July 28, 2011 7:13 pm

    beautiful post !

  13. marthasnail permalink
    July 28, 2011 7:23 pm

    such a wonderful post, brian. i think you’ve hit on something. summer always makes me think back to my childhood–more than any other season.

  14. July 28, 2011 8:02 pm

    Beauty like this brings out the beauty in people. Good gracious! “Fireflies and gardenias!” I’m in a good spot just imagining everyone else’s blue hour memories.

  15. July 28, 2011 11:14 pm

    Your post reminds me of The Tree of Life. I saw it the other day. Long summers, kids playing beneath sprinklers. Life.

  16. July 29, 2011 3:22 am

    there is nothing like a long look back on childhood, and the light , the air the sounds , all of it the blue hour ..and i love that even though you cant really put it into words you describe it,…chidlhood innocence ..the best of times the worst of times..all of it ..tree of life really does capture a total air of reminisence is evocative and stirs the seni
    tment of your post..

  17. July 29, 2011 9:03 am

    I love your work, thank you x

  18. sueysong permalink
    July 29, 2011 3:42 pm

    i heart the lighting of the last photo. good poem too.

  19. July 29, 2011 4:49 pm

    i know exactly what you mean! i’ve been noticing the “blueness” of the forest in my backyard and have been enjoying all summer :)

  20. emme permalink
    July 30, 2011 9:07 am

    thank you, this is so beautifully put. the sense of peaceful nostalgia at dusk is so strong for me. christina- durban, south africa

  21. Trish permalink
    July 30, 2011 10:24 pm

    I love the word gloaming- the way it sounds, and what it depicts

  22. nileta permalink
    July 31, 2011 3:19 pm

    your pictures are a poem on their own!

  23. August 1, 2011 10:02 pm

    right after this particular time of day is most often when i find myself sitting in my living room in near darkness because i haven’t realized that the sun has set.

  24. August 3, 2011 3:43 am

    I love the way your photos and words hold these beautiful moments as keepsakes for the future.

    Thanks for the lovely work, Ferry!

    (And congrats on the Starbucks photo-shoot! Big news, indeed. You’ll still continue to patronise Prufrock Coffee and your local independent cafés, I hope…?)

  25. August 3, 2011 6:47 pm

    i already left a comment above, but i took a picture of my own “blue hour” since then and wanted to share it with you since i quoted you in my blog post:

    thanks for the inspiration :)

  26. Wendy permalink
    August 5, 2011 4:06 am

    This is a post I’ll return to again and again–it so perfectly captures my favorite time of day.

  27. August 5, 2011 10:37 pm

    oh… this post is beautiful.

  28. Jessica permalink
    November 7, 2013 11:51 pm

    We always call it the Golden Hour because everything is bathed in golden hues. Such a magical time of day.

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