Thermal Event (In Camera Zoom During Long Exposure), Rickmansworth

It’s been a full 18 months since I used a zoom lens, it turns out. Yet heading out into thick fog I didn’t want to risk damage to my non-weather sealed 24mm TS-E so picked up the 24-105mm. Wandering down to the Rickmansworth Aquadrome (a series of old gravel pit lakes) I saw this scene and decided I’d best shoot it finally. I’ve passed it an considered a shot quite a few times – a beaten up cargo box with an insanely fierce outdoor spotlight on the house behind it. Normally I walk on by as without fog to intensify the effect it all looks a little too mundane. With fog, the light was searingly intense. Zooming the lens from 105mm down to 24mm over the first ten seconds of the exposure creates the lancing beams of light – that you might expect if the light was right behind the tree, but kind of counter expectational given it is to the side. Tilting the horizon helped accentuate the sense of a catastrophic blast. I’d been considering selling the zoom as I’ve come to enjoy using primes – chiefly the 24mm TS-E and 100mm L Macro – but this convinces me I need to keep it for back up in foul weather and for the mid-exposure zoom effect that I’ve likely overdone in the past, but really enjoy here. Hope everyone is having a fantastic week!

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