Moment Of Illumination by Arla M. Ruggles

I nearly got frostbitten – literally! — while trying to capture the sunrise in the my mother’s treasured old hurricane lamp. It was -20F, and I had to lie in the snow, waiting for that instant.

It lasted … a few seconds … and then … it was over.

After all that suffering, I was suddenly stricken by the realization that carrying the now-frozen lamp back into the warm house would put at terrible risk of breaking …. my departed mother’s hundred-year-old lamp!

Oh, sure! A rational person would have just PhotoShopped something. But NO! I wanted my vision to be authentic …. yet …. eventually conceded to add the foreground grass. I was not about to go back out and try it again.
(Maybe come summer. ;p)

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Photographic Print

Canon 350D EOS
Canon 18/55mm

JASC Paintshop Pro x7 and PhotoImpact x3

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Great Basin Life exists … between … high desert expanses and majestic mountain wilderness.

Daily, I watch the winds of change sweeping away what remains of our western culture and heritage, and the land that has produced them.

My mission is to preserve as much as I can, of that which will soon vanish, through my photography.

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  • Oncemore
    Oncemoreabout 6 years ago

    Great story and capture…..frostbite is no fun…but well worth the risk here..!

  • You know, once I started worrying about that glass, my hands were hardly even cold anymore.

    Thanks for the comment, Vanessa!

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • Oncemore
    Oncemoreabout 6 years ago

    You are welcome. Frostbite is bad news!(it is -15 here now) so take care!

  • It’s an older image — we are well into the 40’s today. YaY!!

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • Martina Fagan
    Martina Faganabout 6 years ago

    great picture and story
    lovely job:)

  • Thank you, Tina!

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • Clare Colins
    Clare Colinsabout 6 years ago

    Congratulations…a lovely image :)

  • Thanks so much, Clare!

    I’m glad you like it.

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • Appel
    Appelabout 6 years ago

    I hope you thought it all worthwhile, I sure do from this side!! (easy for me to say – no frostbite here) It’s beautiful!!! I’ve always loved these hurricane lamps, this one is very pretty with the colored glass on the bottom. :-)

  • Thanks, Appel!!

    The glass is colored by age and sunlight. My mother found it among the remains of a wooden wagon out in the desert, more than 50 years ago. It was pale purple then, and the color has continued to deepen over the years.

    As far as my family is concerned, this lamp is priceless. ;-)

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • Isa Rodriguez
    Isa Rodriguezabout 6 years ago

  • Oh! This is exciting!!

    Thank you, Isa — and Live Love Dream!

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • Mary Ann Reilly
    Mary Ann Reillyabout 6 years ago

    Arla, I am breathless looking at this image. The sensibility to set the scene as you do and the patience to wait for the moment of light most registered in the glass of your mother is beauty defined.

  • Thanks, Mary Ann – that means so much coming from you!

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • Susan Bergstrom
    Susan Bergstromabout 6 years ago

    Visionary….my friend.

  • Thanks, Susan!

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • davesdigis
    davesdigisabout 6 years ago

    Definatley Excellent………………OVER THE TOP!

  • Thanks so much, Dave!
    I’m glad you like it.

    – Arla M. Ruggles

  • arvyart
    arvyartabout 6 years ago

    Brilliant idea, nice description, excellent result!

  • Thanks so much, my friend!

    – Arla M. Ruggles

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