At three o’clock every day, I go to the bathroom. Well, sorry, actually that’s a lie. At three o’clock every day, I either go to the bathroom or think about going to the bathroom. Why? Yes, there’s routine, but there’s also something else. I enjoy a special coincidence there. At that time, every day, a single ray of light — bounced from the 50th or 60th floor of a neighboring skyscraper — falls in from the left to hit the right-side stall wall. It only lasts a couple minutes, but it’s always pretty to see.
I’ve even Snapchatted this bathroom shot to friends. They didn’t care. But in the act of doing this, I’ve forced my mind to remember this spot and this time of day. Noting light. Writing about it. Forcing myself to remember. I’m sure you’ve done the same. But if you need further proof that loving photography means you should take notes of places around, here’s one of the best, Joe McNally, confirming it for you. He’ll explain how he picks up light around him, then pass along a few pro tips you should always take with you.
Enjoy photography lighting basics!