Ennis, Texas, is located just 35 miles southeast of Dallas, Texas. It was established in 1872 and in 1930s used to be known as the place “Where Railroads and Cotton Fields Meet.” Today it is known, among other things, as the place where Bluebonnet and Czech heritage are celebrated. The National Polka Festival is held here every Memorial Day Weekend. Music, costumes, and food of the Czech heritage will be showcased. The parade will run through this historic downtown of Ennis. Go there this weekend, if you got the chance!
Patches of white and grey puffy clouds spread all over the blue canvas of sky two mornings ago. From east to west, north to south. On the east, gleams of brilliant warmth reflected on the edge of the altocumulus where the sun tried to peek through. It was one-of-a-kind morning.
I’ve been observing and preserving the beauty of East Texas sky since I moved here, in Edgewood, in 2006. In 2012, I self-published my photography book, On the Edge of the Piney Woods, compiling the photographs of ever-changing Texas sky and the land’s natural beauty in four seasons. The sky and the land don’t stop amaze me with their ever-changing beauty and surprises, so I keep taking photographs of the same subjects. Like these views of one fiery sunrise in early winter in December 2013. The ray of golden sunlight caught my eyes through the kitchen window, as always, notifying me that a glorious scene was going to play out there in a few seconds. Without delay, I grabbed my camera and got out there in a crisp morning to capture it.
“Here in East Texas, we are blessed with a big, beautiful, ever-changing sky. A sky free of the smoke-belching pillars of industry and the noxious fumes of urban clutter. Someday, that may change; but for now, the only thing out of place in our sky is the occasional contrail of an overflying jet, and the only noxious fumes are generated by the resident skunks.
When we were children, we would lay in the cool grass of summer and try to find familiar shapes in those puffy white clouds. As our appreciation for more abstract beauty grew, so did our wonder in the beauty of our sky.”
These pictures of gorgeous, dramatic sky were taken on the Leap Year Day 2012. I was eager to find something to photograph that day. I missed the golden light in the morning and there was nothing that caught my eyes during the day. Then, early evening just before the golden hour, while I was cooking dinner with stoves and oven burning, from my kitchen windows I saw puff and puff of clouds. That was it! Perfect object, not so perfect time, but I managed to accomplish both tasks.
Three pictures from this sky collection had been chosen to be included in my photo book, the last one in the gallery above even made the cut for the front cover.