My favorite Upstate New York sunset!

Sunset Over the St. Lawrence River

This amazing sunset view of the St. Lawrence River, with the silhouette of the famed Boldt Castle on the horizon, is my absolute favorite New York sunset photo!
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St. Lawrence River, Boldt Castle combine for perfect sunset photo

There are two times of the day I live for: sunrises and sunsets. Sometimes, however, I'm absolutely blown away by the beauty of God's sky paintings.

That's exactly what happened on my final evening in Upstate New York earlier this month — and this print ("Sunset Over the St. Lawrence River") was the result!

My wife and I were standing on the banks of the St. Lawrence River, right behind our hotel room at Bonnie Castle Resort. We had watched the sun set over the famed Boldt Castle each evening, and I had settled for just relaxing and spending time with Yvette (whom I affectionately call My Trusty Assistant or MTA, for short).

But I couldn't resist pulling out the gear and setting up to document what was looking to be an incredible ending to our trip.

Foregrounds are an important part of any fine-art photo, so I found these nice rocks lining the banks of the river.

However, I wanted to ensure the sky remained the star of the show. The solution was to pull out my Sigma 14mm Art lens to create a nice, wide-angle view.

The bonus is that the horizon includes the Boldt Castle silhouette.

I have to be honest: I was disappointed as sunset approached. The sky full of perfect clouds I just knew would light up began to move out, and I worried I would be left with nothing to work with.

MTA laughed at me and told me to wait: "You know you're going to pack up and regret it," she said.

She was right, so I just waited. The fact is the best color often happens 10 to 20 minutes AFTER the sun passes beyond the horizon.

Sure enough, the skies when fairly dull when at sunset — and then exploded in these amazing colors about 10 minutes later. and there were enough clouds to provide contrast and interest in the sky.

Creating the final print required using my Benro filters, with the stack including a polarizer, a 3-stop soft grad neutral density filter and a 4-stop solid ND filter. That last filter allowed me to keep the shutter open for 30 seconds, creating the smooth water.

It just doesn't get any better than this!