A little bit of personal history will help to explain the motivation and emotion behind this photograph. I grew up in Wilmington, Delaware, but moved away after marrying and graduating from college, then lived in several other states over the following 45 years. After 35 years in Pennsylvania, we got the crazy idea to move to Lewes, Delaware. My sister moved here six years prior, and my husband grew up in Ocean City, New Jersey, so this move was like coming home. It was a wonderful decision. Since we made the move, another of my sisters and one of my husband’s sisters have joined us here.
It goes without saying that the Lewes area is a treasure trove for nature photographers. Ironically I didn’t know how beautiful this area was until after we moved here! My childhood experiences with southern Delaware consisted mostly of beeline daytrips to Rehoboth Beach or Lewes Beach in the heat of the summer. I had never explored all the wildlife refuges and parks. But after the move, we got right to that!
So now, on to the photograph. “Break of Day” was taken on my first sunrise trip to Herring Point in Cape Henlopen State Park. As I walked down the path to the ocean, I could see that I had chosen a great day. The light and air were perfect. In addition, there was an unexpected reward for getting up so early. A group of ten high school students were gathered to watch the sunrise together. I assume they were seniors celebrating the end of the school year. Watching them run around, some of them daring to swim on that cool morning, and hearing their laughter took me back several decades. I was just as interested in them as the color creeping above the horizon as the sun was about to make its entrance. To cap off the excitement of it all, just as the sun rose, the song “Here Comes the Sun” projected from their boom box. Now, that really took me back a few years! I took so many photographs, trying to capture the special moment, and “Break of Day” is my favorite. In fact, it is hanging as a large canvas on our living room wall- a daily reminder of the gifts we have received since we followed through on that crazy idea almost two years ago!