LAKE TAHOE - Karen Hutton Photography
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West Shore Wonder

West Shore Cafe, Homewood, CA

This image pretty much happened by accident. It was taken on the West Shore of Lake Tahoe, California one evening last winter.

I'd been out photographing new snow all day, mostly on the East Side. We've been having a drought for 5 years, so having snow to photograph at all was beyond thrilling for a whole host of reasons!

I have a wonderful print client (a married couple) who had recently bought several of my photographs and I wanted to create a special thank you for them. I pondered for awhile. At one point some weeks before, they'd asked me if I had any images from the West Shore Cafe. It was their special place... and had even been married here. At the time, I'd never even seen the West Shore Cafe... and being a landscape photographer, it wasn't on my radar.

My clients had been married in summer... but I got to thinking that a snow shot of the pier where they'd said their vows might be a lovely gift. They had stood at the very end of this very pier.

I got to the west side of Lake Tahoe just in time to realize the sky was going to turn all kinds of awesome colors! We'd been having very ordinary sunsets for weeks. This was like a gift from the heavens.

I waited till the West Shore Cafe turned its lights on... and made several compositions before the colors in the sky faded into the dark evening. My feet were frozen when I finished - it was nearly 0 degrees F - but I didn't care. I'd gotten the shot I dreamed of.

My clients were completely surprised and ecstatic! They couldn't believe I'd done this for them. For me, it felt amazing to be able to give this moment to two such lovely and generous people. It wouldn't have meant as much to anyone else.

I feel that I was given certain gifts in life... and that sharing them in this way was part of fulfilling part of my soul's mission.

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