Several evenings ago I noticed, yet again, the large volume of light which was spilling from streetlamps across the City of Riverside. The light pollution brightens the night skies, illuminating clouds, and on most nights produces a dim half-light rather than a true dark. On an uncloudy night it is possible to see first magnitude stars and planets, but stellar bodies that produce less light are obscured by the ground illumination.

There’s nothing unusual about light pollution. Its a side effect of urban and suburban development. What is unusual about the lamplight here is the strong orange/red tint that the newer lights give off. The older lights, which have long been replaced, emitted a cold blue/white light.

I was looking at some clouds moving slowly across what was once a black dome, and happened to see the orange tint on their undersides. I set the camera up on a tripod to capture the scene.

I decided to shoot something closer to the lamplight source a couple nights later, and made the first two photos below of tree branches near a lamp. The 2nd frame is not as “technically correct” as the first because of the flare, but I like the photo and since flare frequently shows up in panning shots in movie films, I’m going to display it here, anyway. Again, two nights later, I looked at the rising moon, and seeing more orange in the cloudy sky backlit by the moon, I tried a few more frames of the street.