County Dock - the story of an image

Last Light on County Dock, Mandarin FL Last night the sunset over the St. Johns River was very nice. Not crazy spectacular but visually beautiful. Typically I don't make a point to hang out and watch sunsets. I figure that there will always be another sunset...what a poor attitude. By chance I had my camera in the car. When I left the gym to come home, I saw the pink sky and headed to the dock. There is always some anxiousness when you approach a site and you don't know what to expect. I've arrived way too many times only to be disappointed. The dock and boat ramp were barricaded which almost sent me home, but I grabbed my camera and decided to check things out. I left my tripod in the car thinking there would be nothing worthwhile to shoot. When I walked to the water's edge it was obvious that I was staying a while. I exposed 50 images. Most of these I laid my camera on the wooden rail for support. I'm typically an f/18 ISO 100 type of shooter. My favorite shot was 1/20 sec, f/6.3, ISO 1250. No 40x60 for this one but I was happy with the result. So what about the other 49 images? I worked a few different angles, isolating the sky, then the water, some verticals, etc.  I found that this image combined all of the elements of interest...the sky, the orange color highlighting the boat, reflections in the water, the docks, the lights of the Buckman Bridge in the background, and the couple watching the sunset. I think it is the couple that adds the human element and scale. When you can get a few elements to come together then an image has a good chance of being a keeper.

Morals of the story: Go to the gym and your rewards will come after, hang out to watch sunsets and be surprised, never leave your tripod in the car.