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Cotton Candy Skies

Roberto Nickson


Behind the Shot

A long-running criticism declares that Los Angeles drivers can’t drive in the rain. While traffic statistics prove that crash rates double in Los Angeles during rainstorms, the fact is that crash rates increase everywhere during inclement weather. (Although nationally, accident rates go up only about 34%.)

This classic song is mostly correct: It (almost) never rains in California. Los Angeles only gets about 14 inches of rain a year, and averages just 35 rainy days a year. This ensures that grime and oil that would be washed away by rain in other areas remain on the roads in car-crazy Los Angeles. When the rains hit, the oils float on the wet streets, and the wet streets become slippery. This, added to general inexperience driving in adverse conditions, accounts for Los Angeles’ reputation.

But as Roberto found, those few rainy days produce amazing sunsets. “I love post-rain skies. I also just love the rain in general. Not only is it calming, but it makes me not feel guilty for being inside working. It’s really tough to focus sometimes during those perfectly sunny Southern California days. After a drizzly day in L.A., I decided to go for a cruise and just listen to music as it was the final week before I sold my car. I thought the sunset would be one of those orange-filled post-rain sunsets, but it turned out to be a beautiful cotton candy-colored one. I decided to take a bit of an impromptu shoot of the skies.”