camera settings

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Lately I’ve been getting more and more dm’s on instagram asking me about the camera lenses I use. To be honest, I don’t have very many. But I have plans of adding to my collection soon.

But if you’re at all interested in knowing, I have listed all my sony lenses and even my canon lens gear here. *If you didn’t know I used to shoot canon before I switched to sony about 3 or 4 years ago. So if you’re a canon shooter, check out this link. My friend, Andy asked me about my old canon wide angle lens and compared them to other canon wide angle lenses. Pretty interesting how he laid it all out.

For this image, I used my 16-35mm zeiss wide angle lens. It was the only way I would have been able to capture this entire scene in just one frame. I love the way the cherry blossom tree branch is reaching towards the bench and then spikes all the way up. It’s like the craziest 90 degree angle in nature I’ve ever seen. But I also love how that first branch is just arching right above, framing the bench so nicely. I’m sure I’ve walked passed this scene a million times but I’m so glad I saw it during cherry blossom season. The fluffy pink flowers just fills the scene so much more and adds a lot of color to an otherwise dark image.

My camera settings for this image is F5.6 at 1.3 seconds at ISO 800 shot with my Sony A7II. I don’t remember if I captured this with my tripod or not but I’m assuming it’s handheld. Otherwise the ISO would not be that high but to be honest, if it was handheld, I’m surprised I was able to hold my camera steady for 1.3 seconds.

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The cherry blossoms haven’t bloomed this year. I’m hoping they’ll be out at this time next week.

So this is an image I took last year around this same time. I have tried working on this image several times in the past year but I could never get it right. It’s really different from other images I create because of the lighting. I don’t have much practice with artificial lighting, especially outdoors like that. So whenever I edited it, the colors would look funny and didn’t like it. I’m so happy with the way this one turned out. It’s exactly what I had envisioned from the very beginning. Finally.

It was that same super foggy day that I took this image and this one. This just happens to be the very first image I took that whole morning. The fog had not fully settle in yet so you can see how it’s covering half of the Washington Monument. Little did I know that later on in the morning the entire monument would be covered. So cool!

And little did I know, I would drop my tripod in the Tidal Basin that day too. *face palm* #neverforget.

Anyways, hope you all have a great weekend. I am about to send out my monthly newsletter on Sunday the 1st so if you aren’t subscribed, please do so here. You won’t want to miss out on free calendar downloads, an updated cherry blossom guide and so much more! And if you do use the free wallpapers, screen shot them and send them to me! I would love to see it!

The settings for this image is F8 at 2.5 seconds and ISO 160 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens on a tripod.

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Taken around the same time as this image. I really love those moody, rainstorm clouds. I remember it had been raining on and off all day that day. This happened to be during one of those off periods. What had actually inspired me to take this image was that cartoon you see on the right hand side. In particular that one with the green background and cute little bunny screaming on it. I recognized those characters from our trip to Japan 2 years ago. I believe the cartoon is called ‘Line Town’ and I thought they were so kawaii. They even had their own store near Harajuku and I believe Andrew and I bought a couple of tshirts there for our nieces and nephews. I was so excited to see Line Town come to America that I had to take a cool reflection shot of it. Duhhh! I didn’t make it into the Times Square store but at least I’ll have more opportunities to go than I did when it was only in Japan.

So I started to set up my shot but then that guy who’s covering it saw me trying to look for my composition. I know I was taking taking my time but it may have been too long. Because when I first saw this scene, there was no one there! But that’s New York for you, there are people EVERYWHERE and at any given moment, one of them could walk right into you composition. Right when I was ready to click, there he was, in front of the green bunny. I could have waited to see if he would move but there were more people behind me on their way. Oh well. I still think it turned out pretty cool.

My settings for this image is F8 at 1/50th of a second at ISO 400 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens. At first I was surprised that the shutter speed was so fast at ISO 400 on such a gloomy day, but then I realized it’s times square. It’s always so bright there so you really don’t need a high ISO to shoot fast. LOL.

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Not too long ago, Budget Travel reached out to me because they wanted to use one of my images for their blog post. They were writing a piece on the best places in the country to see the sunrise and obviously, Washington DC made the list (because it really is one of the best places!). So I was honored that they wanted to use one of my images.

Click here if you want to check out the article.

You may have remembered when I took this image. It was at the same time as this one. Isn’t it crazy how different it looks with a vertical crop vs. a horizontal crop? They were obviously taken a couple of minutes a part but they look so different to me. What about you? Do you see a difference? If so, which one do you prefer? Anyways, I love the way that this one turned out as well. I think it’s so interesting to see the cloud formations behind the trees. The reflection from the reflecting pool could not be any better!

On a side note, we just got back from our trip to Orlando yesterday. I had a blast! A much needed vacation after a pretty stressful time in life. I’m ready to get back out there and shoot! More sunrises and sunsets like this please <3 I’ll be back home for a little while now. No real trips planned as of yet but I’m getting the itch to go somewhere in springtime. If you know of any cool places to go to, let me know. Especially places with some beautiful flowers!

My camera settings for this image is F8 at 1/30th of a second at ISO 250 on my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens on a tripod.

Thanks again Budget Travel!

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Even though it was Christmas Eve, I still wanted to go out and capture the sunrise. On this particular morning the sunrise was beautiful but very fleeting. The colors in the sky only lasted for a couple of minutes and then went away. So I figured I would walk around more and see what else I could find. Luckily, my family didn’t have plans of getting together until lunch so I had time to wonder.

I’ve mentioned this before on the blog, but I am constantly moving and walking while I am out taking pictures. I honestly feel like there is nothing worse then going home with a memory card full of the same images. I can understand if you’re standing in the same spot and sky is changing or something like that but I really like to capture a scene and then keep it moving to find a different or even a better composition. So while I was wondering around, I found these cherry blossom branches that perfectly framed the Jefferson Memorial. I mean seriously, could it be any more perfect? *In my Chandler Bing voice*

My favorite part of this image is how cold it feels. Yes, it was a cold day but I think the blue sky and the blue water help exaggerate the feeling along with the bare branches. This image was obviously taken in the winter time. And just like this previous tidal basin image, I really like how the clouds are mimicking the branches. It definietly adds to the framing and repetition of the image.

My camera settings for this image is 0.4 seconds at F22 and ISO 80 with my Sony A7II 16-35mm. You may or not be impressed that this was handheld, no tripods. When I read my camera settings, I was impressed… so….

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So you know that one of Sue’s highlights from the trip was the Ocean Path. If I had to pick mine, it would have been the airplane tour we did on our last night in Maine with Acadia Air Tours. We booked the “airvan” for 35 minutes at sunset. It was perfect because the plane was actually built for sightseeing.

But if you have never been on a scenic airplane tour, I have 2 photo tips for you:

1. Constantly check your images. The beginning of the flight was perfect. I had the correct settings to make sure I wasn’t getting any motion blur in my images. But as the sun was setting towards the end of our flight, I did not realize how much the light had changed.  I should have bumped up my ISO or something because all the images towards the end of the flight were so blurry. I wasn’t upset or anything, I still had a rockin’ time on the flight. Just check your images as you go!

2. Zoom lens all the way. I brought my 70-200mm just in case, but didn’t feel like I needed it at all. We were only up 2000ft max in the air and I was still able to get pretty good zoom-age with my 28-70mm. I say zoom instead of a wide angle because there were times when there would be a lot of sun glare on the windows. Especially when we were faced a certain way, it was very difficult to avoid it. At least with the zoom lens, I was able to avoid those spots as opposed to a wide angle or something that would have captured it all. Sue was taking pics with her phone and said that the sun glare was really difficult to avoid the entire trip. All of her photos had at least a spot.

So if you’re in Acadia National Park and want to see it from a different point of view or even have a totally different experience, I’d highly recommend Acadia Air Tours. Bernard was our pilot and he was so nice. It was very easy to talk to him and I didn’t feel like I was bothering him with the million and one questions I was asking 🙂  And if you do book a trip with them, tell them I sent ya!

This was taken at the beginning of our flight and my camera settings for this image is 1/25th of a second at F5.6 ISO 640.