night photography

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Every year in October I can expect a huge jump in texts and phone calls from my dad. No, he doesn’t miss me. We live about 5 minutes away from each other. It’s not his birthday month. It’s not my birthday month. Why all the constant phone dings from my dad? Every year he reminds me of the Harvest Moon and basically forces me to go out shooting 3 nights in a row to capture it. The day before, the day of and the day after the full moon to make sure I capture it at it’s fullest and brightest.

Well, being in Maine didn’t stop him this year. As soon as I arrived I was immediately reminded of the Harvest Moon which meant that I had to pick my location asap. I figured Cadillac Mountain would be the best since you’re on top of a mountain! If my calculations were off in figuring out where the moon would rise from, at least it would be easier to move around on the top of the mountain than it would have been to move to a whole new location if I weren’t.

Watching the moon rise was magical and definietly a lot easier than watching the sun rise. It made everything around me seem so tiny. And then when it turned orange? You could hear all the camera shutters around me going CRA-ZY! It was so bright orange that it kinda made the sky turn a reddish hue. It was absolutely beautiful.

So just in case you don’t have Daddy Pan calling you every October, make sure to catch the full moon rise during this month. Its always awesome. Unless, it’s a cloudy night then it can be super disappointing.

My settings for this image is F13 at 1.3 seconds ISO 400.

PS Where the moon cake at?

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Happy ┬áIndependence day! Hope you all have a great 4th of July full of fun, family and fireworks ­čÖé

This image was taken last year before the National Museum of African American History and Culture was opened. It was amazing! My friend, Jim (who I used to intern for at the Smithsonian Natural History Museum) and I were the only ones inside the fence taking pictures. So I’m pretty sure that means we’ll be the only two people┬áEVER with an image like this. With no one in the shot with 4th of July fireworks with the museum and Washington Monument standing side-by-side. Pretty awesome, huh? But I do remember how gloomy and cloudy the day was. The whole day called for rain and we got little pockets here and there. I┬áremember thinking that they may totally call off the fireworks since the clouds were so dark and heavy. Luckily, they went off as planned. But unfortunately┬áagain, we weren’t able to see the ones that went really high in the sky. We could only hear them. The clouds were so dark that you couldn’t even see the color in them from the firecrackers. We could only see some of the lower hanging ones. Oh well. I still think this turned out pretty amazingly. But a cool effect that happened from all that rain that I didn’t expect were the reflections in the walkways. I purposely got down lower so I could really highlight the reflectiveness of the ground.

I’ll be out taking fireworks images again this year at the National Mall. I’m really looking forward to it. Its like 20 minutes of pure excitement. So if you need any tips on how to shoot fireworks, check out this video I created 4 years ago. All the rules still apply:

Happy shooting and be safe!

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When I go to Taiwan I love to get my hair washed at the hair salon. You can’t do that in the states without getting a haircut or something but you can get your hair washed for less than $5 USD. It’s like a hair wash and head massage all at the same time and I LOVE getting my head massaged. So really it’s a dream and then have they blow dry and style your hair for you after all is done.

This one particular time I was talking to the guy who was washing my hair, just small talk stuff but he could tell I’m not from Taiwan. He asked where I was from and I said America. He immediately goes “ohh Kobe Bryant!” and I was like, “yes Kobe Bryant! Do you know how to say anything else in English?” He didn’t. HAHA