photography

All photos available for print and licensing >

Sunrises are around 6a now. Which isn’t too bad because I can set my alarm for 4:30, leave the house by 5 and arrive in the city at around 5:15 or 5:20 depending on where I want to shoot and the traffic. Weekends is a total breeze because there is no one on the road. And this past Sunday was no exception.

I was feeling a little tired so I wanted to go to a place where I could easily park and not have to walk too far. Call me lazy but I figured the US Capitol was the perfect spot for just that. I sat on along the reflecting pool when all the sudden the sky blew up in color! It was so beautiful and one of the best sunrises that I’ve seen in a while. I was thrilled that I was out to capture it. It didn’t last too long, probably 10 minutes max but it was so worth the early morning wake up call. Later on in the day I had tickets to go to the Kennedy Center to see Hamilton. So I was taking pictures, listening to the Hamilton soundtrack and overall having the best time watching the sky.

To be honest, Hamilton was FANTASTIC. I loved every minute of the show. The singing and dancing were on point but the story was just so interesting. I had always heard of Alexander Hamilton, but I think that’s because I spend so much time in Washington DC that his name shows up in random places. Like The Hamilton restaurant, seeing his statue in the Capitol Rotunda, things like that. I never really knew who he was or what he did for our country. But now because of the show, I wont ever forget. If you ever get the opportunity to see it, I’d highly recommend going at least once. I was smiling during the entire show.

My camera settings for this image is F16 at 1/6th of a second ISO 320 with my Canon 5D Mark II and 17-40mm wide angle lens.

All photos available for print and licensing >

I remember exactly how this moment happened. My friend Sue and I spent our first morning in Oranjestad walking around the city to explore. We’re both earlier risers so we were doing it to kill time until the rest of our friends woke up so we could all go to the beach together.

Walking around the capital city made me realize just how peaceful, colorful and safe Aruba really is. We were walking around so early in the morning that none of the stores had opened and we looked like the only tourist around. No one bothered us or even said a word. I loved how there were so many locals hanging around just sitting on the benches, soaking in the sun. The only place that was open was The Pastechi House which had some amazingly fresh Pastechis. And when I say fresh, I mean they grew the spinach behind the store!

So after a quick breakfest, Sue and I continued to wonder. I had my 70-200mm lens on most of the time while I was shooting the colorful buildings when I saw this green one across the street from us. I was really drawn to it because I noticed how there were little plants growing out of the roof. I don’t think it was supposed to do that but I thought it made for an interesting play on color. I started photographing it when Sue told me there was someone over there waiting for me to finish taking pictures. I brought my camera down and waved my hand in the universal sign of “Oh I’m sorry, I didn’t see you, you may pass.” LOL. But as I was giving him the hand signal I thought about how great it would be to include him in this image. So here he is rushing by so I could continue taking pictures. But I really like how everything lined up. My favorite is the reflection in the car window. It’s so subtle but I think it really adds the image.

After he passed he continued to walk slowly on his way 🙂

My camera settings for this image is F8 at 1/1000th of a second at ISO 320 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm lens.

All photos available for print and licensing >

I don’t even remember the last time I’ve visited the US Botanic Garden. I know it has to have been at least a couple years and the last couple times I was there, it was purely for the orchid exhibit. I did not go anywhere else or really explore the grounds.

Well last week I had a former photography student and now friend come visit from Sweden. He planned a trip to go to NYC and in the middle of his trip, decided to come down to Washington to see me and another friend he has living in this area, Andrés. It was so great to catch up with Patriq. We talked about everything from photography, American food to Ikea. PS in case you were wondering, swedish fish aren’t really from Sweden.

We met up around the US Capitol and then decided to poke our heads into the US Botanic Garden. For some reason, I had never been in this room and it seems like it’s the main room you go in as soon as you walk into the building. It’s breathtaking with all the plants and vegetation. My favorite part was the ability to walk up the stairs and get a high level view of the room. I found this spot but knew there had to be someone in it to make it complete. I just love the play in perspective with the huge leaf in the foreground and the little Patriq in the background. We were only in the garden for a little bit before we went to our next stop but I can’t wait to go back again. This place has so many great photo opportunities just waiting to happen!

The camera settings for this image is F10 at 1/80th of a second and ISO 400 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.

All photos available for print and licensing >

There’s always room for firsts and I had my first podcast experience a few weeks ago. Thanks so much to Jason Flakes and Mary Bailey for having me on PhotoStank. I had so much talking about photography, Snap DC and so much more. To be honest, I didn’t want the conversation to end. I was having so much fun. If you’re interested, click here to listen to the episode.

And if you have time, check out the episode’s challenge. I think it’s an interesting one. Use the hashtag #photostankchallenge so I can be sure to see what you have come up with.

Today’s image was taken a couple of weekends ago in Lake Anna, Virginia. It had just stopped raining and was still a bit too cold to go out on the boat for some water fun so I thought it was the perfect opportunity to fly the drone! I love practicing flying as much as I can. I’m still a bit nervous at it but I know the more flying time I get, the better it will be.This birds eye view of the world is such an interesting perspective. And my favorite part of this image is the way that you can see the reflections of the clouds in the water. The trees weren’t looking too bad after the rain either 🙂 I think I’ll be flying my drone a lot more often in the summer. Sunflower fields here I come!

Speaking of flying, my friend Andy just came out with a video about flying drones. If you have one, you should definietly check out this video. I learned so much! Just wish it came out before the trip to Lake Anna so I could have applied some new knowledge I learned.

My camera settings for this image is F2.2 at 1/220th of a second and ISO 100 on my DJI Mavic Pro.

 

All photos available for print and licensing >

Last weekend was another adventure weekend. This time was at Lake Anna, Virginia. For the past 3 years, my family has rented a lake house and we would have tons of fun in the water. This past weekend was my first attempt at wake surfing and I had a blast! Mostly because I shocked myself and got up on my very first try. I know I had to have been standing for at least a minute. It was funny because I had spent so much time worrying about how I would get up that once I was up I had no idea what to do next. There is a video of it, but in true Andrew fashion, there’s a finger in the corner of the video!!! I mean, how does that even happen? I swear he must do it on purpose… Anyways I was able to go a few more times and I got better and better at it. Luckily there are no fingers in those videos.

This image is of my friend, Nando. He’s way better at wake surfing, snowboarding and all those kind of things than I am. It was fun to photograph this though. I never thought about the cool angles you could get from the back of the boat. It makes me want to go back again just so I can photograph more surf. This image was taken about 10 minutes before it started thunder storming. Man I wish that rain held off because it rained for the rest of our trip. I would have loved to fly the drone during these wake surfing sessions. I was able to get a little bit of fly time from land, but the boat would have been awesome. Next time, Lake Anna!

My camera settings for this image is F5.0 at 1/320th of a second at ISO 250 with my Sony A7II and 28-70mm lens.