reflection

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If you haven’t noticed before, but this is my favorite puddle at the Tidal Basin as seen here and here. It is a little sad to say that statement because there really aren’t supposed to be puddles and this one is pretty much there all the time. But if I had to choose, it would be this one. It’s hard to miss, if you turn towards the left right when you get off the footbridge, just look down. You will see it. I love it so much because the trees around the puddle are so long that they stretch into the tidal basin and when you see the reflection from the puddle, it looks like this awesome tunnel of flowers.

Last week, before all the crazy wind and weather we were supposed to have, I made a last minute decision to head down to the Tidal Basin. It was a sunny day and I wasn’t sure if that would be my only opportunity to capture my favorite trees. So I went down to the puddle and didn’t have any plans or ideas in my mind, I was just going to let my camera do all the work. I crouched down and was just letting everyone pass by me. I loved the way this one turned out because the green Lime bike stood out so nicely in the pink flowers. But then my friend Frithjov is right there behind the bike! I didn’t even notice that was him until after I captured this image. A big hug happened afterwards followed by an interesting discussion about Japanese french fries and fried food. LOL. A great way to spend a cherry blossom morning 🙂

My camera settings for this image is F8 at 1/160th of a second at ISO 200 with my Sony A7II and 28-70mm zoom lens.

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Yesterday’s sunrise was amazing. I checked my weather app the night before and it looked very promising. So I was excited to get out to the Tidal Basin, shoot sunrise and check on the status of the cherry blossoms.

You can see in this image that they are budding. I may have seen one or two trees that had a couple of blossoms on them but for the most part they looked like this. They definietly won’t be blooming this week. Hopefully by the end of next week. However the color in the sky and the cherry blossoms were not my main focus once I arrived. It was all the flooding that was on the sidewalks! There was so much water everywhere. A lot of the southern part of the Tidal Basin, close to the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial, had large puddles and some were so big that they were impassable. It had got to the point where I really regretted my decision of wearing sneakers instead of rain boots. It made the grass all muddy and overall a really swampy situation.

I’ve seen the Tidal Basin flood before, but there had always been a reason. This day for example was right after we had a huge thunderstorm so obviously it was flooded. This day was crazy foggy and there was a lot of moisture in the air so I’m assuming that’s why it flooded. But we haven’t had any rain or snow in almost a week. There really is no reason why the sidewalks should have been flooded like they were. It’s bananas.

So if you’re like me and want to do something about it, check out the Trust for the National Mall’s website so we can help protect the Tidal Basin and Cherry Blossoms.

The camera settings for this image is F5.6 at 1/40th of a second and ISO 500 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.

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The second day of spring and we finally get some snow. So funny how that happened. But I welcome you, snow with open arms although you should have come last week. But it’s whatever. I’ll take what I can get.

I was so excited to get out there and shoot. I’ve been waiting for this day for about 3 months now and it finally happened. I met up with my friend, Paul, and we decided to head over to the US Capitol and check out the scene around there. I had seen some people posting images of the Capitol dome and cherry blossoms so I wanted to see if we could find them to see what they looked like in the snow. Mission accomplished. I’ll post an image of them soon.

After walking around for a while, Paul and I headed to the Rayburn House Office Building to warm up a bit and use the facilities since the US Capitol was closed. While walking around I noticed a whole bunch of men in suits looking at me. Then I realized, oh, they must be looking at my sweater that said “Mo’ Money Mo’ Puppies”. Which I feel like is a great motto to live by.

So as we were walking out I spotted this beautiful puddle right outside of the building. I knew I had to capture this image quickly because I really wanted to have a pop of color and the red taxi cab was driving by. I love how it turned out and it was totally by luck.

One good thing about this snow is that it should not effect the cherry blossoms. One bad thing about the snow is that it may kill off the magnolias that were already starting to bloom 🙁 That makes me so sad. I didn’t get a really good opportunity to photograph them.

Next year, magnolias. For sure.

My camera settings for this image is F11 at 1/125th of a second at ISO 200 with my 16-35mm wide angle lens and Sony A7II.

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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 every photo shoot turns out well. Sometimes I’ll go out and not even pull out my camera and just end up walking around aimlessly. Sometimes I’ll snap a few pics but know that they won’t be my favorites. Other times the images need a little creativity in post processing and I feel like thats what happened with this image.

I went out one morning last week hoping for a colorful sunrise but ended up with some very blue, cloudy skies. The good news is that I found a new puddle and I’m really looking forward to capturing this same scene during a nice sunrise. There are a lot of puddles all around the US Capitol. So many great reflections to be found but I think what makes this one so unique is the fact that you can still see the US Capitol and some car trails to go in front of it. Very cool, if you ask me.

It was a little difficult to capture. Luckily I carry all my extra batteries and memory cards in this cheap, Forever21 makeup bag that is made of entirely plastic. I emptied the entire contents into my backpack and placed it in the middle of the puddle so that I could use it as a resting place for my camera without it getting wet. The key to this image was to get as low as possible and that was basically sitting on top of the puddle.

I liked the way that the image turned out but I thought that rotating it made it look even cool. It sort of adds an interesting element to it and reminds me of those ink blot tests. What do you see actually see in this image?

My camera settings for this image is F11 at 6 seconds with ISO 125 on my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.

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Today is the day! Today is the day that the National Mall NPS will announce their predicted peak bloom date for the cherry blossoms. I can’t wait. I’ve been on twitter everyday this week checking out what they say and what Capital Weather Gang has to say about the weather we’ve been having and how they’d effect the Cherry trees. As a side note, I’m pretty sure I just gained 10 cool points from that last statement. LOL. As of now, I’m just excited for the big announcement!

PS. Today is also the day that my March monthly newsletter goes out. If you haven’t already, make sure to sign up. I have a couple of really exciting announcements of my own that I’ll be announcing on the newsletter first!

Ok, now back to the image on this blog post. This was taken last year, early morning on a particularly beautiful day. It was the day after it rained and it created these amazing puddles all along the Tidal Basin sidewalks. It also rained so hard that there were flower petals all over the place and it felt like you were walking in a wet wonderland of pink. I had my headphones in, rain boots on, and I was having a blast walking around capturing the beautiful trees. It was just by accident that I captured the airplane flying by but I think it makes it a little more interesting to see. I also remember having to wait a little while for this area to clear because there was a big group of people standing underneath the trees taking pictures. It was well worth it because I love the way it turned out. However if you look closely enough, you will still see one person there still taking pictures. At least she’s a little camouflaged though. HAHA.

The settings for this image is F18 at 1/50th of a second at ISO 400 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.