sunrise

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A little travel flashback to last year in Maine. This was my first time in Maine and loved it. As soon as you stepped off the plane you could just tell that the air was different. I believe the word that I’m looking for is clean…

And I loved how close and convient Portland Head Light was to everything. I don’t remember exactly but it was like a 15-20 minute drive from our hotel and an even easier walk from the parking lot to this vantage point. But if I had my way, I would spend more time in Maine again this fall, especially in Portland. We only got to spend one night there but it was the cutest little town. I definietly did not get to see enough of it. Don’t even get me started on the lobster rolls. I’m pretty sure I had at least one every day that I was there 🙂

But if you have been keeping up with my current travel updates on Instagram stories, you’ll know that Andrew and I are on a ferry back to Bergen before we make the trek back home to Virginia. Planning this trip was fun but it depended a lot on this ferry. It was the only way Andrew and I would have been able to road trip around Norway without having to make a complete circle driving around. This was definietly the easiest and fastest way to do it. Hopefully the fun-ist way to do it too. I was super excited to see the sunrise from the water.

My camera settings for this image is F4.0 at 8 seconds and ISO 640 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens. I did not use a tripod for this image, instead I just held my breath and balanced my camera on top of a rock and hoped it turned out well.

 

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Last but not least is my favorite image in the whole series. I took this image at the very end of my time shooting sunrise at the National Mall. As you can see I started this week off right outside the Lincoln Memorial, then I went inside, then back to the reflecting pool, and went up the stairs to go to the Lincoln and ended right back inside the Lincoln Memorial. The whole hour I out shooting the sunrise I just walked back and forth between the two landmarks. So instead of coming out with one image, I was able to come out with 5 really cool images that I love. So next time you go out to photograph any location, I hope you keep this series in mind. I think it is a cool example of how many different perspectives you can get if you just keep walking.

By this point the sun was fully out and shining bright inside the Lincoln Memorial. My natural tendencies would lead me to go right but this time I felt the need to go left. I began photographing President Lincoln through the columns but I wasn’t happy with the images that were coming out. I was about to leave when I stopped in the corner of the interior and noticed all the amazing shadows the columns were creating. To be honest, I waited for about 15 minutes for someone to show up. Some kind of foreground element to make this image a little more interesting. The closest thing that I got was the shadow figure on the left hand side. Someone who looked like they were about to come in but for some reason did not. Either way, I still love all the lines and repetition in this image.

My camera settings for this image is F8 at 1/125th of a second at ISO 640 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.

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If we are going to go in chronological order, this image would be next. The third image in the series this week of keep it movin’. Why photographers should keep walking around to find multiple compositions instead of finding one that works and stay in the same spot.

You can see the first image here and the second one here.

Now that does not mean that you can’t go back the same spot. I think certain composition work better than others depending on the light. You may be at one place but 20 minutes later see that the sun will hit it in a certain way and you’ll see something totally different. That’s fine. Just don’t get stuck!

I originally started off this photo trek at the reflecting pool. I walked from one edge of the pool to the edge but nothing was really inspiring me so that is when I decided to turn around and walk up the Lincoln Memorial steps. Once I was taking a few pictures of the Lincoln while the sun was starting to really come out and change the colors in the sky. I looked down at the reflecting pool and thought that it was the time to go back down. So I made my way back down and was able to capture this one. I love how the US Capitol is the main focus in this image. You don’t really see this point of view a lot since it’s so far away and people mostly want to photograph the Washington Monument from this angle. Funny how if you look real close, you can see other photographers on the other side of the reflecting pooll.

My camera settings for this image is F7.1 at 1/800th of a second ISO 500 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom lens handheld.

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This is probably one of my favorite views ever of the National Mall. It’s right when you’ve reached the top of the Lincoln Memorial steps and turn around to see behind you. There’s just something about the columns framing the Washington Monument that makes me so happy. It was odd though, for a Sunday morning, a weekend morning, there was hardly anyone out. Usually you’ll see at least runners and small groups of people here or there. But I’m glad this lady was there. Her red shirt pops perfectly as she’s taking her own photograph.

This is the second image in the five images that I’ll be posting this week, encouraging photographers to walk around when they’re out taking pictures. You’ll never know what images you’re missing by staying in one place the whole time. The first image was right on the Lincoln steps leading up to this image. I really believe that if you keep walking around and try new compositions you’ll find new ones that you may have never seen before and probably end up really loving.

This five day series is coming because Andrew and I are in Norway! We landed in Bergen yesterday and spent the afternoon exploring the city. Today we’re headed to Flåm which marks the beginning of our road trip. Hopefully we’ll get to ride the railway system. Thank you to everyone who has suggested it. I am so looking forward to seeing more of this country. Planning the trip was so fun, I can’t even imagine what it’s going to be like to experience it. I’ll be adding pictures and videos to my instagram stories so definietly follow along if you’re not already.

My camera settings for this image is F7.1 at 1/80th of a second at ISO 2000 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens handheld.

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Since I’ll be away this week, I thought it would be kinda cool to pre schedule these blog posts to illustrate the importances of moving your feet while shooting. What I mean is that photographers can get so comfortable when they find one composition that they end up staying in that same exact spot for the entire sunrise, sunset or whatever period of time. To me, there’s little worse than coming home and finding a whole memory card full of the exact same images. I personally feel like I didn’t push myself enough or I could have missed an opportunity. Even something as simple as turning around and seeing what’s going on behind you can even lead to a more interesting image.

So everyday this week there will be a new image but they were all taken within an hour of each other. I would stop at each place for about 10 minutes or so. However long I felt was necessary and then kept it moving. I walked from the edge of the reflecting pool to the center to the other side of the reflecting pool. I would walk up and down the stairs of the Lincoln Memorial steps. And even go back down to the reflecting pool when I saw something cool happening over there. None of the images will be the same but all taken in the same area. I hope that you’ll find inspiration from this and keep your feet moving!

This particular image is one of the very first ones I was happy with this Sunday morning. Despite what you may think it wasn’t taken at the reflecting pool either. It was on the Lincoln Memorial steps. There just happened to be this beautiful puddle right and I stood behind it to capture the Washington Monument. I think my favorite part of this image is the little gap you see in between the trees and the reflection. I think it makes it much more interesting than if it were just a perfectly symmetrical image. The colors ain’t bad either 😉

My camera settings for this image is F11 at 1/40th of a second at ISO 800 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens handheld.

 

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This image was taken about 30 minutes after I captured this one. The sun came out and was hitting the trees very nicely. By this point, Andrew and I had driven around Emerald Bay so that we were facing west and the sun was just over my right shoulder.

As I mentioned in my last blog post, Andrew and I woke up really early to capture this image. 4 am west coast time so about 7am east coast time which isn’t so bad if you put it in terms of time zones, however by this point we were already adjusted to the west coast time. When I told my family the night before what time Andrew and I were planning on waking up and to go take pictures, they seemed pretty shocked. To be honest, people in general are shocked when I tell them what time I wake up to go take pictures. If you had told college-age me that I would be waking up that early, I’d be shocked too. But at this point I’m used to it. And when we’re home, Andrew usually wakes up early too. I don’t make him wake up early with me when were traveling but he’s just a good supportive husband who wants to make sure I’ll be ok so he’ll come with me too <3

But it’s funny because soon after we came home from this trip, Andrew and I went to a conference to listen to Robert Herjavec (among other people) speak. He talked about how he’s an early riser just so he can get things done before he has to go to work. Everyone thought he was crazy too. But the funny part of it was when he said people would ask him, “but aren’t you tired?” And then Robert said, “of course I’m tired! But I gotta get it done!” LOL so true Robert, so true!

If you ever get the opportunity to see Robert speak, I’d highly recommend it. He was funny, entertaining and inspiring.

My camera settings for this image is F7.1 at 1/100th of a second at ISO 400 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom lens.