washington monument

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I took this image at the same time I captured this one. Except at this time I did not know my batteries were dying. I was too busy enjoying the beautiful light that was peaking through the Japanese cherry blossom trees and kept on shooting and shooting away.

This whole cherry blossom season has been very cloudy. I think there may have been just 1 or 2 days that I was out that we actually had some sun out of the 2 weeks that they were here. So I was super excited to see the blossoms glowing.

You can’t tell, but I was standing next to my friend, Jarrett while capturing it. He’s the kind of friend that we never make plans to see each other but we always run into each other while taking pics. I always enjoy running into him, especially around the tidal basin because we have so much in common. He’s the type of person that you can say anything to him and he’ll have a funny story to tell you about that. So if you ever run in to Jarrett while taking pics, just ask him if he likes fried chicken. LOL.

So now that the cherry blossom season is pretty much done for this year, I some how forgot to mention this everywhere but on my newsletter that I updated my cherry blossom guide. LOL. I was in the shower the other day and realized I hadn’t put it on social media or anything! It was definietly a doh moment! So better late than never? At least you can use these tips for next year? Sorry about that. Here’s the link if you still have any interest.

My camera settings for this image is F8 at 1/160th of a second at ISO 400 with my Sony A7II and 28-70mm lens handheld.

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On my quest to find different cherry blossom angles, I came across this one. I love the way that it turned out. Whenever I look at it, it makes me feel like I’m in some kind of cherry blossom jungle and I have to somehow make my way over to the Washington Monument without making any of the pedals fall off. Is that weird? I dunno…

I met up with my friend, Larry and took him to a part of the Tidal Basin he had never been to before. It’s one of my favorite spots to go to especially during cherry blossom season because not a lot of people know about it and its usually far less crowded than the other places in the Tidal Basin. I have taken a couple of images from this place before, you can see them here and here. If you’re interested in seeing where this is, check out this map. I took it at that little part where it says “Kutz Bridge”. You have to cross Independence Ave to get to it from the larger part of the Tidal Basin but its well worth it.

Shout out to my friend, Navin for one of my favorite cherry blossom images ever and he took it from this exact location. It was because of him that I’ve been inspired to take so many different images from here but it would be very difficult to top his. Doesn’t mean I won’t keep trying though.

But with the crazy wind and rain that we got Sunday evening til Monday, it’s pretty safe to say that the cherry blossom season in Washington DC is over now. Don’t worry though, I took soooo many pics. It’s a little overwhelming to go through them all but just be expecting them… for about the next year or so. LOL. JK I didn’t take that many but it feels like I did.

My camera settings for this image is F8 at 1/10th of a second at ISO 640 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens handheld.

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Finallyyyy a sunny day at the Tidal Basin. So far this cherry blossom season has been very cloudy, grey, and windy. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but I prefer blue skies with my pink flowers. I think the color combination works so well together. So I was thrilled when we finally had clear skies and s-u-n.

This particular day I was not planning on being at the Tidal Basin, instead I parked my car along Ohio drive and I had every intention of staying on Ohio drive and shooting the cherry blossoms along the Potomac river. That quickly changed because I thought I saw some fog coming off the Tidal Basin and you know me and fog. It’s like a magnetic connection we have. I ran over to the basin and saw nothing. It was probably some kind of mirage or wishful thinking for some fog and cherry blossoms but either way, I’m glad I ended up there. Once the sun actually came up, the light hitting the blossoms was amazing! I couldn’t have asked for a better lighting situation. I could have asked for a better battery situation because out of the 3 batteries I had with me, I only had enough charge for about 30 minutes of shooting 🙁 I was so upset when the first battery started flashing the warning because I knew I didn’t have much left on the other ones. How could I forget to charge them?

Luckily I was able to squeeze just a couple of images at the very end of the battery life and came up with this image. I love the sunburst peaking through the blossoms. I think the flowers underneath that are the ones that I look at the most. They look as if they’re glowing.

My camera settings for this image is F22 at 1/125th of a second at ISO 400 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.

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Thanks to Destination DC for inviting me to their Cherry Blossom Instameet this past Friday. The meet up time was set for 7am but sunrise is around 6:45 so I decided to go a little bit early to try to capture some images before I saw my friends. I arrived at the National Mall around 6am and headed straight towards the monument. I have been keeping an eye on the to the cherry blossoms around there for a little while and they were looking pretty good. And like I said in my last post, I really want to try to go to different places to capture them than the Tidal Basin. Well the blossoms did not disappoint! Even in the middle of darkness, you can see how plumpy they were looking. Yes, plumpy is a word in my dictionary. LOL.

But I didn’t bring my tripod because I didn’t want to have to hold it for the instameet. So in order to capture this image I took my backpack off and placed it on the ground. I still had my 28-70mm in there so I used it as a way to prop up the camera to shoot up from the ground. Unfortunately I didn’t notice I placed my backpack on a big patch of dirt and for the  rest of the morning I had dirt all over my back. LOL it was dark! So don’t do that if you’re planning on using your own backpack as a tripod. LOL. This was my first attempt but also my favorite. I love how the cherry blossom trees balance each other but there’s so much space in between.

Thanks again to Destination DC and the National Cherry Blossom Festival for hosting the event. And a special shout out to Stellas Popkern for the delicious popcorn. The black truffle with sea salt was so different but so good.

My camera settings for this image is F5.0 at 2.5 seconds and ISO 250 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.

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So the cherry blossoms are not the only flowers that you will see by the Tidal Basin. Just to the other side of the Paddle Boat Parking lot will you find the Floral Library. It’s easy to walk right past it, but it’s one of my favorite places to be. I remember being a young girl and my mom would take us to the Tidal Basin to just take pictures in front of all the flowers. Photo evidence #1. LOL. Believe me, if you could see all the photos we have in our albums they all did not turn out as cute as this one did. HAHAHA

I took this image last year when they had some beautiful yellow daffodils. The Floral Library pretty much has something beautiful blooming all year around except for winter. My favorite way to capture these flowers is by getting down real low so that you are sitting in the grass and your camera is propped up. Basically it is resting on the dirt. The point is to get down that low to make it seem like the flowers are as big as the background and in this case, the Washington Monument. I love the play on perspective and it makes your viewer look at the image for a little bit longer so the can figure out what’s actually going on. But I think my favorite part of the image is that one daffodil facing the Washington Monument and it almost looks like it’s kissing it 🙂 Or is that just my imagination?

My camera settings for this image is F7.1 at 1/60th of a second and ISO 320 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens. Obviously this wasn’t taken with a tripod only because I can’t find one that will go that low. Do you guys have any recommendations?

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If you’ve signed up for my newsletter then you already know, but I have a super exciting announcement to make. I am this year’s Ball for the Mall’s official photographer! AHHHHH!!!!!!!!

I am so thrilled and so grateful. If you don’t know what the Ball for the Mall is, it’s a fundraising event that the Trust for the National Mall puts on every year to raise money for the National Mall. This year the tent is going up right in front of the Smithsonian museums. Being the official photographer does not mean I’m photographing the event. It just means that the Trust for the National Mall is featuring my images on all their materials for the event like the invitation, save the dates, etc. I’m honored to be helping with such a beautiful cause that’s so close to my heart. I’ve spent so much time at the Mall and it’s given me so much. I’m grateful to be able to give back. Plus I heard there’s going to be some super cool people like Wolf Blitzer emceeing the event. I am going to try to take a selfie!

I’ve never been before and I’m really looking forward to attending the event with Andrew later on this month. Now, to go ball gown shopping. AHHH!!!! 🙂 I don’t know if you can tell, but I’m so excited.

This image was taken on morning on a super cold winter morning at the National Mall (obviously). I love it because the sky reminds of tie-dye. I mean when you see a scene like this, how could you not fall in love with our national parks?

The settings for this image is F9 at 1/10th of a second at ISO 200 with my Canon 5D Mark II and 17-40mm wide angle lens. You know this is an older image when the Canon 5DmII is mentioned.