Washington DC

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Thanks to my friend, Birch who invited me to go with her to photograph the sunset parade at the Lincoln Memorial performed by the United States Marine Drum and Bugle Corps. It was my first time attending and I didn’t really know what to expect. This year was the first year it was held on the National Mall. Previously they were at Iwo Jima because I imagine they have lots of room there, but I think the Lincoln Memorial was the perfect setting. I loved how the area between the Lincoln Memorial and Reflecting Pool was closed but you were still able to wander around and get shots from various places.

If you’re interested in checking it out, click here for the official website however make sure to check their Facebook before you actually go. Birch and I tried to go a few weeks ago and it got canceled a few hours earlier because of a storm and they announced it on their Facebook. I’d highly recommend it if you have some free time.

Going to the parade, I knew I wanted to concentrate mostly on the repetition and pattern. Looking at previous images, I loved how the red jackets popped off the screen. However, I found myself liking my images with black jackets more. For some reason it just all goes so nicely together. It just makes the scene look a little more minimal which I like.

I ended up taking a ton of images so expect to see more of these in the future 🙂

My camera settings for this image is F6.3 at 1/320th sec and ISO 500 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom lens.

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If you’re in the Washington DC area and you have no plans this weekend, definitely go check out the Washington Monument on the National Mall. The Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the moon landing and they are projecting a life-size version of the Apollo 11 lunar spacecraft. It’s been going on every day since Tuesday at 9:30 pm but if you go on Friday or Saturday at 9:30 pm, 10:30 pm, or 11:30 pm, they will have a 17-minute presentation of what it was like when the spacecraft took off.

I hope to be there Friday but trust me when I say this is way cooler in person. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything projected on the Washington Monument like that and it’s just a great time sitting on the national mall and watching it go.

I captured this image on the first night of the projection on Tuesday evening. We sat right by 15th street and I don’t think a lot of people on the street knew what was going on. There were so many pedestrians, scooter riders and car drivers who just stopped in the middle of the road. At one point the police had to even come, turn on their lights to clear everyone out. So I thought I’d take advantage of the foreground and really show what it’s like being there. It sort of reminds me of Stranger Things, right? LOL

My camera settings for this image is F4.5 at 3.2 sec and ISO 100 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide-angle lens

 

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These summer storms have been getting intense. And it seems like they’re happening almost every day, right?

I’m so happy I was able to get out and photograph the skies in between some downpours in order to get this shot. It had been a while since I’ve been to the Tidal Basin so I completely forgot that the Jefferson Memorial is now under scaffolding. Hopefully, it won’t last too long because it’s just to clean the top of the dome, but with Washington DC, who knows.

To quote my friend, Larry “DC means doing construction” LOL.

Like I said, this was photographed in the middle of some downpours. I was there just around sunset when I noticed the rainbow so I immediately had to pull over. All of a sudden, the second rainbow out of the top of the Jefferson Memorial showed up. I was so excited. I was standing on Kutz Bridge in order to capture this and I even heard cars driving past and people going “Ouuu double rainbow”. LOL.

Hopefully, there will be some more storms in the future and I’ll be able to capture some lightning strikes. Those are always so exciting to capture.

My camera settings for this image is F8 at 1/20th sec and ISO 100 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom lens.

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Sunrise has been pretty rough these days. A 4 am wake-up alarm is not my ideal time to be woken up, especially in the summertime but sometimes it’s necessary. Like last week when I finally made my way to the Lincoln Memorial for sunrise after what seemed like forever. The sunrise itself wasn’t that great but the early morning glow was what made it all worth it.

I met up with my friend, Birch who I haven’t seen in what feels like even longer than my last Lincoln Memorial photo walk. We mostly caught up with life while chasing the light around the reflecting pool. This image was taken from the Lincoln Memorial looking towards the National Mall. We were kinda standing around with cameras in hand when this guy on the bike just showed up. The perfect silhouette to the Monument.

The scene itself seemed a little off balance with most of the interesting elements on the left-hand side, so I solved it by cutting off the right-hand side with a column from the Lincoln Memorial. I love how it framed all the necessary elements of the image but also created some interesting layers.

BTW, when is the Washington Monument finally going to open? I’m ready to go back!

My camera settings for this image is F5 at 1/5000 and ISO 800 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm.

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I love how the city gets so patriotic during the 4th of July. Anywhere you walk you can see flags everywhere. But the Willard InterContinental on Pennsylvania Avenue always sticks out in my mind as being one of my favorites. I’ve noticed that every year they will hang American flags outside each of the hotel windows and it just looks so cool from afar.

But for some reason or another, I’ve tried so hard to capture these flags but couldn’t get an image I was happy with. I may have first noticed them 3 years ago. I even tried photographing them last year and said: “Oh well, next year”. But this year was going to be the year.

I had an image in my head of what I wanted to capture ahead of time and I knew I was going to take my time around this building to make sure I got it. Although when I arrived some of the flags were twisted around the pole, this is pretty much what I had in my mind. I love how the white building is the perfect contrast to the flags. But it’s all the horizontal lines and repetition that really gets me. If I ever had a big office building, I’d want to do the same thing.

To be 100% honest though, I’ve been so busy with photographing things for other people and projects that it’s been a while since I had gone out to shoot just for myself. I went out for a little photo-therapy and it felt great. I’ve realized it something that I need to make a priority to do at least once a week, even when its one of those super busy weeks where it seems like I don’t have time. I can’t let it slip anymore.

My camera settings for this image is F8 at 1/160th sec and ISO 500 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom.

 

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Happy Friday!

These images were taken on July 3rd. My friend, Laily invited me to her neighborhood firework show and it was a great one. Since it wasn’t the National Mall, I decided I was going to concentrate on a few different things. 1. on just the fireworks, 2. the crowds of people, 3. different exposure techniques. In the end, it was the images of just the fireworks that I liked the most. Not bad for a neighborhood show!

Unfortunately, I did not take pictures on the 4th. It had been raining all evening and to be honest, it just scared me away. I had experience of rain on the fourth and the fireworks had been less than spectacular so I decided to just sit it out. It was a last minute decision I honestly kinda regret. It looked like the beginning of the firework display was awesome but then fizzled into just colorful smoke by the end. Either way, there’s always next year 🙂

And now that I have a better idea of where the fireworks are shooting from, I think I’ll be more prepared for next time!