Caribbean

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On our way back from the beach and walking towards our room, I was completely distracted by the newly renovated swimming pool at Club Med. It is now above ground so it feels like an infinity pool and when no one is in it, the reflections are absolutely gorgeous. This image makes me want to jump in, but we actually didn’t spend any time at the pool. Andrew’s way more of a beach person but when I travel with my girlfriends, I feel like we’re at the pool 90% of the time. I’m ok with either. As long as there’s some sort of body of water, I’m all good.

Which one are you? A pool or ocean person?

But I’m glad we walked by it right around sunset because the colors are stunning. Andrew was returning our beach towels and getting us drinks when I captured this image. I just loved the way the palm trees and clouds were reflected in the water. I tried my best to get as close to the water to make the reflections look extra big. Proud to report that there was no water damage to ANY of my cameras during this whole trip 🙂

If you find yourself traveling to Grace Bay, I highly recommend spending your time chasing the sunset because of where you are located on the island. It sets right in front of you making it difficult to take a bad image. The sun rises on the other side and with all my experience there, your time is probably better spent in bed then waking up super early.

My camera settings for this image is F8 at 1/60th sec and ISO 200 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.

 

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At any given time, you could have found me with at least 2 different cameras while I was in Turks and Caicos. Since I was not able to swim or do much physical activity, I figured I’d spend my time laying around or capturing images. (Which is an amazing plan if you ask me). So I ended up bringing 4 different cameras on the trip, 5 if you count my iPhone.

  1. Sony A7II
  2. DJI Mavic Pro Drone
  3. GoPro Hero 5 Black
  4. Canon T70 film camera

It may have been a little excessive to have at least 2 cameras on me, but that was the only way I was able to capture everything I wanted without having to go back to our room to get a different camera. But during the day, I loved having the GoPro and Drone. Both of these cameras allow such different perspectives that I’m not used to when just shooting with my Sony.

But to be honest, I’m usually very cautious when flying my drone in front of a lot of people. I know a lot of people don’t like it. It can be noisy and a disturbance so I try my best to only fly when there aren’t as many people around. One morning, Andrew and I woke up early just to fly the drone. It was great because at 6 am we were the only ones on the beach. I was free to fly wherever I wanted. But I do like images with people in it…

So the next morning, I chose to fly around 8 am. There were a few people on the beach but not as many as there would have been if it were later on in the day and I didn’t fly as long as I did the previous day. But it was great because the sun was completely out and the colors in the water were looking amazing. I especially like looking at all the shadows the sun created.

My camera settings for this image is F2.2 at 1/2200th sec and ISO 100 with my DJI Mavic Pro.

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So this ends the week long look back at my adventures with my friend, Sue. If you haven’t been following along, she has been one of my best friends for forever and is moving to Austin, Texas this week. I’m grateful she asked me to take the long drive down to Texas with her so we can spend a little more time together but also I get to check out Austin since I’ve never really been to Texas before.

It’s crazy because looking back at our first cross country road trip, Spain, Maine, and now this image from St John, I’ve realized we’ve done so much together. And this doesn’t even scratch the surface. We’ve been on plenty of girls trips and have spent so much time just adventuring around the Washington DC metro area. I’ll miss her lots but I also know it won’t be for too long before I see her again.

This image is of St John Virgin Island. It’s funny because this was our first ever vacation together and probably one of my favorites. I mean how can it not be? I’m all about that island life. LOL. I remember the exact moment I took this too. We were actually staying on St Thomas, took a ferry to St John and then a bus took us to the local beaches from there. Fortunately the bus stopped at some beautiful places along the way for us to take pictures. I leaned over Sue to take this image but I’m pretty sure that she’s used to me doing stuff like that by now. Not much longer after I took this pic, we were down on that beach laying out 🙂 Sounds perfect right about now.

My camera settings for this image is F4 at 1/640th sec at ISO 80 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.

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I know I’m extremely late to the game on this one. Like almost 6 years late, but have you seen the movie “Finding Vivian Maier”? If you haven’t, it’s on Netflix and it’s definietly a must watch especially if you’re a creative but more specifically a street photographer. Holy Cow. I was blown away by this movie.

First of all, Vivian Maier’s work was so good and to think she shot everything on film too. I feel like with film (as opposed to digital cameras) is much more planning and thinking involved. Especially since film takes a little while to shoot and reload, but also since you can’t even see what the image looks like after you’ve captured it. It’s like praying you got something good but never not knowing for sure until your roll is developed and then it is sometimes difficult to go back and recreate that exact moment. It’s actually a bit terrifying when you sit down to think about it.

And that Rolleiflex. OMG how cool was that camera. I love how the viewfinder was on top so that you could sneakily take photos without people really knowing. I feel like I can sort of do that with my Sony A7II but not to the extent that Vivan did.

But second of all, how cool is it to find a huge trunk of negatives and seeing such amazing photographs. I loved how you got to know her and her personality through her images and the stories of people she connected with. It was very interesting how she sort of recreated herself for different people. I think when I think about her images her self portraits stand out the most to me in my head. She was such a mysterious woman and to see what she actually looked like was very nice.

Anyways, you may have noticed in 2018 I really tried my best at street photography and it’s something I really enjoy but something so different for me. Vivian Maier is now a huge inspiration to that and look forward to capturing more on my travels 🙂 This image was taken in Aruba while we were sitting down for breakfast. Across the street was this man who just seemed so content with the morning. He was basically screaming for me to capture this image.

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

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THE FINAL COUNTDOWN 

It’s the last day of 2018 and I thought it would be fun to look back on the past year and relive some of my favorite travel moments from the year. It’s interesting because I do something similar to this every year and every year my favorite images are almost always different from others. I try not to let emotions play into the selection but it can be difficult. You’ll see what I mean 🙂

I had a fantastic year of travel and so blessed to be able to experience everything that I did. I’m lucky enough to have visited the Europe, Caribbean and of course different parts of America. So let me know what you think. Click on each image to read the original blog post:

drone, mavic pro, california, san diego, fiesta island, birds, selfie, fly, dji, bird, seagulls, practice, socal, water, beach, island, dog island

One of my very first drone images from San Diego. Taken around this time last year, I loved being in Southern California in the winter time. I got my drone at the end of 2017 so I was just practicing flying when I took this image. I really didn’t think much of it until I saw that bird fly below close to the water. With the placement of where I’m sitting and that bird, I love how everything lines up. Definitely expect more drone images from me in 2019. I’m hooked!

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Every year during this time of the year, I like to go back through my images that I’ve captured and pull them together for a ‘best of’ post. I capture so many images in a year that it can be a little difficult to narrow them down so I like to divide it them into two days, one for travel and one for just Washington DC images.

This image did not make the cut but it reminds me of one of the more memorable trips of the year. My trip to Aruba with all my girlfriends. It was so much fun to have that girl time and to spend a long weekend at the beach. I stayed in a room with my friend, Sue. It was perfect because we both just naturally wake up early and she is very patient with me when I want to stop a million times on the way to breakfast just to take pictures. She’s patient because she’s probably taking a million pictures too. LOL.

This image was taken on our last day. Sue and our friend, Neena woke up in the morning to get breakfast and do some last minute souvenir shopping for our loved ones back home. Andrew’s always the easiest person to shop for because he doesn’t necessarily want any of the touristy stuff you can get. I usually just go to a local grocery store or convenience store and buy a whole bunch of different snacks and treats that we don’t have back home but look interesting to try. We have a good time trying them together. So while I was waiting for Sue and Neena to shop, I saw this rooster just walking around. I loved the colors behind him so I took a quick shot before he ran away.

My camera settings for this image is F7.1 at 1/500th sec and ISO 400 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom.