landscape

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Woke up at 4:30a yesterday to go light chasing!

My friend, Larry and I made our way to the Thornton Gap Entrance at Shenandoah National Park and it was fantastic. So many times I’ve been to Shenandoah National Park and run into fog like this and this. Yesterday was the opposite of that. It was cloudy but clear enough to see some fantastic colors. I haven’t had a chance to go through all my images, but I really liked this one. I think it really captures the mood plus I can’t stop looking at the light that is hitting this man’s yellow jacket. By the way, that’s not Larry. It was just another photographer enjoying the sunrise with us.

As far as a foliage report, I think this weekend would be a great time to go. This overlook, which is very close to the entrance, had some beautiful, colorful trees. As we were driving up the mountain though, we noticed that a lot of trees had already become bare with yellow leaves on the ground. So if you haven’t checked out much fall color, I’d recommend going to Shenandoah National Park soon. I’m not sure about the Front Royal entrance but if I had to guess, I’d guess it would probably be better to go sooner than later.

Man it’s like the fall colors came so quickly and now we’re already talking about them leaving? It’s like cherry blossom season in the fall. But speaking of cherry blossoms, I heard the Tidal Basin is looking real nice too. So I have a busy weekend planned of shooting.

Also Larry was kind enough to let me borrow his Sony A7III and I may be in love. My camera settings for this image is F9 at 1/80th sec at ISO 800 with Larry’s A7III and my 70-200mm handheld.

 

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As you can tell by now, it’s really rainy in Norway or at least while we were visiting. Way more than I had expected. But in some ways it was a good thing and it definietly did not prevent us from doing anything we would have normally done. I think the clouds and rain brought a certain moodiness to all these images and I’m really liking it. For example, this image that I captured at “sunset” in Sognefjord in Flåm, Norway.

Sognefjord was our first fjord experience while in Norway and I was super pumped to drive up to Stegastein to see it. Stegastein, is this beautiful outlook area where I expected to see tons of people. You drive up this really windy road with the famous Norwegian hairpin turns and at every corner was a beautiful viewpoint. To my huge surprise when we finally reached the top, Andrew and I were the only ones there! No bus full of people or anything. Literally the only car in the entire parking lot. I think all the rain, fog and drizzle chased everyone out. Honestly, there was a moment there where I thought we were in the wrong place because there was no one there. The other people must have found the real Stegastein or something better? Because how could no one be here? *Confused face emoji*

Anyways, it was beautiful and larger than life. It was really cool to see this up high perspective because being down by the water you would have never imagined there were so many layers to it. It may be difficult to see but there’s actually several waterfalls in this image too. I think there’s at least 4 captured. Can you see them?

My camera settings for this image is F5.6 1/320 sec at ISO 800 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.

 

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One of the first things we did when we arrived in Norway was head over to the Fløibanen funicular in Bergen. Luckily our hotel was really close by and it was only a 10 minute walk to the station. I was happy to see that we were able to purchase either one way tickets or round trip tickets. Andrew and I decided to do the one way because neither one of us wanted to hike up the mountain but we thought it would be cool to see the views walking down.

Well, it was stunning to stay the least. It was raining on our way up which wasn’t too bad since we were covered by the tram but once we arrived to the top of Mt Fløyen I didn’t even notice the rain anymore. We spent some time walking around the 180 degree semi circle which provided amazing views of Bergen and the surrounding area.

While we were walking down the mountain, the rain was off and on but mostly on. We stood under some trees hoping that the rain would pass quickly but it didn’t. So we just kept it moving. But during the times when the rain was off, the sunlight would come through the clouds and it would create this gorgeous light on the buildings below us. It was like the whole world was glowing. So if you’re ever in Bergen, I’d highly recommend the Fløibanen funicular. It’s a great ride up and an easy walk down. I just hope it won’t be raining like it was when we went.

Quick tip: While walking down Mt Fløyen, I noticed that any scenic view had a bench right by it. It’s like a little sign saying sit down, relax and enjoy the scenery. But it wasn’t just in Bergen that they had that. It was all over Norway. So if you ever had a doubt you would see something nice, look for a bench!

My camera settings for this image is F5.0 at 1/2000 ISO 500 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom lens.

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Driving in Norway was an experience all in itself. Initially everything about it seemed pretty normal to me. They drive on the right side of the road, car works the same as they do in America, etc. No big deal. But actually driving in Norway is super different. First road signs are so hard to see. In the cities, Bergen and Ålesund, they were just little signs on the side of a building. I may be getting older but they are so small that you really had to be the first person at the stoplight to see them. Otherwise, we were just guessing if we were turning on the right street or not.

Second, there aren’t many stop lights but there are so many roundabouts. I guess this is there way of making turns easier but we also noticed that not a lot of people don’t use turn signals at these roundabouts either. I swear at one point there was like 3 in a row within 2 miles of each other.

Third, Norway is a very mountainous country. Well, at least on the west coast. So driving up and down these mountains can be a little difficult, especially when you have hairpin turns like this! I showed this image to my brother and he was saying how there’s a lot of car advertisements who film on this road, but I will have to say that this isn’t the only road that’s like there. The whole country is full of them! This is probably just the easiest to capture on camera. While we were driving into Geiranger it was so foggy I could barely see 10 feet ahead of me. It was an experience that would be hard to forget.

My camera settings for this image is F10 at 1/80th of a second at ISO 200 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.

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I preschedule all my blog posts. That’s the only way I can make sure one gets up on the blog everyday. So as I was wrapping up yesterday’s blog post on Sunday, I was messaging my friend, Birch about the snow this coming week. We tentatively made plans to meet up and shoot but with Washington DC weather who really knows if it’s actually going to happen. And as a casual side note she told me about the awesome fog layer that was forming at that time on the Potomac River. And you know me, as soon as I hear the word ‘fog’ my ears perk up. I literally just wrapped up that blog post as fast as I could and made my way to the city.

OMG it was like I was in a magical dream land. The fog was amazing! Something I experience probably once a year in the city and I loved it. Birch and I met by the Arlington Memorial bridge and walked a huge loop around the memorials. This image was taken right at the base of the bridge but what’s crazy is that there were times where you couldn’t even see this much. If this isn’t the way to spend a spontaneous Sunday afternoon then I don’t know what is. Plus this image is in full color. Nuts-o, right?

My camera settings for this image is F5.0 at 1/800th of a second and ISO 320 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.

So as of now, the snow doesn’t look like it’s going to happen this week. I told you Washington DC weather can be kind of crazy so definietly be expecting a lot of fog images. Birch and I were walked a lot and probably stopped at least 20 times to say “woah” 🙂 I love foggy days in DC.