light

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Just another image from walking around downtown Chicago. For some reason, I ended up next to this parking garage several times. It wasn’t intentional but I thought it was such a cool wall. So the first day we were walking around, kinda close to sunset time and I noticed this row of trees. I loved the way the light was hitting it so I asked Andrew if we could stop to wait for someone to walk past. I don’t think he knew what I was talking about because he was looking around to see what I was seeing but we stopped immediately.

It wasn’t long before this lady with a red jacket walked by. It was perfect. I love that color pop and how it adds so much scale to the trees and wall. It really is scenes like this that makes me excited about street photography. It may seem so simple, but the timing seemed perfect.

As soon as I captured this, we started walking again to our final destination that night, Lou Malnati’s pizzeria. OMG so good!

On another note, I’ll be in Richmond, Virginia this weekend and I’m really looking forward to it. If you didn’t know, I graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a BFA a longggggg time ago and I haven’t been back to the capital city since. I know it’s changed a lot and am really looking forward to seeing all the changes. I definietly want to go check out the campus and all the apartments I used to live in just to see if any of those have changed. It’s going to be crazy and a trip down memory lane FOR SURE!

My camera settings for this image is F6.3 at 1/200th sec and ISO 1000 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom lens.

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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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This is a portrait of my friend, Albert from one of Artechouse’s installations earlier this summer. I love it because of the cool lights in the background, the color, the mood but my favorite part of this image is because it is of Albert.

I’ve known him from a few years now and have been following him on instagram even longer than that. But it hasn’t been until the past year where I have really gotten to know him. We’ve spent some beautiful mornings together taking pictures and have spent some amazing evenings together talking and laughing. We have a lot of things in common, one of the main things being photography but he just inspires me so much every time we get together. I am always amazed by his images but what I love most about him is that he is not afraid to be himself. I mean look at this!

But because of him, my interest in street photography and portraiture has grown so much. Even when I’m standing right next to him, he can see things that just pass me by. He has taught me to be more patient, not care what anyone else thinks and I appreciate him so much for that.

To be honest, I don’t think he reads my blog or will ever know that I’m writing this about him. But I just would like him to know how much he inspires me to be me and how much I value his friendship. Thank you, Pootie! Hope we can get together soon after I get back from California to catch up and take more pics <3

My camera settings for this image is F4.0 at 1/500th of a second at ISO 5000 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens. Have I mentioned how much I love this camera in low light situations?

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So after my lightning practice last week at the Jefferson Memorial aiming at the Washington Monument, I had another opportunity to shoot lightning the very next day. This time I was at the Artechouse, which you should definietly go visit. Their latest exhibit is probably my favorite so far. It’s a celebration of lights that really can not be missed. Anyways, I was about to leave the exhibit when I got an alert on my phone saying that lightning struck 3 miles away from my current location. So you know what that means right? Leave asap so you can go storm chasing!

I figured that the US Capitol was the closest, cool looking building to me. Luckily it hadn’t started raining yet and I always have my tripod in my car so I parked as close as I could to the Capitol and made my way over. I had a blast! The wind was blowing and the lightning strikes were crazy big. While I was at the Jefferson Memorial, I had to wait some time between each strike maybe a 2-3 minutes but this time they were coming every 15-20 seconds. It was AWESOMEEEE. I was out there for only 30 minutes or so before the real big rain hit but I’m super happy with the way that this turned out.

Every time the lighting struck it would light up the sky to this amazing blue/purple color. It was such a beautiful show. There were even people who were leaving the Capitol that couldn’t help but to stop and take selfies. Such an exiting night to say the least. I ran back to the car as soon as the rain really started to pick up and it was all good in the neighborhood.

My camera settings for this image is F4.0 at 1/13th of a second ISO 400 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm.

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Another one from Saturday morning’s amazing sunrise.

I was walking up the Lincoln Memorial steps when I just had to turn around and appreciate the morning light. It felt so good on my back that I wanted to see what it looked like and I saw this scene. My favorite part of it all is the light that is shining right down the middle of the image.  My eye keeps going to the huge shadow it created of the guy walking down the steps. It looks like the shadow is as tall as the Washington Monument!

I don’t usually put a lot of sunbursts in to my images, but I do shoot them a lot. Sometimes I feel like they can be a bit overwhelming and may take away from the image. In this particular one, I think it works well. I think it helps create the mood of the light shining down on the reflecting pool and everyone walking around it. I also think it’s interesting how the light effects the people depending on where they stand. The people who are closest to the reflecting pool look so teeny tiny, I love all the layers in this image.

On a side note, how about all that rain and snow we got? Please magnolias. Please stay warm and intact. I’m not so worried about the cherry blossoms. I think they’ll be fine. A similar weather situation happened last year where we got ice and freezing temperatures right before they were about to bloom and they were fine, for the most part. In some ways it was kind of better because it deterred a lot of people from visiting the Tidal Basin. All good with me! But I’m not so sure about how well the magnolias will do since they’ve already started blooming 🙁

The settings for this image is F22 at 1/20th of a second and ISO 250 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm handheld.

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One crazy cold morning I met up with my friend, Albert to shoot the sunrise. I remember the day before I heard on the radio that we were expecting a lot of fog and obviously I got really excited and told Albert about it. The weather can be so finicky because I woke up the next morning to one of the clearest skies ever! I’m so sorry Albert I made you get out of bed so early in the morning! Plus it was crazy cold and windy. It was probably one of the shortest sunrise sessions I’ve ever had. 20 minutes and I was back in my car.

But as we were about to leave, I noticed the beautiful light that was coming from the front of the Martin Luther King Jr Memorial. I asked Albert to stand right at the light ray and I love the way that this turned out. It’s so simple with the little pop of “warm” light. But I think my favorite part is the overall cool-ness to the image. I love how blue and cold it feels because that’s exactly what it felt like being there. Remember how I was saying this is a composition I wanted to keep on working on? Click here to read my previous post about the MLK Jr Memorial. 

To be honest though it’s not exactly what I had intended from the original post. It’s a little bit closer to what I had in mind and I’m still very happy with it. I’m going to keep at it until I get it exactly how I envision it.

Did I mention it was crazy cold that morning? LOL.

The camera settings for this image is F7.1 at 1/125th of a second at ISO 125 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.