pink

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Home from Austin, TX and I had a blast! I loved it and didn’t want to come home but since my friend, Sue just moved there, I’m sure there will be more visits in the near future. But more about that later.

The day before I left I went to the Smithsonian Gardens behind the Smithsonian Castle to go checkout the Saucer Magnolias. They were supposed to peak that weekend so I figured going there and checking out the scene would be a good idea. It was a windy morning but I’m glad my friend, Birch as able to meet up as well. We spent the morning catching up and it made the wind that much more bearable.

One thing I learned last year from photographing the garden is that there is this beautiful view of the Washington Monument. I don’t know why, but I never noticed it before. So when I went this year, I kept the mental note in my head and wanted to get some compositions with it in it.

I love the way this one turned out. I probably stood there for a good 10 minutes before I got the shot I wanted but this lady walking past with the grey coat was perfect. I wanted to create a lot of depth in this image so I kneeled down low to get a little bit of that fencing in the shot, then the plants in the center of the garden, the lady, the trees and then finally the Monument. All the colors and everything working so well together was just a happy accident. This definietly made me excited to shoot more flower images around the city!

My camera settings for this image is F4 at 1/200th sec and ISO 640 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom lens.

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Just going through some older images of the US Capitol building, I ran across this one. Most of the time when I look at these images, I remember EXACTLY when I captured them, what I was feeling, etc. But for some reason, I don’t remember with this one. Did I even capture this images? LOL of course but I’m not sure what happened. Maybe I was just busy that day or something and didn’t have time to go through them all and eventually I just forgot about them? OR maybe I’ve just been to the US Capitol so much that all my memories are starting to mush together into one? I know it had to have been a sunrise. Either way, I’m glad found this image.

This is actually the original.

Dome, US Capitol Building, washington dc, tour, capitol building, interior, architecture, sunrise, capitol hill, NE DC, SE DC, pink

I really like the way that it came out but as I was waiting for my computer to save the image, I thought about what it would look like with a vertical crop. I tested it out. Which do you like better?

Either way, I love the two bright colors right next to each other. It’s so unexpected but very interesting to me. And the most unexpected part about the image is being able to see the inside of the dome! Look in the windows. You can see a little bit of the interior. So COOL!

PS. I’m still trying to get a tour of the interior of the US Capitol dome. Those shots would be AH-Mazing. I think I’ve written to my representative at least 3 times and still no answer. If anyone knows how I can get in, let me know the time and place and I’ll be there.

My camera settings for this image is F4 at 1/50 sec and ISO 500 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom lens.

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Before I left to Aruba, I mentioned the fact that I was really looking forward to seeing the flamingos on Flamingo Beach. And I’m so glad we had the opportunity to see them. To be honest, they were a little smaller than I thought they would be and there wasn’t as many but that didn’t stop me from following them around everywhere to capture their every move. LOL.

They were so fun to watch. Their little habits like stomping on the ground to get food and even biting themselves even while walking was so interesting to see. I think the funniest part was when they would get in the outdoor shower and wait for someone to pull the chain down so they can get fresh water. These flamingos are definietly not wild. There was even a little gum ball machine that had flamingo food that you could pay and feed them, but I was not trying to do that. I think that would be getting a little too close to the birds. My friend was trying to pose for a picture with one and she probably got a little too close. The flamingo actually bit her! She laughed about it while she was backing away and said that it felt like a little pinch but nuh-uh. No way would you ever find me that close to a bird. Even if they’re pretty and pink. Birds are birds. 

You can see in the background there are a few rain clouds. It did rain for a bit while we were in Aruba. It went away in about 20 minutes but it gave us a nice break from the constant sun. I think it worked out well though because I love the tones that it created in this image. 

My camera settings for this image is F4.0 at 1/6400th of a second ISO 400 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm zoom lens. PS you’re going to be seeing a lot of the 70-200mm in my Aruba images. It had way too much fun with that lens. 

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It seems like everyday this summer has either been super hot and humid or super rainy, right? There hasn’t really been an in between in a while. This image was actually taken on one of those rainy days. It rained the night before and it rained right after this image was captured so I was really surprised when color actually came through the clouds during this sunrise. And as a side note super lucky that I left the Reflecting Pool right before it started pouring. The whole morning was really dark so I love the way the pink and purple hues brought out the contrast.

Now that I have my 70-200mm, I’ve been challenging myself to keep the lens on my camera without switching to one of my defaults.  It’s actually a lot harder than it sounds but I think it’s really interesting how subjects that I photograph all the time seem so different. I’ve always talked about getting really low or getting high could help make things look different. Well, getting a new lens can do the exact same thing. I captured this image at focal length 112mm.

Besides the color and the reflection, my favorite part about this image are the ducks. I always get so happy to see them, especially in the summer time. There seems to be new baby ducks all the time. Of course they could be the same ducks that I’m seeing over and over again, but they’re just so tiny that I can’t even imagine being more than a few weeks old.

My camera settings for this image is F4 at 1/60th of a second and ISO 1600 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm. The reason the ISO is up so high is because this image was captured handheld.

Hope you all have a great weekend!

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While I was busy storm chasing the other day, I didn’t even notice the sunset that was happening. I figured with so much rain, cloudiness and overall darkness going on that we weren’t even going to get a sunset. I was totally wrong. It was this incredibly glowing pink, orange, purple color. I’m not sure if I’ve ever seen anything like it and was completely shocked when I did. Man at least I saw it for the last 5 minutes because I would have been real upset if I missed it.

I was standing in between the columns when I noticed the glow out of the corner of my left eye. I scrambled inside the memorial because I knew the only way to shoot with a cool foreground and not stand in the rain was to shoot the Jefferson statue. I am so glad there are little openings all the way around the memorial because I love the way this image turned out. The reflection on the marble floor is super nice too. I consciously made an effort to include that in the image while I was shooting.

The sunset lasted about 5 minutes (for me at least) and then I went right back to my spot in between the columns to shoot the lightning. Overall it was a great night for photography and I am so glad I was able to go out.

Funny though, the first song that I heard on the radio when I got back into my car was Lightning Crashes by Live. That song brings back so many childhood memories for me. LOL. Mostly of me sneaking into my brothers room and listening to his cd collection.

The settings for this image is F5.6 at 0.4 seconds at ISO 400 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm and a tripod.

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Special Announcement! I’m hosting my very first photowalk and I’m so excited!!!

It’s happening on Saturday June 9th at 5:20a meeting at the Lincoln Memorial. Mark yo calendars. Super early, I know, but it will be so fun. I’m teaming up with the Focus on the Story International Photo Festival for a super cool Saturday morning. Don’t quote me on this but I heard they’re bringing Krispe Kremes too. So what could be better than the National Mall, sunrise, donuts and ME?! LOL.

Click here to sign up for the free event. And while you’re at it, check out some of the other events that will be going on that weekend. I’ve signed up for a couple myself and really looking forward to learning from other photographers.

This image was taken in August 2016 but I still remember the details of taking it. It was a super humid summer evening and we were expecting thunderstorms that night. So with weather conditions like that, I thought the sunset would be super colorful. It was, but only along the bottom of the sky, right above the horizon. So I decided to crop the top part and focus more on the water ripples. I don’t know if this image would have been as successful as it is without the water because I think the best part of it was catching the color reflection. It makes it seem a lot more colorful and dramatic than it really was. The most interesting part to me is that little line that flows down the center left hand side of the reflecting pool. I love the way that it bounces from one side to another so subtly.

So that’s our meeting spot! The Lincoln Memorial! Don’t forget to register for the sunrise photowalk and see ya there!

My camera settings for this image is F6.3 at 1/10th of a second at ISO 250 with my Sony A7II and 28-70mm lens.