reflection

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We’ve been having a lot of stormy weather lately in the Washington DC area. It seems like almost every day I’ve been getting warnings on my phone about rain or thunderstorms. I’m not complaining though because it feels great to break up some of the hot, humid summer days. But with all these rainy days, I’m always thinking about the water levels at the Tidal Basin and how bad the flood walls need to be repaired.

Even though I took this image last summer, it reminds me of what it’s probably been like at the Tidal Basin right now. It’s pretty ridiculous to see how much the Tidal Basin gets flooded, even on a day that doesn’t rain that much. To be honest, this particular day was the worst I’ve ever seen it. The sidewalks are flooded and it has become un-walkable. At some point, I had to walk up the slight hill, up to the sidewalk in order to get around trees and the flooding in order to walk along the Tidal Basin. It’s crazy!

If you’re are just as concerned as I am about your grandchildren seeing the Tidal Basin in all its beautiful glory, including the iconic cherry blossoms, please consider taking the pledge from the National Trust for Historic Preservation. It’s a national treasure that needs to be preserved.

My camera settings for this image is F4 at 1/250th sec at ISO 640 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.

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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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This image has been shared more than 3.6 million times.

Probably much more than that but with so many people showing it to their friends and family, I know my name has been lost and I can’t keep track. To say it’s been an honor is an understatement. The number of conversations, emails and private messages I’ve received about this one image has been overwhelming but so humbling. Even to this day, 7 years later, I will still get messages in my email box specifically about the emotions people have felt about it.

This post isn’t to brag or to show off. It comes from the bottom of my heart. The deepest gratitude I can offer to the beautiful city I call home, all those who have taken the time to tell me how much this image has meant to them, and especially all the veterans and families who have been impacted by the Vietnam War.

So I wanted to take a moment and talk about the story behind the image, Vietnam Veterans Memorial at Sunrise:

It All Started 11 Months Prior. January 6th, 2012:

I woke up for sunrise with every intention to photograph the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. I had visited the memorial one time before but did not come out with images I was super excited about. After a conversation with a friend, I decided I needed to go back.

Little did I know, the sunrise that morning was going to be EPIC!

Click here to read more

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Before leaving to Chicago, I had no idea there were so many alleyways in the city. Now that I think about it, it makes sense though. Just never really thought about alleys. So this one time when Andrew and I were on our way to a photo location (I don’t remember exactly which one but it’s safe to say it was a parking garage), google maps actually lead us through this one as the fastest way to get to our final destination. It seemed a little sketch with the smell of super greasy food, what it looked like people taking a cigarette break in the alley, and just an overall darkness hanging above us but other than all that I saw no reason not to walk through. LOL.

So we did.

Then I saw this puddle and probably spent a good 5 minutes just standing in front of it. I was trying to find a good reflection and then patiently waited for someone to walk past. I think the smell was starting to get to me and I was tempted to just ask Andrew to walk past a few times but then at the moment I was about to give up, two people actually walked past. You can see the second person a little bit closer to the wall on the right hand side.

Because I didn’t want that second person to be so visible and I thought this image would lend itself so well to it, I decided to convert it to black and white. In the end, it was just more interesting to just reduce it down to its lines and shapes and really bringing the attention to the person in the middle and the reflection. I love the way that it turned out. It actually kinda makes me want to go back to some older images and looking at them in black and white. It’s seriously a whole totally different point of view.

My camera settings for this image is F4.5 at 1/125th sec and ISO 500 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.

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Hump Dayyyyy

I feel like I’ve been traveling a lot in 2019 so far. And if there’s anything that I’ve learned in these recent travels, it is never put your camera away. I try my best to always keep my camera in hand for those ‘just in case’ moments. I’ve also found that sometimes if my camera is already in my backpack, I may feel a little lazy to take it out to try to capture a moment and end up regretting it. So as a rule, I try to always have my camera ready and available.

Another consequence of always having your camera available is that you start taking random selfies like this. LOL. or even this one…

I’m not always on the lookout for puddes but if I see one, I do like to see if there’s anything interesting in the reflection. This one was taken just around the corner of our hotel. It’s actually the very last image that I captured on the trip and thought it was cool to see the edges of the tall buildings around me. To add a little foreground interest, I included my shoes in the images and at the very last moment threw up a peace sign. Just something fun but ended up giggling when I saw it as I was looking through my images once I arrived home.

But trust me. This is definietly not the last image I have from Chicago. I have so many more that I’m excited to share. PS I’m starting to work on a Chicago photo guide so if you have any questions about anything, feel free to ask. I’ll try my best to answer them in the guide.

Also excited for more travels in the next few months 🙂

My camera settings for this image is F6.3 at 1/100th sec and ISO 250 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide angle lens.

 

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One of my favorite parts about Chicago were all the elevated points of views around the city. For example, I mentioned before this image was taken from an L train station which was about two stories above the ground. Besides the L train, there were many views from rooftops and parking garages that made it such an easy city to photograph with so many viewpoints.

This image was taken at a parking garage. My friend, Andy wrote a city guide (which I plan on doing as soon as I go through all my images) and mentioned this one in particular. I loved the reflective surface of the building and decided this had to be one of the spots I visited. It was so great that I actually ended up visiting this spot twice in one weekend. Luckily, it was close to our hotel so it was super easy to stop by. But the funny part is that there were other photographers there both times I went.

Andrew’s not really one to be in my photos so I’m glad I was able to capture this photographer in her element. She had quickly just popped her head out, I think to check her settings and then popped right back into the garage but I am glad I was quick enough to actually capture this moment.

It was around 9a in the morning and pretty bright outside but one of my favorite parts about this image is the railing closest to my camera. I just love how it’s glittering in the light. Probably a detail only I would notice, but it just captures my eye.

Since I visited this spot on two different occasions, be prepared to see more from here.

My camera settings for this image is F8 at 1/320th sec and ISO 250 with my Sony A7II and 70-200mm wide angle lens.