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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 ūüôĀ

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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So here it is, the deer story! As Andrew I were walking around Sprague Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park around sunset, we noticed about 3 or 4 deers drinking the water. I thought it was the cutest thing ever and from a distance, I started taking pictures. Then we noticed some other people even closer to the deer walking towards them. The deer didn’t seem to be scared or anything because they didn’t run away, so after witnessing that, I wanted to go¬†closer, obviously.

We slowly walked closer to them and noticed that there were so many more than just 3 or 4. There were like at least 10 of them! AND there were some baby deer too. They were sooooo cute. Pretty soon¬†there was a big group of us people surrounded by all these deer! I’ve seen deer before but not this many at one time and never this close up and calm. All of us were taking pictures but moving really slow to not scare the deer. But eventually, after standing there for about an hour observing the deer, the sun had set and it was getting dark fast.

Andrew and I decided to break away from the pact of people and continue on to the trail to walk back to the car, but the deer had another idea. As soon as one of them saw us walking past them, he started CHARGING AT US!!! OMG scariest ish EVER! So I ran towards Andrew, looked behind at the deer and he CHARGED AT US AGAIN!!!! By the third time he charged at us, Andrew and I had ran so far down the lake that we put everyone else in between us and the deer. At one point, we heard this lady scream “Stop Running!” In my head, I was like ‘lady, are you crazy?!?!’

After freaking out for 20 minutes, I confessed to Andrew that I had made eye-contact with the deer and that’s probably why he charged at us. Oh man. Never again deer! So we ended up back tracking and taking the long way back to the car.

The best part is that I got the beginning of the first charge on video! It will be up on youtube soon but I stopped recording as soon as I realized what was happening. Biggest regret- turning off my camera ūüôĀ Oh well, I got a little bit of it that I will share soon….

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You know what’s funny? As I was shooting this, I noticed I was the only one who was getting up close to the US Capitol building. There were quite a few tourists out there with me. I think a bus pulled up while I was there and so many of them were taking selfies in front of the Capitol. But no one would even get near the fountain. Weird, right? Maybe it was the Capitol police with their guns that looked so intimidating. Or maybe they were just not trying to get into my shot. Either way, I was all alone taking this picture. I’m not complaining though. It was really nice to be the only one. Who knows how many people got pictures of my back side though. HAHA.

On this evening, it looked like it was going to storm but I don’t think it actually did. The clouds were super dark. I couldn’t tell with my eyes if they were moving but once I slapped on the Ice Neutral density filter 10 stop, I could see that they were making this really cool effect. Like they were all racing out of the Capitol dome. I really liked it so I tried different angles and came out with this one. This one came out particularly awesome¬†because you can see some reflection in the water and may I add the symmetry of the building’s architecture is probably the coolest part of the image.

For some reason seeing dark and moody images of the Capitol always reminds me of President Underwood. So now that House of Cards season 5 is officially back on Netflix, I think you know what Andrew and I will be doing on our flight back home from our trip. Oh man, can’t waitttt. This season is really going to be good!

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I remember shooting this last year. I was driving home from shooting the storm at the Washington Monument and was a little disappointed with how my pictures came out. There wasn’t one that I was extremely happy with or excited to work on but the rain had cut my photoshoot short. Sometimes it happens even on the worst weather days. And then as soon as I got to my car and start driving, the rain stopped. So I started filtering all the places I could go shoot on my way home when finally I realized the US Marine Corps War Memorial was perfect!

I drove up to the memorial and NO ONE was there. It was amazing! Usually there are bus loads of people here. But the rain must of scared them all away. So taking all the liberties I could, I parked my car right in front of the memorial. Yes, right along the drive path. Whatevs- no one was there anyways. I was only going to be there for 10 minutes tops. I didn’t even close my driver side door because I was so excited by the clouds. So I started shooting, shooting, shooting. No tripod, all hand held. The storm clouds were so dramatic and amazing. I was so grateful for this little break in the rain. My favorite part is seeing that little reflection of Iwo Jima in the puddle. I had to squat down real low for this one which also helped in making the storm clouds look even bigger.

My camera settings for this image was F5.6 at 1/15th of a second at ISO 640. Shooting handheld with such dark, dramatic skies, you have to put your ISO high to avoid any kind of motion blur. I also bracketed these shots so I could later choose which one turned out the best.

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I’m really hoping this marks the beginning of storms here in DC. Summer is my favorite just because we can get some really dramatic skies and this past Monday was no exception. It was super hot over the weekend and finally a cold front came in bringing this storm¬†that created the most amazing skies right at sunset. The storm itself was a little disappointing. We were expecting lightning¬†and only saw a few really far away. But the clouds, the rainbow, the light soooo made up for it.

I met up with my friends Dave and Zack at the Lincoln Memorial. We figured that while it was raining, it’d be a great spot to take cover and still take pics at the same time. It was so fun running back and forth on the outer perimeter of¬†the memorial. At first we were in the front capturing the dramatic skies. All of the sudden I turned around and saw this amazing glow coming from the back of the Lincoln. We ran back there to check it out and take pics. Then we get a message from Zack saying there was a rainbow at the monument. We ran over and started shooting that. It was so fun and exciting. I know we weren’t the only ones doing going back and forth. So many tourists were running along with us. LOL.

My camera settings for this image was F14 at 5 seconds and ISO 50. I chose to shoot this as a¬†long exposure so I could blur out some of the people in the foreground. *What were they all doing there standing in the rain anyways? This was definietly shot on a tripod but somehow I left my remote at home ūüôĀ Oh well. There better be more storms in next few months.

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Home after a great trip to New York. Even after visiting the city a¬†hundred times, each time feels like a brand new experience. Theres just so much to do and see. This time I went with my sister-in-law and my two nephews. The oldest one, Brennan mentioned he wanted to see Grand Central Terminal. We all thought it was a great idea since none of us had been there before.¬†So we made our way over there and along the way, we stumbled upon the New York Public Library. Another place I’ve never seen or visited before!

I started out taking pictures of the exterior but then noticed a whole bunch of people walking in. They looked like tourists themselves with cameras and backpacks so I suggested we go in. I didn’t know it was an¬†attraction all in itself¬†and had no idea of what to expect. Man, the interior is so beautiful! I was blown away by the paintings on the ceiling¬†and gold detailing. I feel like I just kept on looking up the whole time we were in there. It was also cool that they allowed photography. I just kept on snappin’ and snappin’ away. At one point, I think I went a little snap happy and didn’t notice that there was a rope you had to stand behind if you wanted to¬†take pictures. I just kept on walking wherever I wanted and kept the pics flowing. So this image is actually from a point of view that I was not allowed to take. LOL Whoops. Sorry! (not sorry). When you see so much gorgeousness in one place, it’s difficult to pay attention to the rules.

Man if I lived in New York, I could totally see myself visiting this library often. I would get so many blog posts done. LOL. Talk about creative inspiration.