Quick Shot: 12 Hours Apart

Photographers love to shoot sunrise and sunset (this should come as no surprise), so I will often do Internet searches of good locations for these events prior to traveling. And such was the case with my recent trip to the Lake District in England.

Although I've been to the Lake District three times, and some of my favorite sunset images were made in the lake district, I wanted to find new locations so as to not 'repeat' photographs I've already made. The web is a great resource - it can help me scout a location for a good foreground and orientation relative to the sun. 

I can guarantee that if you search for sunset and sunrise images in the Lake District, the location for these images won't return in the search results (unless you are seeing this post!). I found this location miles down a small single track road on the edge of some farmland in the southern part of the Lake District! The orientation of the lone tree, with the distinct kink in the truck, and with the orientation to the sun was perfect for my purposes..... and best of all, it was walking distance from my accommodations and discovered accidentally!

Now as you look at these images, you should know two things: 1) they were made 12 hours apart - one at sunset and one at sunrise and 2) they were made on film, and there is no editing. Okay, there is a little bit of editing - I had to scan them and remove dust spots that show up in scanning, but the colors are legit. The other thing to appreciate is how big one of these photos is...... you may recall once using 35mm film and how those negatives are roughly the size of a postage stamp. For fun, here's a photo of me holding one of these negatives next to a dollar bill...... :-)

I made two images using my large format Ebony RSW45 large format film camera, adapted with a Shen Hao 6x19 panorama film back. Film is Kodak Portra 160.

Sunset...... 7:30pm

Sunrise...... 7:30am

Quick Shot: Venice Sunrise Finale

For the past several mornings, I have awoken early and gone out in the bitter cold and rain hoping to catch a colorful sunrise over Venice. And for the past several mornings, my efforts have been rewarded with grey skies and rain.

Today was different. Although it was the coldest morning here, the rain had passed and a thin layer of light and fluffy clouds dotted the horizon. The sky began to turn a magnificent orange and I had a few seconds as the sun poked over the top of the horizon to get these shots with the famous Venetian gondola's in the foreground.

Here's the best part...... this image is natural! No HDR here folks, just a little crop and some sharpening. It really was spectacular! Shot on a Leica MP240 with 24mm f/2.8 lens.

Quick Shot: Umbrella Couple

I am currently in Venice, Italy, which is one of my absolute favorite cities to explore with a camera. Like I always do, I rose early this morning to explore the sunrise opportunities in San Marco Square. It was very rainy, which tends to happen every time I come to Venice, so I had to be creative to capture a early morning photograph that was different from something I've done before.

As if on queue, this couple came to watch the sunrise with their matching umbrellas. They stood facing the gondolas holding hands and it was the perfect photograph to capture the rainy start to a morning in Venice.

Shot with a Leica MP 240 and Leica 24mm f/2.8.

Ngorongoro Sunrise

Good morning! Sunrise in Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania was extremely photographic as the sun peeked through the dense cloud cover that settled overnight. To get this photograph, I stitched eight individual images together into a single mosaic. Shot on the Nikon D610 with Nikon 80-400mm lens.

Quick Shot: Venice Sunrise

After over three weeks of traveling through Italy, France, Spain, Greece and Turkey, I'm finally back home and busy editing all the pictures. It was an incredible trip, and I'm excited to start sharing the photos, beginning with one of the first images I took during the trip.

Our arrival in Venice, Italy was greeted with a lot of rain. San Marco Square was completely flooded and the rain continued for several days. While this made it less pleasant to walk around, the rain did keep people inside - meaning I had some of the busiest parts of Venice all to myself. 

We woke up very early one morning to head to San Marco Square so I could shoot sunrise. I knew I wanted the photo to just scream Venice, and there is nothing more quintessential to Venice than the gondolas. With the gondolas in the foreground, I lined up and started shooting a wide panorama. I intentionally shot at shutter speeds around 2 seconds so that I could get a little blur to the gondolas that were bobbing peacefully in the water.

The resulting sunrise photo is actually seven images stitched together to create one monster panorama. The final full resolution image is over 500MB in size..... a whopping 93 megapixels! I am really excited to print this photograph in full size, because there is such incredible detail. The image was taken with the Nikon D800 and 50mm lens. 

Quick Shot: Great Falls Sunrise

The weather in the DC area abruptly went from pleasant fall days to blistering cold this weekend, but despite the weather, a few brave trees still cling to their fall colors. I decided to try and capture a last glimpse of fall this weekend with a trip to a favorite DC photo destination, Great Falls National Park.

Located on the border between Maryland, Virginia, and DC, Great Falls is a wonderful place to escape the urban sprawl. I've photographed the falls here several times, but never walked away with a photograph that I thought was particularly grand or truely captured the beauty of these falls. This time I woke up excruciatingly early to get to the falls for sunrise in the hope that the first rays of sun would cast a warm glow over the scene.

Although the sunrise wasn't spectacular, the location of the sun provided a brilliant golden light to the rocks in the middle of the river. To give the image some drama and depth, I used a long exposure to get the wispy effect on the falls. I wanted the resulting image to have lots of depth but to be very calm and inviting, and I think I hit the mark!

Shot with the Nikon D800 with Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8 lens using a Gitzo tripod and ND8 neutral density filter. Minor adjustments made in photoshop. 

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