Photography Tip – Look Up

28 02 2010

In my previous post, I shared a photo of the dome ceiling at the University of Virginia’s Rotunda. That got me to thinking about another similar shot. Apparently I enjoy taking photos of domes. The photo below was taken in the Chapel on the campus of the U.S. Naval Academy. This led me to recall a photography tip that I read about a few years ago.

A lot of things happen over our heads. Some things are man made and others are natural. The ceiling in my living room has a ceiling fan and a textured finish. A textured finish isn’t put on a ceiling for anything more than being pleasant to the eye. In more complex buildings ceilings include domes, arches, lines, and curves. All of these are things often appealing to the eye. In nature trees grow over us and clouds float by. For some people jokes exist in a realm above the head. And if you don’t get what that means, I’m talking about you. Regardless of where you are, many opportunity for good photographs exist above our heads.

All of that being said, it’s very easy to forget to look up. Most of the things we look at do not require much tilt of the head and neck. Whether you’re clicking photos with an iPhone, a point-and-shoot camera, or something more complex look up and see what your options are. Give your neck some exercise!


New Gallery – Annapolis, MD

12 01 2010

I have lived in the Washington, DC area for more than five years. Last weekend, I began to finally photograph Annapolis. I walked around the historic sections of the city on a cold windy day that provided some good sky conditions for some of my photographs. The resulting photos make up the beginning of a gallery that I hope to expand over the coming months. Feel free to check out my Annapolis, MD gallery by clicking any of the photos below.

The historic Annapolis skyline taken from City Dock.

I found a cold windy winter day to be a good day to try to photograph the city. There were very few peopleĀ  around. It was nice not having to trip over others to find a spot to take a photo. As I expand the gallery, I hope to take some more shots around sunrise (ha) or sunset. And hopefully some at night as well.

The Maryland State House in Annapolis, MD.

St. Paul's Episcopal Church located in the historic circle of Annapolis.

While I was walking around Annapolis, I also took some time to visit the campus of the United States Naval Academy. While photos from the Academy can be seen in the gallery (by clicking any of the images above), I also posted some of my favorites in a previous post.

United States Naval Academy Chapel

9 01 2010

Last weekend, I explored Annapolis, MD on a cold windy day. I walked through the campus of the United States Naval Academy and visited the chapel. It is a beautiful building and it’s a very powerful experience to visit. There are times that pictures do a better job of speaking than we can so I’m going to let this post be one of those times.

U.S. Naval Academy Chapel

U.S. Naval Academy Chapel - Altar and Dome

U.S. Naval Academy Chapel Dome

U.S. Naval Academy Chapel

12 Significant Photos: #4 – Dawn at the Capitol

21 10 2009

The day after Christmas in Washington, DC was both cold and quiet. I took my wife to work early in the morning so that we could get on the road out of town after her shift. Her shift started before sunrise, so I was able to get to the Capitol before it was light.

There were not many people around. Just a men’s group out for a morning walk. I decided that I would take some shots of the Capitol from front (west front, sun behind) and center.

The reflecting pool in front was partially frozen, creating a unique reflection that ranged from mirrored to blurred. The sun rose behind the Capitol Building and lit up the sky and the reflection. The resulting shot is one of my favorites that might be out of place as #4 in my list.

The U.S. Capitol, located in Washington, DC, at sunrise in December 2008.

The U.S. Capitol, located in Washington, DC, at sunrise in December 2008.

George Washington may have…

20 04 2009

…chopped down the cherry tree, but Japan sent some replacements. Spring has alledgedly come to Washington, DC. During a season full of rainy 50 degree days, I managed to find a clear and sunny morning to take in the Cherry Blossoms in full bloom.

The Jefferson Memorial framed by cherry blossoms.

The Jefferson Memorial framed by cherry blossoms.

The National Cherry Blossom Festival is a busy and exciting time in Washington, though it is one that I have avoided for the first 4 springs that I have lived in this area. While the blossoms certainly didn’t disappoint, the crowds around the Tidal Basin and the Washington Monument did make taking photographs a challenge. It was an exercise of waiting for people to pass and ducking under the camera range of others.

Early morning sun lights up the east side of the Washington Monument.

Early morning sun lights up the east side of the Washington Monument.

The bright early morning light, blue sky, and pink blossoms combined for some strong photographs. While walking through downtown, I found that I enjoyed the Washington Monument better with the cherry blossoms. This might have been because it was easier to maneuver, but I’m going to say it was the dramatic angle of the light.

Washington, DC provides many opportunites to enjoy the monuments to some our nation’s founders. But some of the best perspectives come from exploring off of the beaten path. One of my favorite shots from my morning with the cherry blossoms came from an approach to the Washington Monument from the southwest. From this direction, I approached the monument from a grove of cherry trees and I found a nice window for the shot.
Washington, DC is a great city to explore and while the Cherry Blossom Festival is not one of my favorite events in DC, the beauty of the blossoms is unrivaled. For additional photos of Washington, DC, please feel free to visit my DC Gallery.

What’s Unique About This Photo??

10 02 2009

One of my favorite shots is a close up capture of an American flag blowing in the breeze. Can you spot anything unique?

A United States flag blowing in the breeze

A United States flag blowing in the breeze.