Among other things, 500px.com gives me the opportunity to find out which of my images are popular with people and which ones are not. Already I’ve been surprised several times, but I guess that’s why people do market research. Over the weekend, I put up some more pictures I took in the past, and one of them rocketed to the top of the heap.
I call the category to which this image belongs “Airplane Mode” as a play on the term for safe, non-transmitting electronic devices. The above image was taken on a Delta flight out of Sea-Tac airport in Seattle. We left the ground right at dawn, and flew over the Cascade mountain range as the sun continued to rise. I could see a break in the clouds coming (looking through the window in front of the one next to me) and got ready to capture this scene where the clouds are on one side and the mountains are clear on the other. There’s also a bit of an S-curve going on.
I thought it was kind of cool once I got it through post-processing, but I didn’t think it was 500px-popular cool. I posted this to my 500px site along with several others that I thought were much more interesting. This one, however, has been my most popular so far.
500px.com has given me some amazing inspiration in the short time I’ve been a member. Every time I look at the updated list of popular photos I am humbled by the truly excellent photographers and artists out there. I am also motivated to strive for greater goals.
We were in Mount Vernon, WA (confusing, I know, but this is Washington state) recently to see the tulips. We missed the actual Tulip Festival by a couple days but fortunately the flowers themselves don’t pack up and leave on a certain date.
These images were taken at Roozengaarde Farm which maintains the large garden through which we walked as well as many acres of the plants. I honestly had no idea there are so many varieties of tulips. And yes, they make liberal use on variations of tiptoeing through the tulips.
I’m not sure the weather could have been much better for strolling through gardens of brightly-colored flowers. It was bright and sunny and not too hot. From a photographic standpoint, however, it wasn’t so good. The extreme contrasts between light and shadows were a constant challenge. Another challenge was keeping my composure when the wind blew in certain directions. This is farm country, after all, and the pungent aroma of animal leavings was ever-present. Sometimes, however, the air was so ripe it almost brought tears to my eyes. Fortunately that’s not something the camera can capture.
More from Orlando – This is the main swimming pool at the Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress. For the first several days that we were there, it rained practically all day and night. My camera stuff can handle inclement weather pretty well, but there’s not much that can be done about raindrops on the lens. Itching to get out and shoot something (anything), I headed outside when it looked like the rain let up. It turned out to be temporary and last only a few minutes, but I was able to get this image from one angle of the pool.
The water meanders throughout this man-made cave structure and looked pretty inviting. Here’s a quick shot I made later in the week during the day when the waterfalls were turned on:
I’d have to say that the night-time image, with the lights on, looks more interesting to me.
As I write this I am on a plane, returning home after a week-long conference in Orlando. Although I didn’t go to Disney World, there were still other things to see. For example, here is the Hard Rock Cafe along Universal’s Citywalk.
It’s meant to look like the Colosseum does today – mostly still there, but falling apart a little in places. This was taken from across the little river they have down there while standing under the wing of Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville plane. Afterward I turned around and took a picture of that too.
Posted in HDR
Tagged FL, Orlando
I’ve been experimenting with long exposures lately. I suppose you could thank Matt Kloskowski for sparking my interest. Please understand that these are my very first attempts.
There are several places on Vashon Island for finding disused pylons and other maritime detritus in the water. The challenge is that when the tide goes out, it goes way out. There’s not much point in shooting extra long exposures when nothing in the frame is moving. Fortunately the tide is in just enough at the evening golden hour right now. This first image was shot with the shutter open for 65 seconds.
This next one was shot at 30 seconds (on a different day from the previous image) during a fantastic sunset.
I held the shutter open for 59 seconds on this one and decided to give it a split-tone treatment.
Even with a 10-stop neutral density filter, I still needed a really small aperture to drag the shutter as long as I wanted. Aperture sizes beyond about f/13 showed me that I had a bit of an issue with my D800. Turns out there was quite a bit of oil on the sensor. It had been there since I got the thing about a year ago, but I didn’t really notice the problem when shooting at wider apertures with a more shallow depth of field. Anyway, I had to get it cleaned. Now I don’t have to clone out countless halo’d dots in Photoshop.