In the year 2000, the company I worked with in the Philippines sent me with 3 other guys for satellite communications training in Phoenix, AZ. The host there took us to the Grand Canyon, my first shock and awe of American landscape.
Early 2001 my visa was approved to work in the US, great, until September 11 happened. We were glued to the TV watching what was going on and witnessed the horrible things in New York. My flight to the US was delayed because of it. I was able to fly New Years day 2002. That was very exciting for me to be here in the US for the second time and I said I was gonna stay a little bit longer. Now it’s been almost 13 years and I am forever grateful to America. I am able to provide for my family and the freedom, convenience of living here in the US.
Well anyway, me and my friend was working in Maine and when it was time to go home we decided to drop by New York to photograph the tribute light for the anniversary of 911. We went to our favorite spot and of course there were gazillions of tripods. Everything was cool though, we got a decent light and nice weather.
It was a bit of a challenge to stitch panorama the scene because of the amount of people that was in my frame and the ferry boats messing up the water. I metered in the buildings that got me F/10 at 30 seconds. That was all my setting in the 7-frames I took.
We were in Virginia/West Virginia area and from google it says that Cascade Falls is the best waterfall in Virginia! We decided to drop by and take a look. We chose the more difficult 2 mile hike route because we were tough, so I thought. Man, I am out of shape. My friend and I used to trail run 5 miles before, but since January I have been on and off with my fitness regimen. I am just too occupied with my work, that’s my excuse, LOL.
Cascade Falls is a 66-foot drop waterfall that can be found in Jefferson National Forest in Pembroke, VA. It is just about north of Blacksburg.
The most important thing when shooting waterfalls is the shutter speed. I look at how big the waterfall is and its speed. The faster it is the slower the shutter speed I use in my camera. Here I used 1/2 to 1 second. You need to meter to the water falls and then compose.
For those who like to shoot waterfalls, hold it until the fall season. Your photos will look better with all the colors in the fall foliage. And also you can’t be lazy because most waterfalls are hidden and hiking is needed, for real! :)
I have been to Washington DC so many times in the past but never at dawn. Here is a panoramic shot inside the Lincoln Memorial.
We went back to the car and drove near the Capitol building to catch the sunrise. You would think that you’d be alone. There was an early bird there occupying the center most part of the reflecting pool. LOL.
The sun was just about to get out from hiding…
All my photos here are stitched panorama. In the second and third photo a 3-stop ND filter was used.
Even at dawn this place is full of people; joggers, photographers etc etc. Well, it was a good trip nonetheless.
I was going to cool off with cityscapes when we had the chance to go to Pittsburgh. Such a beautiful city from Mount Washington overlooking. You can never appreciate it during the day but when the night comes, and the city lights are on, it’s totally different.
We took advantage of the light and waited for few moments before taking the shot. I used a ND8 (3-stop ND) filter to maintain my aperture but prolonging my shutter speed. The right time to shoot cityscapes to me is on a twilight, when the light still prevails and the buildings are about to light up. Compare it to the second shot on a different vantage point and different time.
This night was game night between Marlins and Pirates. I think the Pirates lost it. LOL.
Hope you enjoy it!
These were stitched in Photoshop CC 2014 and post processed in Lightroom 5.5.
Lighthouses are of no use for modern sea navigation, with all the advances in GPS technology, ships don’t need them to navigate the shores. They are just there for adornment, a tourist destination, specially in Maine.
I had limited composition in Pemaquid lighthouse because it was during sunset and there was a lot of tourists that I could not position my tripod without someone in front of me.
I was intrigued by Schoodic Peninsula in Winter Harbor still a part of Acadia NP, we went there for a sunset. Should have been a sunrise because we were in the wrong side of the coast! I love the rocks here, pretty cool!
Schoodic “Croc” Point – F/13 @ 10 seconds, 24mm, ISO 100, ND8, 32MP, click photo for L
My friend and I went to Bass Harbor lighthouse for a sunrise. We were alone there the whole time, no tourist at all. The water was very calm and the light was soft, time for some long exposure. It was very low tide but I found a way not to make that visible.
The last two photos I have used a 3-stop ND filter(ND8) to prolong the shutter to the desired speed. Study the light long before you push that shutta!
Hope you like them and have good week end!
I woke myself around 1am. The drive to Aspen was 3 hours from my current location in Colorado. Its been a good 3 days so far, I was to able to go to places in Utah and Wyoming. Southwest is a special place for me, with all these unlimited places to shoot. I’m blessed to be able to visit them. Thanks to all the people who preserved these places for us and for the next generation. I do hope fracking wont mess things up. LOL.
I arrived at Maroon Lake 5am and it was still very dark. I read that at one point there were 100 tripods in this location and I don’t wanna miss out. I guess I was too early but then I got the best spot imo. A few minutes later 3 cars came and I said to myself this is good at least I was alone no more. I spoke with this gentleman from St Louis it was his first time there too.
The composition here was very simple since this has been photographed a million times before, lake reflections with the Maroon Bells as subject and Maroon Lake as foreground. To have a perfect reflection there must be no ripples in the water. The conditions were pretty good so far at 539am, no wind, no birds messing up the water. I set up my tripod and I was looking at 7 stitches with the horizon at the center.
As the mountains came out from the shadows, gorgeous is the best word to describe the whole place. Man, this must be the garden of Eden! I don’t wonder why so many photographers come here 365 days a year. I waited a little bit more for the sun to light up the mountain and began shootin! That Aspen glow! This place is beyond gorgeous in the fall season with all that color reflections.