I have done this shot before but always at night and in a vertical orientation. I had been thinking it would be cool at blue hour so I made sure to make a stop here when the time came. I went with a horizontal framing this time, which I think I prefer now that I am seeing the results. I shot this with my Nikon 70-200 2.8 @ F3.5. I blended two shots together for this one though the second shot was only for the highlights on the tower sign and lights on the right hand side. The blue of the twilight hour really helps to compliment the purples and greens in the scene.
I am quite sure this is a new color scheme this fall season. I do not recall seeing it any other year and I am sure this is the first year I have seen anyone else post photos of it. Regardless I really like the two tone color scheme from this angle as the single colors tend to be a bit boring. Furthermore, while this is my favorite spot to shoot the castle at sunset at night all the greenery gets lost in the dark and looks drab and boring. For that reason, I opted to go for a vertical composition here to keep the shrubs to a minimum. I also opted for the Nikon 35 1.4 for a tighter composition as opposed to my often used and much wider Nikon 14-24. This gave me a result I am much happier with than my previous horizontal, extremely wide shots from this area.
I will start by saying the animatronics for the new Frozen Ever After ride are the best currently at Walt Disney World. They are incredibly dynamic and life like and the Imagineers have done a great job at bringing them to life. This comes with a few minor issues from a photography standpoint. Because the faces are so dynamic and constantly changing you can, just like real people, capture them with some rather goofy looks. This can be especially annoying as the boat is constantly moving so the shot you end up with that is the optimal framing may not be the optimal facial expression. This can be worked around by snapping several shots quickly back to back and then aligning and masking faces for the best expression while also keeping the best frame. Or perhaps I’m just unlucky and no one else will run into this! Frozen is not an attraction I was personally interested in prior to its announcement but even as a ride makeover it is well done and sure to be a hit amongst its many fans. I will look forward to riding and shooting it again on future trips.
If I am going to retake a shot I’ve done before I like to ask myself how I can do that shot better. Otherwise, I am not sure if there is much point to retaking the shot. In this case, I had shot from this angle into the sun but did not capture the monorail. Plussing the shot with the monorail is an obvious improvement but I wanted to take it a step further. I setup my tripod for the shot and honed in my optimal exposure for the scene while waiting for the monorail. I knew where I wanted the monorail to be in the shot and I knew this was before it reached the sunburst. I also knew shooting into the sun with the 14-24 at this angle would create a huge rainbow flare across the frame, something I did not want. To deal with this just as the monorail was approaching I quickly took a couple shots with my hand blocking the sun which eliminated the flare and then quickly removed it in time to shoot the monorail at just the right spot on the rail. In post, I masked out the flare using my hand covered shot. It is a small detail but one I think helps complete the shot as I envisioned.
I’m back from another Disney trip and even though it was cut a day short thanks to Hurricane Matthew I’m very glad to have been able to see the VERY new Muppet show at the Magic Kingdom. The first day I attempted to see it I actually missed it as they were having technical difficulties. This was the main thing I wanted to see on this trip however so I went back another day just to see the show and was able to see both the Declaration of Independence and Paul Revere’s ride version of the shows. It’s classic Muppet hi-jinks and I think any Muppet fan will be pleased. It’s really nice for Sam Eagle to play a large role here as well as one of my favorite Muppets. Hopefully they will expand and do even more “moments in American history” as the show goes along.
If you have followed me for a while now you probably have realized I do not shoot a lot of characters or shows. Honestly I still find quite a lot of them result in pretty boring shots but this past trip I did take the opportunity to shoot the Main Street Trolley Show and I really like some of the shots I got. The performers movements, and along with the trolley and the various angles you can use Main Street USA as a backdrop really present a seemingly endless number of dynamic shots. I opted to shoot with the ultra-wide Nikon 14-24 2.8 and get as close as I could to the performers for this series and I really love how they turned out.
I am sorry for the lack of new shots lately. A combination of lack of time and a lack of shots that I felt motivated to work on has had me sharing a bunch of older stuff (on Instagram at least). I’ve got a new trip approaching soon however so I wanted to get through the remaining shots I did have that I wanted to edit so today I’ve got a new one for you. This is a standard wide view of the Japan Pavilion. Nothing crazy going on here but I think it is a nice tranquil view. If not for the single lonely stroller, you could almost be convinced you were in Japan.
I am going to continue where I left off last week with another Main Street USA photo. Perhaps one too that is not often seen. Again, most shots are just down the street towards Cinderella Castle but I have been there, done that, and wanted to get some things I did not have. The “theater” entrance is one of the more interesting facades on Main Street and the perfect centerpiece I felt for this shot.
I am guilty of going for the easy shots up and down Main Street USA. Pick a good spot in the middle of the street and fire away. I decided to try something different and this is the result. It is not a shot that is going to win any awards but I think it mixes it up a little bit at least. The biggest issue with my Main Street shots this trip is there was a lot of moisture in the air. Moisture in the air reflects light and with the amount of light on Main Street USA, the sky was looking nasty. I spent a significant amount of time burning, healing and cloning to fix it. To me it is worth the time as it is the difference between posting a shot and it never seeing the light of day.
I usually don’t bother too much with shooting while on the Transit Authority. It is my time to relax and take the weight off my shoulders (literally, my camera bag is incredibly heavy). I rarely ride at this time of day however so I figured I would take a couple shots and see how they turned out. If they did not pan out, I would have them for myself at least. I was pleasantly surprised with how this shot as you round the corner to the view of Cinderella Castle turned out. I did opt for a 16×9 crop down from the usual 3×2 aspect ratio I try to maintain. The reason being is the roof just took up too much of the shot and overpowered it. With the 16×9 crop it leaves just enough to help accentuate the curve and frame the castle without overpowering the shot.