My alternate title for this shot was going to be Creepin’ on Cinderella Castle. I decided I’d go for the more obvious title in the end… but now since I’m telling you anyways you get the best of both worlds. I opted to shoot from here as I have tons of sunset shots from here and they are all the standard wide view from the bridge. I probably framed it with too much tree (and I didn’t like my crop options) but at least it’s something I haven’t done many times before.
The last time I shot this scene I was still shooting the Nikon D7000. I’ve been through 3 cameras since then, so it was time to give it another go. Honestly though, they are very similar, especially viewed at smaller sizes. The major improvement for web viewing is improved color handling. The increased resolution also gives a sharper look even when down sized. Finally, the expanded dynamic range allowed for an edit that pushes sliders while maintaining a cleaner look.
Having shot so much around Walt Disney World it’s refreshing when the weather offers something new you can capitalize on. In this case, fast moving clouds always look really cool with a long exposure. To boot they were just thin enough to allow some stars to shine through.
I haven’t done a basic castle shot in a while, so I figured it was time. The castle still looks as great as ever and the dreamlights add a nice whimsical touch, but I must say I think I prefer the look of the path before the big hub re-do. This version feels a bit busy in comparison.
I originally looked at doing this shot with the Nikon 14-24 2.8 but quickly found even at 14mm it wasn’t wide enough. Enter the Rokinon 12mm 2.8 to the rescue. It was the perfect lens for this shot. I found the center of the room and put my tripod in its lowest position and pointed the camera straight up. I used the flip screen for framing, something I’d consider almost a necessity for this shot. I shot and used 2 frames, a base exposure and an under exposure for some of the particularly bright highlights on the chandeliers. I’ve found myself shooting fewer and fewer frames since switching to the Nikon Z7 and being able to see the exposure before I even press the shutter.
Shooting the fisheye at Mission Space is cliché now but hey, it’s the most fun lens to use with all the curves. This one is a little different from the ones I’ve seen as most are taken behind the moon. I have one of those too but let’s do this one first. Enjoy.
Occasionally, you simply luck into a unique shot. I was shooting this due to the unique lighting scheme on and around Cinderella Castle when suddenly… fireworks. Now we’re in business. A second round of fireworks was shot a few minutes later but funny enough my best capture was the one that was caught by surprise.
The clouds in this shot were not moving quickly like the ones from yesterday’s shot. This made them much clumpier and uglier as I mentioned. Even a 30 second exposure only gave them a little bit of motion, so I spent a little bit of extra time using color and curves to add some additional mood to the sky. This ended up giving me my moodiest edit of the Imagination Pavilion yet.
Usually I prefer completely clear night skies to capture. Cloudy skies often turn into an ugly mess but on this night the clouds were moving extremely quick which I knew could end up making something interesting. I took a few longer exposures and ended up really digging how cool the sky on the right-hand side looked and how it broke up nicely into some clearer sky for some stars. This really makes the image in my mind and gives it an added layer a clear sky simply would not have provided.
If you want the sweet foreground bokeh, Epcot’s got the goods for you. This is the kind of shot that makes you thankful to have a flip screen. Laying flat on the ground really takes a toll as you get older…