I’m still digging through my shots from the national parks I visited on my journey to Disneyland. I really liked the sky and sunrays in this one from Joshua Tree National Park. I only wish we had spent more than 1 afternoon and a night here. We barely scratched the surface!
This time around shooting the floating mountains of Pandora I opted for my Rokinon 12mm fisheye lens. I thought it was cool just how much of the scene I was able to capture with it. As usual however, the edit itself was a bit of a challenge. Though this is a single exposure I ended up using 3 different white balanced versions to create the final version. Further color balancing and levels adjustments helped dial it in just right. Finally, as I shot at a slightly raised ISO 400 I captured an amazing amount of stars which really help finish off the image.
Today, I’ve got another take on Beauty and the Beast from the most recent Flower & Garden Festival. I shot this from the far side of the fountain using the Nikon 70-200 2.8 at 135mm. The compression from the longer focal length makes Impressions de France appear closer behind them. Finally, the highlights on Beast and Belle were a little strong so I had to use 2 total shots blended to get them just right. Enjoy!
Unfortunately, I did not get many photos of New Orleans Square on my trip. Of the three I did get I only liked two of them, this being one of them. I went for a darker, moodier edit for this shot as I felt it fit the atmosphere well. The main challenge here was controlling the highlights in the windows, especially around the chandeliers. Thanks to the wonderful dynamic range of the Nikon D810 however I was able to create the base blend with only 2 shots. A third shot was used for the sky which captured way more stars than expected.
The title of today’s shot is a double entendre of sorts. It is sad I only just visited Disneyland and shot Paradise Pier for the first time and it’s already being replaced by Pixar pier. I really enjoyed what I saw and now if I ever make it back it will already be replaced. I am thankful I was able to see this rendition however. I’m really going to have to hustle if I want to get all my MANY unprocessed shots of Paradise Pier out before Pixar Pier opens.
I have wanted to get this shot for quite a while now but never got anything worthwhile. Finally, the sky gave me something interesting to work with and I now have a shareable version of this shot. I really wanted some warmth in the sky to compliment the warm lighting of Harambe’s port. The orange glow from the setting sun did just the trick. Enjoy!
I was waiting on my wife in the restroom area here and noticed monorail red entering the park. I had the Nikon 28 1.4 lens on at the time, so I ran a little way back to frame Spaceship Earth completely and waited for monorail red to glide into frame. It’s a small detail but does a great job of showing the scale of Spaceship Earth. The colors ended up looking fantastic on the blue hour sky too. Enjoy!
In a lot of ways this shot of the Fantasy Faire feels like an older style shot for me. Center up an area and do a long exposure of it. Boom, done. The only slight difference here is I took a few extra photos to get the lights on Rapunzel’s hair on the tower. They illuminate in a swirling effect, so I never got them in one photo. I blended them in but ultimately don’t know that it was worth the time to capture them all as you can’t really tell except on the full resolution version anyway. Regardless, enjoy.
As the sun dipped below the horizon in Pandora the sky took on a nice color gradient. I saturated it a bit and it ended up a fantastic color compliment to the foreground elements. I did a bit of dodge and burn work to the rocks and vines to help them pop a bit better. I find that they tend to look a bit flat in all my Pandora photos unless I do this. Even just a small amount of dodging and burning can go a long way here.