Saturday, February 2, 2013

Disney v2.0 - Blue hour, night photography, and buddies take over the beds



After visiting Animal Kingdom, the girls swam in the Big Blue Pool with Rich while I attempted to take some photos of the resort.  Personally, resort photographs with strangers randomly milling about look unprofessional and don't appeal to me.  (Not that I'm a professional but....)  I spent more time on the pool deck than wandering and photographing, which was fine.






The girls wanted to check out the little playground behind the pool so we did that after we ate dinner.  I wandered while they played and was surprised to find the bridge to Pop Century not too far from the playground. As a photographer of people, I understand and have experienced the appeal of sunlight in that hour or so before the sun quickly drops for the evening.  I've been following some photographers who mainly photograph landscapes, including Disney.  They've talked about "the blue hour" or that period of time shortly after the sun sets when the sky turns a brilliant blue that is best captured by the camera.

I was photographing during the blue hour but without a tripod or anything solid to hold my camera, I was forced to bump up my ISO in order to keep my shutter speed fast enough for handheld shooting.  (I didn't want to shoot wide open either.)  I tried to rest the camera against the railing to steady it but that only provided a tiny bit of assistance.  Here's my photo of Pop Century across the lake.

(ISO 1600, f/8.0 SS 1/10 of a second)

I wasn't happy with the results so I returned to the playground and tried to come up with an alternative to a tripod.  I pulled my speedlight out of my bag, placed it on the ground, and then propped the camera up against it, with the camera body on the ground and the lens turned up.  I was sitting on the ground but I didn't want to sprawl across the walkway in order to see through the viewfinder so I had to meter before placing the camera on the ground and guess the composition.

(ISO 200, f/9.0, SS 4 seconds)

Can you see the difference?  This picture was taken only 8 minutes after the one of Pop Century so the sky hadn't had time to significantly change.  The longer exposure (shutter speed) combined with the lower ISO and a steady camera allowed the true colors to develop.  The only adjustment I made in post processing was to the levels in PSE as it was slightly underexposed.  I didn't filter in any color.


I tried to take a picture of the girls at the playground before we headed back to the suite for their bedtime.  Gives new meaning to the phrase "hold still for a second!"


So that night Emily agreed to share a bed with Daddy.  And 10,000 buddies.



(All but Baby Simba were brought from home.)


Mama Meerkat said...

I know next to nothing about photography, but that blue sky is really amazing!

All the buddies in bed is so cute.

Anonymous said...

I hate to be this type of commenter, but we had bed bugs after a trip to Italy last year. We think we got it from not washing or at least drying everything when we got back. I don't want to make you nervous, but it's probably a good idea to throw all the buddies in the dryer at least for a half hour after they take "field trips" away from the house (especially in hotels). I don't want to be one of those snarky commenters, but honestly, I wouldn't wish bed bugs even on my worst enemy.

b and e said...

Looks like an awesome trip!
I don't normally like to direct people to my blog, but I haven't done much posts of a baby nature normally but I have put together a top list of helpful baby things and would love for you or anyone else to pop by and see what they think...?
Okay off to read through your blog some more!

Ashlee said...

Wow the blue of the sky is amazing! It's crazy to see the difference between the two shots.

You're such a good Mom! My mom would have NEVER let me bring that many buddies! I used to sneak them into bags when I was younger to bring them places with me! :)

Anonymous said...

HI Sara,
First of all thank you for keeping your blog alive. It is really lovely.
I stop by here because I saw an article from business insider of the 15 most impressive students at MIT right now. The person in the place number 9 is a gentleman with spin bifid a. Right away I though on Ana. Maybe, the article is not a big thing for you, but I felt to share it.

Keep well you and your love ones!

Sarah said...

Anon - thank you for that link! That was great to read. Just goes to show that kids with spina bifida can do anything.

Tara said...

I love the blue sky! Beautiful photos!