Monday, June 15, 2009

A walk on the Mall

A couple of weeks ago I went up to Clarendon to watch a bike race and take a couple of pictures. It was a beautiful day, the sun was shining, the sky was blue and the bicyclists were whizzing around the course at top speed. And there's where I ran into my first problem.

Something happened to me that hasn't happened to me in a very, very long while: I got blurry pictures. I admit it, I just wasn't used to my new camera yet and I paid the price with 150 or so blurry pictures of bicyclists.

In an attempt to make sure this didn't happen again, I went for a walk on Sunday to get better acquainted with my new toy.

As I said to someone Monday, the sky was so perfectly blue it would have been a crime not to take advantage of the opportunity. I grabbed my camera bag and headed down to the Mall.

The result was the most pictures I've ever taken in such a short period of time. More than 400, 408 to be exact. (Four hundred and nine if you count the accidental picture I took of the ground when my finger hit the vertical release.) By comparison, during 10 days in Ireland, I shot 35 or so rolls of 36-exposure film, or about 1,200 pictures.

Some of the things I was trying to do was learn how, again, to play with exposures and lighting and all that. I think I'm getting the hang of it now. For example, the next two shots were taken with the same "film speed," ISO 100, but this one was shot at 1/640 of a second:


While this one was taken at just 1/10 of a second. Kind of a neat difference in effect the water makes, eh?

I won't bore you with more technical details of the pictures, I just hope you like them.

I've always liked this sculpture, there's just something about it. One funny, though, the sculptor really must have liked it since there's one exactly like it on O'Connell Street in Dublin.

See what I mean about the blue, blue sky? Doesn't the Capitol actually look nice?

As part of my stroll, I took a few moments to walk through the Botanical Gardens' outdoor space. If you're looking for a place to take a date, not a first date of course, this isn't a bad choice.










Well, that's all for now. If anyone has any suggestions for good place to take pictures around the area, I'm just like the rabbit, all ears.

18 comments:

Deutlich said...

You've got a very nice eye for photography

Ella said...

those (amazing) pictures are why i don't photograph children very often. nature and architecture cooperate more. love the water shots.

Lemmonex said...

How have I not seen this rabbit?

The color contrasts are great here.

FoggyDew said...

Deutlich - Aw shuck, twernt nothing. Thanks ver much ma'am.

Ella - Immobile objects are easier, but the payoff with kids is pretty good when you get it. I shot about 200 pics of my neice and nephew's 2nd b-day. The mixture of three 2-year-olds (the other was their cousin), a 4-year-old (the cousin's sister, also a cousin), cupcakes and icing was pretty spectacular.

Lemmy - The rabbit sits in the sculpture garden on the north side of the Mall. Not the one right in front of the Hirsh, the other one where the skating rink is in the winter.

Fearless in Toronto said...

I know nothing about photography, but these pictures are gorgeous. The colours are wonderful.

Liebchen said...

I love these pictures! The colors are great, but I also really love the difference that you pointed out with the water shots. Very cool.

FoggyDew said...

Fearless - Thanks, I really enjoy the "colours" as well.

Liebchen - Thank you (and thank you for leaving out the "u") Water is all kinds of fun to play with, photographically speaking. I have a bunch of the other fountain as well, but they're not quite as dramatic. The FDR Memorial also has some great opportunities for waterfall pics.

Sebastian said...

The blue-flowery-odd-depth-of-field ones are lovely! What're you shooting with? CANON I HOPE?

Keep them coming. I actually lost my photos from DC. Which royally sucks. It's nice to see your lovely capitol again :)

FoggyDew said...

Seb - Yeah, I like that one too, although it didn't turn out quite like I expected. Cannon? Bah! There is but one camera and Nikon is it's name.

Losing pics is always a bummer. I've always told myself if there's a fire in my place the one thing I'm grabbing are my binders of negatives (and, now, I guess my external drive).

That's one of the nice things about D.C.: no matter what, there are some pretty views.

Sebastian said...

Ugh...

I'm not sure we can be friends...

What body, what lens? I'll try to not look too disgusted when you tell me.

FoggyDew said...

Seb - It's a D200 with the addition of the MB-200 grip to double the battery life and give me a vertical shutter release button and scroll wheel. The lens is a Sigma f2.8 24-70mm autofocus zoom.

And, before you start puking too much, the reason is because my last camera is/was a Nikon F3 (bought it used from an AP shooter) so I'd already made the investment in a couple of lenses and didn't want to duplicate the effort.

Sebastian said...

It's OK, I can always understand and appreciate people being locked into a particular brand/system. And, objectively, Nikon is just fine.

Nikon owners are all hairy inbred ingrates, of course, but Nikons themselves are fine.

If you're interested in landscape stuff, I would look at the 10-20mm Sigma -- I've been using it for a few months now and it's _awesome_

Fearless in Toronto said...

I don't know what you're talking aboot...err...about.

FoggyDew said...

Fearless - No matter how you say it, we'll still love you down here.

lacochran said...

I'll bite... why not for a first date?

FoggyDew said...

lacochran - There's no easy escape routes. By that I mean you can't just say, "Hey great flowers, gotta run." At least not politly. Getting a drink or coffee allows you that option if the date is going off the rails.

Meghan said...

Way to take photos of the beautiful but often unnoticed views :)

redhead said...

These are absolutely amazing. It's great seeing a place you love and like to frequent through someone else's clever eye.