long exposure

Commercial Hotel Night Photography Albuquerque San Mateo Inn

Commercial Hotel Night Photography Albuquerque San Mateo Inn

Lightning in Commercial Hotel Photography Albuquerque

Almost one month to the day I returned to the San Mateo Inn for more commercial exterior photography, this time at night! My first shoot was all during the day with clear blue skies overhead. For this second shoot right after sunset, the clouds were rolling in and a storm was approaching. I was working as fast as I could with my new Sony a7R IV mirrorless camera. In fact this was the very first shoot I used it for! I could hear the thunder and see the lightning, and in a happy accident, during one long exposure photo of the front of the hotel, I caught a sharp bolt of lightning! I got the remaining photos I needed of the pool and front sign, and was back home safe and dry before the actual rain started. Thank you to the owner, Yvette, for braving the storm with me and watching my back as we were very close to the road to get some of these shots.

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Ft Union Drive In Starry Skies Astrophotography Las Vegas New Mexico

Ft Union Drive In Starry Skies Astrophotography Las Vegas New Mexico

Astrophotography at the Drive In

As best as I can remember, for the first time since I was a kid, I saw a movie at a drive in theater. The experience was great (the movies were not)! This was part of an ultra-rare, full weekend off, out of town, not part of a photo job holiday. It was me and Jessica and our dogs Kiki and Artie all in the M3 with the top down completely under the stars, looking up at the big screen. And the stars! They were so bright and vivid! Not since I spent the night at the bottom of the Grand Canyon did they look as vivid to me.

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Imperial Beach San Diego Long Exposure Photos

Imperial Beach San Diego Long Exposure Photos

Long Exposures + Ocean = Dreamscape

If you asked me, I would tell you that a tripod is a must for making long exposure photos. In fact, I have already shared some long exposure ocean photos from San Diego featuring the Ocean Beach Pier that were all shot with my Nikon mounted on a tripod. That said, if getting a tack sharp image is not needed, handholding a slightly long exposure photo, especially with a lens that has VR (vibration reduction), can produce some very cool shots. The latter was the method I used to hold my Nikon right above the incoming water at Imperial Beach, San Diego, California at sunset. Why do a long exposure? Because it makes the water look like stretched out cotton. In the above shot you might easily think it was taken from a boat in deep water, when in reality it was me in less than ankle deep water letting that few inches of water whoosh past me as the camera’s shutter stayed open for 1/6th of a second.

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Fireworks 2019 Balloon Fiesta Park Albuquerque New Mexico

Fireworks 2019 Balloon Fiesta Park Albuquerque New Mexico

Fireworks Photography in Albuquerque 2019

For the first 4th of July in a long time I had my camera out on a tripod using bulb mode and an index card to capture multiple fireworks burst in one exposure. Setup in a wide open field at Balloon Fiesta Park in Albuquerque, New Mexico I had a clear view with little wind to blow smoke into the frame, but on the other hand not much of a foreground to set the fireworks in. My step-by-step guide for making fireworks photos goes into even more detail about how and why I like to photograph fireworks. Still, I was pleased with the images I was able to make even from a good distance away.

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Frozen Midnight in Albuquerque New Mexico Snow Photography Black & White

Frozen Midnight in Albuquerque New Mexico Snow Photography Black & White

Frozen Treetops Over Dark Pools

Right on time to the weather forecast, snow began falling at 5pm on a Friday. By midnight it was a frozen landscape like I have never seen in Albuquerque, New Mexico before. There was not just snow cover, it was as if the trees and ground themselves had become snow leaving only dark ponds to contrast with all that white. I went out with my tripod to make these long exposure (5, 15, 30 second exposures) in black & white around my own apartment complex grounds.

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The Many Looks of the Ocean Beach Pier in San Diego California Photo Story

The Many Looks of the Ocean Beach Pier in San Diego California Photo Story

The Ocean Beach Pier Changes Day by Night

Over the course of seven days staying in the Ocean Beach community in San Diego, California I went to visit the Ocean Beach Pier several times. It looked and felt different each time. I was there for a brilliant sunset. I was there as a storm approached. I was there when the pier was nearly completely empty, and when it was filled with people. I met a pelican. I walked it, and I rode a Bird (electric scooter) down it. I listened to the stories the ocean whispered as it passed under and around the pier.

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Imperial Sand Dunes of California Drone Video Aerial Photos

Imperial Sand Dunes of California Drone Video Aerial Photos

Awestruck by it all

Entering California from the southern route along I-8 out of nowhere appears Imperial Sand Dunes. I was awestruck by this true desert landscape of sand and dunes. I did not know the U.S. had a desert like this with golden sand one could confuse for being out in the Sahara. It was pure coincidence that upon leaving California to return to New Mexico the dunes were passed by at sunset time. I flew my Mavic Pro drone for some cinematic drone video and aerial photos, with still some time to tote my Nikon up a dune for some HDR and long exposure still photos from the ground. What a landscape this was!

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