Man Feeding Birds, Old Town Waterfront

Man Feeding Birds, Old Town Waterfront
Man Feeding Birds, Old Town Waterfront. Nikon D810, 50mm f/2 K, ISO 64, f/5.6, 1/400 sec.

Initially, I was interested in capturing the movement of the man throwing bread crumbs to the gulls, who would in turn catch the crumbs in midair. Later, as I was reviewing photos from the day, I became fascinated by the interplay between the lines that could be drawn between the gulls in the air and the shadows cast on the pavement by the trees just out of the frame.

One of my favorite black and white toning tricks is to pull down the blues so that the sky and water take on a more dramatic look and bump up the overall contrast of the photograph. This really brings out the texture of the clouds in the sky, as opposed to the sky looking like a boring mass of gray paste.

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Stone Bridge, George Washington Memorial Parkway

Stone Bridge, George Washington Memorial Parkway
Stone Bridge, George Washington Memorial Parkway. Nikon D810, Tokina 17-35mm f/4 @35mm, ISO 64, f/16, 3 sec.

There are many stone bridges along the GW Parkway. The one in the photo above is located near one of my favorite sunset spots, Riverside Park. This vantage is located about halfway down an unofficial trail that leads to a rocky beach along the Potomac River.

In order to capture the full range of detail against a backlit sky, I hand-blended three varying exposures together in Photoshop. This is the same idea as shooting HDR (high-dynamic range), but with much greater finesse, control, and, ultimately, a more realistic photograph.

Impressions, Old Town Waterfront

Impressions, Old Town Waterfront
Impressions, Old Town Waterfront. Nikon D810, Nikon 200mm f/4 AI, ISO 64, f/8, 6 sec.

Lights from the dock, restaurants, and boats shimmer in the waters of the Potomac River.  An exposure time of six seconds allows them to blur and become colorful patterns against the deep blue of the twilight sky reflected in the water.

Oar Sanding, Alexandria Seaport Foundation

oar-sanding-alexandria-seaport-foundation
Oar Sanding, Alexandria Seaport Foundation. Nikon D200, 35mm f/1.8 AF-S DX, ISO 100, f/2, 1/160 sec.

I met Evan Waksler while out on a stroll with my kids along the Alexandria Waterfront. He was working on sanding down the rough spots on a newly made oar, a tedious task for sure. Evan is the director of the Seaport Center, the floating workshop of the Alexandria Seaport Foundation. ASF is a wonderful non-profit organization here in town that teaches youth the art and craft of shipbuilding. Go check out their website!

Potomac Sunset, Riverside Park

Potomac Sunset, Riverside Park
Potomac Sunset, Riverside Park. Nikon D200, Tokina 11-16mm 2.8, ISO 100, f/11, 1/3 sec.
I love photographing at Riverside Park, which is down on the southern part of the George Washington Parkway. There’s something exhilarating about scrambling down to the rocks and setting up while trying not to fall in the Potomac River. What follows is the serenity of listening to the waves while waiting for the light to change.

Long exposures are typically my favorites down there, showing motion in the water and, in this case, the subtle motion of leaves and flowers.

Stormy Dock, Old Town Waterfront

Stormy Dock, Old Town Waterfront
Stormy Dock, Old Town Waterfront. Nikon D200, 18-70 3.5-4.5 AF-S DX @ 31mm, ISO 100, f/5.6, 1/50 sec.

A storm was on its way out several days ago and, seeing as I hadn’t been out shooting as much recently, I decided it was the perfect time to get out and try to make some pictures. It turned out that the light was absolutely gorgeous everywhere I looked, so I was really glad I made the effort to leave the house!

The shot above was made shortly before sunset, so the low setting sun was reflecting off all of the clouds to the east. As a result, everything beneath was bathed in a golden glow from above. I took a shot very similar to this one over the winter and it’s interesting to compare the two. See below:

Wintry Dock, Old Town Waterfront
Wintry Dock, Old Town Waterfront. Nikon D200, 35mm 1.8 AF-S DX, ISO 200, f/6.3, 1/100 sec.

Fireboat & Rainbow, Potomac River

Fireboat & Rainbow, Potomac River
Fireboat & Rainbow, Potomac River. Nikon D200, 180mm 2.8 AIS ED, ISO 200, f/8, 1/500 sec.

It’s pretty fun to sit and watch the Alexandria Fire Department show off, although I’m sure they have a good reason for these exercises! The sun was hitting the scene just right, forming a rainbow in the mist from the stream of water.

Wintry Dock, Old Town Waterfront

Wintry Dock, Old Town Waterfront
Wintry Dock, Old Town Waterfront. Nikon D200, 35mm 1.8 AF-S DX, ISO 200, f/6.3, 1/100 sec.

Before those of us in the Mid-Atlantic region of the U.S. forget that there was a blizzard last weekend, I thought I’d post a photo I took during the great dig-out. Here’s to a few days of spring-like weather!

Abstract Ripples, Shipyard Park

Ripples, Shipyard Park
Abstract Ripples, Shipyard Park. Nikon D200, 105mm 2.5 AI, ISO 100, f/16, 1/5 sec.

This photo was created by panning the camera across the already existing ripples in the water. The Potomac River was reflecting the sky at dusk and I wanted to try an impressionistic approach to this beautiful scene.

Glass Harp Player, North Union Street

Glass Harp Player, North Union Street. Nikon D200, 105mm f/2.5 AI, ISO 100, f/5.6, 1/250 sec.
Glass Harp Player, North Union Street. Nikon D200, 105mm f/2.5 AI, ISO 100, f/5.6, 1/250 sec.

The glass harpist is a fixture of the Old Town waterfront. He plays all sorts of classical favorites and popular songs, and there’s always a crowd of folks standing around listening—and watching. It’s a fascinating instrument and quite the visual spectacle. What’s more, he’ll explain the history of the instrument to you if you stick around long enough.