Here’s an assortment of some of the photos I captured on Spaceship Earth:
From there, we headed over to Mission: Space to do some shooting. The great thing about Sarah being big into Disney iPhoneography now is that I have more time to slow down and take photos, often because she’s the one to slow down first! I don’t feel guilty when I want to stop and grab a few shots, because she’ll do exactly the same thing. She takes iPhoneography just as seriously as I take regular photography. Just the other day she was researching iPhone 5 rumors to see if there was any speculation about its camera. I’ve taught her well!
From Mission: Space, it was off to World Showcase, where we briefly debated experiencing Maelstrom. Ultimately, cooler heads prevailed, especially once we saw how empty the area was. While I love attractions and almost feel guilty when we don’t do as many of them as we “should,” Maelstrom is something we can do anytime, whereas photo conditions aren’t perfect anytime.
I’m much better off putting my camera away during the middle of the day and maximizing attractions then, leaving the sunset/golden/blue hours and last hour of each park’s operation devoted to photography.
From Norway we were off to China. My first shot there was a variation on a shot I’ve been taking for years, of the temple and the ponds in front of it. Even though I’ve captured similar shots on multiple occasions, it’s just too beautiful of a scene to pass up, and the dragon topiary and the gorgeous night sky really made this stand out from other versions of this shot.
Not wanting all of my photos to be recycled past shots, we decided to venture a bit deeper into the pavilion and look for areas that are less-photographed. All of World Showcase is beautiful, so it wasn’t too difficult to find plenty of photographic gold near the back of the pavilion. Granted, the shots aren’t as wow-worthy as that shot across the pond, but they’re less standard. Not everything turned out how I had hoped it would, but the duds at least gave me some ideas for future shots.
Germany was the next stop on the Grand Circle Tour. For as photogenic as Germany is, I seem to have a difficult time shooting it, mostly because it seems like it’s all been done before. Despite this, I tried for some off-center angles and interesting foreground objects (like the clock here) to spice things up. I like the shots, but none of them were amazing.
When I don’t achieve complete success, like any good American, I like to blame my failure on someone or something else. In this case, part of the reason why I didn’t stick around and try to nail Germany was because it was already getting late, and I wanted to take some photos in Future World before we left. At this point, since we had to be up early the next morning for Star Wars Weekends, Sarah decided to head back to Port Orleans – Riverside.
At the end of the long walk out of World Showcase, I noticed some topiaries set up for the Epcot Flower & Garden Festival. There was basically no lighting on them, which is surprisingly typical for Epcot topiaries, but I figured I could just take a really, really long exposure to brighten them up. The shots here are both well over 30 seconds each, and even they still fairly dark in the topiary portion of the photo. On the bright side, the long exposures made the skies much more blue and light, and I love a good blue night sky!
Walking past the Fountain of Nations and the Innoventions area at night always amounts to an internal struggle: do I stop and take photos or just enjoy this awesome ambiance? On this night, for most of the walk, enjoying the ambiance won out. I absolutely love the lighting in this area, the dancing water and score of the Fountain of Nations, and the background music around Innoventions. I’m a sucker for neon, and even though I think maybe it’s time for a new look for Innoventions, I still like the neon throughout this area, too.
As I walked through Future World, I was surprised to see that Sarah didn’t end up leaving, and was still snapping away with her iPhone! If there’s one thing I’ve learned from taking photos, it’s that when you tell yourself you’re going to stop for “just one more photo,” you never, ever take only one photo. It’s like eating potato chips. One is never enough.
I did end up taking some photos of the light-up pavement as we approached Spaceship Earth, and some other photos in this area, plus plenty more by the front entrance topiaries. The topiaries were really my goal for that night since they were unique, and I definitely got a lot of photos of them. I probably should have focused on them when I wasn’t exhausted at the end of the night, but oh well!
We left Epcot after I had gotten my fill of photographing the topiaries, but the night was (to my surprise) far from over. I still had TWO resorts to photograph…
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