Greetings, wonderful readers! Things are a bit busy here at the Central Florida Photo Ops HQ this weekend, so I’ll leave you with a quick post and some photos from a stroll down Park Avenue through Winter Park last Wednesday evening.
A quiet night “on the avenue”
A path into darkness
Blue Hour Motion – A train passing behind one of the fountains in Winter Park, Florida
I made these a little after sunset during “blue hour” – I like the look of the light. You can see a few other photos I’ve made in Winter Park in this album on Flickr.
There are a lot of posts on here about nature / wildlife / landscape photography in our area. But the blog isn’t only about those subjects – it’s about Central Florida Photo Ops in general. So this week we have something a little different…
Central Florida’s new commuter rail system opened on May 1. The first phase of SunRail is 32 miles long and connects DeBary to Sand Lake Road, with 12 intermediate stations. The fares have been free for the first two weeks while they work the kinks out of the system. And I had some free time – so it was a perfect chance to check it out.
Trains run every 1/2 hour during the morning and evening rush hours and every two hours in the middle of the day. Getting there early gave me more opportunities to get on and off the train and explore nearby locations. And sometimes the light is really pretty in the morning too!
A beautiful morning to catch the train – at the Maitland SunRail platform
The trains are new, clean, modern, air-conditioned, and the morning I rode they were all on time. They’ve been crowded with many folks riding for free to scope out the system. But by the time I boarded last Wednesday the crush had thinned out – I had no problem getting seats all morning.
There are plenty of scenic locations within walking distance of the SunRail stations. Exploring them all would take longer than a morning so I only stopped at three: Orlando Health, Winter Park, and Maitland. Finding subjects to point my camera at was easy. Here are two examples:
Seaboard Coast Line – Amtrak Station
Lucy Bleuz and the Jazzy Dog – they look like good places to eat
I didn’t try photographing from inside the train – motion and glare would make it tough. But there are some interesting sights between stops. If you want to try this, the east side of the car in the afternoon might have the best shots and light.
Initially, SunRail isn’t operating on weekends – so you’ll need to get around another way on Saturday / Sunday. But if you have time during the week, it’s an enjoyable experience. And did I mention there are photo ops?
Just a quick post this week (a schedule update and one recent photo).
I’ve been invited to speak at both the Oviedo and Port Orange Camera Clubs next month. I’ll talk about “Winter Photo Ops in Central Florida” and recommend things / places to photograph in our area this winter along with sample images. Depending on interest and time, we may go a bit further and talk about other times of year too, or we may also discuss tools and techniques for any of the photos I show. Questions on anything else presented are also welcome.
The Oviedo Photo Club meeting is on November 4th at 7PM in the Memorial Building in Oviedo (38 South Central Avenue, Oviedo FL 32765).
If any of you are at one of these meetings, please say hello – I love to meet readers!
And since we can’t have a blog post without a photo, here’s one I made at the beginning of October in Winter Park, Florida.
I liked this fountain, but wanted to make the photo look a bit different. My normal approach might have been to use a very slow shutter speed to make the water silky smooth. This time, I decided to use as fast a shutter speed as possible to “freeze” the water. So I opened my aperture and ended up with a 1/8000 sec shutter speed. The wide aperture also helped to blur the background and isolate the subject. I don’t think you can make a photo like this with your cell phone!
Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog. Now – go make some photos – and go to a camera club meeting!