US Capital Building

I had a couple of visits to Washington D.C. last year.  Surprisingly, I’ve been to D.C. probably over two dozen times in my life.  If you would have asked me about that earlier in my life, I wouldn’t have guessed it would become a frequent travel spot for me.  It just never appealed to me to visit D.C., but here we are years later and its become my most visited location. 

I took this photo during one of my trips last year at sunset.  The D.C. Police didn’t like my camera and tripod.  They made me back up a few times to get me further and further away from the building.  I must look scary or something.  During this specific trip, I worked on capturing close ups vs. the normal wide angle perspectives of the capital.

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Window With A View

This was a fun spot to explore and I loved these windows looking out at the Allegheny River.  Unfortunately, the last time I went, we discovered that someone painted over the windows with graffiti.  I normally love graffiti as an art form, but this artist didn’t have to cover these beautiful windows with it…..  Ugh!!  Well, at least I have my photos from before the graffiti.

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Tulum

About an hour and a half drive south of Cancun is the Tulum Mayan ruins.  This site is one of hundreds…maybe thousands across Central America.  Most of the sites are buried under the jungle and haven’t been touched in something like….oh Mayan time.  Anyway, this specific site is a Mexican archaeological site that you can tour.  What’s unique about it is the fact it sits right on the cliffs overlooking the beach. 

We had a great time exploring this site doing our best to take it all in and ignore the other tourists.  I captured some great photos and enjoyed the day with MJ.

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Big Apple Sunset

I’ve had photo sitting on my hard drive for a while.  Why I didn’t post it before is a question I can’t answer.  Maybe because I didn’t want to post tons of NYC photos too close together in the past…..  I don’t know.  I know that I like this photo and wanted to post it.  Anyway…. Here is it.  The Manhattan skyline at sunset from the Top Of The Rock looking south.

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All Friends

I was surprised how many times we found different animals hanging out together during our safaris in South Africa.  This is just one example, but it was common site…especially giraffes and zebras.

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The Point

I was out very early this morning with the boys attempting to photograph the sunrise behind downtown Pittsburgh.  We got lucky because it didn’t snow or rain on us, but we never got a pretty sunrise…it was just to cloudy.  Even though we didn’t get the sunrise we wanted, I took a fair number of photos.  Here is one of those photos looking right at The Point Park.   

NOTE:  the park is partially flooded in the photo.

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Air Force Academy Cadet Chapel

I took this photo in early December while I was in Colorado Springs.  I used an Uber to travel out to the Air Force Academy right before sunset to photograph this spot.  When I arrived, it was in the low 50s and I was comfortable.  When I left a few hours later, it was in the mid 30s and I wasn’t prepared.  I was freezing when the sun set and with the wind coming down the mountains onto this spot.  Regardless, I dealt with it.  I could have dealt with it better had I taken a coat (my fault for not planning ahead)….  But I didn’t.  Anyway, after I captured all the photos I wanted, I requested another Uber.  At that point, I started to get worried the Uber driver wouldn’t be able to come give me since the based closes to visits at 6pm (and I was really cold).  If the Uber driver got stopped at the gate, it would have been a 4 mile walk from my spot (the Chapel) to the gate to catch the ride.  As it turned out, the Uber driver got through and everything was fine. 

By the way… you can see another photo I took of the Chapel’s interior at this LINK.

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Akumal

Have you been to the Mexican Riviera area?  In my opinion, there is something special about this region.  Weather, culture, landscapes, nature… I don’t know.  They’re all great, plus the reef and cave diving is wonderful. 

Today’s photo is from above the Grand Bahia Principe Akumal Resort near the small village of Akumal Mexico.  It’s a great area, I’d recommend a visit.  By the way, what do you think of this resort’s pool area next to the ocean?  We walked this beach a few times while we were here.  It’s beautiful in person and the sand on the beach is very soft.  Some photos can’t do justice compared to being there in person.  That’s how I feel about this photo.  In in person experience was amazing.       

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Leadlights

It has been a while since I posted a pic from an abandoned location.  Maybe because I’ve been busy processing so many South Africa photos for the last few months.  Well, last night I was on a urbex photography processing spree and I processed this photo from early 2017.  The original raw images were just sitting there on my hard drive waiting for their turn.

What a pretty photo they became after a little processing.  This is from a famous abandoned cathedral in the Pittsburgh area.  I’ve been inside it numerous times.  I love the stained-glass windows that remain.    

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Allegheny Cemetery

Anyone else ready for Spring?  I am!!!  I took this photo last spring at the end of a Pittsburgh photo walk.  We finished up and most people left, but Blair and I stayed a little while longer and went to this spot to check it out.  I’m glad we did.  I loved this little castle looking structure at the entrance to the cemetery (incorporated in 1844). 

So until Spring arrives, let’s just look at photos from warmer times and keep our heads up. 

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Hyena

I have so many great photos from our South Africa trip.  I can’t help but post more and more photos from that journey.  I hope you don’t get tired of seeing them.  On this safari, we had some wonderful luck and found lots of animals including a pack of hyenas.  They didn’t seem to care that we drove up to them.  It was as if we didn’t exist.  They ignored us and just went about their business.  I assume he had eaten recently, since it looks like his fur is red from blood around his mouth.

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Stellenbosch

This is such an amazingly pretty little college town in the Western Cape region of South Africa.  The architecture in Stellenbosch was this great Dutch style going back hundreds of years.  We spent an entire day out sampling wine and touring the country side.  We had a great day in this area.  Of course, I snapped hundreds (maybe 1,000+) of photos throughout the day like this one. 

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Snack Shack

While in Mexico, I spent less time than normal shooting photos.  I just needed some down time from everything.  From work, stress, the Internet, etc…  So I took some photos, but probably only 25% of the total I would normally take.   I went out one night after dinner to capture some pics.  Tonight’s post is from that photo walk.  This is the resort poolside snack shack with a full moon above it.  I love the sky in this photo.

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Blue Iguana Tequila Bar

I honestly don’t remember which Carnival Cruise ship this photo is from.  I’ve had this photo sitting on my hard drive for a while just waiting to share it with you some day.  Well, today is the day.  Believe it or not, I didn’t have a drink at this spot.  But I liked the looks and design of this spot. 

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Super Bowl Sunday

Well today is a national holiday here in the United States.  Over a hundred million citizens within the United States and millions more across the world will be watching the big game tonight, as the Patriots take on the Eagles. 

I realize that most of the world (outside of the New England area) hate the Patriots.  I won’t rehash all the reasons why….we all know them already and there have been tons of articles already written on the Patriots (for and against).  I’ve been a Tom Brady fan going back to his University of Michigan days.  As you all know, I’m also a Lions fan and have been my whole life.  So you know, I don’t give up on my teams or players. 

I’ll let haters hate and keep cheering for Brady.  He’ll already go down as the GOAT (Greatest Of All Time), so it doesn’t matter whether he wins or loses tonight.  Regardless I’ll be cheering for the Patriots.  We have a Giant Teddy Bear, that we call GB (for Giant Bear) in our living room.  Today he cheers for the Patriots as well (see below).

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Palm Tree Reflections

Another photo from the Grand Bahia Principle resort near Tulum Mexico.  I took this photo this yesterday morning just after the sunrise, but before the morning shadows disappeared.  We’ve had a great time, but if I was rating this resort…… well, I’d rather not say.  Anyway, I always enjoy getting up early on vacation to catch sunrise photos and I try to get creative so that it isn’t always the same standard view of the ocean with a large ball of orange in the distance.

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Baby Goose

While in Cape Town (before their water troubles), we went to their botanical gardens and found more animals.  These two little cuties were following their mother through the flowers.  I believe these are Egyptian Geese.  Maybe in the future I’ll post a photo of the mother who was also pretty.

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Grand Bahia Principe Tulum

MJ and I had another great trip to Mexico. This time we stayed at the Grand Bahia Principe resort that includes five unique resorts on one campus.  As a guest, you get access to most of the areas at all five resorts with a few exceptions.  On the morning of this photo, we were hanging out at the pool and beach area of the Tulum resort. 

Before traveling to Mexico, I researched their drone laws/regulations to find out what I can and can’t do with my drone.  The Mexican laws are basically a copy of the United States laws, which means you can fly a drone anywhere if it is five miles away from an airport, it is within visual site and it is below 400 feet.  So I’m good to go!!

As I was flying along the beach, over the ocean and above the resort (respectfully high above the resort so that it wouldn’t interrupt any guest) of course the Drone Police (who also sometimes work as tripod police), came over to tell me I’m not allowed to fly my drone in this area.  There are no laws to back his claim up.  Just like there are no laws preventing the use of tripods, but lots of security make that claim.  I personally think this is an ego thing.  Neither of them (tripods or drone) hurt anyone, but it makes the security personal feel important to tell photographers “no”.  As if I’m putting the lives of the guests in danger as part of a large secret government spying program or something….  Ugh….  Regardless, this all took place at the end of my last flight, so I was basically done anyway.  But I don’t get it.  I’m having fun as a paying guest.  I’m not hurting anyone or anything.  I’m being respectful with it.  Again Ugh!!   

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JuJu

JuJu Smith-Schuster had a great rookie year with the Steelers.  On top of some great performances, he has a flair for the dramatic and quickly became a fan favorite.  I captured this photo of him in late December at Heinz Field.  @juju

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Don’t forget to check out my photo galleries.  I update and add to them often.  PLUS….don’t forget you can get a free gift and 10% off great Think Tank camera gear by using this link: http://bit.ly/2FVW0eg

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