There's something about a Nashville sunset

There's something about a Nashville sunset

Good old Nashville is the star of today's post - specifically, that gorgeous skyline they got there!  It's my favorite spot to visit in town, and I try and go here every time I get to Nashville.  A trip somehow seems incomplete without it.  Here are 6 HDR photos taken during a stunning sunset!

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Not your typical Nashville photos

Not your typical Nashville photos

Today's post is a collection of random pics from my recent travels to Nashville.  It's a beautiful city, but one day I focused on shooting the offbeat and overlooked stuff, instead of the traditionally beautiful spots there.  I like what I came away with.  Shooting things that are usually overlooked is a great exercise for expanding your creative vision.  Have a look!

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Blue hour in Nashville

Blue hour in Nashville

From my recent trip to lovely Nashville, here's a collection of photos taken downtown.  It's a wonderful town for photography, and I love to go there and shoot.  I always seem to get great conditions for photography while I am there.  So click on it and let me know what you think - and thanks for stopping by!

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The incredible neon in Nashville

The incredible neon in Nashville

Today's post is all about that great American tradition: neon signs! In particular, this is a collection of photos of some of the wonderful neon signs in downtown Nashville, TN.  I was there last week, and I shot a bunch of this stuff.  Hope you enjoy it!

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Afternoon at The Parthenon

Afternoon at The Parthenon

This is one of my favorite spots in Nashville - The Parthenon.  On my last trip there, I ran into an online friend there - travel sure makes this a small world at times!

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God Bless Johnny Cash

An iPhone tour of the Johnny Cash mural in Nashville, TN

(click on any image to enlarge)

Ok, first things first: I’m not a fan of country music.  Ok, good, I got that out of the way early.  But I will say that despite that admission, there are plenty of things I love about Nashville, TN (which is famous for its country music stars and venues), and I do recognize some of the better-known country songs.  Not many, but a few.

I know a couple of tunes by Johnny Cash.  Who doesn’t know “I walk the line” or “Ring of Fire”?  Willie Nelson has a jingle or two that I remember.  I’m partial to “On the road again”.  There’s even a David Allan Coe song that I love, and it’s even on my iPhone.  But country music as a genre?  Not for me.  I am more of a heavy metal rocker.  What can I say?  I love rock music, and grew up on it.  We all know that we still love what we loved as teenagers, right?


I’m not sayin’ that country music is bad, it’s just not my thing.  I completely understand if you are not into heavy metal.  I could crank up some Ozzie and love it, but you might want to strangle me if I did.  Differences are good, right?  It makes the world a more colorful place.


Anyways, Nashville is a great town and I love to shoot there, despite the music.  It’s really a photogenic city, but unfortunately some of my trips there are without my camera.  I simply have too much work to do and too little free time, or the trip is really short (I’ve had two 1 night trips there in the last couple of months - both without my Nikon).

So in those situations, I go with the next-best thing: my iPhone.  It’s always with me, and it does a damn fine job, most of the time.  If you have been here before, you probably already know that I love that thing.  And if you follow my Facebook page or Flickr stream, you have seen my iPhone posts - probably more often than you want to.  But I can’t help myself - I love to shoot and share, a lot.  I even wrote a little article about that once.


So on my last trip to beautiful Nashville, I came across this entire wall mural dedicated to Johnny Cash.  And I didn’t have my Nikon, with my favorite thing attached to it: my wide angle lens.  Poor me.  I may have cried for a few minutes, but hopefully nobody saw me.  


Thus, I did what I always do anyways: I shot away with my iPhone.  And here are the shots.  This mural has been there for over 10 years now, and is 150 feet long and 12 feet high.  It’s pretty impressive!  Plus, let’s face it: Johnny Cash is one cool dude.  Or, was.

Anyways, I hope you enjoyed these photos, and thanks for stopping by!  

Good morning Nashville

I love shooting first thing in the morning when a city is asleep.  

Sunrise shooting is hard to do, but always worth it.  It's a great feeling to be out when the rest of a city is still abed.  It's almost like you have the place all to yourself.  Yes, you run into a few random folks here and there, but mostly it's just you and whatever it is you are pointing the camera at.  That's a certain kind of special.

And as you know from visiting here (at least I hope you have been here before - if not, then welcome!) I love to shoot in HDR, and I love to shoot cityscapes in HDR.  So that get's a little tricky because my preference is always to have NO people in my shots.  I can't always get that, but I always try.  Obviously there are some tricks to remove people (stack filters for a VERY long exposure thereby blurring them all into oblivion, or simply removing them via software) but I generally leave them if they are there, unless it totally screws up the shot.  I'm not sure why I do it that way, but I do.

So that's one of the main reasons that I love to shoot at sunrise.  At sunset you can get great light, but everyone else is out there with you.  At sunrise, the possibility of great light is pretty high, but you have the added benefit of being alone.

So here I was in Nashville, TN on Broadway which is sort of their main drag.  It's full of country bars and neon signs, both of which are great fun to shoot.  And it was sunrise, and I basically had it all to myself.  A great start to a day, really!

Staring down on Nashville

What's your favorite skyline to shoot?  It's hard to beat this view of Nashville!  I love standing up here and firing away! 

I love shooting city skylines, and doubly so when they are fronted by a body of water.  I live in Austin, TX and our skyline is a perfect example of this.  We have a river running right in front of it, and it's awesome.   Add in some twinkly lights during blue hour, and I am one heck of a happy guy!!

But of course Nashville, TN has this as well (one of the many similarities between these two cities) and whenever I visit I love to get up here on the Shelby Street Pedestrian Bridge and fire away!  It's incredible to stand up here, looking down on a beautiful skyline, and watching the clouds pass and the river roll by.  Great fun! 

I caught this shot on one of my visits there a while back, and try to get up here on every visit to shoot it again.  So, I have a lot of shots from this spot but they all seem to be slightly different.  It looks like I might make it to Nashville again before the year ends, so it's pretty likely I will be standing here again soon!  Pray for good clouds for me, will ya?? 

By the way, this was a sunrise shot.  I love shooting early and getting in my creativity first thing in the morning! 

Razing the old

“You raze the old to raise the new.” - Justina Chen, North of Beautiful

I was Googling for quotes about new beginnings, and that one came up.  I have never read the book and am not familiar with the author, but that quote kicks ass.  It’s so true, and so on target for me.

I haven’t said much about this here on the blog yet, but things are changing in terms of my photography and my blogging.  I have written some articles I want to share here, but they aren’t ready yet.  It’s nothing major in the scheme of things, just a collection of gradual changes that I am working through and I am excited about.  

You may actually never notice.  Like I said, it’s nothing major.  

But the first step for me was overhauling the blog, and if you have been here before and remember the site, you can (hopefully) tell this one is new and different.  I use Squarespace and have been on that platform for 4+ years.  It’s been great, but they did a complete overhaul to a new version of their platform a long time ago and I have just gotten around to upgrading.  It took a lot of work, but was worth it.  I feel like I stepped into a new age.  I’m excited.

So I razed the old, and have raised the new.  It's exciting when you have your own little corner of the internet, and get to make all the decisions about how it looks. 

And while I still have a bunch of loose ends to fix here and there, I went ahead and went live with it.  I just thought it was time.

BTW, this is a sunrise pic from outside of Nashville at Radnor Lake.  Sunrise seemed like an appropriate image for this.  Call me sappy if you want.  :-)

Another beautiful Nashville sunset

This is another from a large group of photos (mostly still unprocessed) that I took during a stunning sunset in Nashville, TN a few weeks back.  I had been busy all day and was tired when I got back to my hotel, but figured it’s always worth it to get in a little photography when I can.  Since I was staying in a hotel right downtown, I just took off for a walk with all my gear, hoping to find some things to shoot (having shot downtown Nashville many times already) and hoping for great light.  It turns out that I got both.  I stumbled upon some new spots I had not photographed before, and as you can see, the light ended up being pretty awesome.  That’s my definition of a win-win!