A fountain in Vienna

As you have probably read here before, I love to wander on back streets in cities - there are always interesting things to point a camera at.  I was somewhere in the historic part of Vienna, Austria and doing that wandering thing.  I came across this fountain which was tucked into a courtyard, so of course I just walked in there like I belonged there.  Though that behavior has backfired on me in the past, this time I was alone and able to grab this shot.

Things like this are one of the reasons I enjoy going to Europe.  Little fountains tucked into courtyards - you just don't find that much here in the US.

The fountain at Buckingham Palace

When I was in London a few weeks back, I hosted a photowalk and we had a great turnout.  It was such fun to meet so many new folks and I think that everyone really enjoyed it.  At one point during the photowalk we ended up at Buckingham Palace.  It was pretty funny to see all these tripod-wielding photographers descend on the place.

Out in front of Buckingham Palace is a large sculpture known as the Victoria Memorial.  It's something I think most people would recognize.  I had never actually paid close attention to it on previous visits, but this time I walked around it and focused on some of the details (pun sort of intended). 

These little fountains are on each side of it, and I am a fan of fountains anyways.  I also liked how the setting sunlight cast a nice glow on the bronze. 

It’s always interesting to see what you can discover when you are with your camera, and are deliberately trying to slow down and pay attention to things.

Roland Fountain - Bratislava

Town squares are awesome, especially in Europe!

I love fountains and waterfalls, and town squares - they're just awesome!  I found this fountain (quite easily, I might add) in the Old Town Square in Bratislava, Slovakia.  It's hard to miss and is the key focal point of the square.  It seems every town square in Europe has a fountain, and they are always surrounded by such great architecture.  For me, that's part of the charm of European cities.

Curiosity killed the cat...but helped the photographer!

I'm actually lucky to have been able to get shots that night.  I had massive travel delays - and didn't sleep a wink on the plane - so I got into Bratislava around 7pm instead of earlier that day at 1pm.  I almost went to bed, but my curiosity won out so I hit the town for a quick round of shooting (and some dinner!).  It's impossible to pass up an opportunity to shoot in a new place!

Technicals: 7 exposure HDR, f/22, 14-24mm wide angle lens (at 14mm)

Software: HDR Efex Pro, Color Efex Pro, Aperture

HDR Before & After: how the photo was brought to life!

I have been sharing these "before & after" shots, and get some good feedback on them so I thought I would keep that going.  It's amazing to me what HDR can do - it really does bring a photo to life!


Gefion Fountain

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I love shooting waterfalls and fountains - something about them just appeals to me.  I guess it's the running water.  Yeah, that's it.  Running water is nice.  Who doesn't like that sound?  A little trickle of something small, or the roar of a large one?  Even fountains have a nice sound to them, with the spray splashing about like a kid in the summer.  Good stuff.

This is Gefion Fountain, situated next to St. Alban's Anglican Church on the harborfront in Copenhagen, Denmark.  It's fairly large and an awesome sight to see, with all the jet sprays leaping this way and that.  Considering it was a lovely afternoon, there were folks everywhere and it was impossible to get a shot without anyone in it, but I found this angle, which caught the spray and minimized the human traffic around this touristy spot.  Good fun!

A fountain in Tampa

I caught this shot (is caught even the right word?) in downtown Tampa a while back on my quick trip through there.  Sunset was approaching and I wanted to be somewhere downtown.  I was hoping for a reflection of the skyline in the water, but I could never find a good spot for it, and I guess I ain’t smart enough to use Google Earth before I arrive to figure these things out.  It’s funny - or sad, really - that I used to travel to Tampa at least twice a month, but this was years before I got into photography, so despite being familiar with the town, I wasn’t  “photography-familiar” with it.  I really had no idea where to go and shoot.  How many wasted opportunities I wonder?  Oh well, live in the present and all that.  I am making up for it now though!  Anyways, I found this open park area with these fountains, and with the light quickly departing I set up and rolled off lots of different shots.


There is this wonderful fountain at the Mandola Winery, outside of Austin, and though it was fairly crowded during my visit, I was able to get this close up of it.  I like all the water drops splashing about.  It took me several attempts but I was finally able to get that one long drop hanging off his chin!

Littlefield Fountain

Here's a shot from my home town of Austin.  This is the Littlefield Fountain which is on the campus of the University of Texas at Austin, which is where I went to school.  This shot is actually fairly old, but I came across it in the archives recently and realized I had never done anything with it.  After letting HDR Efex Pro do its magic, I was really happy with the look of the water.  I would call it somewhat impressionistic, but I found it interesting nonetheless.


I am drawn to fountains - it's that water thing again - but I rarely find myself shooting the entire thing.  I tend to just pick parts of it and focus in on that.  In this shot I was on the grounds of the Indianapolis Museum of Art and caught this image while I was walking over to shoot some other structures.  I obviously went for a very narrow focus this time but I like how that effect draws the eye in...

Last light in Tampa

Sunset just rocks, even when you don’t get to shoot it.  The light is just so awesome.  Take this shot, for instance.  I was walking around in downtown Tampa, FL and just could not find a good vantage point for the city and the sunset together.  I used to travel to Tampa all the time, but that was over 10 years ago and I wasn’t carrying a camera with me back then, so I didn’t know the good spots.  I came across these fountains - and I like shooting fountains - so I set up and caught the last bit of light as the sun disappeared.  I just thought the colors and light were fabulous.

This is a single exposure image that I ran through HDR Efex Pro, and then made some minor adjustments in Viveza, which is also an amazing product!