This sunrise view is from the roof of the Grand Hotel Central Barcelona. I found the hotel somewhat last minute on hotels.com. What caught my eye was the rooftop bar and infinity pool. It's an amazing hotel located in the gothic quarter of the city within walking distance of nearly everything. For me the best part is this rooftop view in the morning. Later in the evening we would sit here with a plate of Tapas and glass of Sangria watching the lights of the city. Not a bad way to spend a few days.
I took this with the camera just above the water so that it takes up half of the frame. I'm not sure what that big building is, though everyone else in Barcelona surely does. That's because there are only a few tall buildings in the city. If I recall this pool was on the 10th floor of the hotel. At that height you can see over most of the rooftops of Barcelona. So much of the population of the central city live in apartment buildings that are no higher than about eight floors. Of course that's a lot of living space regardless.
When I walked around this part of town I was impressed by the eclectic combination of apartments mixed with gothic cathedrals mixed with shops mixed with dabs modern architecture here and there. Everything is close together in neighborhoods that feel distinctly local and reflect values of the residents. At least that was my impression looking at it as an outsider.
I remember taking this because it was on my birthday last December. The conditions looked good and I thought, hey I can do whatever I want today so I headed out and caught this amazing display. Not a bad present.
We get these sunsets quite a bit, the trick is knowing when to show up. Of course there's an app for that, it's called Sky Fire at http://www.skyfireapp.com. Basically it looks at the atmospheric conditions near you and produces a probability of a good sunset or sunrise. I've used it once or twice and it works about seventy percent of the time. Close to home I've learned to read the sky but my own success rate is only about fifty percent. On the road it's a good tool to have especial if you are not familiar with the conditions.
I like living near the water as its become a central theme in many of my landscape images. Most of our planet is covered in water and I think I heard or read somewhere that there is more water below the earths surface than all the oceans. That's mind boggling if it's true. Nonetheless water in an image is a strong element that resonates with me at some level. Maybe its because our bodies are mostly water and there is some elemental attraction. You never know.
The Victoria's Secret store in Vancouver has these big billowy pink satin windows. Because I'm using a Sony A7R2, I cranked up the ISO to 10000 and still was able to handhold street shots like this. I was shooting in aperture priority and this image ended up having a shutter speed of 1/1000. That's impressive when you think about the opportunities it opens up for low light street photography. I like doing street photography, but doing it at night is like another world.
I am not so bold when taking pictures of people on the street, I'm really quite furtive and do my best to not attract attention. In a busy area a person with a camera does not stand out. Having the technology that allows me too be quick at night is an advantage over what was even possible a few years ago.
This was taken with a telephoto at 31mm, so I was fairly close, just at the edge of the sidewalk where people were walking in front of the window. In the last few months a few prime lenses have become available that allow wide open apertures which come in handy for scenes like this. I take a prime, but I find that when I have a zoom I use it more. I should just try leaving the big boy at home and using just the prime for a few days.