Monday, November 10, 2014

Shooting for the weather in travel photography with my Fuji X-T1

With modern digital cameras and even cell phones making it easier for anyone to grab a decent example of a popular location, the real challenge in travel photography is coming up with a unique shot.   One method I use to try to separate my images from the standard postcard views is to shoot for the weather instead of for the subject. Weather is the only thing about a location that is constantly changing, and the one element you can use to make a situation uniquely your own.

All the images in this post were taken from the same location on different days, or different times of day. In each of them I composed for the weather phenomena that was occurring and kept the main subject, the Empire State Building, subservient to it. All were done with the Fuji X-T1 and either the 18-135mm, the 14mm, or the 10-24mm lenses.

Here the sunset spread itself over 360 degrees of the sky so I used the 18-135mm lens at 18mm to capture two images that I later merged in Photoshop to make an inclusive panorama.  I formed my composition by keeping the building small towards the bottom of the frame allowing the line of clouds to take the eye directly to it. 

Sometimes you just get lucky. The cloudy day was clearing around sunset when a lone cloud passed in front of the top of the building. I photographed it as it passed. At one point it totally obliterated the view of the tower. This is one of my favorite shots as the ghost-like apparition of the building emerges from the haze.

Pretty much a standard view of the entire scene, but again at 10mm to gain the maximum effect from the dramatic formation of the overhead clouds.

Sometimes it is the effect of weather on a scene that yields the interesting photo. Here I used the long 135mm focal length to capture the colorful reflection of the setting sun in the windows of the Empire State Building. 

Yet another day with yet another, different cloud formation to illustrate my point. Same scene and treatment as some of the images above but with a uniqueness due only to the difference in weather phenomena.

A deep blue, morning sky was crossed with jet contrails. I converted the image to an infrared version of black and white to emphasize the stark abstract pattern made by the white lines against the blue sky.

Here I photographed the fragmented and abstracted sunset reflection of the building in a nearby window. 
Another infrared interpretation as an early morning fog cleared out leaving part of the steeple in the cloud.


  1. I think that thanks for the valuabe information and insights you have so provided here.
    taxis in barnstaple

  2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.