A couple of weeks ago, my oldest daughter called and asked if I would be interested in doing a photo shoot with her during the sunrise in Papago Park. I have been around the area of the park, but never directly in it. The park is situated next to the Phoenix Zoo and the Desert Botanical Gardens. Never being one to pass on a chance for a photo shoot in a new place, especially with my daughter, I was more than willing to get up uber early to make the hour drive to the park. For my daughter, it was an opportunity to pick my brain on lighting, shutter speeds, aperture settings, etc., to capitalize on the unique lighting from a rising sun in a beautiful desert setting. She has a great eye and came up with some really creative shots and I thoroughly enjoyed our time together.
For me, I fell in love with one of the ponds in the park. The golden hue of the rising sun reflecting off of mirrored water created some really nice shots. I have attached seven of my favorite ones from around the pond.
The first and second captures give you a perspective of the pond.
The third shot focuses on the end we were standing by, which had a lot of reeds planted and loved by a number of early morning ducks.
The fourth shot was the area where we were standing looking back towards some red rocks near the Desert Botanical Gardens. I wasn’t kidding when I said there were some reeds planted.
Photo number five gives you a perspective of the angle of the climbing sun (notice the steep angles of the shadows) and a duck swimming through a shadow of a park light pole (look closely in the lower left for the duck).
In photo number six, I was able to capture a duck facing the sunlight and…
capture number seven zooms in on him….I loved the reflective quality of the water and the lighting of the duck.
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