Well this is how my year started off – chasing the sunset. I had a unique opportunity to make the trip to Miami, Florida for the new year. So I jumped on the last flight I could across the country to Miami. I did miss the sunset however. So I proceeded to plan B.
As with most destinations I travel to, I began studying the local maps and topology. Because of the limited time and long journey, I put extra emphasis on my research. I settled on a harbor area on the keys just across from the front face of the Miami skyline. I liked the relatively unobstructed view. After checking with local staff at the venue and confirming it was okay for me to setup my camera equipment, I went to work. This perhaps wasn’t the best location to photograph the fireworks. As it turned out, the Miami International Airport departure route flies right above the center of the skyline. This meant that the fireworks will not be anywhere close to the center of the frame as I hoped. I only realized this hours into my shoot and could not move as I was already hours into a time lapse sequence that was to last most of the night through the fireworks. Bummer! I suppose I need to factor air traffic into my research.
All that aside, it turned out to be a very productive shoot. I shot a time lapse with the Canon 7D Mark II and 17-55mm f/2.8 lens. This is now standard practice most of the time. While that was going, I started taking frames for a very detailed ultra high resolution panoramic of the skyline and waterfront with the 50 megapixel Canon 5DsR and EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II lens. The final result is breathtaking. It is at least three times wider than the shot above, and you can count Christmas tree ornaments on the trees in the apartments. As it turned out my first pass ended up being my shot of choice. The 5DsR is the perfect camera for this sort of photography.
This shot made it to my collection of limited edition large format prints and I cannot wait to print and share the first one!