A few pictures of the 2014 Uptown Houston Holiday Lighting #UptownLighting @UptownHouston

The Uptown Houston Holiday lighting has really become a tradition for me after I get done with the family portion of Thanksgiving which is a bit backwards considering this is a very big family event!
This year I got a spot almost in the stage center near the curb so I didn’t really need to use my long telephoto lens and the 24-70mm f/2.8 was enough.
Mixteco Ballet Folklorico was performing again this year and added some energy on the stage
Mixteco Ballet Folklorico

Also returning was Houston Choral Showcase
Uptown Houston Holiday Lighting

For those not familiar with this event, for as long as I remember, folks get rooms in the Hilton and participate in decorating their balconies. They really do an amazing job! I’ve heard that they often reserve the rooms a year in advance. Pretty neat!
Uptown Houston Holiday Lighting

This was the 3rd place winner in 2014:
3rd place winner!

2nd place Winner
2nd Place Winner!

and 1st place:
1st Place winner!
I have no clue how the winner is selected but they are all winners and should get participation ribbons (I got a few of those growing up).

And of course, the biggest reason I was here was the fireworks display. I have photographed a lot of fireworks shows and without a doubt this is my favorite one. I think the secret as to why this is my favorite to photograph is that the fireworks is wrapped around by 3 glass buildings which reflect the light on to the crowd and highlight the buildings so it provides for an interesting background and foreground which just can’t be done at the downtown 4th of July shows.  Unless you have a potato for a camera or in the wrong spot, it’s impossible to not get a good picture here (I’m looking at you channel 11).

The first picture is looking directly at the fireworks. The camera settings were nothing too fancy – 14mm, 1/25, ISO 1600, f/2.8 (ok so there is only one lens that can do this and do it sharply), but any combination of this exposure would have worked. In fact, I kind of wish I used a slower shutter speed and switched to f/4 to get a little more depth of field and a little more light trails. Light trails are more of a personal taste – some photographers shoot a few seconds to get all the trails but I think the 1/10th-1/25 range is the sweet spot so you see what your eyes saw. I digress.

Uptown Houston Holiday Lighting

Instead of shooting all the pictures straight on, I thought it’d be nice to get a side view, especially given that I was near the median and Post Oak Blvd now has the BBVA building and this way it would stack up the buildings on Post Oak from the Transco (Williams, or whatever it’s called now) tower, BBVA and the 3 office buildings along with the trees. I’m happy with the results though again I wish I would have used a slightly slower shutter speed.
Uptown Houston Holiday Lighting

A more colorful picture of the same spot
Uptown Houston Holiday Lighting

And another…I actually deleted a hundred or so of the fireworks pictures because it was getting redundant and towards the end it was getting too bright and they didn’t look that great and I was too busy enjoying the fireworks live to fiddle with the settings.
Uptown Houston Holiday Lighting

And time to go home
Uptown Houston Holiday Lighting

Hope everybody had a wonderful Thanksgiving!

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