The 70th Anniversary of Iwo Jima

The Marine Corps War Memorial
Today is the 70th anniversary of the flag-raising on Iwo Jima during World War II. Photographer Joe Rosenthal captured the events on February 23, 1945. One of his images¬†became one of the most recognizable photographs of the war. It was recreated in bronze for the Marine Corps War Memorial that overlooks DC from the banks of the Potomac in Arlington, VA. The photograph eventually figured prominently into Clint Eastwood’s World War II drama Flags Of Our Fathers.

Here is another one of my photographs of the memorial, captured last October, after sunset when a dramatic deep blue sky (and even a couple stars) provided a dramatic backdrop for the illuminated monument.

Ohio Drive SW Bridge

Ohio Drive Bridge
Another great shot from last night’s spectacular late winter sunset. The main attraction was the Jefferson Memorial across the Tidal Basin but turning the camera slightly to the left brought this photo into the frame.

Monumental Sunset

Monumental Sunset
I’ve been waiting for the weather to get nice enough for outdoor photography again and this weekend delivered. My first time out photographing DC in 2015 produced some of my best shots ever with this amazing sunset over the Jefferson Memorial and Tidal Basin.

Blue Sky Over Iwo Jima

Blue Sky Over Iwo JimaWhen I went on a photo-shoot at the Marine Corps War Memorial in Arlington, VA, there were a couple of shots I knew had come out great when I left. This one didn’t stick out of the collection until a couple of months afterward. Now it’s one of my favorites. The bluish tones of the statue complement the deep blue sky just before sunset. And together, they set up a strong contrast with the deep red of the American Flag waving overhead.

Rainbow Erosion

Rainbow ErosionOne of my favorite photos from my recent trip to Tucson Arizona is from before I even arrived there. The picture above captures an amazing landscape I spotted somewhere in Arizona on our descent into Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport. The photo is more compelling for it’s beautiful color, which is not a post-processing effect or intentional addition. It is the circular polarizing filter on my lens interacting in an unexpected way with the coatings on the plane’s window.

So much of modern photography happens in digital post-processing, where you can apply any number of effects, undo as many times as you like, and experiment endlessly without damaging the original photograph. All of that would have been impossible or prohibitively expensive in the days of film and darkroom photography. Taking advantage of today’s advanced tools is a natural progression of the art but it also feels like a perversion of the old technique. It’s nice whenever you can discover a natural effect, even if by accident, that allows a beautiful photo like this one to be produced with minimal digital manipulation.