Watching the Fire Dancer at a Luau

One year ago today we were celebrating my father in law’s birthday at a luau at the Disney Polynesian resort in Orlando. When we first went to Disney last year I was very skeptical of the whole thing. I know that it is a tourist trap, and I was not that excited for myself. By the time we left in June we were already planning this huge family trip in December. Disney can really get to you quickly. The Spirit of Aloha dinner was a great way to end our second trip to the Magic Kingdom a year ago. The food was great (I probably bring this up once a week still), and the show was very entertaining. A few of our party even ended up on stage as part of the show. The fire dancer near the end though was really fun to watch. I don’t think that we planned it this way, but the luau was perfect for the last night.

Making Photos on the Family Vacation

While I am with the family on vacation I have to constantly keep telling myself that it is not about the photos. If you cannot tell by this blog, I am obsessed with photography. When I am not doing it for work I am doing it for pleasure. It is both a job and a hobby. At some point I think that I will become tired of it all, but right now that is not even close to happening. While at the luau I made some photos of the family members that were called up to dance during the parts of the show, but otherwise kept my camera down. The food was too good to worry about photos! When the fire dancer came out though I was suddenly very interesting in making some photos. The one problem was that my daughter who was two at the time was passed out in my arms. Luckily she was on my left side so I still could have my right arm free to make photos. I was really pushing myself making longer exposure with one hand for extended periods of time. The arm gets tired, and the camera does not stay so steady. Holding at 5D Mark III with the battery grip and a 24-105mm lens on it can get tiring after a while. I kept at it though as the results were pretty fun. The photo above was made at 1/8th of a second. I wanted the fire to really move a little in my frame. I knew that the dancer would have some motion blur, but that is part of the show. My real focus was on the fire. This was one of my favorite frames from that dinner.

The End of a Good Year

If you haven’t been able to tell by some of my year end posts I really had an eventful 2016. It was a good year that saw my photography reach new heights. I feel like I came a long way with my ability, and I also forged some new relationships that will carry on into the future. This was such a good year that I really don’t want it to end, but I remember thinking the same thing last year. The goal is to get out and make the best images that I can. Each year that bar for what I think is a good image seems to get raised which is a good thing. I have weird goals for my photography. I don’t really seek fame with it. I just want to make good images. This year I have been able to do that so that makes me very happy.

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About Pinola Photo

I am a sports and lifestyle photographer based in West Lafayette, IN home of Purdue University. I cover sports for Big Ten teams as well as other colleges. You can follow me on twitter @pinolaphoto. You can also view my website at www.davewegielphoto.net

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