September 11th – 15 Year Anniversary

Yesterday I went to Liberty State Park in New Jersey for the 15th anniversary of the September 11th attacks.  The day was totally surreal and I’m still amazed it was 15 years ago.  I was hoping to see the Tribute in Light that shines above the city emulating where the towers used to stand.  We went later in the day to see the lights turn on and found a pretty good spot on a walkway overlooking the Hudson River.

I set up my tripod and started off with my 28 mm lens however I realized this was not close enough to the city.  I ended up using my 18.0 – 55.0 mm lens.  I used the zoom lens for two reasons: 1) to make sure the image was close the subject and 2) to be close enough to make sure the walkway was not in the image.  We had picked a spot on the walkway which curves around the harbor and if you didn’t zoom far enough the image would have the walkway and railing in the image.  I ended up being at 36 mm on my lens.

After a few practice shots I picked an aperture f/11 and ISO of 320.  I was shooting at 15 second intervals with a 11″ shutter speed.  The sun had totally set at this point so I wasn’t worried about changing light so I had the camera in manual.  I didn’t have any filters since these can sometimes create reflections or colored spots.  The tribute lights were really bright and the image came up remarkable in my opinion.  There ended up being a lot of movement in the clouds, airplanes, helicopters, boats, and building lights that really set a dynamic scene.

We were at the sight for about 50 minutes to an hour so I got about 8-9 seconds if video to work with which is a nice length of video.

Once I edited the photos I realized there was some type of glare spot in the image that has some dots.  The glare spot is very faint but is apparent with some movement of the clouds.  I am not really sure what this is from since I carefully cleaned my lens. Perhaps its from light leaks since I didn’t have my viewfinder cover on the camera.  I’ll make sure to include this next time for the long exposures.  The spot is too big to remove my editing so hopefully its not too apparent.  Anyways hope you enjoy!

Camera Settings:

Nikon D7100, 18.0 – 55.0 mm f/3.5 – 5.6

36 mm, f/11, 11 seconds, ISO 320, 15 second interval, Auto White Balance


Leave a Reply