Abu Dhabi – An Afternoon In The City
Over the past few months, I have been moving house, moving country and restarting my business. On top of this, I have been doing “in-house” work for companies and finishing off jobs that I started in the UK. It’s been busy and two months have flown by, but this weekend we got to travel to Abu Dhabi to the Emirates Palace and the Grand Mosque.
Even though the weather was rubbish, I was looking to get a few good pictures. We started with the Emirates Palace, which is a huge building with amazing grounds surrounding it. The building exudes luxury and quality and the lobby (if you can call it that) goes on and on, with plenty to explore even if you’re not staying there.
As it was grey outside, we didn’t really venture that way. We stayed inside, had some coffee and took some photographs of the interior. There were some amazing designs to be seen all around and this is what I concentrated on photographing.
The way I see it, photography is a learned skill. The more you do it, the better you get. So projects and trips like this enable you to flex that muscle…….or dust off the cobwebs…..depending on how long it’s been since the last shoot.
After seeing these incredible patterns, we headed over to the Sheik Zayed Grand Mosque. I wasn’t expecting much in the way of the weather, but we were not disappointed! Even under cloudy skies, the place is amazing. After all of the security checks, you’re free to roam around all day and well in to the evening……..and tripods are allowed……so it is a perfect place to photograph, give or take the odd tourist. The only day you’re not allowed in is on Friday, the holy day.
So we wandered around looking for shapes, patterns and mosque’esk looking shots! All of which were here for the taking.
There is so much detail in every part of this building, from the overall structure, to every flower in the intricate design work.
As the sun started to set, the clouds started to break and we couldn’t have asked for more! The sun beamed out above the clouds whilst shining it’s warm pleasing glow below. Luckily, we were in the right place at the right time to see few minutes of golden light and after a bit of jostling through the crowds of selfie grabbers, I got into position to get a few shots I am happy with.
I shot everything handheld this time, as I didn’t think the weather was going to break and I didn’t bring my tripod, but I’ve learned from this (until the next time I forget) and I’ll be bringing my tripod and filters when we visit again!
Tip for beginners:
If you’re out shooting locations like this where the pace is slow and controlled, get the camera into manual mode. Play with the settings and see how changing either the ISO, shutter speed or the aperture has an effect on your shot.
Remember, if you’re not getting the results you want and some fleeting event is happening in-front of you (like we had with the sunset here in Abu Dhabi), you can always switch back to auto….or aperture priority (semi-auto). Then once you have a shot you like, you can drop back into manual and see if you can better that shot.
Because, if you don’t get the shot…..can you say it really happened!!??
I am always switching between manual and aperture priority. Manual gives me total control at a slower pace. Aperture priority, in conjunction with exposure compensation gets me an end result quickly.
Just get out there and shoot because the more you shoot, the more you’ll learn.
Manfrotto 055 3 section tripod with an arca swiss ballhead