Main

Disney's Hollywood (was MGM) Studios Archives

September 28, 2014

Where in the World #351

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

I hope everyone had a lovely Rosh Hashanah! The celebration is still going on as I write this
Shofar

Happy Birthday to my husband John Blackwell! I just found out that he actually checks out the game. :)

The Gunnels Family are at Disney's Vero Beach Resort. Have a lovely time!

Last week's challenge: number #350
Where in the World #350

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © Erin Blackwell

It's the Public Library on the Streets of America in Disney's Hollywood Studios. This is one of my pictures that I took especially for the game. :)

Alan Mize, quick! Dave Carriere says they're waving overdue fees; get that book back!

Kristi Strembicki was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Kristi and to all our winners this week! Jennifer Rowell, Bruce Jones, Danielle Harsely And Agnes Ciotti, Melissa Such, Sandie Albrecht, Mary Beth Tarbet, The Koren Family, Linda Ranatza, Carol Ney, Ed Suscreba, Jim Finley, Ed Elder, Elaine Kleinhenz, Virginia Pierce, Susie Howard, Linda Scrivano, The Kahle Family, Cheryl Costello, Hunter Armstrong, Jill Hauth, Lana Bloomfield, Tom Armstrong, Sharon Pierce, Nan Amor, Kye Layton, Team Hill, Torrey Beasley, Morag Lemon, Gabriella, Terry And Matthieu, Tom Swan, Katie, Ken Maikowski, Amber Penske, Ken Daube, Lee Anastasi, Doug Olson Family, Candice Grimes, The Strukel Family, Ed Bogle, Vera And Izzy Williams, Mike O'brien, Julie Bozeman, Melissa King, Lori Rienhardt, Tricia Petty, Kyra C., Karen Hotchkiss, Vinny Bullara , Maggie Klotz, K Beasley, Axel Beer, Phyllis, Paula Massarelli, Paul Dickson, Luis Rodriguez, Paul Knott, Chris Horne, Mike Amor, Tinkerbell Wells, Pollyanna Buff, Brenda Mclean, Sharon Lucia, Pat Schwier, Claire Gregory, Lindsay Coram, Wendy Barney, Duskin Henard, Patti Gumiela, Suzanne Renfroe, Megan Krainski, Betsy Silvestri, Annette Nuenke, The Parker Family, Dawn Bach, Al & Kerry Ganter, Eric Johnson, Andrea Kruszewski, Paul Scimeca, Deb Ragno, Kris Nixon, Dee Dee Kenney, Janet T Thorn, Carol Collins, Beth Pleban, Nancy Dawkins-pisani, James Steele, Maureen Handy, Dennis F O'reilly Jr, Lee Deroia , Scott Mcbride, Ashley Collins, Maryann Romagnano, Liz Moreau, Elaine Tomko-delucaq, Jamesd, Emily Hudson, Andy Hickey, Dave Freemyer, Ken Savage, Eric Berger, The Kertes Family, Ginger Sneeringer, Jeff Blank, Maggie Biederman, Kathy Morris, Tiffann Gibb, Jamie Fahey, Mickey Eckert, Jamie Fahey, Sherry Hawley, Michele Zowacki, Hobbes And Snorky, Bruce Hinterleitner, Ruben O'meara, Jason Hocker, Jen Peterson, Nadine Grieshaber, Eric Enli, Linda College, Jeremy Hardy, Team Bonnie Sue, Bill Mckim, Jen Eacret, Jodi Cook, Julia Marsh, Greta Lee, Herb Miller, Wayne Chadourne, Brian Delacruz, Trisha Johnson, Arlene Vicek, Rebecca Keenan, Larry Sprenkle, Karen Costa, Susan Barbash, Mary Ann Lamay, Britta Andrews, The Long Family, Jamie Beil, Daniel Record, Bob Ruer, Brian Grabowski, Sarah And Chris, Dallas Hamilton, Paul Ignudo, Jr., Andrew Pettit, Melissa Littman, Vicki Shearman, Brian Mcwithey, Les Whitten, Kate Fischer, Carla C, Jeremy Reichelt, Patti Mccaffrey, Karen Bellamy, Les Stewart, Scott Sangston, George Mundy Jr, States Family, Terry Blair, Chloe Mayhew, Diana Grady, Josh Carney, Dave Carriere, Kelley H, Randy, Grumpy's Groupies, Smitty, Mike Haeberle, Mary Jo Gallion, Jan Rosato, Rob Blundin, Matthew Frey, Pati Nystrom, Heidi Goodhue, David J Miller, Kay Egan, Tim Johansen, Susan Higginbotham , Chris, Gretchen, And Katie Barnes, Kimberly Timm, Ron Harper, The Gunnels Family, Jennifer Snook, Davida, Carolyn Como, Ken Rhinehart, Kristan Bertelmann, Belicia Cullen, Scott Cullen, Vicki Britt, Chris Kelly, Alan Mize, Mark Proper, Mike, Darrell Shortt, John Foggo, Esther Chernak, Theresa Rucando, Jackie Graebel, Sheila Bagg, Brian Miller, Theresa Maradei, Joseph M. Zafia, Kerri Coggins, Tom Higbee, Matt Holley, Hillary Waldroop, Kyle Burdo, Jen Tremley, Barclay Bakkum, Owen States , Jim & Lorie Sonnen, Brian Yesutis, and Kerry A.
__________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #351 Where in the world is this?

Can you believe we're at the end of September? So where is this picture to end the month?
Where in the World #351

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, October 2nd, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.
See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

September 26, 2014

Echo Lake Sunset in Disney's Hollywood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

As I was scouting locations for the Star Wars Weekend Fireworks, I checked out the view from across Echo Lake. It was late in the day and the Sun was just going down behind the palm trees to the right of Min & Bill's Dockside Diner. This created a large light discrepancy between the bright sky and the water. As I talked about with Cinderella Castle a couple of weeks ago, I decided to take a series of photos to capture the large range of light in the scene to combine later to create a High Dynamic Range (HDR) image.

The light range was even larger this time and I took a set of seven photos from -3EV to +3EV in 1 EV stop increments. I later merged those photos together using Photomatix Pro software.

Echo Lake in HDR at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Echo Lake in HDR at Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D700/24-120VR, f/16, ISO 200, EV 0, 24mm focal length, HDR Image.

This view has changed over the years and will be again as the American Idol Experience has now shut down. As Rafiki says, Change is good.

September 23, 2014

Disney Pic of the Week: Billboards of Hollywood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Walking around Disney's Hollywood Studios always gives me the feeling of being in a place that never was. You know what I mean? Hollywood back in the 1930's and 1940's was like a fantasy to most of America. A place not quite real. The billboards you see around the Studios help to tell the story of that time. A few of the billboards are based on the park's sponsors while others advertise locations in the area. Locations like Hollywoodland.

Hollywoodland billboard in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Hollywoodland billboard on top of a building in the Studios.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/25s, f/4.8, ISO 1600, EV -1.0, 62mm focal length.

Do you know the name of the Disney movie which changed the Hollywoodland sign to Hollywood?

Lisa will be here on Thursday to share her Disney Pic of the Week on The Billboards of Hollywood Studios (sounds like an old monster movie title, doesn't it?).

September 4, 2014

Frozen Storm Troopers at Star Wars Weekends

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Imperial Stormtroopers singing at a Star Wars Weekend event in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Imperial Stormtroopers singing at a Star Wars Weekend event.
Nikon D700/24-120VR, 1/200s, f/4, ISO 2000, EV -0.7, 120mm focal length.

For a few years now the Stars of the Saga show at the Premier Theater in Disney's Hollywood Studios has opened with a fun group of Imperial Stormtroopers who often break out in song during their performance. This year it was Let It Go from the Disney animated mega-hit Frozen. Besides, the cold never bothered them on Hoth.

A delightful photo for Disney Pic of the Week on Special Events.

August 29, 2014

Summer with Olaf at Disney's Hollywood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Frozen Summer Fun with Olaf at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Frozen Summer Fun with Olaf at Disney's Hollywood Studios,.

Scott is taking a break this week like Olaf did all summer at Disney's Hollywood Studios. For those visiting the Studios this last unofficial weekend of summer, check out all the doings for Frozen Summer Fun. UPDATE: Olaf, Anna, Elsa and Kristoff have been given extensions through the month of September, 2014. CLICK HERE for the details.

August 24, 2014

Where in the World #346

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

Hannah Kertes is headed for college! Congratulations and good luck! Caffeine is your friend during exams! And long lectures.
From Millan.Net

Hi, Sandie Albrecht! No, no one where the blue car was. I always love when I think I know Disney and something comes along that makes me go:
From Millan.Net

Last week's challenge: number #345
Where in the World #345

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © Erin Blackwell

Herbie the Love Bug. He's on the Backlot Tour for this picture, but he's at other locations so I took all of them as correct.

Everybody got this one right! Good for you, Players!

Donna Frank was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Donna and to all our winners this week! Jim & Lorie Sonnen, Diane Tredore, Jennifer Rowell, Mike Amor, Ed Hogan, Emily Hudson, Sharon Pierce, Linda Ranatza, Michelle Raimist, Sandie Albrecht, Dave Freemyer, Eric Berger, Joann Albrecht, Paula Massarelli, Ed Elder, Carol Ney, Ed Suscreba, Bruce Jones, Jeff Schoeling, Mary Beth Tarbet, Kye Layton, Phyllis, Linda Ranatza, The Gunnels Family, Megan Krainski, Ruben O'meara, Jacquelyn Law, Jen Tremley, Bill Mckim, The Kertes Family, Grumpy's Groupies, Dee Dee Kenney, Team Hill, Linda Ranatza, Alan Law, Britta Andrews, Heather Sabatino, Nan Amor, Rob Blundin, Andrew Carrieri, Theresa Rucando, Josh Weiss, Kevin Marriott , Kris Nixon, Gabriella, Thierry & Matthieu, Elaine Kleinhenz, Roxanne Kliebert, Belicia Cullen, Scott Cullen, Jason Skow, The Parker Family, Wendy T. Faler, Carla C, The Long Family, Lori Rienhardt, Dawn Bach, Vera And Izzy Williams, Jim Finley, Andy Hickey, Phil Vickers, Mike O'brien, Chris, Gretchen, And Katie Barnes, Double Family, Betsy Silvestri, Carol Gamill, Larry Sprenkle, Tricia Petty, Beth Mcmeekin, Jonathan Ward, Jodi Cook, K Beasley, Virginia Pierce, Antoinette Leblanc, Claire Gregory, Melissa Such, Mickey Eckert, Bob Patterson, Carolyn Como, James Steele, Robert Wescovich, Liz & Dave Fullerton, The Emich Family, Andrea Kruszewski, Hobbes And Snorky, Daniel Record, Doug Olson Family, Tinkerbell Wells, Ken Maikowski, Mike & Jackie Mclucas, Evald Olson, Ashley Collins, Maureen Handy, Bob Henriksen, Janet T Thorn, Erin Hammer , Craig, Julia Wickware, Olszak Family, Les Whitten, Dennis O'reilly, Vicki Britt, Leach Family, Jim Riley, Luis Rodriguez, Patti Mccaffrey, Josh Dean, Deborah Wolfe, Team Bonnie Sue, Linda College, Caryn Schill, Scott Greenbaum, Andrew Swiatowicz , Stefan Owens, Kristi Strembicki, Danielle Harsley And Agnes Ciotti, The Kahle Family, Diane Curfman, Nikki Parker, Kristyn Scibienski, Bruce Hinterleitner, Linda Scrivano, Arlene Vicek, Chloe Mayhew, Matt Wildey, Michele Mongeon, Russ Morgan, Ronald Delorey, Paul Dickson, Kerry A., Cheryl Costello, Jen Peterson, Jeremy Hardy, Les Stewart, Mike Malampy, Christi Ison, Jeff Blank, Kyra C., Linda Norton, Terry Blair, Brian Gallant, Cathy Connors, Stefanie Vandiver, Kyle Burdo, Brian Mcwithey, The Foley Family, Andrew Pettit, The Holmes Family, George Mundy Jr, Tom Swan, Chris Bauman, Michael Dale Pennington, Patrick Broaddus, Melody Odonnell, Jeremy Reichelt, Matt Holley, Jamie Steiner, Tricia Noble, Randy Thomas, The Hutchinson Family, Josh Carney, Scott Sangston, Wayne Chadourne, Matthew Jadro, Stacy Guarracino, Diane Furtado, Terry Fleming, The Patterson Family, Mark Franklin, Maggie Klotz, Carri Marotto, John Pasqueralli, Ruth Woodhouse, Alison Rosenberger, Eric Enli, Christopher Hall, Ron Harper, Marcie Soderlund, Jen Cerce, John Zolyniak, Eric States, Kevin Parmeland, Kristina Rohrbach, Kelly Smith, Anastasia Macneil, Kevin.jones, Tim Johansen, Smitty, Fred Shakeshaft, Dave Carriere, Chris Thacker, Hillary Waldroop, Heidi Goodhue, Heidi Goodhue, Joseph M. Zafia, Team Meeker, Mary Mizell, Jo Ann Bailey, Sharon Leitgeb, Sara Holloway, Jackie Graebel, Sheila Bagg, Liz Moreau, Jane Johnson, Walter Clark, Sarah And Chrsi, Brian Grabowski, Tom Higbee, Barclay Bakkum, John Dupre, Melissa Kirk, Michelle Bates, Julia Marsh, Jennifer Mercier, Nathan York, Christina Rotella, Robert P. Flaherty, Deb Ragno, Kristan Bertelmann, Jennifer Bogdan, Ken Rhinehart, Margie Larmon, Matthew Frey, and Desiree Fremer.
__________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #346 Where in the world is this?

This might be a bit tougher. Probably not. :)
Where in the World #346

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, August 28th, by clicking on the blue box below.

Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

June 13, 2014

Photographing Star Wars Weekends Fireworks

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Star Wars Weekends for 2014 ended each day with the Symphony in the Stars fireworks show. The show is done totally with music from the Star Wars movie saga. The fireworks used are the most advanced I have ever seen at a Disney themepark. Bursts would change colors in different directions and from the inside-out, shapes of galaxies and ringed planets with lots of ground rockets. All this takes place behind the main stage in front of the Sorcerer Mickey Hat. For safety reasons, Pixar Place and Toy Story Midway Mania are closed before the performance.

While I was only able to photograph Symphony in the Stars once. I have enlisted four other talented Disney fan photographers to show you five locations both inside and outside of Disney's Hollywood Studies to photograph these fireworks from.


From Inside Disney's Hollywood Studies:

I photographed from The Feel the Force Premium Package viewing area. I setup towards the front and just to the left of the stage looking up Hollywood Blvd. It is very close to the stage and the Sorcerer Mickey Hat and I used the Sigma 15mm fisheye lens to cover as much of the sky as I could. The viewing area has a few palm trees and the lens shows you the number of people in front of the stage during the show.

Symphony in the Stars fireworks show in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Symphony in the Stars fireworks show.
Nikon D700/Sigma 15mm, 1.3s, f/8, ISO 400, EV 0, tripod.

I think if I was to do it again, I would have found a position as far away or to the back of the viewing area and as close to the rope edge on Hollywood Blvd.

Jeff Krause (SpreadTheMagic on flickr) set up near the corner of Hollywood and Sunset Boulevards. From there you can see the Keystone Clothiers store and the Sorcerer Mickey Hat. The view is cluttered with the tall palm trees and the store itself but you can see more of the high bursts in the sky.

Symphony in the Stars fireworks show in Disney's Hollywood Studios by Jeff Krause, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Symphony in the Stars fireworks show by Jeff Krause from Hollywood and Sunset Blvd.
Canon EOS 5D Mk3/16-35IS, 15s, f/9, ISO 800, EV 0, 16mm focal length, tripod.

As you can see, there are a lot of people who attend Star Wars Weekends days. Be prepared.

Matthew Cooper (TheTimeTheSpace on flickr) set up in the Echo Lake area and used Min & Bill's Dockside Diner and the lake as a foreground subject. If you get to this area early (and I recommend you do), you can set up your tripod (not yourself) on the inside of the fence surrounding Echo Lake. People won't be able to accidentally hit your tripod legs during a long exposure with the setup.

Symphony in the Stars fireworks show in Disney's Hollywood Studios by Matthew Cooper, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Symphony in the Stars fireworks show by Matthew Cooper.
Nikon D800/24-70mm, 15s, f/11, ISO 100, EV 0, 24mm focal length, tripod.

I really like this location. If I had not decided to do the special viewing package, I had planned on shooting from here.


From Outside Disney's Hollywood Studies:

Dave Kliment (ExploringWDW on flickr) photographed from what I am seeing on flickr and elsewhere as a very popular location. The Sorcerer Mickey and enchanted broomstick topiaries are out in front of the park's entrance.

Symphony in the Stars fireworks show in Disney's Hollywood Studios by Dave Kliment, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Symphony in the Stars fireworks show by Dave Kliment.
Nikon D300/10-24mm, 22s, f/16, ISO 200, EV 0, 19mm flocal length, tripod.

Here you can see how high the bursts go in the sky and how wide the ground rockets shoot up. You do loose the Sorcerer Mickey Hat entirely and most of the buildings on Hollywood Blvd. Due to the long exposures necessary for Fireworks photography, the neon lighting gets overexposed but it does not distract from the fireworks.

From the walkway to the Epcot resorts, Dennis Dunkman (ddindy on flickr) photographed at the point of the path which looks directly down Hollywood Blvd. From this location you can really see the scope of the Symphony in the Stars fireworks show.

Symphony in the Stars fireworks show in Disney's Hollywood Studios by Dennis Dunkman, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Symphony in the Stars fireworks show by Dennis Dunkman.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 15.2s, f/11, ISO 200, EV 0, 56mm flocal length, tripod.

Each photographer was using Bulb Mode to open and close their camera's shutter while using a tripod to keep it steady. For more on how to photograph firework shows at Walt Disney World, click on the links below:

Photographing Fireworks at Walt Disney World - Part 1

Photographing Fireworks at Walt Disney World - Part 2

May 30, 2014

Star Wars Weekends Legends of the Force Motorcade

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Star Wars Weekends for 2014 started off with a big opening ceremony featuring those lovable Imperial Stormtroopers making fun of all the people being held back by a teeny, tiny, little rope. From there it just got bigger and better. A lot of people were entertained all day with Star Wars Character Meet and Greets, roving characters on Mickey Avenue, lots of behind the scenes shows in the Premier Theater and, new for 2014, Star Wars character meals: Jedi Mickey's Star Wars™ Dine at Hollywood and Vine and Star Wars™ Dine-In Galactic Breakfast (click the links for more information).

The 2014 Official Star Wars Weekends poster was hanging on each side of the Main Stage in front of the Sorcerer Mickey Hat. You could find the poster on calenders, t-shirts, pins, hats, coffee mugs and just about anything else inside Darth's Mall merchandise shop.

Star Wars Weekends official poster titled
Star Wars Weekends official poster titled "Join the Rebellion" hanging on the Main Stage.
Nikon D700/24-120VR, 1/250s, f/8, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 120mm focal length.

Each Star Wars Weekend day begins with the Legends of the Force Motorcade. Jedi Mickey Mouse leads it off followed by the 501st Legion Florida Garrison and the Rebel Legion. Organizations which promote Star Wars, use of costumes and contributing to their local communities.

Legends of the Force Motorcade in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Jedi Mickey Mouse, Imperial Stormtroopers and Rebels parade in the Legends of the Force Motorcade.

After the Legions pass, Star Wars celebrities from both the animated series and live action movies go by in convertibles waving to one and all. For the first weekend this year, Ashley Eckstein (Voice of Ahsoka Tano from Star Wars: The Clone Wars), Ahmed Best (Voiced and played Jar Jar Binks in Star Wars I-III), Vanessa Marshall (Voice of Hera Syndulla from Star Wars Rebels) and Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca from all the Star Wars movies) came down Hollywood Blvd.

Celebrities in the Legends of the Force Motorcade in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
From Top Left: Ashley Eckstein (Clone Wars), Ahmed Best (Jar Jar Binks), Vanessa Marshall (Star Wars Rebels) and Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca) ride in the Legends of the Force Motorcade

Star Wars Weekends have grown in the last two years since my last time visiting a Galaxy Far, Far Away. It helps there are now new movies for fans to look forward to. The success of The Clone Wars on the Disney cable networks have helped to foster a whole new generation of Star Wars fans. This fall, Disney XD will be premiering a new animated series called Star Wars Rebels picking up where Revenge of the Sith, the third prequel movie, left off. I can only see Star Wars Weekends becoming even more popular.

The use of the FastPass+ system helped greatly in obtaining excellent seats for the popular Behind the Scene shows at the Premier Theater. Plan ahead and show up about 45 minutes before the show.

May 29, 2014

Jedi Master in Disney's Hollywood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Jedi Master of the Jedi Training Academy at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Jedi Master of the Jedi Training Academy.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/60s, f/5.6, ISO 220, EV 0, 135mm focal length.

A Jedi Master leads a group of young ones in the ways of the Force next to the Star Tours attraction in Disney's Hollywood Studies. Each day, children of guests can take part in the Jedi Training Academy. It is a fun show for both children and adults.

You, too, can learn the ways of the Force via this Disney Pic of the Week on Star Wars.

May 16, 2014

Off to a Galaxy Far, Far Away at Disney's Hollyood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Imperial Storm Trooper patrols the enterance to Disney's Hollywood Studios during Star Wars Weekends, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Imperial Storm Trooper patrols the enterance to Disney's Hollywood Studios during Star Wars Weekends.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/1000s, f/5.6, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 160mm focal length.

Scott is off this week visiting his friends from a Galaxy Far, Far Away during Star Wars Weekend at Disney's Hollywood Studios. May the Force Be with Him so he can return next week with new photographic adventures to share.

You can follow Scott on his Twitter account at Scottwdw where he will be posting photos and other information during his trip.

April 18, 2014

Sunny Lobby of the Tower of Terror

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Normally one thinks of the lobby of the Hollywood Tower Hotel as a gloomy, dusty place. This is not always the case on a sunny day in late October when the Sun's angle at times sends its bright rays through the lobby doors.

Guests throw eerie shadows in the Tower of Terror lobby at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Guests throw eerie shadows in the Tower of Terror lobby.
Nikon D700/Sigma 15mm, 1/100s, f/4, ISO 6400, EV 0.

Waiting for the doors to the library to open, there are deep shadows being cast to the side of the lobby desk. For this photo, I wish I had time to do a bracket set of photos but I was ushered away by a bellhop.

Dusty trunk and luggage still waiting for bellhops in the lobby of the Tower of Terror in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Dusty trunk and luggage still waiting for bellhops in the lobby of the Tower of Terror.
Nikon D700/Sigma 15mm, 1/30s, f/4, ISO 6400, EV 0.

Do not worry. Once you enter the library and the bellhop closes the door, you will be taken into the dark world of the Tower of Terror. I am sure you will enjoy dropping in.

April 17, 2014

This is what we call...MuppetVision 3-D

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Guests enjoying the Muppet Vision 3-D pre-show in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Guests enjoying the Muppet Vision 3-D pre-show entertainment.
Nikon D700/Sigma 15mm, 1/100s, f/2.8, ISO 6400, EV 0.

For those of us who remember The Muppet Show syndicated television show, watching the pre-show to MuppetVision 3-D in Disney's Hollywood Studios is like going back in time with one twist...each bank of televisions are connected into one scene. The Muppet zaniness which happens as guests wait to enter the theater is exactly like what I used to watch in my college dorm room back in the late 1970's.

A nostalgic trip down memory lane for my Disney Pic of the Week about MuppetVision 3-D.

March 2, 2014

Where in the World #321

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

Annie Snodgrass, you were in plenty of time to submit your entry. I don't check until Friday morning; I feel that's the safest for everyone to have entered because of all the different time zones around the world.

Exciting news, Players! Paul Moore is going to Walt Disney World and then on the Disney Fantasy: he's promised to bring us back Mickey rice krispie treats!
From Millan.Net

Tom Buck just had his first Dole Whip! Another convert joins the ranks! Somebody get him the T-shirt.

I'm listening to all the Walt Disney World Resort channel videos on youtube. It takes me right back to Disney where I'll put on this channel and leave it on for the music. (After I've caught up with Stacey's list of must-dos). Yes, I am that geeky. :)

I know it took a while before we left the last park but it was worth it. We got Christi Ison's breakfast lasagna, Ashley Collins' Mickey pretzel (did you need mustard?), Duskin Henard's ice cream, Rebecca Keenan's churro, Claire Gregory's whole shopping list ;). By the way, I didn't forget your Mickey balloon!
Disney balloon

From last week: Challenge #320:

Where in the World #320

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © Erin Blackwell

We're in the Raiders of the Lost Ark scene inside the Great Movie Ride at Disney's Hollywood Studios! The thumbnail had a little clue: the hieroglyphics show the Hidden R2-D2 and C3PO from Star Wars which, as Vicki Britt and Josh Carney said, is very cool!

Cheryl Costello, if you want to see them, look to your left across from Indiana Jones. They are right before the rope hanging with a trunk, second row from the bottom. Don't forget to look for the Hidden Mickey and Donald also on the left and high up right before you leave the room!

Dave Carriere, I have been trying for years to get a decent picture of these guys! I can't believe I finally caught them! I should ask Barrie Brewer if she would do her Photoshop magic on it to make it look even better.

Jeff Blank, awesome Jeopardy answer! ;)

Kristi Strembicki were the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Kristi and to all our winners this week! Jennifer Rowell, Donna Frank, Jennifer Duncan, Brian Yesutis, The Kertes Family, Erica Tibbetts, Pat Schwier, Tara Weaver, Brian Miller, Kenny, Kevin Koszola, Ed Elder, Melissa Such, Michele Zowacki, Carol Ney, Linda Ranatza, Stefanie Hendley, Emery Fellows, Tricia Petty , Sharon Pierce, Tinkerbell Wells, Sisk Family, Heather, Phyllis, Laurie Berthelot, Eric Berger, Janney Family, The Garofalos, Kelly Sroka, Debbie Desimone, Hilary Pease, Erin Dagney, Al Desimone, Christine Dagney, Quincy Delcolletti, Jack Lynch, Pam Vanaustin, Bill Schmid, Danielle Harsley, Valerie Zabe, Dee Dee Kenney, Zandria Michaud, Tim Miller, Jason Hocker, Dawn Bach, Ellen Sullivan, Team Hill, Manda Stuewe, Sandie Albrecht, Jesse Mccarthy, Michael Mclucas And Jackie Mclucas, Nicole Mosca, Nancy Bolton, Elaine Kleinhenz, Michelle Darabaris, Paul Dickson, Owen Popek, Anne-marie Murch, The Parker Family, Nancy Ahlsen, Shari Prater, Ed Suscreba, Scott Merrill, Lee Anastasi, Fiona Knight, Christy Fish, Annette Nuenke, Beth Mcmeekin, Laura V., Paul Silagyi, Judy Simonsen, Bill Mckim, Amiee Augustine, Rob Hepler, Carla C, Lauran Jozik, The Frisbee Family, Scott Cullen, Kye Layton, Belicia Cullen, Nathaniel Clements, Josh Weiss, Pam Manseau, Tina Santacroce, Tim Johansen, Mary Beth Tarbet, Mark Benton, Gabriella, Terry And Matthieu, Jacquelyn Law, Dave Wang, Ken Jackson, Bryant And Ruben O'meara, Jennifer, Patty Norman, Nan Amor, Cindy Pink, Arlene Vicek, Chris Nichols, Patti Gumiela, John Bickers, Jen Tremley, Gordon Cavalero, Louise Barton, Steve Ganter, Paul Moore, Karen Costa , Les Stewart, Heather Capraun, Robin Robinson , Herb Mille, Ken Daube, Jeremy Hardy, Maureen Handy, Anna Hudson, Fishman Family, Vera Dercole, Lisa Zitek, Dale Knight, Andrew Swiatowicz, Clay Anthony, Demetrios Makres, Jim Nitschje, Liz & Dave Fullerton, Robert Wescovich, Megan Krainski, Hobbes And Snorky, Danielle Murgia, Jonathan Ward, Julie And Kody Rider, Karen Schlumpf, Diane Furtado, Maggie Klotz, Melodye Berry, Axel, Emily Hudson, Peg Readinger, Kelly Hurley, Stefan Owens, Ron Harper, Smitty, Lyn Johnson, Tink, Liane Watt, Margie Bigelli, Lynette Michalos, Tim Keenan, Andrew Stege, Carla Keenan, Kirsten Miller, Elizabeth Scarborough, Betsy Silvestri, Claire Gregory, Scott Precise, Chris, Gretchen, And Katie Barnes, Craig, Jenifer Geinitz, Gail States, Scott Mcbride, Duskin Henard, Ralph Chamberlain, Patty Carty, Chris Kelly, Michele Smith, Amy Enser, Brad Ward, Paul Knott, Jonathan A Thomas, Tom Koval, The Patterson Family, Jim Finley, Brian Gallant, Wayne Chadourne, Tim Mckay, Kevin Parmeland, Sarah And Chris, Dallas Hamilton, Mike Aldrich, Cathy Connors, Chris Thacker, Ignudo2@comcast.net, Melissa Littman, Patrick Broaddus, Sara Alaimo, Shelly Borella, Terry Fleming, Erin Loring, Dennis Loring, Davida, Anastasia Macneil, Mary Greger, Vicki Britt, Andy Schumacher, Michelle Palazzo, Kirk Hardy, Susie Howard, Karen Bellamy, Barclay Bakkum, Jenn Steele, Sandra Valgardson, Mark Proper, Dave Carriere, Karrie Duffey, Leigh Mertz, Patti Mccaffrey, Hillary Waldroop, Caryn Schill, Doug Olson Family, Jeff Blank, Karla Callen, Kerrie Hogan, Matt Holley, Josh Carney, Bonnie Cummings, Kate Fischer, Maryann Romagnano, George Mundy Jr, Rob Blundin, Karen Hotchkiss, Grump's Groupies, Walter N. Clark, Joseph M. Zafia, Jodi Cook, Matthew Earl, Eileen Miller, Kelly Smith, John Foggo, Amy Filliben, Cheryl Costello, Bob Henriksen, Heather Hynes, Craig Lordan, David Lizewski, and Annie Snodgrass. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
Since this was the last game for February, the drawing is now! The winner is: Carri Marotto! Congratulations! You'll be receiving a prize from Deb Wills!
__________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #321 Where in the world is this?

The saying goes, “March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb”. So we'll start with one that might be a toughie. We're in a park.
 Where in the World #321

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, March 6th, by clicking on the blue box below.

Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

February 16, 2014

Where in the World #319

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

I forgot to wish you guys “Happy Valentine's Day”! And I got you a box of chocolates and everything. Oh well...
From Millan.Net

You know what else I forgot? February 13th marked our third anniversary, Players! You and I have been together in this game for three years and you haven't gotten sick of me yet! (Barrie started the game 6 ½ years ago!) Amazing, isn't it? :)

Cindy Pink, sorry to hear coming back from your trip has been so tough. Here's a dolphin to bring back good memories:
From Millan.Net

On the other hand, the Eckerts are headed for Walt Disney World this week. Have a magical time!

From last week: Challenge #318:
Where in the World #318

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © Barrie Brewer

The fountain outside of Muppet*Vision 3D featuring Miss Piggy as Ms. Liberty in Disney's Hollywood Studios! I came across the song “I'm Gonna Always Love You” with the Muppet Babies and I had to do something from this attraction. (“Going to climb the Matterhorn...”)

Everyone got this right!

The Murr Family were the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to all the Murrs and to all our winners this week! Jim & Lorie Sonnen, Kenny, Kristi Strembicki, Jennifer Rowell, Theresa Rucando, Kris Nixon, Linda Ranatza, Carol Ney, Tricia Petty , The Kahle Family, Rob Blundin, Donnna Frank, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Ed Elder, Mary Beth Tarbet, Leigh Mertz, Hillary Waldroop, Betsy Silvestri, Diane Tredore, Bruce Jones, Anjanette Tournillon, Terry Blair, Susie Howard, Agnes Ciotti, Sharon Pierce, Carla C , Russ Morgan, Brian Richmond, Elaine Kleinhenz, Jim Logue, Pat Morin, Bill Mckim, Scott Greenbaum, Linda Scrivano, Mike Walter, Ed Suscreba, Tim And Nancy Johansen, Patty Carty, Marsha Waidelich, Ruben O'meara, Heidi Goodhue, Phyllis, Brendan Abel, Deb Ragno, Team Hill, Colette Stanton, Curtis Bille, Josh Stern, Rob Csenar, Beth Gandy, Jennifer, Mike Pinkosky, Leigh Kenney, Ashley P. , Richelle O'neil, Hilary P, Shari Sand, Buffy Super, Heidi Garvin, Nick Cristea, Kathleen Glovna, Amanda Campbell, Tami H., Jon Landis, Pam Manseau, Jenny Brennan, Jim Verdi, Maureen Handy, Debbie Desimone, Kathy N Brooke, Tim Miller, Maryann Eckenrode, Sheryl Hicks, Alycia Dias, Ellen Sullivan, Amber P, Carol Collins, Mary Virginia Clause, Carol Collins, Al Desimonea, Chad, Lana, Lisa Purcell, Brittany Jaynes, Kelly Sroka, Diane Furtado, Brad Magaha, Jen Arabian, Stephanie Peterson, Patty Norman, Paul Moore, Pat Schwier, Lauren Holcomb, Chris Kelly, Sharon Powell, Trish Roam, Jason Hocker, Chuck Fitzgerald, Tessa Flanagan, Scott Mitchell, The Fosbender's, Suzanne Baker, Gina Shaw, Denise Mcculley, Meghan Gleason-vollmer, Lori Lavery, Matthew Jadro, Patty Newton, Paul Gera, Pat Schwier, Karen Adamakis, Jen Cerce, Julie Gilliard , Chris Nichols, Jennifer Shelor, Donna Hall, Trish Roam, Joy Laughlin, Kit Carlson, Lynda Abiuso, Sarah Patin, Daniel Meagher, Claudette Laferriere, Rex Biederman, Jennifer Starling, Debbie Conn, Theresa Lucotti, Double Family, Mandy Cox, Laurie Murray, Jason & Melinda Lenz , Double Family, Aliceinwdw, Lindsay Coram, Erin Hammer, Richey Family, Jenny Crook, Lee Deroia, Liz Mckinnell, Mike Haven, Rebecca Smith, Linda Bowles, Stefanie Hendley, Dawn Bach, Dawn Bach, Angel Diven, Diane Marie Kellogg, Jennifer Tayman, Laura W, Rachel Daloia, Les Stewart, Lou Ann Davis, Jessica Gruhlke, Tinkerbell Wells, Axel Beer, Angie Grimes, Toni Paul, Kathy Roark, Lynette Michalos, Jack Lynch, Chris Horne, Tina Moriarty, Kev Marriott , Kevin Jones, Evonne Ciccone, Louise Barton, Amiee Augustine, Jason L, Craig, Tiffaay Gibb, Bill Schmid, Anne H, Peg Readinger, Lisa Giles, Donna Begley, Belicia Cullen, Liz Moreau , Scott Cullen, Donna Begley, Paul Sankey, Brian Bell, Pollyanna Buff, Melissa Such, Bob Ruer, Robert Wescovich, Jodi Lupp, Cathy Derecola, Sharynne Smith, Jonathan Ward, Mary Akers, Heather Lester, Jim Kapps, Steve And Ruby Jordan, Herb Miller, Janet T Thorn, Denisse Vadell, April Roche, Michelle Darabaris, Kim Skanes, Gerald Skanes, Andrea Kruszewski, Maria, Diane Emberton, Mark Schmidt, Mary Ellen Sarna, Tara Linz, Joan Smith, Lisa Mckenzie, Erick Jauregui, Dawn Farganus, Laura Melton, Jeffrey Howell, Heather Patrick, Emily Hudson, Neil Van Dyke, Lee Anastasi, Morag Lemon, Jessica Iglesias, Cheryl Costello, Dana Wayne, Mandy Clarke, Donna Buechele, Marie Vanacore, Gabriella, Terry And Matthieu, Chris Peyton, Randy Look, Jim Vandenberghe, Amy Urton, Anne Beebe, Karen Blunk, Mike Haeberl, Kathleen Heintz, Sisk Family, Kristy R, Katie Buck, Annie Niece, Annie Snodgrass, Michele Smith, Sandy Frank, Desiree Denker, Dave Freemyer, Judy Simonsen, Gina Falzone, The Parker Family, Mary Kay Samluk, Mary Kay Samluk, Fishman Family, Scott Precise, Vanessa Stjohn, Paul Knott, Kara Cummings , Brandon Emerson , Lyn Johnson, Nicole Amidon, Julie Signor, Celi , Hunter Armstrong, Dave Wang, Lorine Landon, Al Ganter, The Garofalos, Mike Malampy, Allison Forson, Patti Gumiela, Bryan Kruse, Joe Scanlon, Karen Marsich, Gemma Cooke And Michael Cooke, Laura V., Valerie Nance, Timberly Aymond, Timberly Aymond, Chuck Sands, Tina Santacroce , The Gunnels Family, Donald Leblanc, Jennifer Harmon, Craig Tripp, Jen Spruill, Imani Jackson, Becky Norman, Traci Burgess, Michelle Raimist, Beth Mcmeekin, John Dalby, Suzanne Renfroe, Kyle Burgess, Megan Krainski, Matt Hanlon, Jen Tremley, Hannah B, Josette Gabel, Mike & Jackie Mclucas, Virginia Pierce, Kerry Touloumis, Kerry Touloumis, Margaret Erath, Sarah, Barbara Ajak , Art Hutchinson, Chris, Gretchen, And Katie Barnes, Kevin Scott, Jennifer Genovese, Jacquelyn Law, Sue Hunsicker, Pam Vanaustin, Lorraine Higgins , Heather Capron-stantial, Karen Ramirez, James Steele, Ken Jackson, Joni Elmore, Kathy Morris, Andrew Eckert, Deborah Falvo, Melanie Kolacy, Paul Silagyi, Jenelle Pape, Nan Amor, Deb Yurkanin, Allyson Genereux, Deb Yurkanin, Trina Noggle, Joe Armeni, Tracey Horan, Kevin Scott, Stefan Owens, Mary Graham, Marlene, Olszak Family, Rhonda Tomlinson, Chloe Mayhew, Stefanie Vandiver, Matt Petty, Robert Graham, Robin Robinson , Jill Berg, The Kertes Family, Chris Thacker, Mike O'brien, Ryan Mccorristin, Dawn Miller, Morgan M., Greg Welch, Carynschill, Susan Tadlock, Christina, Tim Jeltes, Lisa Bohannon, Lisa Dalrymple, Fonda Nass, Maggie Klotz, Rob Hepler, Craig Livingston, Dee Dee Kenney, Kathleen Bast, Leach Family, Robin Fitts, Janine Maravgilia, John Sheridan, Candice Grimes, Will Gates, Brian Mcwithey, Amy Filliben, Melissa Calhoun, John Bickers, Jeff Oyler, Jeremy Hardy, The Tisdale Family, Carol Gamill, Ruth Woodhouse, Tom Koval, Jill Merten, Sandie Albrecht, Derek Carty, Gina Smith, Danielle Rennicks, Ashley Collins, Gail States, The Emich Family, Jaime Stecker, Bill Cudney , Mary Ann Lamay, Mary Ann Lamay, Tom Buck, Ginni Mc Combe, Bruce Hinterleitner, Hobbes And Snorky, Mike Amor, Elizabeth And Jennifer Geno, Sherri Pell , Pecosace, Diane Curfman, David Lothschutz, Diane Butler, Linda College, Sara Holloway, Helen Amer, Erica Slomka, Kody And Julie Rider, Bruce Nash, Jill, Ainsley Poe, Julia Wickware, Natalie Covey, Natalie Covey, Phil Vickers, Amber Slifer, Mickey Eckert, Linda Kasych, Colleen Didonato, Rhondamaclean, Vera Dercole, Barbara Remele, Steve Morin, Paul Dickson, Nicki Joseph, Paula Barnes, Teala Van De Ven, Michelle Striegel, K Beasley, Mickey0216, Kristen Duffey, Demetrios Makres, Cindy Pink, Elizabeth, William And Vicki Edwards, Sharon P, Brenda H, Krista Serpi, Karen Schlumpf, Ralph Chamberlain, The Scimeca Family, Karen Withstandley, Sarah Calvario, Kim Patton, Rebekah Anguish, Buffie Harper, Ashley Hill, Cheryl Chambers, Ed Hogan, Brandie Baughman, Ashley Martz, Donna Currier, Mary Finkle, Larry Sprenkle, Deb Gallo, Mike Mondoux, Matt Wildey , Josh Weiss, Lynnette Feltner, Sarah Goulding, Jennifer Townsend, Jodi Vallaster, Ruth Senecal, Kirsten Miller, Linda Lundsten, Blake Schmidt , Tyler Otts, Erica Sipich, Kristyn Scibienski, Kirk Hardy, Jeff Schoeling, Susan Higginbotham, Tim Keenan, Vanessa Gordon, Evald Olson, Carolyn Como, Michelle Runion, Doug Olson Family, Luis Rodriguez, Patti Mccaffrey, Christie Linard, Chris Connelly, Daniel Record, Katie Bray, Chris Thomas, Sandy Miller, James Moore, Karen Costa, Kerri Coggins, Eva Mayhew, Wayne Chadourne, Regina May, Renee Hardiman, Bethany Angermaier, Kameo Crea, Jen Snook, Melissa Littman, Jim Nitschke, Kim Riley, Dwayne Fontenot, Michael Gombeda, Billie Jean Albolino, Theresa Maradei, Kelly Frasca, Cheryl Hollingsworth, L Dean, Jeff Blank, Trish Roam, Nigel Mcquire (wales Uk), Michelle Holquist, The Frisbee Family, Carla Nale, Lindsay Koren, Kathy Love, Bob Patterson, Brian Gallant, Sarah And Chris, The Patterson Family, Ken Clark, Karen Spreitzer, Jodi Cook, Kathy Huckabee, Dallas Hamilton, Santiago, Kevin Parmeland, Melodi Clark, Nancy Crossman, Kerri Kobylka, Judy, Chris Bauman, Rebecca Keenan, Paul Ignudo Jr., Jeremy Reichelt, Andrew Pettit, Michael Dale Pennington, Alexandra Flannigan, Joseline Hernandez, Karen Kenney, Paul Newbiggin, Angela Breeden, Sheri S., Deb Stluka, Vicki Merry, Jennifer Chartier, Tricia Noble, Michelle Kuijer, Anastasia Macneil, Shannon Wright, Sara Alalimo, Fran Rendulic, Melody Odonnell, Cameron Lange, Mary Greger, Chuck Everson, Chris Bruce, George Mundy Jr, Beth Josuweit, Terry Fleming, Jenn Steele, Josh Carney, Linda Mixdorf, The Hutchinson Family, Karrie Duffey, Scott Mcbride, Andrew Carrieri, Ron Harper, Maja Kodani, Scott Sangston, Marie Seilus, Kelly Smith, Dayna Guay, Vicki Britt, Patty Sammis, Kate Kozlowski, Andy Schumacher, Tracy Discher, Michelle Wilinski, The Holmes Family, Kerrie Hogan, Jan Rosato, Kat Curtis, Michelle Palazzo, Brandy Ehrke, Bonnie Cummings, Mike M., Allison Caputa, Caitlin Lewis, The Reichl Family, Fred Shakeshaft, Carri Marotto, Nathaniel Clements, Duskin Henard, Jeff Finger, Eric Enli , Alison Rosenberger, Terry W., Heather Pedulla, Whitney M, Ken Maikowski, Karen Bellamy, Randy Thomas, Marilyn C, Jim Finley, Wayne Witherspoon, Wade A. Williams, Rosanne Williams, Vicki Shearman, Schuyler Etheridge, Marty Martin, Cathy Connors, Gloria Martin, Michelle B. , Craig Palmer, Antoinette Leblanc, Hayden May, Mark May, Kathryn Perkins , Shelby Watson, Susan Doucette, Rita Henderson, Steve Knapp, Elizabeth Ostrowski, Mike Gillardi, Davida, Kate Fischer, Patrick Broaddus, Denise Finkle, Don Fedor, Matt Holley, Jeff & Cheryl Simmons, Kathy Sinniger, Chuck Reid, Maryann Romagnano, Cynthia Stinson, Team Meeker, Lori Rienhardt, Smitty, Sonya A., Mark Franklin, Kim Paulakos, Kris Blamphin, Ronald Delorey, John Foggo, Suzanne Denham, Kim Wolfe, Jennifer Bogdan, Dennis Blackburn, Linda Palencar, Barb Welshhans, Amanda Garrett, Robert P. Flaherty, Angela Fennell, Vickie Scioneaux, Jackie Graebel, Lynn Lofton, David B., Walter N. Clark, Lindsay Morris, Joseph M. Zafia, David Ballard, Maryann Daly, Shirley Garcowski, Grumpy's Groupies, Tom Higbee, Christy Schor, Barclay Bakkum, Peggy Saeger, Jean Bussell, Gallagher Family, Lindsey Nozal, Dave Carriere, Matthew Earl, Stacy Guarracino, Andy Hickey, Roye Ann Morris, Terri Thornton, Robin Meredyk, Claire Gregory, Carrie Kenney, Christi Ison, Marie Vera, Gregg Mcglasson, Owen Popek, Owen Popek, Jackie Klafeta, Vera And Izzy Williams, Shannon Murray, Margie Larmon, Cheri Palmisano, Ashley Deitchler , Amy Fleming, Becky H, Betsy Dross, Matt Ciccone, Teri Michalski, Kim S., Lisa Zitek, Wendy Snelgrove, Victoria Finnegan, Bob Henriksen, Ilene, Emma Ramsey, and Laura Sponaugle. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
__________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #319 Where in the world is this?

Heading into a different park! Does anyone need to stop somewhere before we leave the Studios?
 Where in the World #319

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, February 20th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

January 23, 2014

Roping Cowboy in Disney's Hollywood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Beau Rangler roping up some young'uns on Sunset Blvd. in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Beau Rangler roping up some young'uns on Sunset Blvd.
Nikon D700/Sigma 15mm, 1/125s, f/16, ISO 720, EV 0.

Photographed a new to me Citizens of Hollywood character going by the name of Beau Rangler doing some fancy roping tricks on Sunset Blvd. in Disney's Hollywood Studios. The kids did not seem to mind. Anyone know this guy's story? I had to skedaddle to a galaxy far, far away before I could talk to him.

A sunny scene for the Disney Pic of the Week on Disney's Hollywood Studios.

January 3, 2014

Best of Walt Disney World in 2013

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

After visiting Disneyland in September, I had two trips to Walt Disney World in October and December. The first was a family vacation where I photographed while touring the parks. The other was a planned couple of days photographing with other Disney fan photographers. Both trips were fun, enjoyable and presented new challenges and experiences in each park. Today, I am sharing with you some of the highlights from those trips.

It is exciting to see something new at Walt Disney World even if it happens every day. In all my visits, I never saw the IllumiNations barges enter Epcot's World Showcase Lagoon. When I noticed the Earth barge coming through the draw bridge, I stopped and took several photos.

IllumiNations Earth barge entering Epcot's World Showcase lagoon, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
IllumiNations Earth barge entering Epcot's World Showcase lagoon.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/250s, f/8, ISO 200, EV 0, 150mm focal length.

This was the first time I had the Fisheye lens with me at Walt Disney World. I probably used it way too much but it was a lot fun. While waiting for my ride on Rock'n'Roller Coaster, I photographed fellow guests being launched. The lens' f/2.8 aperture and a high ISO allowed me to photograph inside the dark ride.

Guests are launched at the Rock'n'Roller Coaster in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Guests are launched into the Rock'n'Roller Coaster.
Nikon D700/15mm, 1/30s, f/2.8, ISO 6400, EV 0.

Each December, Disney fan photographers always watch for Extra Magic Hours at Disney's Animal Kingdom. This allows for photographing in the park after sunset. Something that is a rarity. The bare light bulbs hanging over the path to Expedition EVEREST made for good foreground interest to the Forbidden Mountain. By using a small aperture of f/22, the small light sources became small starbursts. I waited for Blue Hour, the time between sunset and full night, to give it a magical light.

Blue hour at Expedition EVEREST in Disney's Animal Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Blue hour at Expedition EVEREST.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 2.5s, f/22, ISO 200, EV 0, 92mm focal length, tripod.

After Blue Hour in Disney's Animal Kingdom, I traveled to the Magic Kingdom to take advantage of its late night closing. Putting the Fisheye lens back on my camera, I photographed the lights and movement of the park. Fantasyland's Mad Tea Party is colorful and full of motion when using a long exposure and tripod to photograph it.

Mad Tea Party tea cups whiz around at night in the Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Mad Tea Party tea cups whiz around at night.
Nikon D700/15mm, 10s, f/5, ISO 200, EV 0, tripod.

These are my favorites from this year's trips to Walt Disney World. Here's to even more in 2014. Do you have any favorites from the past year?

December 15, 2013

Where in the World #310

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

This is it, Players. It's Friday night and I leave Disney World tomorrow morning. You know how well I'm handling it:
From Millan.Net From Millan.Net From Millan.Net

From last week: Challenge #309:
 Where in the World #309

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © Erin Blackwell

The courtyard of the Grauman's Chinese Theatre housing The Great Movie Ride at Disney's Hollywood Studios.

You players amaze me. I can't believe so many of you knew this!

Jennifer Rowell, you nailed it! See? I knew you could do it. Jeff Blank, wow! What a great answer!

Kristi Strembicki was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Kristi and all our winners this week! Donna Frank, Paul Dickson, Jim & Lorie Sonnen, Kerri Coggins, The Kahle Family, The Gunnels Family, Susan Hammond, Amanda Campbell, Shannon Savoia, Meghan Gleason-vollmer, Jim Vandenberghe , Scott Greenbaum, Zach Szymko, Colette Stanton , Gabriella, Terry And Matthieu, Tina Santacroce, Rhonda Tomlinson, Rob Jacob, Theresa Lucotti, Paul Scimeca, Andrea Kruszewski, Maryann Eckenrode, Pam Vanaustin, Tim Johansen, Maggie Klotz, Carolyn Como, Lee Deroia, Patti Gumiela, Zachary Falcone, Chuck Sands, Craig, Joy Laughlin, Jeff Blank, Scott Cullen, Belicia Cullen, Robert Wescovich, Dallas Hamilton, Jeremy Reichelt, Matt Reed, Janet T Thorn, Anastasia Macneil, Jennifer Rowell, Wade A. Williams, Linda Bowles, Smitty, Emily Hudson, Doug Olson Family, Randy Thomas, Carol Ney, Linda Ranatza, Carol Ney, Amy P, Rob Blundin, Marguerite Garofalo, Chris, Gretchen And Katie Barnes, and Nan Amor. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #310 Where in the world is this?

We're going to another park. I think this one is tougher.
 Where in the World #310

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, December 19th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

December 6, 2013

Starburst photography in Disney's Hollywood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

One of the first things beginner photographers are told is NOT to photograph towards the Sun. For the most part it is good advice and shooting into the Sun should be avoided. Yet, if done right, putting the Sun or any bright light source like street lights in your compositions can work.

The first thing you need to do is balance out the large light to dark difference. You can do it a couple of ways. Often I will use flash to fill in the shadows. Another way is to use High Dynamic Range (HDR) techniques to capture the large range of light from dark to light using multiple exposures and then blend them into a single image. The latter is the technique I used below of an antique car in Disney's Hollywood Studios. The last tip is to step down your aperture to f/16 or smaller. This will create a starburst effect on bright objects in the frame. In the photo below, the Sun and reflection off the hood are examples of starbursts.

Sun shines on a past star parked off of Sunset Blvd. in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Sun shines on a past star parked off of Sunset Blvd.
Nikon D700/15mm, f/16, ISO 200, EV 0, HDR Image.

Wide angle and fisheye lenses are well suited for this kind of photography but any lens stopped down can create starbursts. Bring a little star power to your photography with this technique.

December 1, 2013

Where in the World #308

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

I'm on my way to Walt Disney World! So is Annie Snodgrass!

Annie, I hope we bump into each other! I don't know if your boyfriend will be so keen about it after what I said last week. From Millan.Net

Cindy Pink is going on a Disney cruise soon which rounds out her year of "All Four": Disneyland, Aulani, Walt Disney World, and now Disney Cruise Line. Whoa! What an amazing year, Cindy!

Mary Beth Tarbet, Dave Carriere, and Dave & Sandy Kanigowski, thank you so much for your wonderful notes! I really appreciate them.

From last week: Challenge #307:
 Where in the World #307

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © Erin Blackwell

The Carthay Circle Theatre in Disney's Hollywood Studios, holding the Once Upon a Time store.

The real theater in Hollywood was the first to show Skeleton Dance, showed the early Mickey Mouse cartoons before feature films, then later held the premier of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. It was one of 13 theaters to be fitted with the full Fantasound equipment for the road show premiere of Fantasia and even gave tours to patrons to show how the ground breaking sound system work. It's no wonder this is just one of the tributes to this wonderful place in Disney's Hollywood Studios!

Kris Nixon was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Kris and all our winners this week! Kristi Strembicki, Daniel Record, Jim & Lorie Sonnen, Chuck Sands, The Gunnels Family, Phil Vickers, Belicia Cullen, Scott Cullen, Mary Beth Tarbet, Ed Elder, Andrew Carrieri, Sharon Pierce, Lori Elias, Paula Massarelli, Scott Greenbaum, Ed Krol, Elaine Kleinhenz, Timberly Aymond, Jenny Brennan, The Kertes Family, Hayley Valk, Tina Santacroce, Zach Szymko, Kara Cummings, Brian Miller, John Mahoney, Colette Stanton , Gina Shaw, Carol Ney, Theresa Lucotti, Tina Powell, Bruce Jones, Theresa Rucando, Joe Calomeni, Kathy Morris, Theresa Rucando, Dave Freemyer, Sandie Albrecht, Melissa Such, Leigh Mertz, Liz Slevin, Paul Dickson, Dawn Bach, Tracey Thomas , Aimee Leblanc, Dawn Zatorski, Paul Scimeca, Mike Walter, Tricia Petty , Kelly Deleon, Dave Cole, Laura V., Rhonda Tomlinson, Jennifer Page, Lee Anastasi, Stuart Hale, Vicki Britt, Russ Buckingham, The Emich Family, Michelle Norris, Paul Knott, The Young Family, England, Deb Ragno, Phyllis, Amanda Campbell, Rob And April - Team Vanderpool, Michael Frisbee, Team Hill, Betsy Silvestri, Gina Smith, Mary Clark, Tommy Montgomery, Maggie Klotz, Cheryl Costello, Rob Blundin, Emily Hudson, Louise Barton, Maureen Handy, Jessica Raposa, Suzanne Sevier, Mickey Eckert, Tim Johansen, Gabriella, Terry And Matthieu, Kerry A., Donna Buechle, Craig, Marie Summers, Ruben O'meara, Jada Smith, Joann Albrecht, Patty Carty, Elizabeth And Dan Johnston, Chris Kelly, Mary Ann Lamay, Eric Enli, James Steele, Michelle Striegel, Leach Family, Hobbes And Snorky, Leach Family, Wayne Beck, Andrea Kruszewski, Pam Vanaustin, Ashley Collins, Leslie Dean, Jonathan Ward, John & Rhonda Nottell, Nicolle Clement, Judy Simonsen, Irene Ng, Chris, Gretchen, And Katie Barnes, Jason L, Vera And Izzy Williams, Michelle Darabaris, Len Darabaris, Bruce Hinterleitner, Heather Pedulla, Linda Ranatza, Pat Schwier, Cindy Pink, Kerry Mccaffrey, Andrew Popek, Amanda Woods, Gerald Skanes, The Pearsall Family, Morgan M, Cassandra Newton, Susan Fuger, Kim Skanes, The Parker Family (actually Nikki), Steve Morin, Tommy And Karlene Farley, Jason Hocker, Katie Bray, Claire Gregory, Jim Finley, Maryann Romagnano, Maranda & Chris Nichols, Kirsten Miller, Jeff Blank, Kerri Coggins, Elizabeth Salcido, Bob Patterson, Shelly Borella, Sarah Thomas, Karrie Duffey, Alison Rosenberger, Kelly Smith, Rebecca Keenan, Annie Snodgrass, Erin Hammer, Sara Holloway, Tricia Noble, Maja K., Barclay Bakkum, Terry Fleming, Matt Holley, Melissa Littman, Anastasia Macneil, Marie Phillips, The Patterson Family, Team Meeker, Rita Garcia, Matthew Jadro, Dave Carriere, Herb Miller, Karen Bellamy, Alan Mize, Kameo Crea, Kay Egan, Wendy Palmquist, Ron Harper, Duskin Henard, Nicole Benoit, Gail States, Chloe Mayhew, Vanessa Gordon, Mike Hulse, Art Hutchinson, Water N. Clark, Jan Rosato , Heidi Goodhue, Evald Olson, Hunter Armstrong, Jenny Stoneburner, Brian Grabowski, Erin Loring, Dennis Loring, George Mundy Jr, Nan Amor, Les Stewart, Robert P. Flaherty, Joseph M. Zafia, Logan Gravitt, Mark Proper, Jennifer Mercier, Karen Schlumpf, Cary Burke, Patti Mccaffrey, Smitty, Sophia Clifton, Peggy Saeger, Hillary Waldroop, John Pasqueralli, Dave & Sandy Kanigowski, Jane Johnson, and Beth Olliges. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.

Hey, kids! Do you know what time it is? Time to announce the November winner. It's Patti Mccaffrey! Patti, you'll be getting a prize from Deb Wills: Congratulations!
_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #308 Where in the world is this?

We're still in the parks, Players. Do you know who this is?
 Where in the World #308

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, December 5th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

November 10, 2013

Where in the World #305

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

Monday marks Remembrance Day in Canada and Veterans Day in the US. Thank you to everyone who has served their nations; we are in your debt.

As for our Players, Patrick Broaddus is headed for Disney! I think we missed him but just in case, wave and wish him Bon Voyage!
From Millan.Net

Tom Buck, that's a fun Walt Disney World trivia game you have! Who's the best at it? Quick, three things from Disney's Animal Kingdom starting with R!

From last week: Challenge #304:
 Where in the World #304

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © Erin Blackwell

The classic 1939 Ford delivery truck for Sid Cahuenga's One-of-a-Kind Antiques and Curios in Disney's Hollywood Studios! This wonderful store is on the left hand side when you enter the park, across from Oscar's. I'm like a lot of you: I love looking around in here!

Michelle Norris was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Michelle and all our winners this week! Bruce Jones, Hillary Waldroop, Linda Newsom, Jackie Howland, Axel Beer, Kathy Morris, Mark Deroia , Craig, Maureen Handy, Barbara Cramer, Ed Krol, Gabriella, Terry And Matthieu, Maggie Klotz, Heather Cook, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Mark Brown, Michele Lindemann, Tanya Thomas, Colette Stanton , Andrew Carrieri, Carla C, Linda Ranatza, Nicole Shuler, Ellen Sullivan, Lori, Phyllis, Carol Ney, Paul Dickson, Ed Suscreba, Team Hill, Melissa Such, Wendy Beaudoin, Kevin Miller, Betsy Silvestri, Audra Miller, Kye Layton, Janet T Thorn, Mike Walter, Cheryl Costello, Kristi Strembicki, Scott Greenbaum, Donna Frank, Ruben O'meara, Belicia Cullen, Kris Nixon, Phil Vickers, Scott Cullen, Chris & Amanda Nichols, Sharon Emich, Jason Hocker, Bob Patterson, Tommy Montgomery, Mary Beth Tarbet, Chris Horne, The Kertes Family, Rex Biederman, Rita Garcia, Tricia Petty, Carolyn Como, Michelle Norris, Liz Moreau, Carrie Ross, Jennifer Walker, Rosanna Bowser, Jack Lynch, Melissa Rymer, Tinkerbell Wells, Jennifer Harmon , Mike Haven, Dee Dee Kenney, James T. Hickey, Amy Schweizer, Jennifer Nencka, Chris Kelly, Sharon Pierce, The Malesky Family, Steve Goodman, Gina Shaw, Pam Vanaustin, Russ Morgan, Joe Hanson, Kathy Rubin, Sabrina Allen, Gerald Skanes, Wendy Barney, James Steele, Melissa Mcginnis, Brian Miller, Rob Blundin, Andrea Kruszewski, Jen Morace, Jennifer Rowell, Leslie Gilder, Clay Anthony, Dylan Weidner, Jim & Lorie Sonnen, Pat Schwier, Laura V., Kirsten Miller, Hobbes And Snorky, Robert Wescovich, Dave Kanigowski, Sandy Kanigowski, Rob Hepler, Wayne Beck, Luis Rodriguez, Ainsley Poe, Mike Haeberle, Julie Wickware, Owen Popek, Emma Poprock, Cheryl Chambers, Stuart Hale, Michelledarabaris, Leach Family, Len Darabaris, Randi Balch, Mike Mondoux , Matt C., Daniel Mills, Jeff Blank, Phoebe, Duskin Henard, Cathy Connors, Andrew Pettit, Paul Ignudo Jr, Chloe Mayhew, Alison Rosenberger, Kate Fischer, Josh Carney, Karrie Duffey, Shelly Borella, Abigail Grasso, Anastasia Macneil, Chris Bauman, Alan Mize, Matt Holley, Beth Josuweit, Sandy Miller, Tricia Noble, Maryann Romagnano, Carri Marotto, Curtis Bille, Brian Gallant, Matthew Jadro, Rebecca Keenan, Melissa Littman, Jan Rosato, Ron Harper, Rapunzel, Art Hutchinson, Tom Buck, Betsy Dross, Penny Urell, Jeffrey Dunne, Daniel Record, Vera And Izzy Williams, Kerry Mccaffrey, Les Stewart, Brian Mcwithey, John Menjes, Claire Gregory, Lisa Pinder, John Pasqueralli, Louise Barton, Vicki Britt, Fran Rendulic, Nancy Cole, Karen Smith, The Hutchinson Family, Heather Pedulla, Patti Mccaffrey, Clare S, Jane Johnson, Team Bonnie Sue, George Mundy Jr, Tom Higbee, Gallagher Family, Amy Filliben, Sherri Pell, Peggy Saeger, and Agnes Ciotti. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #305 Where in the world is this?

Where in another park. Who or what is this?
 Where in the World #305

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, November 14th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

November 8, 2013

Fisheyed Disney

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

A fisheye lens is an ultra-ultra wide-angle lens that produces strong visual distortion intended to create a wide panoramic or hemispherical image. Fisheye lenses achieve extremely wide angles of view by forgoing producing images with straight lines of perspective (rectilinear images), opting instead for a special mapping (for example: equisolid angle), which gives images a characteristic convex non-rectilinear appearance (Source: Wikipedia).

Did you get all that? Fisheyes have been a favorite fun lens for Disney photographers for years. The lens, as the above definition says in a round about, distorts straight lines near the edges. That effect can ruin a photo unless used creatively. Earlier this year, I obtained a Sigma 15mm Fisheye lens for my Nikon D700 FX (full frame) dSLR camera. Last week, I used it at Walt Disney World for the first time. Let's see how I did.

I look for three conditions when I am shooting with a Fisheye lens:

1. Compositions with curved or circular objects which wrap around the image.
2. Put something of interest in the center and let straight lines get bent to lead people to the frame's center.
3. When a Fisheye is the only way to get far enough away from a subject to photograph it in cramped quarters (like a ride queue).

The huge red guitar outside of the building containing the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster in Disney's Hollywood Studios was a perfect subject for a Fisheye composition. The curves of the piano keys, guitar, palm trees and even the railing all work to create the uniqueness of a Fisheye photograph. You will also notice how close I got. I was learning over the railing to get as close to those piano keys as I could. Just like any wide angle lens, you want to get as close to the main subject as you can. It is easy to loose a subject in the extreme wide angle of a Fisheye and make a photo confusing.

Rock 'n' Roller Coaster building in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Rock 'n' Roller Coaster building in Disney's Hollywood Studio.
Nikon D700/Sigma 15mm, 1/640s, f/13, ISO 200, EV 0.

With the Bust of Walt Disney at the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences in Disney's Hollywood Studios, I got in real close and let the Fisheye distort all the straight lines of the nearby celebrity busts, palm trees, lines in the pavement and building. Notice how the bust itself is relatively distortion free.

Bust of Walt Disney at the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Bust of Walt Disney at the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.
Nikon D700/Sigma 15mm, 1/250s, f/8, ISO 200, EV 0.

In the Test Track queue where you can use the giant touch screens to design cars, it is really tight quarters for even a wide angle lens. The Fisheye worked great to tell the story of how Disney entertains and educates even while waiting in line.

A young woman designing a car in the queue for Test Track in Epcot's Future World, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
A young woman designing a car in the queue for Test Track.
Nikon D700/Sigma 15mm, 1/50s, f/2.8, ISO 3200, EV 0.

You will see more Fisheye photos in the future as I found it a fun and useful lens to have in Disney themeparks.

October 22, 2013

Disney Pic of the Week: Animation Courtyard

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

The Archway for the Animation Courtyard in Disney's Hollywood Studios reminds me of the old Hollywood Movie Lot entrances from the 1920's, 30's and 40's. Large, colorful and ornate structures to give an air of importance to the film industry. That bigger than life feeling the Studios of back then and today try to give their audiences.

Upon walking through the Animation Courtyard archway, you can visit the Disney TV stars in Disney Junior Live!, be immersed under the sea in the Voyage of the Little Mermaid or learn how animated features are brought to the screen in The Magic of Disney Animation.

Archway into the Animation Courtyard in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Archway into the Animation Courtyard.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/60s, f/16, ISO 720, EV +0.3, 82mm focal length.

Lisa will be here on Thursday to share her Disney Pic of the Week about the Animation Courtyard.

October 6, 2013

Where in the World #300

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

Belated Happy Birthday to Karen Ramirez!
From Millan.Net

Mary Beth Tarbet and her family just got back from Disney and you know what that means: post-Disney blues. Here's the Disney bear of comfort, Mary Beth.
From Millan.Net

Thank you so much to The Gunnels Family for your wonderful note!

Jennifer Rowell and Craig researched the UK phone boxes some more. With their work and the Players who contacted me about it last week, I'm going to call them tomorrow and see what happens!

From last week: Challenge #299:
 Where in the World #299

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © 2013 Erin Blackwell

Susan & Mike Hill explained this very well: “This is a picture of Mona Lisa goes Hollywood at the Mama Melroses's Ristorante Italiano in the Disney Hollywood Studios.” Dave & Sandy Kanigowski, Deb Ragno and The O'meara Family add, “Mama Melrose's Ristorante Italiano, where Italy meets California in the heart of the Backlot.” Thank you, guys!

Mangia, mangia is right, Chris Kelly!

OOO, Kerri Coggins has reservations there in 2 weeks! Jim Finley will be down there too. Bring me back something!

To Tinkerbell Wells, Grumpy and Dopey: Hobbes And Snorky want you to know they're thinking of you and say:
From Millan.Net

Kris Nixon were the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Kris and all our winners this week! Phyllis, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Linda Ranatza, Chris Nichols, Jennifer Rowell, Carol Ney, Team Hill, Paul Dickson, Cheryl Chambers, Hillary Waldroop, Kertes Family, Mary Beth Tarbet, Maggie Klotz, Rob Blundin, Michelle Bullas, Kate Flanagan, Karen Williamson, Kye Layton, Karen Ramirez, Pat Schwier, Jennifer Harmon, Kristyn Scibienski, Madison Sisk, Melissa Such, Dee Dee Kenney, Cheryl Costello, Sheryl Hicks, Claire Gregory, Colette Stanton , Hayley Valk, Paul Knott, Mary Ann Lamay, Frank Shin, Stephanie Visco, Jeff Robertson, Janet T Thorn, The Fosbender's, Nicole Dobosh, Nicholas Monitto, Kathleen Thornton, Harrison Sisk, Joann Albrecht, Noelle Dingeldein, Elizabeth And Vicki Edwards, Kate Nejman, Elizabeth And Vicki Edwards, Hobbes And Snorky, Kristi Strembicki, Daniel Cortez, Beckner Family, Lee Anastasi, Jonathan Ward, Millie Tenreiro, Deb Ragno, The O'meara Family, Betsy Silvestri, Kathy Morris, Keith Rogers, Nathan York , Donna Frank, Wendy Beaudoin, The Malesky Family, Tricia Petty, Megan Krainski, Gabriella, Terry And Matthieu, Chris Kelly, Lynette Michalos, Elaine Kleinhenz, James Steele, Heather Sabatino, Jen Cerce, Michelle Raimist, Tinkerbell Wells, Agnes Ciotti, Maureen Handy, Julie Wickware, Lisa Zitek, Pam Vanaustin, Paul Moore, Kevin Miller, Audra Miller, The Parker Family, Linda Scrivano, Robert Wescovich, Josh Carney, Stephanie Newell, Jeremy Hardy, Chris Yesutiss, Ashley Collins, Amy Filliben, Kerri Coggins, Diane Curfman, Chris, Gretchen, And Katie Barnes, Dan And Elizabeth Johnston, Patti Mccaffrey, Erin Connell, Tj, Carolyn Poirier, Emily Hudson, Robert Wescovich, Joe Calomeni, Blake Schmidt, Doug Olson Family, Lauren Thomas, Scott Cullen, Belicia Cullen, Vera Williams, Jeff Blank, Jane Johnson, Schweizer Family, Duskin Henard, Jennifer Snook, Cathy Connors, Karen Davis, Dave Wang, Michelle Roth-smoot, The Patterson Family, Brian Mcwithey, Elizabeth Scarborough, Ashley P. , Anastasia Macneil, Vicki Britt, Marie Samele, Andrea Kruszewski, Dayna Guay, Karen Smith, Diane Batista, Carla C, Amy Fleming, Aimee Cox, Marcie, Chuck Sands, The Gunnels Family, Les Stewart, Jan Kettmann, Matt Degrandis, Dave Kanigowski, Sandy Kanigowski, Sharon Pierce, Alan Mize, Sara Holloway, Jim Finley, Matt Holley, Mickey Eckert, Jackie Graebel, Luis Rodriguez, Wayne Beck, George Mundy Jr, Morag Lemon, Rebecca Keenan, Cheri Palmisano, Leigh Mertz, Team Meeker, Nathaniel Clements, Theresa Rucando, Stacy Guarracino, Valerie Lunsford, Kerry A., Tom Higbee, Kirsten Miller, Ron Harper, Carla Leger, Elizabeth Goodman, and Kelly Smith. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.

That makes this a good time to do the September drawing! And the winner is: Belicia Cullen. Congratulations! Deb Wills will be sending you a prize!
_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #300 Where in the world is this?

I'm not which park, Players; I'm just saying we're in a park.
 Where in the World #300

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, October 10th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

September 8, 2013

Where in the World #296

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

Special Announcement: we welcome a new Player! Congratulations to Ed and Barbara Elder on their new son, EJ!
From Millan.Net

Bill Mckim leaves for Disney soon! Bon Voyage, Bill! Have a magical time! From Millan.Net Take us with you!

On the other hand, Lindsey Schlauderaff is going through serious Disney withdrawal. What can we do, Lindsey? Maybe a sing-a-long? Let's go with a classic. Think Jiminy Cricket, Players.

When you wish upon a star
Makes no difference who you are.
Anything your heart desires
Will come to you.

Like a bolt out of the blue
Fate steps in and sees you through.
When you wish upon a star
Your dreams come true.

From Millan.Net

Agnes Ciotti and Danielle Ciotti Harsley, thank you for the compliment on the picture of my husband & I! Of course I knew it was Harley Davidson's 10th Anniversary, Sandie Albrecht! I planned that long ago! From Millan.Net

Challenge #295:
 Where in the World #295

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © 2013 Erin Blackwell

The sign for One Man's Dream in Disney's Hollywood Studios. I put Oswald at one end and his little brother Mickey at the other. I thought it was only appropriate.

Please note: my Pal Mickey has a Walt shirt and a little Pal Mickey of his own. ;)

As so many of you said about this must see attraction to see everything we owe to the man: Thank you, Walt, for all the memories and magic. Without you, we wouldn't be here together sharing something we love so much.

Kristi Strembicki were the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Kristi and all our winners this week! Chris Masse, Jennifer Harmon, Mary Beth Tarbet, Donna Frank, Shannon Savoia, Joann Albrecht, Jennifer Rowell, Megan Krainski, Colette Stanton, Paula Massarelli, Andrea Kruszewski, Amber Penske, Barb Tucker, Lori Elias, Angie Blair, Lindsey Nozal, Jen Tremley, Carol Ney, Linda Ranatza, Kira A, Andrew Norman, Josh Etzweiler, Anne Heffentreyer, Lee Deroia, Tricia Petty, Larissa Huda, Bill Mckim, Andrew Carrieri, Wendy Beaudoin, Rob And April -team Vanderpool, Valerie Lunsford, Amy Martel, Deb Ragno, Sandie Albrecht, Tina Santacroce, Sharon Powell, Paul Dickson, Karen Ramirez, Stuart Hale, Pam Vanaustin, The Malesky Family, Ellie Argaluza, Robin Robinson, Krystal Pound, Karen Smith, Chris Kelly, Jeff Schoeling, Maureen Handy, Chris, Gretchen, And Katie Barnes, Kimi Scimeca, Kristan Bertelmann, Sandy Kanigowski, Dave Kanigowski, Scott Mcbride, Emily Hudson, Chris Nichols, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Alicia Stevenson, Agnes Ciotti, Janet T Thorn, Olga Vorontsova, Sheryl Hicks, Julie Larsen, Robert Wescovich, Terry Blair, Claire Gregory, Diane Ramos, Melissa Such, Belicia Cullen, Scott Cullen, Patti Mccaffrey, Jolynn Digiallonardo, Sharon Pierce, Katie Bray, Olivia, Brian Mcwithey, Les Stewart, Larry Sprenkle, Virginia Pierce, Josh Weiss, Jonathan Ward, Chloe Mayhew, Betsy Dross, Morag Lemon, Alan Mize, Josh Carney, Vicki Britt, Fran Rendulic, Rob Blundin, Team Hill, Timmy Saunders, Patti Deluca, Jackie Graebel, Joseph M. Zafia, Tom Higbee, Matt Holley, Lindsey Schlauderaff, Nathaniel Clements, Lynette Michalos, Patti Gumiela, Jo Ann Bailey, Barclay Bakkum, Tom Buck, Evald Olson, Cheri Palmisano, and Carla Leger. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.

_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #296 Where in the world is this?

We're staying in the parks!
 Where in the World #296

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, September 12th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

August 27, 2013

Disney Pic of the Week: Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

The Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show in the Streets of America backlot area at Disney's Hollywood Studio is an exciting, fast, adrenaline inducing live show. It is a fun and challenging to photograph with lots of fast action, jumps and stunts. Each stunt is carefully choreographed and practiced to look far more dangerous than they are. The fact that it looks so dangerous is a tribute to the men and women who put on the production each day.

Hero car jumps between vans during a performance of Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show at Disney's Hollywood Studio, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Hero car jumps between vans during a performance of Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11-16mm, 1/2000s, f/11, ISO 1400, 0 EV, 16mm Focal Length

Come back on Thursday when Lisa shares her Disney Pic of the Week for Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show.

August 22, 2013

Star Tours Queue Tower in Disney's Hollywood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Mon Calamari officers overlook the Star Tours queue in Disney's Hollywood Studios from a control tower, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Mon Calamari officers overlook the Star Tours queue from a control tower..
Nikon D700/Tokna 11-16m, 2s, f/8, ISO 800, EV 0, 16mm focal length, tripod.

Mon Calamari officers overlook the Star Tours queue in Disney's Hollywood Studios from a control tower. If you want to photograph in an empty Star Tours queue, stay late during an Extra Magic Hour night. A colorful and spacey Disney Pic of the Week for Star Tours.


August 13, 2013

Disney Pic of the Week: Cars

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

The subject this week is cars found inside the Walt Disney World resort. This is not about the movie, Cars, whose characters are seen numerous times in and around the parks. These cars are seen on display at Epcot's Test Track and around Disney's Hollywood Studios. Street performers on Main Street USA and Hollywood Boulevard often are driving around in cars of a different era.

With Chevrolet being a major sponsor at Walt Disney World, I was a little surprised to find a Yellow Ford Taxi Cab sitting on Sunset Blvd. in Disney's Hollywood Studios. To eliminate the distractions surrounding it, I got in close and focused on the emblem of the car's manufacturer.

Yellow Ford Taxi Cab parked on Sunset Blvd. in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Yellow Ford Taxi Cab parked on Sunset Blvd.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/3200s, f/5, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 32mm focal length.

Lisa will be here on Thursday to share her Disney Pic of the Week about Cars.

August 9, 2013

Details of Disney's Hollywood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Every Disney park and resort has many amazing details which help to immerse us guests into the theme of attractions, areas and entire parks. Disney's Hollywood Studios has numerous little details I am guessing many guests do not see or look for. Here are a few I found.

This golden Buddha statue is one of several found outside the Great Movie Ride reproduction facade of the Mann's Chinese Theater entrance.

One of several Buddha statues on the Great Movie Ride at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Flordia
One of several Buddha statues on the Great Movie Ride.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/80s, f/5.6, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 300mm focal length.

An Animal lobby dust pan eats up the grim and dirt left behind by guests visiting Muppet Labs to see Muppet*Vision 3-D.

Animal Lobby Dust Pan in MuppetVision 3D at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Flordia
Animal Lobby Dust Pan in Muppet*Vision 3-D.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/60s, f/3.5, ISO 5600, EV +0.3, 28mm focal length.

Fire Station No. 1 (the home of the fire truck that appears at the end of Muppet*Vision 3-D) can been seen if you look north from the entrance to Mama Melrose's Ristorante Italiano. I found it looking a bit unkempt.

Fire Station No. 1 in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Flordia
Fire Station No. 1 in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Flordia.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/125s, f/5.6, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 150mm focal length.

Figures on the Animation Courtyard Archway depicting the filming of a Hollywood Western. Maybe the Lone Ranger (wink). You will find scenes like this on either side of the archway.

Figures on the Animation Courtyard Archway in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Flordia
Figures on the Animation Courtyard Archway.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/200s, f/8, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 68mm focal length.

Next time you are walking around Disney's Hollywood Studios, look for those details Disney Imagineers have left for us to discover.

July 26, 2013

Photographing Patterns at Walt Disney World

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Patterns can be boring to look at for most people. Not to us photographers. Patterns are facinating to photograph. They are all around us once we train our brains to see them. Lots of times, we will ignore patterns and fail to see their photographic potential.

Take for instance when we browse the shops at Walt Disney World. Do you notice the photographic opportunities of the displays? Look below at the display of Disney character coffee cups. Do you see the patterns?

Disney character coffee cups on display in Beverly Sunset shop at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Disney character coffee cups pattern.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/160s, f/3.8, ISO 1800, EV +0.3, 32mm focal length.

Click here for more about photographing patterns

June 21, 2013

Photographing a Star in Disney's Hollywood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Whenever the Citizens of Hollywood set up shop in Disney's Hollywood Studios there will soon be a gathering of park guests around them. To make sure to separate the lovely and talented Evie Starlight from the people behind her, I made sure to shoot my lens wide open at f/5.6. Shooting wide open means using the largest aperture setting of a lens.

Evie Starlight is a bubbly and beautiful starlet and one of the Citizens of Hollywood performing on Sunset Blvd. in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Evie Starlight is a bubbly and beautiful starlet performing on Sunset Blvd.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/200s, f/5.6, ISO 200, EV 0, 300mm focal length,.

The result is a sharply focused starlet with the crowd befitting her status softly focused in the background.

June 16, 2013

Where in the World #284

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

All together, Players: let's hear it for the Dads! Happy Father's Day!
Happy Fathers Day
I hope you have a great day!

Guess who's birthday is on Thursday? Yes! How did you know? You guys!
From Millan.Net
to me!
Does this mean I can go back to Disney World?

Chris Masse, I am floored by your note! THANKS!

Here's Challenge #283:
Where in the World #283

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © Erin Blackwell

The guitar tuning pegs at the attraction archway for The Rock 'n' Roller Coaster, a favorite for some many of us!

Ooo, Duskin Henard! You said “bumfoozling”! From Millan.Net

Steve and Ruby Jordan was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Steve & Ruby and all our winners this week! Daniel Record, Paul Dickson, Erin Hammer, Kye Layton, Andrew Carrieri, Janet Thorn, Jen Tremley, Kristi Strembicki, Debbie Connors, The O'meara Family, Scott Cullen, C.j. Connors, Team Hill, Belicia Cullen, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Caryn Schill, Tommy Montgomery, Sharon Pierce, Tami Howerton, Christie, Dulcie Hayes, Charlie Zimmerman , Emily Hudson, Ed Hogan, Kate Flanagan, Freemyer Family, Jim Riddle, Patti Gumiela, Vicki And Elizabeth Edwards, Chris And Sarah, Jennifer Noble, Melissa Such, Tina Powell, Tricia Petty, Les Whitten, Mike Rotkiske, Yvonne Marchione, Mike Walter, Dawn Burns, Amanda Campbell, Samantha Raucci, Brendan Abel, Carolyn Lobel, Julie Signor, Paul Moore, Maggie Klotz, Ariana Stowe, Orange Bird, Stuart Hale, Nick Bentz, Angie Blair, Brian Gallant, Joe Calomeni, Malesky Family, The Moore Family, Cathy Connors, Bruce Jones, Stefan Owens, Carol Becker, Chris Kelly, Alan Mize, Megan Krainski, Kenny, Larissa Huda, Maureen Handy, Adr, Marcus Davies , Laney, Joe Mangini, Pam Vanaustin, Amy Schweizer, Ladonna Tisdale, Clay Anthony, The Kahle Family, Judy Simonsen, Rob Jacob, Claire Gregory, Eileen Miller, Jennifer Harmon, Ed Suscreba, Cynthia Hitchcock, Jim Dewalt, Rob Blundin, John & Rhonda Nottell, Andrew Swiatowicz, Gail States, Chuck Sands, Kirk Hardy, Chris, Gretchen, And Katie Barnes, Katie Wood, Brian Skinner, Julie Wickware, Vera Williams, Randi Balch, Karen Ramirez, Mike Malampy, Doug Olson Family, Gallagher Family, Bill Cudney , Carol Ney, Joe Jennings, Emma Poprock, Jeff Blank, Erika Loboda, Len Beebe, Charles Everson, Jennifer Shaw, Dallas Hamilton, Philip Badcock, Jenny Brennan, Anastasia Macneil, Wayne Witherspoon, Mike Cerce, Tricia Noble, Craig Lordan, Sandra Edwards, Chris Bauman, Russell Hamlin, Noah Schweizer, Daniel Schweizer, Kerri Coggins, Matt Holley, Mary Beth Tarbet, Terry Fleming, Anna Keene, Mackenzie D., Nancy Cole, Dick Smith, Nancy Cole, Mark Franklin, Annmarie Arlauckas, Amy Park, Kara Morton, Duskin Henard, Brooke Whitlatch, Carla Leger, Michael Gunnels, Cheri Palmisano, Randy Thomas, Amy Kleinfieldt, Matt Ciccone, Capt James K, Morgan M., Ashley Elizabeth, Mickey Eckert, Ronald Delorey, Vicki Vaught, Kris Nixon, Amber Slifer, Nicole Shuler, Les Stewart, John Pasqueralli, Sonnen's, Patti Mccaffrey, Agnes Ciotti, Tammy Kennedy, Chris Nichols, Donna Hawkins , Nathaniel Clements, The Holmes Family, Jennifer Barbour, Bill , Dwayne Fontenot, Tom Buck, Jason Skow, Heidi Goodhue, Morag Lemon, Fred Shakeshaft, Kara Cummings, Jenny Mcqueen, Elizabeth Scarborough, Jeff Brashear, Brooke Sifferman, Emily Harper, Larry Sprenkle, Kate Fischer, Melodye Berry, Dan And Elizabeth Johnston, Lindsey Nozal, Denise Cayz, Earl Wilcher, Carolyn Comp, Laura Labadie, Vicki Yarnell, and Brent Lollar. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.

_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #284 Where in the world is this?

Orange Bird said the challenges are too easy: so... everyone say it together, Players!
It's a DOUBLE CHALLENGE WEEK!

Extra tough challenge:
tough challenge

And regular Challenge #284: staying in the parks again!
 Where in the World #284

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, June 20th, by clicking on the blue box below.

Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer

_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

May 30, 2013

Echo Park Drive

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Echo Park Drive intersects with Sunset Plaza in this sign near Echo Lake in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Echo Park Drive intersects with Sunset Plaza in this sign near Echo Lake.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/125s, f/5.6, ISO 200, EV -0.3, 170mm focal length.

There are lots of things to see and do as you walk around Echo Lake in Disney's Hollywood Studios. Next time you are near Echo Lake, look for the details in the buildings and streets which border it. The street sign here is an example of the famous Disney detail and made for my Disney Pic of the Week on Echo Lake.

May 24, 2013

Star Wars Weekend Hyperspace Hoopla Photography Tips

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Star Wars Weekends have started at Disney's Hollywood Studies for this year. I had a great time there last year being swept up in the fun of the Star Wars universe of characters, actors and events. At the end of each Star Wars Weekend day is the Hyperspace Hoopla Dance Off Show at the stage in front of the Sorcerer Mickey hat on Hollywood Blvd.

NOTE: These photos were taken in 2012. Current Hyperspace Hooplas may feature different characters, dancers and storylines.

Hyperspace Hoopla during Star Wars Weekend in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Hyperspace Hoopla during Star Wars Weekend at Disney's Hollywood Studios.

The show is hosted by Snig and Oopla though Emperor Palpatine has been known to crash the party.

Hyperspace Hoopla hosts Snig and Oopla and party crasher Emperor Palpatin at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Hyperspace Hoopla hosts Snig (upper right) and Oopla with party crasher Emperor Palpatin.

The Emperor gets chanllenged to a Dance Off pitting the Dark Side against the Jedi force of good. The Emperor goes first and brings out bounty hunters Boba Fett and Aurra Sing before finally introducing the Lord Darth Vader.

Boba Fett, Darth Vader and Aurra Sing on stage at Hyperspace Hoopla in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Boba Fett, Darth Vader and Aurra Sing on stage at Hyperspace Hoopla.

Not to be outdone, Snig and Oopla bring out the Jedi forces to vanquish the Dark Side with Princess Leia, Chewbacca and Ahsoka Tano from the Clone Wars animated series.

Princess Leia, Chewbacca the Wookie and Ahsoka Tano from Clone Wars on stage at Hyperspace Hoopla in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Princess Leia, Chewbacca the Wookie and Ahsoka Tano from Clone Wars on stage at Hyperspace Hoopla.

Sometimes not even the Emperor or Snig and Oopla can keep good and evil from being tempted with each other.

Darth Vader dancing with Padme Amidala, Queen of Naboo, during Hyperspace Hoopla at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Darth Vader dancing with Padme Amidala, Queen of Naboo, during Hyperspace Hoopla.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/250s, f/5.6, ISO 6400, EV 0, 300mm focal length.

The audience determines the winner by applause and then an encore.

The encore for the show I saw featured Darth Maul in a martial arts style dance routine to close the event.

Darth Maul performin on stage during Hyperspace Hoopla at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Darth Maul performin on stage during Hyperspace Hoopla.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 11/250s, f/5.6, ISO 6400, EV 0, 135mm focal length.

Some tips for photographing the Hyperspace Hoopla:

1. If you want to be close to the stage, you should be prepared to show up 1 to 1.5 hours before it starts (consult the Star Wars Weekend Guide Map). It can be a long, hot wait on open cement in the Florida Sun. Bring bottle water to keep yourself hydrated and an umbrella for shade.

2. This is a lighted stage show and my blog post on Photographing a Disney Show will come in handy.

3. Check out the AllEars.net youTube channel for the latest Hyperspace Hoopla show:

And May the Force Be with You!

May 21, 2013

Disney Pic of the Week: Star Wars Weekends

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Since 1997, Walt Disney World has hosted special Star Wars Weekends at Disney's Hollywood Studios. Guests can meet, greet and get autographs from characters of both the movies and animated series as well as from actors and voice actors. Click the link for more information about this year's events which include parades, talk shows and the ever popular Hyperspace Hoopla which must be seen to be believed.

You never know who you might see at Disney's Hollywood Studios during the annual run of Star Wars Weekends. Too bad there were no Stormtroopers about when I took this photo. As I do believe these are the droids they were looking for in a Galaxy Far, Far Away.

C-3PO and R2-D2 visit Disney's Hollywood Studios during Star Wars Weekends, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
C-3PO and R2-D2 visit Disney's Hollywood Studios during Star Wars Weekends.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/250s, f/8, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 28mm focal length.

Lisa will be here on Thursday to share her Disney Pic of the Week on Star Wars Weekends.

May 17, 2013

Using a Super Zoom Lens at Walt Disney World

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

I am a big fan of using Super Zoom lenses on digital SLR cameras. When I travel to places like Walt Disney World, I do not want to be carrying a lot of heavy equipment. A Super Zoom lens lets me go with a small pouch which holds an extra battery, memory cards, lens cleaning cloth, flash and one extra lens, usually the 50mm f/1.8.

I have used Nikon's Super Zoom lenses on both a DX (cropped camera) and FX (full framed camera). They are the Nikon 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 AF-S VR DX Zoom and Nikon 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 AF-S VR II FX Zoom Lenses. Canon has their 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 EF-S IS Zoom Lens. Sigma and Tamron each have an 18-250mm zoom lens. All are image stablized and very versatile.

Super Zoom lenses are full of compromises. They have variable apertures and are not very fast nor are they extremely wide or long. I find they work perfectly in a place like a Disney themepark, festivals, or fairs. The following photos were all taken with a Nikon D700 FX camera and the 28-300VR lens.

For this photo of a tricycle parked near Kali River Rapids entrance in Disney's Animal Kingdom, I got in close and low using the widest focal length of the lens.

A tricycle parked near Kali River Rapids entrance in Disney's Animal Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
A tricycle parked near Kali River Rapids entrance.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/125s, f/5.6, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 25mm focal length.

Along the Pangani Forest Exploration Trail, the gorrilas, at their closest, are still far away and the reach of a super zoom lens comes in very handy.

Bachelor Gorilla on the Pangani Forest Exploration Trail in Disney's Animal Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Bachelor Gorilla on the Pangani Forest Exploration Trail.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/250s, f/5.6, ISO 160, EV 0, 300mm focal length.

The Image Stablizaton (Vibration Reduction for Nikon's) in the Super Zoom lenses work even while doing motion photography like panning at the Tomorrowland Speedway in the Magic Kingdom.

Guests speeding around the Tomorrowland Speedway in the Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Guests speeding around the Tomorrowland Speedway in the Magic Kingdom.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/15s, f/29, ISO 200, EV 0, 85mm focal length.

The verstality of the wide range of focal lengths helps to photograph scenes like this one. Space Mountain was being lighted by a late day Sun with rain clouds behind it. I really liked being able to crop in and create this composition with the spires of the ride bright lighted in front of a dark, gloomy background.

Space Mountain with rain clouds in the Magic Kingdom's Torrowland, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Spires of Space Mountain in Torrowland.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/100s, f/16, ISO 200, EV 0, 105mm focal length.

Let me repeat, Super Zooms give you a lot of compostional freedom. I envisioned this photo of the Red Hero car from Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show in Disney's Hollywood Studios knowing I was going to be seating in the VIP section of the grandstands during the show. The wide end let me get the car's reflection, the camera truck and the set behind all in the frame. Using a fast shutter speed let me freeze all the action at the right time.

Red Hero car during the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Red Hero car jumping during the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/1000s, f/5, ISO 200, EV 0, 28mm focal length.

A slight zoom on the lens from 28mm to 40mm eliminated some foreground clutter and brought the broom in closer as I photographed the Sorcerer Mickey Mouse topiary in front of Disney's Hollywood Studios' entrance.

Sorcerer Mickey Mouse topiary in front of the entrance to Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Sorcerer Mickey Mouse topiary in front of the entrance to Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, f/16, ISO 1100, EV 0, 40mm focal length, HDR Image.

Are Super Zooms the perfect travel lens? Maybe not perfect but the closest thing I have used to one.

May 12, 2013

Where in the World #279

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

Here's to all the Moms! Thank you for being there for us!
From Millan.Net

Time to wish Bon Voyage to some fellow Players! Have a wonderful Disney vacation, Susan & Mike Hill!

Stop jumping on the beds!

Susie Howard, thank you for such a wonderful note!

Cheri Palmisano, oh yeah! That DVC membership I said you won... um, I got all your documents right... in my other coat. Be right back.

Here's last week's Challenge:
 Where in the World #278

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © Erin Blackwell

Mary Beth Tarbet and Jeff Blank say it better than I do: “This week is in Hollywood Studios The Darkroom Facade which lets guests look through an aperture like window on a camera.” and “It is the Camera Lens on the Hollywood Blvd facade of The Darkroom at Disney's Hollywood Studios. I always loved how this store set the tone for the park since it is the 1st Art Deco/Streamline Moderne building you see (other than the bus stop and entry gate).”

Herb Miller's son wants to know “Why is it called that? Don't you need light to take pictures?” Want me to have the AE photographers answer that one? :)

We are stopping here on the way to Star Tours, Carolyn Como! Got to make sure we have everything to take pictures!

Noah and Daniel Schweizer, good for you for getting the answer so quickly for your mom!
Patrick Broaddus said, “ I fine the irony of this picture of a camera store from a blog all about cameras and photography completely appropriate. Thanks!”. You're welcome, Patrick! I " uh, totally intended that. Glad you caught it. :)

Chris Masse was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Chris and all our winners this week! Kristen Mccoy, Mary Beth Tarbet, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Team Hill, Tricia Petty, Sharon Pierce, Agnes Ciotti, Bruce Jones , The Strukel Family, Virginia Pierce, Louise Barton, Dave Wang, The Kahle Family , Evanna Huda, Emily Hudson, Vera Williams, Rob Jacob, Paul Knott, Laura V., Mike Rotkiske, Axel Beer, Carla C, Paul Moore, Duskin Henard, Julie Wickware, John & Rhonda Nottell, Chris Wallace, Kori Hockett, Belicia Cullen, Shannon Savoia, Susan Moeller, Scott Cullen, Gabriella, Terry And Matthieu, Steve And Ruby Jordan, Chris Kelly, Brian Miller, Misti Bonis, Kelsi, Amanda Campbell, Patty Greenberg, Patti Gumiela, Ellen Sullivan, Joe Calomeni, Maureen Handy, Traci Stocker, Stuart Hale, Maggie Klotz, Megan Krainski, Tim Johansen, Christine Rowlands, Kris Nixon, Kristi Strembicki, Daniel Record, Debbie Desimone, Al Desimone, Craig, Pam Vanaustin, Kenny, Deb & Dan Mangini, Deb Gallo, Maureen Ferreri , Beth Paczkowski, Hobbes And Snorky, Jason Hocker, Sharon Williams, Nathalie Periard, Curtis Bille, John Sheridan, Claire Gregory, Vicki And Elizabeth Edwards, Ladonna Tisdale, The Malesky Family, Pat Schwier, Dan And Elizabeth Johnston, Steve Knapp, Michaela O'brien , Caryn Schill, Kevin Miller, Audra Miller, Quincy Delcolletti, The O'meara Family, Rob Blundin, Luis Rodriguez, Stephanie Farneth, Herb Miller, Lauren Thomas, Staci Plunkett , Double Family, Heather Pedulla, Kerry Mccaffrey, Jeremy Hardy, Carolyn Como, Vicki Vaught, Katie Bray, Clay Anthony, Jeff Blank, Jackie Purcell, Chris & Amanda Nichols, Colm Broadhead , Robert Hildebrandt, Les Stewart, Lisa Zitek, Janet Thorn, Dallas Hamilton, Rob And April - Team Vanderpool, Dana, Tricia Noble, Hillary Waldroop, Barclay Bakkum, Anastasia Macneil, Ashley P. , Scott Sangston, Jeff Beauchamp, Maryann Romagnano, Shelly Borella, Becky Norman, Diana Mathis, Andrew Bentz, Shellie Bentz, Stephanie Linares, Jim Finley, Paula Massarelli, Olivia , Team Bonnie Sue, Evald Olson, Gaylene Gray, Dave Kanigowski, Sandy Kanigowski, John Menjes, Laura Labadie, Kerri Coggins, Jason Skow, Cathy Magr, Craig Lordan, Carri Marotto, Gerald Skanes, Matt Calpin, Carla Leger, Cheri Palmisano, Judy Simonsen, Holmes Family, Linda Ranatza, Carol Ney, Elaine Kleinhenz, Tom Higbee, Kim Howe, Team Meeker, Gallagher Family, Fred Shakeshaft, The Hicks Family, Alan Mize, Jen Tremley, Matt Holley, Robert Wescovich, Patrick Broaddus, Heidi Goodhue, Peter Boguszewski, Patti Mccaffrey, Noah And Daniel Schweizer (9 And 13yrs Old) , Chris, Gretchen, And Katie Barnes. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #279Where in the world is this?

Let's get a little tougher. At least, I think it's a bit tougher.
 Where in the World #279

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, May 9th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

April 26, 2013

Photographing Details at Walt Disney World

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Disney parks are known for many things. Attention to detail and incorporating detail is one of them. Focusing on the little details at a busy tourist attraction like Walt Disney World is one way to get photos which do not include people.

Taking a stroll down Sunset Blvd. in Disney's Hollywood Studios, I came upon probably the only Ford vehicle on property. It is a yellow taxi in front of the Disney Vacation Club location. I got down low and opened up my aperture wide open to selectively focus on the car's grill where the manufacturer's logo was found.

The chrome grill of a yellow texi parked on Sunset Blvd. in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
The chrome grill of a yellow texi in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/3200s, f/5, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 32mm focal length.

Another detail Disney is famous for are Hidden Mickeys which Disney Imagineers design into attractions, restaurants, resorts and just about anything. This address plaque, found in the Streets of America in Disney's Hollywood Studios, was pointed out to me by a Hidden Mickey fan.

Hidden Mickey on the Dalmation dog address plaque in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Hidden Mickey on the Dalmation dog address plaque in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/125s, f/5.6, ISO 200, EV 0, 300mm focal length.

Disney parks and resorts and most any tourist destination will have details to photograph which will add unique and interesting stories to your travel photography.

March 31, 2013

Where in the World #274

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

To all you Players who are celebrating: Happy Passover and Happy Easter!
Dayenu From Millan.Net

James Hoekzema, you saw Jim Henson at the Grand Floridian?! Wow!

Amber Slifer and Judy Simonsen, thank you for your wonderful notes!

Joy Ousterout, thank you for letting me know about the problem with your entry last week. I updated it with your name and put you in with the other winners! Just in time for your Disney trip!

Rob And April Vanderpool, I'm getting ready to go to Disney with you as we speak! Hold on: Ready! Danielle Ciotti Harsley is tiny and won't take up much space: can we stop to pick her up?

Derek Carty, I'm sorry I lowered your estimation with me. From Millan.Net

Here was last week bonus tough Challenge:
 Where in the World Difficult

And here's the answer:
 Where in the World Difficult

One of the suspensions bridges on the Nature Trails in Oasis, Disney's Animal Kingdom. Barrie Brewer wanted to test the action settings on her camera and asked me to jump up and down on the bridge. Good times. :)

Here's last week's Challenge:
 Where in the World #273

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © Barrie Brewer

It's Miss Piggy dress as the Statue of Liberty at the fountain in front of Muppets 3D! My niece always gets us together for a family photo here! A lot of you said the same. :)

Herb Miller, I don't remember the scrolling sign that said, "K-E-R Are you ready? M-I-T That's a school in Massachusetts"! Is that still there?

Morgan M, coins thrown into all the Disney fountains are donated to charities such as employees' volunteer fund, Disney's Wildlife Conservancy fund, Quest Inc, etc.

EVERYBODY got this right!

Katie Bray was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Katie and all our winners this week! Kris Nixon, Wayne Chadourne, Chris Masse, Jason Skow, Janet Stavrides, Josh K, Paul Moore, Amber , Amanda Campbell, Brian Gallant, Stacie O, Stefanie Vandiver, Kathy Ripka, Bob Patterson, Jillian Domings, Tim Jeltes, Jennifer Shaw, Anita Jodouin, Karen Hunsinger, James Steele, The Woodruff's , Mary Davis, Mary Davis, Russ Morgan, Cheryl Chambers, The Parker Family, Mike Gillardi, Ken Clark, Doug Reichl, Vickie Smialkowski, Sharynne Smith, Kevin Scott, Blake Schmidt, Kim Mobley, Duskin Henard, Robert Graham, Kerrie Hogan, Scott Allemang, Scott Allemang, Sharon Gilbert, Melesia Love, James Schmidt, Mark Craver, Melissa Such, Axel Beer, Michael Tomczyk, Amber Henry, Dianne Parker, Bettina Muscara, Jennifer Harmon, Scott Precise, Sherri Pell, Emily Hudson, Cari Richards, Liz Moreau, Clinton Dickinson, Hoekzema Family, James hoekzema, Lee Deroia, Craig Lordan, Denise, Robert Hildebrandt, Brian Mcwithey, Andrew Pettit, Vera Williams, Jeff Griffin, Brian Nale, Chloe Mayhew, Karen Davis, Jennifer Saunders, Devin Wisman, Michelle Raimist, Dawn Hartson, Kellie Harpel, Deme Grabert, Dawn Hemmert, Christian Hitzinger, Michael Rudge, Candice Grimes, Hillary Waldroop, Herb Miller, Marguerite Garofalo, Trina Noggle, Heather Sabatino, Becky Delp, Karen Costa, Kate Nejman, Annisa Martin, Janet F, Kate Fischer, Brian Grabowski, Morgan M, Dave Cole, Jim Finley, Jodi Cook, Allison Dibiase, Janet Thorn, Chris Bauman, Brandy Andrews, Lisa Zitek, Matt Holley, Josh Carney, Scott Mitchell, Shannon Savoia, Zachary Ott, Anastasia Macneil, Karrie Duffey, Brian Miller, Pam Gallagher, Brian Mickle, Dee Dee Kenney, Phil Vickers, Steve Jordan, Keri, Tricia Noble, George Mundy Jr, Steve Jordan, Traci Mills, Antoinette Leblanc, Jerry Weldon, Salvatore Mangiacapre, Deb Gallo, Patrick Broaddus, Lizanne Fisk, Judy Simonsen, Hayley Valk, Michelle Boykin, Claire Gregory, Kristen Mccoy, Tricia Petty, Jim Thompson, Maryann Eckenrode, Mary Greger, Carla Nale, Mike Walter, Michael Barker, Lisa Fronheiser, Becky Norman, Ken Maikowski, Timothy Hutchinson, Lindsey S., Chuck Everson, Karen Reitz, Theresa Rucando, Scott Sangston, Brenda, Norma Lajoie, Lori Rienhardt, Evanna Huda, Carri Marotto, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Maryann Romagnano, Rob And April - Team Vanderpool, Billie Jean Albolino, Courtney Payne, Doug Olson Family, Andrew Carrieri, Karen Hotchkiss, Rebecca Keenan, Jennifer Klek, Heather Hynes, Barclay Bakkum, Meredith Rule, Heather Friel, Jim Mcdermott, Nigel Mcquire, Mark Benton, Tim Johansen, Shelly Borella, Whitney M, Kate Kozlowski, Andrea Kruszewski, Deb Ragno, Veronica Upwood, Gerald Skanes, Mark Proper, Wendy Snelgrove, Clay Anthony, Jullie Pudem, Tinkerbellwells, Wayne Witherspoon, The Patterson Family, Chris, Linda College, Team Meeker, Nathalie Periard, Curtis Bille, Melissa Littman, Steve Knapp, Dave Freemyer, Jason Hocker, K Beasley, Al Desimone, Deb Desimone, Heather Pedulla, Kat Curtis, Caitlin Lewis, Cameron Lange, Nick Cristea, Karen Smith, Dennis, Jessica Iglesias, Matt Ciccone, Mike M., Erin Hammer, Ashley P., Diane Curfman, Olszak Family, Eric Enli, Stuart Hale, Sharon Powell, Jen Eacret, Monica Owens, Mary Beth Tarbet, Victoria T., Nathan York, Kara Cummings, Melody O'donnell, John & Rhonda Nottell, Patti Mccaffrey, Victoria Finnegan, Jen Cerce, Roger Vollmer, Lauren Thomas, Alex A, Mike Mondoux, The O'meara Family, Dave Carriere, Mike Rotkiske, Andy Schumacher, Belicia Cullen, Scott Cullen, Betsy Dross, Mickey Eckert, Mike Mondoux, Nicole Shuler, Betsy Dross, Ronald Delorey, John Pasqueralli, Sylvie, Ed Suscreba, Leach Family, Dsnymom14, Patty Carty, Mitchell Holmes, John Bickers, Becky Hosinger, Hobbes And Snorky, Kristi Strembicki, Patty Carty, Pollyanna Buff, Kris Blamphin, Sharon Dale, Ryan And Kerry A., Cindy Pink, Lynne Dunn, Tom Donnelly, Jan Rosato, Maggie Klotz, Lou Baker, Susie Howard, Zach Szymko, Brendan Abel, Joan Schroeder, Denise Castiglione, Lynette Michalos, Les Stewart, Paul Dickson, Rachel Kotwitz, Team Hill, The Perras Family, Chris Kelly, Michele Mongeon, Lorine Landon, Stefan Owens, Ladonna Tisdale, Julie And Kody Rider, Sarah Calvario, Madison Hovan, Kerry Mccaffrey, Larry Sprenkle, Annette Nuenke, Lynne Simpson, Luis Rodriguez, Bill Cudney, Kelly Cummings, Chris Schrider, Cathy Connors, Jennifer Bourg, Dwayne Fontenot, Derek Carty, Andy Hickey, Randi Balch, Theresa Maradei, Jenn Crosby, Chris, Gretchen, And Katie Barnes, Betsy Silvestri, Kathryn Perkins, The Hulse Family, Crystal Gelinas, Sue Anne Kennedy, Karen Ramirez, Cindy Rey, Bill Mckim, Les Whitten, Les Stewart, Maureen Handy, Bonnie Cummings, Carolyn Como, Sandra Edwards, Noah Schweizer, Kelli Gordon, Ainsley Poe, Jennifer Mercier, Jennifer Mercier, Diane Ramos, Rachel Hoover, John Hout, Al Sandal, Linda Grau, Elyssa H., Dan Diehm, Michelle Wilinski, Emily Watson, Michalski Girls, Sandra Loveless, Chris Kelly, Amber Slifer, Mark Franklin, Andrew Swiatowicz, Amy Scott, Double Family, Ken Rhinehart, Carrie Kwiat, Pam, Erin Dagney, Christine Dagney, Eric Holmes, David B, Brian Sherwin, Jason & Melinda Lenz, Walter N. Clark, The Emich Family, Jackie Graebel, Jo Ann Bailey, Elaine Kleinhenz, Amy Letterman, Jill Strand, Gabriella, Terry And Matthieu, Colin Sawyer, John Sheridan, Lindsay Kasawski, Screen Watson, Megan Krainski, Tom Koval, Joseph M. Zafia, Cynthia Hitchcock, Kyle Burdo, Dee Riccio, Tom Higbee, Shirley Garcowski, David Ballard, Lynn Torre, Bob Henriksen, Mackenzie D., Maryann Daly, Alan Mize, Carol Ney, Linda K. Ranatza, Emily Harper, Agnes Ciotti, Jennifer Bogdan, Erin Connell, Jeremy Mccaffrey, Linda Scrivano, Robert Wescovich, Josh Weiss, Heidi Goodhue, Tracy Discher, Karen Adamakis, Mike Haeberle, Pam Vanaustin, Angela Johnson, Vicki Edwards, Angel Diven, Ashley Hill, Robert P. Flaherty, Brent Hand, Judy Walker, Jeff Finger, Kerry Fox, Gary Bracknell, Elizabeth Johnston, Karen Genda, Joy Ousterout, Diane Batista, Gail H, Rob Blundin, Jane Johnson, Chris & Maranda Nichols, Chris Connors, Sandy Kanigowski, Dave Kanigowski, Pinder Family, John Paul Carnell, Dallas Boyer, and Jim Logue,. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
_____________________________________________________ _____________________
Challenge #274: Where in the world is this?
 Where in the World #274
Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Friday, April 4th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.
See you next week, Players!
Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

February 24, 2013

Where in the World #269

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

Susan and Mike Hill are still digging out from underneath the snow as two of our own head for Disney vacations and two are already there! So here's to Disney:

From Millan.Net Where in the World Players are here! Jennifer Rupert and Luis Rodriguez are there and Claire Gregory and Paul Moore are on their way!

Thank you to Vera Williams, Melody O'donnell, and Judy Simonsen for your wonderful notes!

Here was the challenge last week. You might remember that I said it was tougher; then 250 of you answered it right. So what do I know? :)
 Where in the World #268

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © Erin Blackwell

The office window for Eddie Valiant, Private Investigations! Right next to it is where his buddy Roger Rabbit went right through the window! Eddie's office is above the Hollywood & Vine restaurant in the Echo Lake district, Disney's Hollywood Studios.

I'm a huge Roger Rabbit fan, so I'm very happy this original park detail is still there!

Look, Bruce Hinterleitner: P-p-please, Eddie! See, I can do it. :)

Amy Schweizer was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Amy and all our winners this week! Al Desimone, Debbie Desimone, Al Desimone, Leigh Mertz, Kellie Harpel, Steve Jordan, Morgan M., Evanna Huda, Julie And Kody Rider, Mary Beth Tarbet, Daniel Record, Erin Hammer, Kristyn Scibienski, Team Hill, Kerry A., Belicia Cullen, Scott Cullen, Jen Cerce, Larissa Huda, Paul Dickson, Cheryl A , Jeff Griffin, Woody Woodward, Jean Ann La Manna, Mark Torsey, Kristi Strembicki, Dee Dee Kenney, Donald Leblanc, Kimberly Moore, Dawn Simpson, Sabrina Allen, Jen Tremley, Curtis Bille, Jenny Brennan, The Kertes Family, Patti Gumiela, Katie Duncan, Jenny Stoneburner, Gabriella, Terry And Matthieu, Chris Masse, Janet Thorn, Dave Wang, Bill Mckim, Craig , Deb Ragno, Christin Langtry, Beth Mcmeekin, Joann Albrecht, Jackie Damon, Ken Daube, Diane Curfman, Paul Moody, Kate Nejman, Orly Bradley, The Emich Family, Ryan Mccorristin, Louise, Betsy Silvestri, Veronica Upwood, Sharon Pierce, Tinkerbell Wells, Tracey Mayfield, Paul Sankey, Kim Howe, Melissa Such, The Parker Family, Jennifer Harmon, Chris Kelly, Joe Calomeni, Chris, Gretchen, And Katie Barnes, Dawn Burns, Tim Johansen, Lisa Hallmark, Rob & April Team Vanderpool, Hayley Valk, Kerri Coggins, Tricia Petty, Jennifer Rowell, Vera Williams, K Beasley , Pecosace, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Craig Livingston, Chris And Alison, Theresa Rucando, Paul Knott, Mary Jane Hargadon, Linda Scrivano, Kenny, Steve Knapp, Sandie Albrecht, James Steele, Al Ganter, Paul Moore, Carla C, Lee Anastasi, Christina Trigiani, Josh Carney, Deme Grabert, Jason & Melinda Lenz, Bruce Hinterleitner, Staci Plunkett, Kathy Morris, Sharon Lucia, Scott Precise, Jason Hocker, Jim Thompson, Dan Johnston, Stuart Hale, The O'meara Family, Claire Gregory, Andrea Kruszewski, Danielle Ford, Jorge Caso, Lori Rienhardt, Francis Lachance, Pam Vanaustin, Olszak Family, Hobbes And Snorky, Megan Krainski, Judy Simonsen, Maureen Handy, Vanessa Stjohn, Robert Hildebrandt , Hillary Waldroop, Les Stewart, Jackie Purcell, Misty Mehelic, Patti Mccaffrey, Gerry Skanes, Kara Cummings, Cynthia Hitchcock, Emily Hudson, Brian Nale, Carolyn Como, Jonathan Ward, Jeremy Hardy, Randi Balch, Cheryl Costello, Karen Ramirez, Andy Hickey, Clay Anthony, Patty Carty, Russell Hamlin, Jennifer Rupert, Vincent Maltese, The Scimeca Sleuths, Chris & Maranda Nichols, Luis Rodriguez, Nigel Mcquire, Bob Patterson, Al Sandal, Jodi Cook, Cathy Michalski, Michael Mclucas And Jackie Mclucas, Chris Bauman, Dan Mangini, Amanda Campbell, Heather Sabatino, Alan Moore, Joy Ousterout, Christopher Hall, Theresa Maradei, Jennifer Snook, Terry Fleming, Lisa Bohannon's, Alan Mize, Vicki And Elizabeth Edwards, Jerry Weldon, Katie Beth, Kerry Mccaffrey, Lynette Michalos, Blake Schmidt, Team Meeker, Brian Mcwithey, Larry Sprenkle, Doug Olson Family, Tara Weaver, Anastasia Macneil, Ainsley Poe, Matthew Earl, Mark Proper, Evelyn Wilson, Barbara Sims, Robert Mccoy, Noah Schweizer (9 Yrs Old), Shannon Benton, Orange Bird, Karen Smith, Kirsten Miller, Angie Shafer, Cheryl Chambers, Blair Bryant, Sandy Kanigowski, Dave Kanigowski, Thomas Farquharson, Diane Ramos, George Mundy Jr, Karen Hughes, Shelly Borella, Kelly Smith, Davida Kosa, Patrick Burke, Monica Owens, Megan Collins, Wendy Snelgrove, Tom Buck, Cheri Palmisano, Mike Cerce, Kelly R., Randy Thomas, Matt Ciccone, Paul Newbiggin, Patrick Broaddus, Matt Holley, Patti Deluca, Hailey Gill, Tom Higbee, Elaine Kleinhenz, Joseph M. Zafia, Matt Degrandis, Jane Johnson, Maryann Romagnano, Kyle Burdo, Barclay Bakkum, The Patterson Family, Fred Shakeshaft, Trish Babler, Kelsi, Suzette Frey, Linda Grau, Linda K Ranatza, Melissa Kirk, Diane Batista, Melody O'donnell, Clinton Dickinson, Josef Wagner, Dave Carriere, Abigail , Kristen Mccoy, Agnes Ciotti, Jeremy Mccaffrey, Evald Olson, Ashley P., Nathan York , Sharon Dale, Gina L Falzone, and Betsy Dross. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #269: Where in the world is this?

We're going to a different park!
 Where in the World #269

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Friday, February 28th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

February 21, 2013

Pocahontas on the Fantasmic! Mountain

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Pocahontas appears during Fantasmic!in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Pocahontas appears during Fantasmic!.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/25s, f/5.6, ISO 1600, EV 0, 300mm focal length.

As the fighting between the settlers and her American Indian tribe escalates, Pocahontas appears high up on the mountain to the music of Colors in the Wind to stop the conflict. One of many breathtaking scenes during Fantasmic!, the nighttime water and fireworks show at the Hollywood Hills Amphitheater in Disney's Hollywood Studios and is my Disney Pic of the Week about Fantasmic!.

February 17, 2013

Where in the World #268

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

Happy Valentine's Day! And thank you to Jeremy Mccaffrey, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, & Rob And April Vanderpool for your great notes to me!
From Millan.Net

A lot of Players sent their answers from underneath a couple of snow. Stay warm and safe! Let's picture ourselves warm and happy in Disney... we're in Disney... we're in Disney...

Wait, Sandie Albrecht really is in Disney! And Mickey and Jim Eckert are headed there! (braggarts) LOL! I hope your trips are wonderful!

Claire Gregory, when do you go to Disney?

Here was the challenge last week:
 Where in the World #267

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © Erin Blackwell

The Ice Cold Snack Stand in Disney's Hollywood Studios, on your right as you enter the park. It's with Oscar's Service Station which rents strollers, wheelchairs, and ECV scooters as so many of us know. :)

This stand holds special memories for Patty Carty, Mickey Eckert, and Janet Thorn. I'm glad seeing this brought those back for you. :)

Morgan M., sneaky? Moi? kenzosmileys

Theresa Rucando was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Theresa and all our winners this week! Sebbie Desimone, Brian Miller, Al Desimone, Derek Carty, Beth Mcmeekin, Ken Maikowski, Doug Reichl, Patty Carty, Janet Stavrides, Eileen Wiederspan, Noah Schweizer, Tinkerbell Wells, Betsy Silvestri, Tinkerbell Wells, Team Hill, Jennifer Harmon, Lisa Mericle, The Kertes Family, Melissa Roberts, Heather Young, Tena Sapp, Jenny Brennan , Julie And Kody Rider, Anne Marie Cronin, Megan Collins, Kristin Olmedo, Trina Noggle, Jared Orth, Dave Freemyer, Ryan Mccorristin, Ken Daube, Mikie Hayes, Kathy Morris, Maryann Eckenrode, Robert Ruocco, Elizabeth Poyner, Eric Schneider, Scott Precise, Patti Gumiela, Kim Howe, Daniel Record, Kelsi, Lynette Michalos, Meghan Gleason-vollmer, Jeff Griffin, Melisa, Orly Bradley, Kristi Strembicki, Lauren Kilpatrick, Brian Yesutis, Beth Mcnaboe, Paul Scimeca, Linda Scrivano, Chris, Gretchen, And Katie Barnes, Steve Jordan, Kris, Belicia Cullen, Scott Cullen , Sandi B, Katie Bamford, The Parker Family, Paul Moody, Pamela Manseau, Chris Masse, Judy Simonsen, Chris Dotaman, Leigh Mertz, Pam Vanaustin, Melissa Such, Paul Dickson, Kelly Cummings, Anne Beebe, Mike Haeberle, John Menjes, Paul Moore, Louise, Dani Deritis , Gabriella, Terry And Matthieu, Janet Thorn, Craig Livingston, Amanda Campbell, Al Ganter, Lee Anastasi, Evanna Huda, Caroline Burmester, Kerry A., Courtney Payne, Les Stewart, The Kahle Family, Cindy Pink, Patti Mccaffrey, Colette, Jeremy Mccaffrey, James Steele, Tricia Petty, Marguerite Garofalo, Natalie Covey, Sandy Weiss, Hobbes And Snorky, Misty Mehelic, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Diane Curfman, Lori Rienhardt, Bill Mckim, Emily Hudson, Alessandro Zapparoli, Dsnymom14, Linda College, Vicki Edwards, Penny Urell, Andrea Mackafee, Jessica Iglesias, The Omeara Family, Laurie W, Maureen Handy, Cynthia Hitchcock, Nathalie Periard, Deb Ragno, Craig, Mike Malampy, Karen Genda, Morgan M., Claire Gregory, Pecosace, Nathan York, Maggie Klotz, Amy Mucedola, Sherry Trapp, Christopher Gainey, Sharon Pierce, Cindy Canterbury, Joanna, The Emich Family, Jacquelyn Law, Tom Koval, Sarah Calvario, Kenny, Karen Ramirez, Jason & Melinda Lenz, Andrea Kruszewski, Betsy Dross, Mike Gillardi, Susie Howard, Vera Dercole, Wendy Snelgrove, Jeff Blank, Bob Henriksen, Colin Sawyer, Jeremy Hardy, Mike Mondoux, Chris & Maranda Nichols, Robert Hildebrandt, Ryan Pinder, Bob Patterson, Al Sandal, Andrew Pettit, Tricia Noble, Karrie Duffey, Jeremy Reichelt, Josh Carney, The Patterson Family, Jennifer Snook, John Nottell, Jullie Pudem, Eric Holmes, Luis Rodriguez, Maryann Romagnano, Ainsley Poe, Tim Johansen, Wendy Barney, Erin Hammer, Karen Smith, Arlene Vicek, Hillary Waldroop, Randy, Deb V., Doug Olson Family, Shelley Diederich, Dave Kanigowski, Sandy Kanigowski, Chris And Alison, Kelly Smith, Mary Jane Hargadon, Angel Diven, Krysten Toth, Zach Szymko, Cathy Connors, Jim Finley, Heidi Goodhue, Jen Tremley, Jackie Purcell, Tara Weaver, Caryn Schill, Gina L Falzone, Debbie Mangini, Deme Grabert, Heidi Goodhue, John Bickers, Susan Higginbotham, Walter N. Clark, Sandie Albrecht, Paul Ignudo Jr, Kristen Mccoy, Barclay Bakkum, Mary Beth Tarbet, Patrick Broaddus, Team Meeker, Jim Thompson, Scott Sangston, Brian Nale, Larry Sprenkle, Jennifer Bogdan, Ladonna Tisdale, Elaine Kleinhenz, Linda Grau, Karen Hotchkiss, Tom Ratcliffe, Liz Moreau, Vera Williams, Jackie Graebel, Linda K Ranatza, Christina Trigiani, Mickey Eckert, Joseph M. Zafia, Linda Begley, Wendy T Faler, Kyle Burdo, Hayley Valk, Chris Haynes, Emily Harper, Nick Cristea, Sherri Pell, Jeannette Fornadel, Terri Zitkus Green, Agnes Ciotti, Margie, George Mundy Jr, Tom Buck, Kerry Mccaffrey, Rob And April - Team Vanderpool, Theresa Maradei, Theresa Maradei, and Anita Jodouin. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #268: Where in the world is this?

This one is tougher (I think):
 Where in the World #268

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Friday, February 21st, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

February 8, 2013

Star Tours Queue in Disney's Hollywood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

My favorite park is Disney's Hollywood Studios which brings the movies I have enjoyed to life. Star Wars, one of my favorites, was brought to life as an intergalactic travel agency called Star Tours. The queue to your StarSpeeder 1000 has you wander through a space port where soft announcements are made, a video screen rotating between planet destinations and schedules and droids working maintenance.

Video screen showing Departures in the Star Tours queue in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Star Tours Departures.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11-16mm, 1.3s, f/8, ISO 200, EV 0, 16mm focal length, tripod.

A pair of Mon Calamaris keep an eye on the Star Tours queue. Do not worry, it is not a trap.

A pair of Mon Calamaris keep an eye on the Star Tours queue in Disney's Hollywood Studio, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
A pair of Mon Calamaris keep an eye on the Star Tours queue.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11-16mm, 1.3s, f/8, ISO 800, EV 0, 16mm focal length, tripod.

Two droids in particular, C-3PO and R2-D2, are fixing up a red Star Speeder 1000 to get it back in service.

Motor Cruiser behind Firerock Geyser at Disney's Wilderness Lodge, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Motor Cruiser behind Firerock Geyser at Disney's Wilderness Lodge.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11-16mm, 1/3s, f/8, ISO 800, EV 0, 16mm focal length, tripod.

With the announcement of The Disney Company buying Lucasfilm and new Star Wars movies coming, who knows where Star Tours will take us next.

These photos were taken very late during Extra Magic Hours and a Cast Member allowed me into the queue not being used so I could set up my tripod without interfering with other guests.

February 3, 2013

Where in the World #266

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

Stephanie Dollar and her family are in Disney! Have a great trip, Stephanie!

Here was the challenge last week:
 Where in the World #265

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © Erin Blackwell

The Beauty and the Beast, Live on Stage in Disney's Hollywood Studios! The climatic scene where the Beast is dying, but will be saved and transformed back to the Prince.

Look at the great seat I had, Players! Front row! I just got lucky. :)

Apologies to The Hoekzema Family: the challenge made them stay up late figuring out the answer. Go to bed now. Nighty night!
Nighty night

Kimberly Kusser was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Kimberly and all our winners this week! Leigh Mertz, Les Stewart, Leigh Mertz, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Brian Miller, Kris Nixon, The Kahle Family, Claire Gregory, Belicia Cullen, Chris Kelly, Scott Cullen, Megan Krainski, Laura Winn, Mindy Loupe, Melissa Such, Nicole Ruzinski, Patti Gumiela, Team Hill, Sarah Williams, Jamie K, Mackenzie D., Amanda Campbell, Emma Poprock, Scott Precise, Kara Cummings, Kelly Cummings, Ronnie Mehelic, Denise Montgomery, Mickey Eckert, Mike Bandru, Karen Ramirez, Ed Elder, Chris, Gretchen, And Katie Barnes, Larissa Huda, Madison Hovan, Tim Johansen, Christina Trigiani, Antoinette Leblanc, Craig, Christine Dagney, Chris And Alison, Rich Kacprowicz, Pam Vanaustin, Brenda Rosazza, Joseph S Gallagher, Sharon, Hayley Valk, Andy Raffel, Becky Hosinger, Meredith Rule, Nicole Shuler, Corbett Scimeca With Help From Mom, Dad And Ryan, Nathalie Periard, Al Desimone, Deb Desimone, Rebecca Smith, Nancy Ahlsen, Katherine Gast, Vanessa Gordon, Christine Stockmal, Shelly Borella, Karen Davis, Jullie Pudem, Wendy T Faler, Karrie Duffey, Anastasia Macneil, Ken Rhinehart, Sara Holloway, Deb, Stephanie Dollar, Olivia, Chrissy, Paul Moore, Kelly R., Cheri Palmisano, Susan Higginbotham, Caryn Schill, Nancy, Chris & Maranda Nichols, Josh Carney, Lily-pierre Couet, Carla Leger, George Mundy Jr, Patti Mccaffrey, Kerry Mccaffrey, Jeremy Mccaffrey, Agnes Ciotti, Michelle, Katerina Purdy, Hoekzema Family, Monica Owens, Melissa Kirk, Jillian Domings , Randy, Dianne Gerth, and Elizabeth Gillardi. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.

In fact, it's time to announce the monthly winner! The winner for January 2013 is Josh Carney!/strong> Congratulations, Josh! Deb Wills will be sending your prize soon!
_____________________________________________________ _____________________
Challenge #266: Where in the world is this?

Paul Moore, this week's challenge is for you!
 Where in the World #266

Just kidding!! Here's the real challenge:
 Where in the World #266

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, February 7th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

January 13, 2013

Where in the World #263

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

Bon Voyage to the The Kertes Family on a special Disney birthday trip! And hello to Patti and Kerry McCaffrey who are in Walt Disney World now.

I wish I was in Disney, too, Patti Gumiela and Karen Smith!

Jill Hauth and Hunter Armstrong knows what we mean as Jill and the Armstrong family are going through the post-Disney vacation blues. From Millan.Net

Here was the challenge last week:
 Where in the World #262

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © Erin Blackwell

It's the seating at The Sunset Ranch Market at Disney's Hollywood Studios where you will find Rosie's All American Cafe, Fairfax Fare, Toluca Legs Turkey Company, and Catalina Eddie's. It's inspired by L.A.'s Farmer's Market and right by Rock 'n' Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith, the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, and Beauty and the Beast. You can read all about its history in Jack Spence's blog (thanks to the Hoekzema Family for the reference)!

And! The site of quite a few meet and greets for the AllEars Team, like in this 2010 picture, marking the start of 2013!

I hope you think it is a good choice for the first one of the year, Cheri Palmisano!

Susan and Mike of Team Hill was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Susan and Mike and all our winners this week! Debbie Desimone, Al Desimone, Paul Scimeca, Diane Curfman, Karen Gates, Mary Beth Tarbet, Mario De Lepper , Andrea Fifield, Jennifer Shoulders, Denise Stevenson, Stephen Heywood, Sheila Lees, Christine Homer, Andy Schumacher, The Kertes Family, Tara Druckenmiller, Cindy Derosa, Tina G., Brandi Benedict, Lori Juliff, Colette S, Donna Quinno, Shannon Wright, The O'meara Family, Julie Westberg, Bill Mckim, Julie Westberg, Megan Krainski, Karen Doshier, Michaela O'brien , Denise Sawicki, Shannon Savoia, Kenny, Tim Johansen, Mike O'brien, Roger Vollmer, Karen Ramirez, Monette Gardner, Larry , Gay Lynn Brown, Robert Hildebrandt, Brenda Mcguire, Pollyanna Buff, Andrew Swiatowicz , Kevin Carter, Diane Morris, Jonathan Thomas, Paul Knott, Kelly Cummings, Chris Masse, Dave Kanigowski, Sandy Kanigowski, Phyllis Masse, Keitjh, Chloe Simmons, Beth Mcmeekin, Patti Gumiela, Craig, Deme Grabert, Ed Hogan, Paul Moore, John Nottell, Ladonna Tisdale, Weaselmouse, Andrea Kruszewski, Rob Blundin, Krysten Toth, Lindsey S., Chris Kelly, Scott Precise, Brian Miller, The Malesky Family, Sharon Pierce, Pam Vanaustin, Kara Cummings, Vera Williams, Jennifer Smith, Hobbes And Snorky, Anjanette Tournillon, Chris, Gretchen, And Katie Barnes, Kris Nixon, Les Stewart, Tom Koval, Karen Schlumpf, Linda Scrivano, Doug Reichl, Jennifer Rupert, Julie And Kody Rider, Hoekzema Family, Chris & Maranda Nichols, Diane Furtado, Mare Aehlich, Jeff Blank, Bob Patterson, Kathy Morris, Brian Grabowski, Jason Skow, Dallas Hamilton, Bonnie Tulenko, John Dupre, Jeff Beauchamp, Alison Rosenberger, Bob Henriksen, Karrie Duffey, Jeremy Reichelt, Marguerite Garofalo, Zachary Ott, Melody O'donnell, Chloe Mayhew, Shelly Borella, Heather Hynes, Janet Thorn, Patrick Broaddus, Josh Carney, Terry Fleming, Tricia Noble, Hillary Waldroop, Kameo Crea, Jullie Pudem, Hannah M, Stephanie Linares, Karen Smith, Carri Marotto, Hunter Armstrong, Tom Armstrong, Jill Hauth, Lana Hauth, Victoria Finnegan, Stephanie Dollar, Jennifer Suhr, Derek Carty, Heidi Goodhue, Vanessa Gordon, Gabriella, Terry And Matthieu, Morgan M., Morag Lemon, Tom Buck, Carla Leger, Cathy Mager, Cheri Palmisano, Wendy Hupp, Jolynn Digiallonardo, John Pasqueralli, Palmer Family , Jeff Powell, Kirsten L Rodriguez, Patti Deluca, Emily Hudson, Elaine Kleinhenz, Chuck Sands, Jennifer Bogdan, Paul Ignudo Jr, Monica Owens, Caroline Burmester, Cindy Pennau, Jon Solomonson, Noreen Rachuba, Jim Kovacs, Mark Russell, Paul Dickson, Joanne Labbe, Chris Hills, Marie Seilus, Patti Mccaffrey, Kerry Mccaffrey, Jane Johnson, Agnes Ciotti , Danielle Ciotti Harsley, and Vicki Edwards. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #263: Where in the world is this?

We're in a different park!

 Where in the World #263

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, January 17th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

January 4, 2013

Great Movie Ride through a Crystal Ball

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Believe it or not, when Disney's Hollywood Studios first opened back in 1989 it was called the Disney-MGM Studios and you could see the replica of the Mann's Chinese Theater as you walked up Hollywood Blvd. I will have to scan in some old 4x6 prints someday to show you this view. By the time the digital camera age came around the view of the Great Movie Ride became history as the large Sorcerer Mickey Hat was built directly in front of it.

Many Disney fan photographers have used various techniques to photgraph the front of the GMR in one image from creating wide panoramics using multiple images, fisheye lenses and even a complete 360 degree interactive view using expensive and specialized equipment and software. Last year, I showed you how I used a crystal ball to make unique photographs of Spaceship Earth and Cinderella Castle. Below, I used the crystal ball again. This time to show you the entire front of the Great Movie Ride.

The front of the Great Movie Ride in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
The front of the Great Movie Ride through a crystal ball.

I would still like the old view back someday. I know a lot of photographers who would agree with me.

I will be using the crystal ball for more Disney photographs this year. Stay tuned!

December 27, 2012

Three Favorite Photos of 2012

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

In reflecting back on my two trips to Walt Disney World and a Disney Dream cruise, I found these three photos illustrated my favorite times from each of the three different Disney adventures.

The first trip was broken up by the cruise in the middle and featured two Star Wars Weekends. If you are even a casual fan of the Star Wars movies or the animated television series, you should consider attending one of these fun filled days. You can visit with many of the popular Star Wars characters, celebrities from the franchise are on hand to sign autographs or take part in special behind the scene presentations and shows and see the amazing Hyperspace Hoopla performed each night. Below is a photo I feel shows the fun of Star Wars Weekends at Disney's Hollywood Studios.

Janga Fett signs his autograph during Star Wars Weekend in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Janga Fett signs his autograph during Star Wars Weekend in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/250s, f/18, ISO 200, EV 0, 116mm focal length, fill flash.

As a couple, my wife and I enjoyed a 4-night cruise on the Disney Dream. We found that even on a cruise ship full of families, an adult couple can find plenty of magical and romantic things to do on a Disney Cruise. Below is the Disney Dream sandwiched between the smaller Disney Magic and another cruise ship at Nassau, Bahamas.

The Disney Dream (middle) and Disney Magic in Nassau, Bahamas.
The Disney Dream (middle) and Disney Magic in Nassau, Bahamas.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/200s, f/8, ISO 200, EV 0, 170mm focal length.

Later in the year, I returned to Walt Disney World for Epcot's 30th Anniversary and reminisced about the EPCOT Center I first saw back in 1983 compared to the one I visited 29 years later. While things have changed in the photo below of Future World, the mission of Epcot remains the same: to entertain, inform and inspire.

Future World from the monorail over Epcot, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Future World from the monorail over Epcot.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11-16mm, 1/125s, f/16, ISO 200, EV -0.6, 16mm focal length, fill flash.

Hope you enjoyed my Disney Pic of the Week of My Favorite Three Photos of 2012.

2012 was a very good Disney year for me and I look forward to 2013 with plans to return to Walt Disney World and to take a trip to Anaheim, California to enjoy and photograph all the new and old wonders of Disneyland and California Adventure. Happy New Year!

December 4, 2012

Disney Pic of the Week: Toy Story

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Disney sure knows how to bring movies to their themeparks. Toy Story Midway Mania on Pixar Place in Disney's Hollywood Studios was an instant hit with guests. Even today, four years after the ride opened, FastPasses can run out within two or three hours of DHS rope drop. The Disney Imagineers out did themselves by molding the Toy Story movies and characters into a ride, a video game and 3-D technology together into an experience like none other found in a themepark anywhere in the world. This is one video game the whole family loves to play together.

Loading area of the Toy Story Midway Mania ride in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Loading area of the Toy Story Midway Mania ride.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11-16mm, 1/30s, f/2.8, ISO 2200, EV -0.3, 16mm focal length.

Lisa will be here on Thursday with her Disney Pic of the Week about Toy Story.

November 30, 2012

Tips on Photographing the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Here are some tips for photographing the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular at Disney's Hollywood Studios. There are three major scenes of the production: Golden Idol, Cairo Fight and Exploding Plane which were all taken from the first Indiana Jones movie, Raiders of the Lost Ark.

The Golden Idol scene is the darkest scene with spot lighting on the Indiana Jones stunt double as he replaces the Idol with a bag of dirt. To get proper exposure, switch to Spot Metering and meter off Jones' skin. The Idol will have some highlights but that is how it is seen so that is okay.

Golden Idol scene of the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Golden Idol scene of the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/125s, f/5.6, ISO 2800, EV 0, 300mm focal length.

The Cairo Fight scene is full of color and motion. There are two ways to approach photographing the fighting and tumbling. First, you can use a fast shutter to freeze the action. This will give you fun photos to study all the expressions of the stunt men and woman and the extras. You should switch to Matrix (Nikon) or Evaluative (Canon) Metering for this scene.

Cairo Fight scene of the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Cairo Fight scene of the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular (fast shutter).
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/500s, f/5.6, ISO 5000, EV +0.3, 135mm focal length.

To capture some of the excitement of the stunts, slow down your shutter speed and allow for the motion of the stunt people to blur.

Cairo Fight scene of the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Cairo Fight scene of the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular (show shutter).
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/125s, f/5.6, ISO 450, EV -0.3, 135mm focal length.

The last scene ends with large explosions as Indy and Marion run from the plane. Many Disney fan photographers consider this the money shot of the show. The trick here is to again use a fast shutter speed and burst mode to take a series of photos to catch the explosion as it expands behind the stunt actors.

Explosive finale of the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Explosive finale of the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/400s, f/5.6, ISO 400, EV 0, 82mm focal length.

It helps to know the show which I have attended numerous times over the years. If you have not seen the show or do not remember it, search youTube for videos to study.

November 20, 2012

Disney Pic of the Week: Backlot Tour

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Disney's Hollywood Studios likes to put guests right into the movies. A part of the Backlot Tour gives people such an opportunity to star in a scene out of the movie, Pearl Harbor. Special effects created in large water filled sets are demonstrated including how water cannons are used to simulate a torpedo hit on a ship. Luckily, volunteers are provided with raincoats but I bet the water is cold!

Water cannons soak guests in Disney's Hollywood Studios' Backlot Tour, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Water cannons soak guests during the Backlot Tour.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/250s, f/8, ISO 200, EV -0.3, 28mm focal length.

Lisa will be here on Thursday with her Disney Pic of the Week about the Backlot Tour.

November 11, 2012

Where in the World #254

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

It's Bon Voyage time again, Players! Everybody crowd around and on 3, we say it together. Ready... 1, 2, 3! Bon Voyage, Mary Beth Tarbet! Have a fantastic trip!  Where in the World #253

Mike Haeberle, I'm glad your power is back on! I hope everyone else is all right after these Northeast storms!

Dan Diehm, you're right. I knew I'd regret saying there's no Walkers in ROTJ, because I knew I saw one somewhere. You've earned the right to be the Rebel Spy on Star Tours!

Here was the challenge last week:
 Where in the World #253

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © Erin Blackwell

As so many of you teased, yes, I stayed right in the same area as last week. This is one of the Ewok huts outside of Star Tours in Disney's Hollywood Studios.

I made these two up before I left and thought it was fun. Hey, I was up late packing and on cold medicine!

You know, Hobbes And Snorky, I'm not sure cheater is the right word. Perhaps charmingly mischievous! (Yes, I know that's 2 words. Still...) ;)

Hannah Couture was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Ed and to all the readers who got the answer right: Kenny, Evanna Huda, Hillary Waldroop, Larissa Huda, Virginia Pierce, Sharon Pierce, Brian Miller, Kye Layton, Matt Holley, Alan Mize, Mickey Eckert, Jen Cerce, Paul Dickson, Stephanie Newell, Karen Drum, Josh Etzweiler, Belicia Cullen, Scott Cullen, Ellen Sullivan, Mary Spina, Ken Clark, Team Hill, Callie, Gabriella, Terry And Matthieu, Tj Mahan, Dale Knight, Kerri Coggins, Tom Koval, Mark Benton, Hobbes And Snorky, The Moore Family, Megan Krainski, Mary Brennan, Philip Vickers, Ed Elder, Mary Beth Tarbet, Doug Olson Family, Jeff & Cheryl Simmons, Pam Vanaustin, Mickey Mouse , Claire Gregory, Rob Blundin, Lauren Blundin, James & Maranda Nichols, Clay Anthony, Joanne Woodston, Jackie Purcell , Bob Henriksen, Carolyn Como, Jen Jefferson, Cynthia Hitchcock, Craig, Claire Gregory, Davin Debouchel, Christopher Hall, Alison Rosenberger, Tricia Noble, Robert Anderson, Sara Holloway, Dylan And Noah Schweizer, Maryann Eckenrode, Brian Gallant, Patrick Broaddus, Paul Ignudo, Jr., Marie Phillips, Angel Diven, Debbie Hicks, Jerry Weldon, Jim Finley, Tricia Petty, Bill Cudney , J-f, Tiffany W. , Rob Jacob, Megan W, Kathryn Hughes, Julie Richardson, Leigh Mertz, Vera Williams, Mitchell, David Ballard , Katerina, Jane Johnson, Maggie Klotz, Erin Macdaniel, Kelsi B, Emily Hudson, Jennifer Cravener, Chris Stockton, Chris Kelly, and the Hoekzema Family. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #254: Where in the world is this?

No, we're not at Star Tours. Instead, we have something that is part of the entire Walt Disney World resort!
 Where in the World #254

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, November 15th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

October 19, 2012

Twilight Zone Tower of Terror in HDR

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

For those of you who have attended a special event at Disney's Hollywood Studios like Star Wars Weekend or maybe an ESPN Weekend, you know about the area past Rock 'n' Roller Coaster and to the side of the Tower of Terror. I had only been back there during the day previously.

Three weekends ago, I attended the Villain's Bash Party in conjunction with the inaugural running of the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10 Miler by runDisney. This gave me an opportunity to bring in my tripod and do some shooting for a couple of hours before my daughter, who ran in the race, crossed the finish line.

First, I want to show you what I considered the best one shot exposure. As always, the Exif data is below the photo.

The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror at Night.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 13s, f/16, ISO 200, EV 0, 40mm focal length, tripod.

From that setting I bracketed around it eight more exposures in one stop intervals (1/2s, 1s, 2s, 4s, 8s, 25s, 60s, 120s). The last two are approximate as I was using my Apple iPhone's Stop Watch App to know when to close the shutter. I processed the nine photos in Photomatix Pro 4 Plugin for Aperture. I applied a favorite preset, adjusted to my liking and finished processing in Aperture 3.4 photo management and editing software.

The final image looks is a bit more HDR-ish than I was looking for.

An HDR Image of the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
An HDR Image of the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror at Night.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, f/16, ISO 200, EV 0, 40mm focal length, tripod.

You can see how the shadowed areas were opened up and the combined exposures caught light changing over the time it took to take the photos which was done manually. I have been struggling with night time HDR images for awhile now. Still a work in progress. Any suggestions or comments are appreciated.

October 5, 2012

Tower of Terror 10 Miler at Disney's Hollywood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

I attended the inaugural Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10 Miler and Disney Villains Hollywood Bash last weekend. The weather was not the best for running with temperatures in the mid-70's F and very high humidity even though the race was run from 10pm to past midnight. The runners checked in at Disney's Hollywood Studios parking lot. There were a few large displays runners were posing for photos with.

Twilight Zone Tower of Terror Inaugural 10 Miler sign in the Disney's Hollywood Studios parking lot, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Twilight Zone Tower of Terror Inaugural 10 Miler Sign.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11-16mm, 1/125, f/2.8, ISO 2800, EV +0.3, 16mm focal length.

While the runners were out on the course being cheered on by runDisney people, cast members, volunteers and even Disney Villains, us party goers took advantage of short lines at Star Tours, MuppetVision 3-D, Toy Story Mania and Rock 'n' Roller Coaster. Using my smartphone, I followed a lot of the runners and getting updates on one special runner, my daughter.

A runner in the cool down lane after finishing the Tower of Terror 10 Miler in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
A runner in the cool down lane after finishing the Tower of Terror 10 Miler.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 0.4s, f/5, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 28mm focal length, tripod, slow sync flash.

There she is. Standing proudly with her medal as other runners walk past. After she drank the water and snacks supplied, we all went for a ride on the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror.

The technique I used was setting my flash to rear sync. This means the flash goes off just before the shutter closes. I had my daughter stand very still as other runners walked past. They show movement over the exposure while my daughter did not.

September 28, 2012

Vacation Time at Walt Disney World

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Donald Duck ready for vacation, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Are You Ready for a WDW Vacation?

Scott is and he will be attending the Disney Villains Hollywood Bash after the Tower of Terror 10 Miler tomorrow night which his daughter is running in. He will be there taking photos to bring back and share with all of us next week. You can follow Scott's adventure by clicking this link for his Disney Twitter feed. If you will be there, look for Scott and say "Hi!". He might have a gift for you.

Can anyone tell Scott why A113 (See ticket number above) is significant in Disney history?


September 14, 2012

Advanced Dark Ride Photography at Walt Disney World

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

I have talked about my attempts at photographing Disney dark rides in the past. I have not been satisfied with my results thus far. So, I contacted an expert. Michael Besant is an accomplished dark ride photographer and I asked him for his secret. Turns out I was not the only one to inquire and he had decided to write up how he photographs and processes his dark ride photos. I will reference the link soon.

First, I want to outline it for you:

Equipment

The better a camera handles high ISO settings the better its ability to capture dark ride images. If you get good images up to ISO 3200 or higher, your camera will work.

A fast lens is a must. The one I recommend is the 50mm f/1.8 prime lens as it is very affordable. Other lenses with wide open apertures like f1.4, f/2 and f/2.8 are in longer focal lengths and thus are more expensive. Many kit lenses are too slow in the f/3.5 to f/5.6 aperture range.

Photography

As in all photography, the better exposed your photo is, the better you will be able process the images. Michael gives excellent tips on how to do this. One which helped me was to switch from my normal use of JPEG images to the camera's RAW image capture. RAW files contain a lot more information in which your photo editor can use in pulling out details in photos.

Other tips are to use Shutter Priority mode to keep the shutter speed manageable. He recommends a shutter speed of at least 1/40th of a second (I try to keep it at 1/60th of a second, if possible), use continuous and single point focus settings and put your camera in burst (continuous) mode. Single point focus allows you to move the focus point to lock in on the brighter locations of the scene you are photographing. Lastly, set exposure compensation to +0.3 to slightly overexpose your photos. This will help in post processing.

Post Processing

I am going to give you the short version which Michael shared with me recently. For a detailed account you will need to visit his Dark Ride Shooting Tutorial (see link at end of article). He uses Adobe Photoshop software which is expensive but is the industry standard and for a good reason as you will see. I used Apple Aperture 3.3 which is like Adobe Lightroom 4.

Michael will open an image in ADOBE CAMERA RAW He always will ‘open' it up with the exposure slider to see what details are lurking in the shadows. Then he starts with the WHITE BALANCE. This is done on multiple levels, the first being the normal adjustments. Before he takes it further and goes into selective color and remove or tone down the HOT colors.

Depending on the image, Michael will adjust with either the RECOVERY or the FILL LIGHT slider followed by SHARPNESS/NOISE REDUCTION (NR) tab to adjust the sharpness and NR at that point. From there he finishes up using the CURVE tool.

If any of this sounds confusing, check your photo editing software's Help to learn how to use them.

For my processing, I had to substitute the NR part with a trip to another program called Noise Ninja. Once done, I returned back to Aperture for the final steps.

Below are photos I took in Mexico's Grand Fiesta ride and the Tower of Tower. I sent copies of the RAW files to Michael so as to compare my processing to his.

The Aztec Pyramid on the Grand Fiesta ride at Epcot's Mexico pavilion in World Showcase, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
The Aztec Pyramid on the Grand Fiesta ride by Scott.
Nikon D700/50mm, 1/60s, f/1.8, ISO 12,800, EV +0.3.

The Aztec Pyramid on the Grand Fiesta ride at Epcot's Mexico pavilion in World Showcase, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
The Aztec Pyramid on the Grand Fiesta ride by Michael Besant.

You will notice right off the difference in the Aztec Pyramid's color which I left more in keeping with the lighting on the ride and I opened up the colors above the pyramid by using a dodging (lighting) brush. Both versions are fine with the differences being artistic and not technical.

Ghosts beckon during the Tower of Terror in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Ghosts beckon during the Tower of Terror by Scott.
Nikon D700/70-200VR, 1/40s, f/2.8, ISO 12,800, EV +0.3, 92mm focal length.

Ghosts beckon during the Tower of Terror in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Ghosts beckon during the Tower of Terror by Michael Besant.

Michael was able to pull out a lot more detail in the ghosts. I tired brushing in a few different effects but never got them as good as he did. Keep in mind Adobe Photoshop is a $600 photo editor and is considered the gold standard in professional photo editing. Apple Aperture is a $90 program which does a very good job.

I will say this is the best I have done with dark ride photos thanks to Michael Besant's Dark Ride Shooting Tutorial. I hope it will help you, too.

If you have any questions, leave them in the Comments.

September 11, 2012

Disney Pic of the Week: Character Interaction

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Most of my Character Interaction at Walt Disney World these days are with my camera. In all the parks you will find willing Disney characters who will pose for your camera. Some you have to wait in line for while others will walk right up to you. In the case of a new Citizen of Hollywood character named Ben Appetit, he will want to sell you one of his pies for $3.14 (get it?). I truly enjoyed his salesmanship and pose. I told him I would send him a copy for his pie brochure.

Citizen of Hollywood Ben Appetit selling his pies in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Citizen of Hollywood Ben Appetit selling his pies in Disney's Hollywood Studiosl.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/250s, f/8, ISO 200, EV 0, 32mm focal length.

Lisa will be here on Thursday with her Disney Pic of Week on Character Interaction.

August 26, 2012

Where in the World #244

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

Smiley from millan.net STOP the presses, Players! Carolyn Conway is getting married this weekend! Her fiancee proposed in Walt Disney World while watching the water electrical pageant on the balcony at the Grand Floridian! WOW!

Here was the August 19th Challenge:
 Where in the World #243

And here's the answer:
Where in the World Photo Fun
Copyright © Erin Blackwell

Soooo... I honestly thought this would stump everyone. I full expected to get 3 answers this week, but I got a little more than that.

560.

LOL!

Ken Maikowski and Lee Anastasi, you did a great job of explaining this: Walking towards Mexico and looking across the World Showcase lagoon, you see the Minaret in Morrocco in Epcot and the back side of the Hollywood Hotel in Disney's Hollywood Studios (Tower of Terror). Curtis Bille, could you finish about the Imagineers? Imagineers realized you would be able to see the back of the Tower, so they painted it and worked the facade so it would like part of Morocco.

I meet a lot of people who have no idea about this, but obviously those people aren't Where in the World Players. :-) In fact, Noah and Daniel Schweizer, part of the AllEars next generation pointed out all of you would figure this out. Thumbs up, guys! Not to mention, Deb Ragno's mother-in-law who lived in Morocco let her know, and I'm not arguing with that kind of knowledge!

Claire Gregory got a Cliff Claven reference in her answer. That is so awesome, Claire! Smiley from millan.net

Kenny was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Kenny and to all the readers who got the answer right: Chris Masse, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Misty Mehelic, Ellie Argaluza, Diane Tredore, Mike M., Agnes Ciotti, Jennifer Rowell, Emily Hudson, Kris Nixon, Virginia Pierce , Stephanie Newell, Heather Young, Mackenzie D., Walter Fletcher, Bill Mckim, Scott Mitchell, Jack Foley, Mary Beth Tarbet, Tinkerbell Wells, Claire Gregory, Amy Schweizer, Tom Hermes, Karen Schlumpf, Ed Elder, Daniel Schweizer, Ed Suscreba, Christina R, Kathryn Perkins, Noah Schweizer, Cindy Dore, Dawn Bach, Evanna Huda, Dawn Bach, The Kahle Family, Julie Wickware, Erin Hammer, Larissa Huda, Linda College, Steve Smith, James Ankathy Berry, Erin Dagney, Christine Dagney, Kelly Mager, Vera Williams, Leigh Mertz, Jennifer Harmon, Chris And Alison, Mark Benton, Sodrosky Family, Jim Logue, Kameo Crea, Stuart Hale, Debbie Desimonecraftydjd, Jen Tremley, Amy R., Matt Holley, Kristi Strembicki, Curtis Bille, Jennifer P, Megan Krainski, Ken Maikowski, Froneberger Family, Kye Layton, Dave Wang, Craig, Melissa Such, Leanne Brownlee, Kait, Cindy Nagel, Deb Ragno, Shannon Milair, Krystal Pound, Kristie Bazile, David B, Brandon Emerson, Colette S, Brian Wojtowicz, Lindsay Leach Age 9, Jenny Brennan, Amanda Campbell, Christopher Barnes, Leach Family, Lynette Michalos, Jennifer A Walker, Mailin Pares, Tom Koval, Jon Landis, Kerri Coggins, Craig Livingston, Starr Cookson, Ellen Sullivan, Becky Coppola, Keith Maser, Jamie K, Steven Mickholtzick, Jay Burkhart, Harley Coleman, Tiffany Gibb, Pat Daly, Lori Gautreaux, Liana Imbrogno, Casey, Scott O'donnell, Brian Gallant, K. Beasley, James, Stephanie Davis, Renee Delk, Shannon Sheek, Team Hill, Jim Oneil, Paul, Michele Leite, Karen Ramirez, Marsha Waidelich, Kelli Simpson, Sam Magri, Kelly Sage, Nate, Janet, Brian Yesutis, Mark, Erin, Laurie Nicholson, Lynman99@aol.com, Lynette Michalos, Meredith Dean, Bob Hendrix, Reagan Herman, Katie Bray, Josh Carney, Heidi Summers, Jenny Stoneburner, Belicia Cullen, Scott Cullen, Michelle Raimist, Robin C Hood, Nora Martinez, Allie Reckendorf, Wendy T Faler, Alan Mize, Janet Thorn, Steve Toponak, Melody Salemi, Kelly Deleon, Mandy Kromer, Julie And Kody Rder, Kristin Hoover, Michael Joel Gainey, Fiona Knight, Wayne Alexandre, Mike O'brien, Dave Cole, Jeremy Hardy, Lindsay Coram, Jerry Felder, Dana Camp, Melanie Horton, Jennifer Mccurry, Rob And April - Team Vanderpool, Dan Mangini, Daniel Meagher, Stacy Wilson, Courtney Payne, Jeffrey Dunne, Anne Marie Cronin, Hobbes And Snorky, Jim Vandenberghe, Bonnie Cola, Louise Barton, Scott Precise, Mike Hulse, Morgan M., Nathalie Periard, Tim Jeltes, Jennifer Snook, Dale Knight, Becky Hosinger, Emery, Sharon Record, Diane, Kristen Clegg, Jeffrey Martin, Maureen Hanlon, Caryn Scjill, Angie Young, Donna Currier, David W., Carolyn Como, Stephanie Visco, Eric Enli, Carla Nale, Wendy Snelgrove, Shannon Brueggemann, Morag Lemon, Diane Curfman, Jason Hocker, Mike Walter, Gabriella & Matthieu, The Kertes Family, Laurie Walker , Josh Lind, Scott, Wendy Crober, Vicki, William , Elizabeth And Thomas Edwards, Sara Holloway, Sherrie Morse, Chambers Family , Ruth Woodhouse, Derek Carty, Candy Dadswell, Brianne, Hannah Couture, Candice Grimes, Linda Scrivano, Brian Miller, Jerry Weldon, Betsy Silvestri, Debbie, Lily-pierre & Mathieu, John P, Double Family, Mike Malampy, Joe Bateman, Pam Vanaustin, Kelly Feeko, Daniel Mills, Kristi, Addison Welp, Madi Mertz, Clare S, Rebecca Keenan, The Parker Family, Josh Weiss, Jorge R. Caso, Maggie Klotz, James Greene, Debra Moscara, Patty Carty, Vicki Vaught, Brian Haas, Abigail Grasso, Tina Wells, Chris Forner, Richard And Lisa Palmer, Jason And Melinda Lenz, Andrew Swiatowicz , Kevin Scott, Erin Connell, Bruce Jones, Lindsey Schlaud, Steve Bieniek, Kelsi, Pamela Carlson, Scott, Denise Cayz, Rob Blundin, Amanda Perkins, Sarah Hyman, Elyssa H., Mickey Eckert, Clay Anthony, Trina Noggle, Carrie, Audra Miller, Kevin Miller, Erin Loring, Nick Bentz, Sharon Dale, Megan , Chris Kelly, Walter N. Clark, Cynthia Hitchcock, Robert Jacob, Travis Grim, Hoekzema Family, Luis Rodriguez, Nigel Mcquire (wales Uk), Gareth Molyneux, Carrie Henderson, Sharon Pierce, Brian Grabowski, Bob Patterson, Kristyn Scibienski, Kerrie Hogan, Jason K, Andrea Kruszewski, Anthony Lipinski, Jessica Folan, Annette Nuenke, Jullie Pudem, Kevin O, Andrew Pettit, Barbara, Anne Hainsworth, Zachary Ott, Monica Owens, Steve Narel, Chris Bauman, Paul Ignudo, Jr., Kate Fischer, Alison Rosenberger, Carla C, Cameron Lange, Jenn Steele, Kristen Mccoy, Tim Johansen, Jim Thompson, Michelle Roth-smoot, Melody O'donnell, Karrie Duffey, Wayne Chadourne, Isabelle Boivin, Dee Dee Kenney, Jenifer Moyer, John Snider, Chrissie Smith, Jeremy Reichelt, Dan Huebner, Diane Ramos, Andy Schumacher, Anastasia Macneil, Carri Marotto, Betsy Dross, Payton Dross , Andrew Weed, Stacey Creed, Phil Thach, Patrick Broaddus, William Sharp, Lynda Brothers, Austin Oblenis, Scott Sangston, Natalie Hackney, Kurt Knappman, Annie Snodgrass, Kevin Weidenweber, Kristen Carde, Stephanie Linares, Matthew Earl, Lisa Zitek, Gallagher Family, Mike Schultz, Stephanie Dollar, Dan Owens, Mark Grosso, Bruce Lawson, Bob Henriksen, Mark Franklin, Ian Falk, Lori Rienhardt, Jeff Onorato, Meredith Rule, Karen Davis, Elaine Tomko-deluca, Carrie Rampy, Jeff Finger, Christine Mckay, Mark Proper, Brian Sheets, Ainsley Poe, Deborah Wolfe, Matt Ciccone, Jennifer Cline, Mike Pennington, Melissa Dye, Angela Horan, Melissa Kirk, Sam Thomas, Eileen Miller, The Perras Family, Cathy Mager, Paul Latella, Jason Skow, Susan, Shelly Borella, Erika Loboda, Heidi Goodhue, Jim Curley, Phil Vickers, Wendy Palmquist, Kris Blamphin, Karen Smith, Bob Smith, Jessica Iglesias, Jennifer Greene, Mitchell Holmes, Barbara Sims, Hannah M., Russ Morgan, Madison Hovan, Al Desimone, Kerry Mccaffrey, Michele Mongeon, Evald Olson, Jeff & Cheryl Simmons, Mona Hornbuckle, Patti Mccaffrey, Olivia D, Chrissy D, Maryann Y, Christine Def, Sam Cridlin, Greg Berg, Lynn Lofton, Nancy, Chris Straw, Debbie Hicks, Nicole Shuler, Jen Cox, Sandy Kanigowski, Dave Kanigowski, Mary Jo Gallion, Teresa Cole, Karen Bellamy, Michael Schelfhaut, Timothy Hutchinson, Les Stewart, Christina Rotella, George Mundy Jr, Ron Harper, Paul Conry, Mike Cerce, John Foggo, Timmy Saunders, Miguel Gonzalez, Ashley Deitchler, Duane Wisniewski, Joy, The Moore Family, Karen Adamakis, Kelly Barnes, Ashley Pizzino, Mary Virginia Clause, Sandie Albrecht, Trish Babler, Liz Moreau, Peggy Saeger, Amanda, Patricia Newton, Nathaniel Clements, Jane Johnson, Robert P. Flaherty, Karrie Trotter, Nicole Amidon, Robert Anderson, Bill Cudney , Danielle Howells, Clinton Dickinson, Chip Vermette, Hillary Waldroop, Angela Fennell, Joy Ousterout, The Patterson Family, Melodye Berry, Stefan Owens, Terri Thornton, Dan Johnston, Tom Higbee, Marc Lorenzo, Tara Weaver, Tammy Henry, Suzanne C Denham, Carolyn Conway, Dotti Chesney, Dotti Chesney, Lee Anastasi, Kristin Dormuth, Mike Venere, Matt Carrera, Barclay Bakkum, Wendy Barney, Paula B, Tracy Discher, Jeremy Mccaffrey, Lindsay Kasawski, Jodi Cook, Chris Connors, Lizanne Fisk, Mukta Mohapatra, Jan Rosato, Dave Carriere, Allison Caputa, and Rebecca Baker. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
_____________________________________________________ _____________________
Challenge #244: Where in the world is this?
In case this one is tough, here's a hint: it's somewhere in Walt Disney World. :)

 Where in the World #244

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, August 30th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

August 21, 2012

Disney Pic of the Week: Rain

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

During the months of May and June this year, Walt Disney World had many days of rain. Not the usual afternoon thunderstorm but full days of rainy weather. I had first hand experience during my trip last May when I photographed a couple of my fellow guests walking past the Yellow Cab on Sunset Blvd. I wrote a series of blogs with suggestions on photographing in the rain which you can access via his article: Photographing in the Rain at Epcot.

Guests clad in rain gear walking past the Yellow Cab in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Guests clad in rain gear walking past the Yellow Cab on Sunset Blvd.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/60s, f/5.6, ISO 220, EV +0.6, 116mm Focal Length.

Lisa will be here on Thursday with her Disney Pic of Week about Rain.

August 9, 2012

Star Wars Weekend Merchandise

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Yoda plush toys in Darth's Mall at Disney's Hollywood Studios during Star Wars Weekend, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Yoda plush toys in Darth's Mall during Star Wars Weekend.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/60s, f/3.5, ISO 12500, EV +0.3, 28mm focal length.

During Star Wars Weekends this year, Darth's Mall could be found in behind the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster and was filled with every imaginable Star Wars and Disney tie-in merchandise. I found this bin of Mickey Mouse earred Yoda plush toys to be a perfect Disney Pic of the Week on Merchandise.


August 3, 2012

On the Road Again

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Scott behind the wheel of the red Hero car from the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Scott behind the wheel of the red Hero car from the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt.

Scott is on the road this week. No, not in one of the red Hero cars (he wishes!) but driving his daughter through the Mid-West as she relocates to take a new job. He will be back next week with more Disney photography tips and information.

July 20, 2012

Disney Panoramic Views

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Back in October of 2009, I wrote a post called Pano-Magic about how to best take a set of photos to create a panoramic image. This post will show you some common mistakes made when taking photos for and creating the panoramics in post-processing. Due to the locations, all of the photos were taken hand-held.

If you recall when I reviewed the Nassau Forts and Junkanoo Discovery Tour, the one thing I wished I had was more time at Fort Fincastle. The panoramic you see below is the result of being rushed. I took these four photos quickly and, as I was reviewing them, was told we were moving on. I knew they would not create the panoramic image I had in mind. The wide angle shot in the review link is much better. Next time I did a panoramic set of photos, I made sure I had more time.

Panoramic view from the top of Fort Fincastle on Nassau in the Bahamas.
Panoramic view from the top of Fort Fincastle on Nassau in the Bahamas.
CLICK PHOTO TO SEE LARGER IMAGE.

This panoramic of Castaway Cay was planned. I knew about the Lookout Tower from my first visit to Castaway Cay. I had visions of a beautiful Caribbean blue sky with sunshine gleaming off the Disney Dream on the horizon. That vision was dashed with the weather but I still wanted the panoramic. I did a couple of things wrong here. First, I did not set my camera to full manual so that the exposure would be the same in each of the photos. As you can see, the photo used for the Disney Dream is a bit underexposed in comparison to the other four photos. Second, you can see a duplicate clearing on the left side. The panoramic stitching software I used did not properly line up the edges. I should have fixed that before saving the panoramic. Also, should have read my Pano-Magic post first, eh?

Panoramic view from the top of Lookout Tower on Castaway Cay in the Bahamas.
Panoramic view from the top of Lookout Tower on Castaway Cay in the Bahamas.
CLICK PHOTO TO SEE LARGER IMAGE.

The last one I want to show you I am very proud of. During the Streets of America photowalk, the group got a backstage tour of the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show. The panoramic image of the garage took four photos and I was so very careful to overlap them enough so the panoramic stitching software could do its magic. This time I made sure my camera was in manual mode to keep the exposure the same. I was told by the stunt drivers giving the tour, they can strip down and totally rebuild any of the vehicles used during the shows.

Panoramic view of the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show garage in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Panoramic view of the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show Garage.
CLICK PHOTO TO SEE LARGER IMAGE.

Many photo editing programs today can perform the stitching needed to create panoramic images. Check to see if yours does. If not, there are many quality stand alone programs suited to the task. Of course, the better you plan and produce the photos for the panoramic, the better your results will be. Right, Scott?

June 22, 2012

Photowalking the Streets of America

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Last month I hosted a photowalk on the Streets of America in Disney's Hollywood Studios. It did not turn out exactly as people thought it would. I had planned a surprise but could not revel it until the time of the photowalk as it was not confirmed until a couple of hours before the meet was to start. You see, I had been in contact with a cast member at the Studios to arrange for special seating at Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show over the last few months. The problem was the weather as it was raining hard, as in Cats and Dogs hard, until about two hours before the Photowalk was to start.

Turns out as long as it is not raining, the show would go on at a slower pace for safety. I collected my group of 6 people who took a chance on the weather and we headed over to the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show entrance where we meet up with the cast member. He escorted us up to the VIP Seating area which is directly behind and above the show's control room. From there we had a clear view of the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show "stage". Four more people joined us late bringing the group to 10 people.

AllEars.net Streets of America Photowalk participants in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
AllEars.net Streets of America Photowalk participants.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/160s, f/8, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 28mm focal length, fill flash.

Here is a photo I took during the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show from the VIP Seating Area when the red Hero car comes nose to nose with the Villain cars while driving backwards. I pointed out when and where the action would be taking place to those who had never seen the show before.

The Hero going nose to nose with the Villians during the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
The Hero going nose to nose with the Villians during the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/125s, f/10, ISO 200, EV 0, 105mm focal length.

I found out before the show my group was invited to a backstage tour of the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show set. After the show ended, I gathered everyone up and meet one of the ushers at the bottom of the stands. He walked us over to a stage entrance where we were greeted by two of the stunt drivers. What a surprise to all of us (including me) that they would be giving the tour. Rob and Chad took us behind the town's facades where we got to see all the cars, motorcycles and other stuff stuff for the show. We even got a chance to get behind the wheel of the Hero car. Let me tell you it is a tight fit!

Behind the wheel of the red Hero car backstage at the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Behind the wheel of the red Hero car backstage at the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/80s, f/4.5, ISO 200, EV -0.3, 28mm focal length.

The stunt drivers were perfect hosts answering all of our questions while showing us around. Did you know they use 3,000 tires a month and the bumper of the Hero car is replaced twice a week? They showed us the cleanest auto shop I have ever seen where they can fully take the cars, motorcycles and jet skis apart and rebuild them. Rob and Chad posed with us for pictures. This is Rob below with a young Photowalk participant.

A young Photowalk participant poses with a stunt driver backstage at the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
A young Photowalk participant poses with a stunt driver backstage at the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/60s, f/8, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 45mm focal length, fill flash.

I can not thank the cast member enough for arranging both the VIP Seating and the Backstage Tour. It was a thrill for all of us and made the day extra magical.

After saying our goodbyes to Rob and Chad and thanking them with the AllEars.net trading card for the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show, we went over and explored the Streets of America. I gave everyone 10 hints of interesting things to find. You can see those hints and the photos by some of the photowalk participants at the AllEars.net Streets of America Photowalk Online Gallery by clicking here. Feel free to leave us comments about them.

We caught the end of a performance by Mulch, Sweat and Shears on San Francisco street. The guitar player was really into it. Sure capped off an amazing photowalk for us.

Mulch, Sweat and Shears guitarist performing on the Streets of America in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Mulch, Sweat and Shears guitarist performing on the Streets of America.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/160s, f/6.3, ISO 200, EV 0, 28mm focal length, fill flash.

What a great group of people who took a chance and came to the photowalk even though the weather was far from ideal. I encourage you to check out the photo gallery (see link above) as the crew did a very good job of capturing the fun and excitement of the day. I hope to see some of you at a future photowalk.

June 19, 2012

Disney Pic of the Week: Streets of America

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

I have walked through the Streets of America in Disney's Hollywood Studios many times since the park opened back in 1989. The backlot facades of New York City and now including San Francisco adding to the atmosphere of Hollywood. I never really took the time to really look at those facades until I was researching for the photowalk I hosted last month. The Disney Imagineers put a lot more thought and detail in those facades than I thought.

One of my research tools was using fellow AllEars.net team member Steve Barrett's Hidden Mickey Field Guide to find and locate those fun Hidden Mickeys found along the Streets of America like this Mickey Mouse watch in the window of the Pawn Shop in New York street.

Pawn Shop Mickey Mouse Watch for sale on the Streets of America in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Pawn Shop Mickey Mouse Watch for sale on the Streets of America.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/125s, f/16, ISO 5000, EV 0, 300mm Focal Length, Selective Color.

Lisa will be here on Thursday with a Streets of America photo for her Disney Pic of Week.

June 17, 2012

Where in the World #234

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

Deb Ragno, you weren't first with the answer and rightly so, since your three year old grandson was playing at your house. So here's to the two of you: the first note! :)

Players, it's birthday shout out time! It's someone all of you know, although maybe not personally, but... if you don't mind: Erin Blackwell --

Happy Birthday Smiley from millan.net

WHAT?! You guys! I am so surprised! I never expected " wait, flowers and chocolates?! Aw, stop, you're making me blush!

Speaking of shout outs: John Ames! So good to see you here! I didn't know you played the game!

Now, everybody wave hi to Rob And April of Team Vanderpool who are enjoying a Walt Disney World vacation! They are enjoying magical moments and I'm sure they are thinking of us!
Speaking of vacations: ALOHA, Kerri Coggins! Oh, I hope you do get to check out Aulani, but I know you are so enjoying yourself at Oahu!

Vera Williams, I'm glad you liked last week's photo! My foot is fine. The gator mostly just gummed it; it tickled. And Patti Mccaffrey, you have so been to Discovery Island in Disney's Animal Kingdom. Because as soon as you walk over the bridge and see the Tree, you are there! Ask Jeremy, he can tell you. :)

Sandie Albrecht, Kameo Crea, P.j. Popsuj, and Carolyn R. Conway, thank you for your notes! Everyone here at the photo blog loves you right back! Because without all of you, we wouldn't be here. :)

Here was last week's Challenge:
 Where in the World #233

And here's the answer:

Copyright © 2011 Erin Blackwell, Canon PowerShot ELPH 300 HS, f2.7, 1/10sec, 4mm, ISO-1600

Clinton Dickinson, you chose the Indiana Jones section of The Great Movie Ride in Disney's Hollywood Studios for 300. The answer is: The entrance music to the Team Hill wedding reception. “What is the Raiders of the Lost Ark theme song?” Correct!

And thanks to Ainsley Poe singing it, I have that theme song stuck in my head. Thanks, Ainsley!

Indiana Jones Smiley from millan.net

As Matt Holley and Chris Kelly pointed out, there are two great Hidden Mickeys here. One is at the base of the Ark and the other is Mickey and Donald on the opposite wall from Indy. Have you guys also seen the wonderful hidden R2-D2 and C3PO on that wall? I've tried to take a picture of it, but it's so dark on that part of the wall that I can't get it clearly.

Gabriella wants to thank Matthieu for getting the answer right for the two of them! Mary Tackett is also very thankful for the “Mom, D'UH! Indiana Jones!” she undoubtedly got when she asked. LOL!

Jenn Steele, I never judge. Never. ...well, maybe occasionally, but NEVER you! And Annie Snodgrass, it's been FOREVER since I heard a good Easy peasy lemon squeezey! Booyah!

Chris Masse was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Chris and to all the readers who got the answer right: Teresa Plunkett, Audra Miller, Larissa Huda, Al Desimone, David W., Kenny, Dave Wang, Kevin Miller, Staci Plunkett, Debbie Desimone, Debbie Desimone, Emily Dagney, Mary Beth Tarbet, Paul Knott, David B, Emily Hudson, Jennifer Dealmeida, Brian Gallant, Rob And April - Team Vanderpool, Dale Knight, Linda Scrivano, Sam Fritz, Brenda Mcguire, Jen Tremley, Jennifer Rowell, James Schmidt, Jim Mcdermott, Kelsey, Janet Fishman, Frank Domizio, Matt Holley, Jen Cerce, Joe Black, Kathryn Perkins, Ken Maikowski, Ed Elder, Hayley Valk, Stephanie Newell, Amanda Sage, The Kertes Family, Laura V., Vincent Coppola, Scott Cullen, Katherine Pretzman , Mike Walter, Belicia Cullen, Margaret West, Marie Seilus, Paul Sankey, T.treloar-rhodes, Sharon Pierce, Russ Morgan, Brian Beck, Vera Williams, David And Angie, Kameo Crea, Antoinette Leblanc, Phil Vickers, James And Kathy Berry, Daniel Record, Deborah Boucher, Liz Weiter, Chris Hanna, Liana Imbrogno, Mackenzie D., Ali Yesutis, Tina Santacroce, Team Hill, Craig, Tiffany Gibb, Kye Layton, Gabriella And Matthieu, Courtney Payne, Emily Jabas, Christopher Tweedle, Lee Anastasi, Nicole Duddy, Sharynne Smith, Bob Hendrix, Megan Krainski, Kerri Coggins, Linda College, Amy Schweizer, Rebecca Smith, Stephanie Visco, Christoper Bourassa, Morgan M. , Chris Surette, Deb Ragno, The Malesky Family, Jason And Melinda Lenz, John Ames, Becky Noto, Mike Venere, Wendy T Faler, Anne Marie Cronin, Jonathan Thomas, Lauren Thomas, Pam Vanaustin, Diane Marciuliano, Gaylene Gray, Nancy Johansen, Cara Richards, Hobbes And Snorky, Erika Loboda, Aaron Harpel, Kellie Harpel, Lily-pierre Couet, The Moore Family, Claire Gregory, Carla C, Paul Newman, Katie Bray, Josh Weiss, Annie Snodgrass, Scott Precise, Regina Seaner, Maggie Klotz, Donna Currier, Carolyn Como, Brendan Abel, Michael Gainey, Vicki Edwards, Melesia Love, Kelly Mager, Elaine Tomko-deluca, Bill Cudney, Christopher Barnes, Kim Kusser, Mary Virginia Clause, Liliana Rivera, Vickie Smialkowski, Caryn Schill, Susie Howard, Dan Johnston, Michelle White, Rob Blundin, Lauren Blundin, Rich Hall, Karen Ramirez, Dawn Bach, Jennifer Townsend, Laurie Walker, Gregg Mcglasson, Matt Cofone, Sharon Dale, Chris Kelly, Nick Bentz, Walter N. Clark, Brian Miller, Beth Mcmeekin, Bruce Arnold, Amy Miller, Vanessa Gordon, Robert Anderson, Doug Olson Family, Jeffrey Dunne, John Duncan, Scott Lau, Kathryn Willer, Jackie Purcell, Wayne Chadourne, Allyson Sodrosky, Cameron Lange, Clinton Dickinson, Ken Fischler, Dan Mangini, Andrew Drummond, Andrew Pettit, Jackie Knapp, Brian Grabowski, Zachary Ott, Jared Orth, Josh Carney, Alan Mize, Bonnie Tulenko, Dee Riccio, Christopher Hall, Mary Tackett, Michelle Roth-smoot, Michele Delorenzo, Austin O'blenis, Kristi Strembicki, Pamela Gerdes, Chuck Everson, Alison Rosenberger, Chuck Everson, Dick Smith, Earl Wilcher, Paul Ignudo, Jr., Gail Hirsch, Brad Scott, Regina Brown, Heather Calvey, Davida Kosa, Callie Conrad, Shelly Borella, Rachel Hoover, Carri Marotto, Kim Steiner, Greg Cusano, Dave Carriere, Regina Allen, Kelli Sangston, Erin Hammer, Anastasia Macneil, P.j. Popsuj, Andy Schumacher, Patti Mccaffrey, Kerry Finnamore, Stephanie Linares, Jeff Finger, George Mundy Jr, Allison Caputa, Ainsley Poe , Jennifer Chartier, Ed Suscreba, Jenn Steele, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Bob Henriksen, Mike Pennington, Matt Ciccone, Jackie Bastien, Erica Zielewski, Heidi Goodhue, Leach Family, Paul Dickson, Nicole Lopresti, Nicole Benoit, Matt Degrandis, Karen Hotchkiss, Lexi , James Greene, Carla Nale, Jenny Lopresti, Emma Ramsey, Tom Buck, M'shel Bowen, Carolyn R. Conway, Jenifer Moyer, Joshua Swainston, Mukta Mohapatra, Jeff Blank, Rick Shea, Bob Patterson, Scott, Hillary Waldroop, Chris, Heather Hynes, Karen Schlumpf, Patrick Broaddus, Lisa Zitek, Sam Thomas, Courtney Broaddus, Ashley Elizabeth, Bruce Hinterleitner, William Sharp, Mike O'brien, Jeffrey Martin, Clay Anthony, Patti Deluca, Cleopatra room, Robert Bostic, John Pasqueralli, Melissa Kirk, Maureen Handy, Kerry Mccaffrey, Jeremy Mccaffrey, Kerrie Hogan, Kris Blamphin, Sandie Albrecht, Robert P. Flaherty, Mark Cullison, David Ballard, Kate Flanagan, Betsy Silvestri, Jennifer Bogdan, Walter N. Clark, Melissa Dye, Debbie Poole, Tom Koval, Sandy Kanigowski, Dave Kanigowski, Chris Bauman, Barclay Bakkum, Thomas Higbee, Wayne Witherspoon, Kristin Dormuth, Jessica Haywood, Paula B, Stacy Murphy, Mary Kay Samluk, Shirley Garcowski, Bill Gallagher, Emily Chronas, Derek Carty, Patty Carty, Jackie, John Foggo, Tina Horlick, Theresa Rucando, Tom & Susan Linder , Linda Mac, Mike Haeberle, Sarah Holodick, Margie Larmon, Barbara Sims, Chris Stockton, Agnes Ciotti, Melissa Love, Ryan , William Smith, Wendy Snelgrove, Stefan Owens, Mickey Eckert, Jamie K, Jane Johnson, Gerald Buford, Jack Foley, Cindy Nagel , J Brizzle, and Ben Sodrosky Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #234: Where in the world is this?

Keep your park passes out, because we are staying in them! So where in Walt Disney World would you see this?

 Where in the World #234

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, June 21st, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

June 8, 2012

Star Wars Weekend Fun at Disney's Hollywood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

I finally got to attend my first Star Wars Weekends last month at Disney's Hollywood Studios. If you have looked into it, you know it is very crowded in the event areas and for the special Star Wars character meet and greets. Beyond that, the rest of the park is fairly normal. I got to do my favorite attractions and rides using FastPasses and patience.

I went to two Star Wars Weekend days. The first day was to photograph the Star Wars Celebrity Motorcade which is lead off by Jedi Knight Mickey Mouse.

Jedi Knight Mickey Mouse leads off the Star Wars Celebrity Motorcade in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Jedi Knight Mickey Mouse leads off the Star Wars Celebrity Motorcade.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/250s, f/8, ISO 200, EV 0, 85mm focal length, fill flash.

I was most interested in seeing the members of the 501st Legion who are people like Civil War re-enactors who are part of a world wide organization which promotes interest in Star Wars through the building and wearing of quality costumes, and to facilitate the use of these costumes for Star Wars-related events as well as contributions to the local community through costumed charity and volunteer work. Below is three examples of the their costume work of over 300 who participated in this motorcade.

Members of the 501st Legion march in the Star Wars Celebrity Motorcade in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Members of the 501st Legion march in the Star Wars Celebrity Motorcade.

There are many special events and meets and greets. These have some unique photo opportunities. Like seeing the Bounty Hunter Janga Fett signing Disney autograph books.

A Bounty Hunter's work is never done as Janga Fett signs his autograph during Star Wars Weekend at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
A Bounty Hunter's work is never done as Janga Fett signs his autograph during Star Wars Weekend.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/250s, f/18, ISO 200, EV 0, 116mm focal length, fill flash.

Waiting in line for Star Wars characters is a long and hot process. I waited for an hour to get my picture taken with Princess Minnie "Leia" Mouse or Jedi Knight Mickey Mouse as they were changing every 25 minutes. I caught this moment during one of the change overs.

Jedi Knight Mickey Mouse waving to Princess Minnie
Jedi Knight Mickey Mouse waving to Princess Minnie "Leia" Mouse during Star Wars Weekends.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/250s, f/10, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 52mm focal length, fill flash.

There are many shows featuring actors who are part of the Star Wars movies and animated series. The one I highly recommend going to is the Stars to the Saga show. Not only will you see stars like Ray Park who played Darth Maul but for the pre-show. The pre-show features some wayward Stormtroopers who enjoyed the park while on patrol bringing back some hilarious photos of their exploits.

Imperial Stormtroopers wearing Mickey ears during Star Wars Weekends at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Imperial Stormtroopers wearing Mickey ears at the Stars to the Saga pre-show during Star Wars Weekends.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/60s, f/5.6, ISO 2000, EV -1.0, 250mm focal length.

If you or members of your family are big Star Wars fans as I am, you will throughly enjoy Star Wars Weekends. I even got to see the famous droids C-3PO and R2-D2 being escorted after a show on the main stage. Spent some money in Darth's Mall which is a huge tent full of only Star Wars merchandise especially for Disney. If you are interested in autographs of the Star Wars stars, there are special entrance stations to get FastPasses. I even enjoyed a Blue Milk Shake (tasted like Vanilla) in the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater restaurant as a nod to the blue milk Luke drank in the first Star Wars movie.

NOTE: I apologize for missing posting to the blog last week. Time got away from me after vacation. I have many great posts coming up over the next few weeks so I hope you will continue to come back to read Picture This! every day.

May 29, 2012

Disney Pic of the Week: From A Ride

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Last fall I rode the Great Movie Ride at Disney's Hollywood Studios with a group of Disney fan photographers. We filled up a few rows and, without using flash which is not allowed, photographed most of the 95,000 square feet of the ride. I chose a wide angle lens and had some fun not only photographing the ride but some of my fellow photographers, too.

His name is Michael Summers and, when he is not in Walt Disney World, he is photographing trains. REMEMBER, do not use flash on a dark ride. Learn how to turn your camera's flash off.

What part of the ride did I photograph?

A photographer shooting on the Great Movie Ride in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
A photographer shooting on the Great Movie Ride.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11-16mm, 1/60s, f/2.8, ISO 6400, EV +1.0, 16mm focal length.

Lisa will be here on Thursday with her Disney Pic of the Week on the subject, From a Ride.

May 18, 2012

Disney Land and Sea

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Disney Land and Sea, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Disney Land and Sea.

Scott is on vacation this week. This time he is doing a Land and Sea trip to Walt Disney World which will include a 4-night cruise on the Disney Dream followed by a stay at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge. He'll be back next week with more Disney photography information and tips.

You can follow Scott on his Disney Twitter feed @Scottwdw or on Google+ at Scott Thomas as he will be posting comments and photos during the trip.

April 26, 2012

Red Car Trolley in Disney's Hollywood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Red Trolley kiosk on Sunset Blvd. in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Red Trolley souvenir kiosk on Sunset Blvd.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11-16mm, 1/100s, f/16, ISO 200, EV 0, 16mm focal length.

When Disney's Hollywood Studios first opened in 1989 as Disney-MGM Studios, there was a lot of elements in the park from the 1988 movie, Roger Rabbit. Today, only a few Roger Rabbit elements still remain including this red trolley souvenir kiosk on Sunset Blvd. as a nod to the Red Car trolley line seen in the movie which makes for my Disney Pic of the Week on Sunset Blvd..

April 22, 2012

Where in the World #226

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

We have another Birthday celebration, Players! Happy Birthday (on the 19th) to Patti Mccaffrey! May you have nothing but pixie dust and happy thoughts this year!
Hold on: we have ANOTHER Birthday shout out! Happy Birthday (on the 21st) to Danielle Ciotti Harsley! May the Blue Fairy herself make your wishes come true!

That's it, Players. Come on, we can't let this special occasion go by without a group sing-a-long!

Smiley from millan.net

AND we have a new Player! Everybody, all together now, with a big friendly hello:

Hello and Welcome, Vicki Britt! We hope you love it here at Where in the World Photo Fun!

Smiley from millan.net

(Good job, everyone! Way to jump in with that Disney spirit!)

By the way, Vicki: it's not like this every week " birthday singing, welcome wagons. I just don't want you to be disappointed next week if it's... you know... quieter since we don't sing all the time. We're not “Glee”. :-)

OK! It's time to look at our Challenges!

The Bonus Challenge maybe wasn't really TOUGH, but at least it was fun!

 Where in the World Toughie

And here's its answer:

Copyright © 2011 Erin Blackwell Canon PowerShot ELPH 300 HS, 4mm, 1/20s shutter, f2.7, ISO 800

Look at me, Players! I'm inside a cluster of Disney Balloons! I was walking down Main Street in the Magic Kingdom and had to stoop to pick up something. When I stood up, I was inside the balloons! It's a magical world!

I worded the answer differently, Brian Mcwithey, but yours was funnier!

Those light-up balloons are calling us, Mackenzie D.... hear them? You know, we could get one and then, when we can't take it on the plane home, give it to someone who looks like they need Disney spirit. What do you think?

Lots of people got this one right! So I'm giving you full credit and you'll get an additional entry in the monthly drawing . :)

Here are the Balloon winners:
Congratulations to Diane Ramos, Daniel Record, Kerri Coggins, Double Family, Teresa Plunkett, Mary Beth Tarbet, Elizabeth And Vicki Edwards, Josh Weiss, Courtney Payne, Deme Grabert, Amy Weber, Renee, Ellen Sullivan, Diane Curfman, James And Kathy Berry, Sharon Dale, Chris Kelly, Jennifer Chartier, Jim Thompson, Doug Olson, Megan Krainski, Patti Mccaffrey, Eva O., Erin Connell, Kerry Mccaffrey, Audra Miller, Kevin Miller, Brian Mcwithey, Michelle Goodwin, Jeff Holt, Les Stewart, Christopher Hall, Frank Pierce, Patrick B., Carri Marotto, Dan Owens, Al Desimone, Debbie Desimone, Mackenzie D., Shelly Borella, Jen Tremley, Heidi Goodhue, Sandra Shaw, Jennifer Rowell, Mickey Eckert, Christine, Mike Pennington, Barclay Bakkum, Jeremy Mccaffrey, Sandra Edwards, Tina Santillo, Agnes Ciotti, Monica Owens, Margie Larmon, Emily Hudson, Stefan Owens, Pecosace, Rob And April - Team Vanderpool, and Kathryn Willer!

Here was the main Challenge:
 Where in the World #225

And here's the answer:

Copyright © 2011 Erin Blackwell Canon PowerShot ELPH 300 HS, 11mm, 1/20s shutter, f5, ISO 1600

It's a Disneyland Viewmaster Disk in the Toy Story Mania queue in Disney's Hollywood Studios! Ah, Vewmasters.... Good times, noodle salad. (Who knows what movie that quote is from?)

But I don't have to tell you, do I, James and Kathy Berry? Not with your son's Mickey Viewmaster in the attic. Or you, Christopher Hall, with your 4 year old son getting that load of old WDW and Disneyland viewmaster reels from Grandma? Or Vicki Britt, you remember what it was like when we had Disney Viewfinders, and Melissa Kirk, you who have this Disneyland disk at home! I'm just going to sit over here and sigh with envy...

Don Whiteman was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Don and to all the readers who got the answer right: Ed Elder, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Larissa Huda, Daniel Record, Matt Holley, Rob Blundin, Emily Hudson, Laure Proutt, Kerri Coggins, Chris Masse, Carla C., Jack Foley, Stacey Hutchinson, Jack Foley, Lindsay Clayton, Double Family, Brenda Double, Louise Barton, Theresa Rucando, Cara Richards, Amy Rupp, Mary Beth Tarbet, Dale Knight, Linda Scrivano, Kelly Montgomery, Michael U., Deb Ragno and Son!, Maureen Handy, Josh Weiss, Craig, The Strukel Family, Courtney Payne, Kellie Harpel, Kerry, Mandi Mae, Amy Weber, Patrick Sklenar, Michael Gainey, Sam Fritz, Donna Currier, Misty Mehelic, Mike Walter, Renee, Jamie K, Beth Mcmeekin, Maggie Klotz, Ellen Sullivan, Jason And Melinda Lenz, Belicia Cullen, Team Hill, Scott Cullen, Diane Curfman, Amy Young, Carolyn Como, Paul Dickson, Mike Mondoux, James And Kathy Berry, Lori Rienhardt, Sharon Dale, Herb Miller, The Moore Family, Jennifer Chartier, Doug Olson, Dawn Bach, Megan Krainski, Christopher Barnes, Kenny, Anastasia Macneil, Halo Barker, Patti Mccaffrey, Eva O., Erin Connell, Emma Ramsey, Kerry Mccaffrey, Audra Miller, Kevin Miller, Brian Miller, Karen, Matt Carrera, Nigel Mcquire (wales In The Uk), Rich Kacprowicz, Rick R., Dan Johnston, The Patterson Family, Jeff Holt, Tom Hermes, Les Stewart, Christopher Hall, Mike Cerce, Frank Pierce, Kelly Smith, Patrick B., Sara Holloway, Karen Hotchkiss, Kristen Carde, Alison Rosenberger, Scott Sangston, Vicki Britt, Dan Owens, Al Desimone, Debbie Desimone, Mackenzie D., Alan Mize, Shelly Borella, Hillary Waldroop, Jen Tremley, Karen Smith, Hobbes And Snorky, Sandra Shaw, Brian Haas, Chris Ashby, Elyssa H., Jennifer Rowell, Chris Forner, Christine, Mike Pennington, John Pasqueralli, David Ballard, Paul Knott, Roye Ann Morris, James Hickey, Melissa Littman, Jeremy Mccaffrey, April Ramey, Tina Santillo, Allyson Sodrosky, Gary Bracknell, Agnes Ciotti, Jodi H, Allie Reckendorf, Paul Zerba, Melissa Kirk, Pecosace, Rob And April - Team Vanderpool, Kathryn Willer, Allyson Sodrosky, and Susan & Tom Linder. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #226: Where in the world is this?

So, the toughies were really just mediums. So, let's see what I can find to challenge you, hopefully. Is this a tough one? What if I don't say where we are, parks or outside?

 Where in the World #226

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, April 26th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

April 13, 2012

Streets of America Photowalk

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Announcing the
Streets of America Photowalk
Tuesday, May 29, 2012 from 12:30pm to 3pm

I will be hosting this photowalk to explore the Streets of America in Disney's Hollywood Studios. Disney Imagineers went to great lengths to create details found in both cities represented, New York City and San Francisco. This is a great opportunity to discover some of the hidden treasures found among the streets of the big city sets. There might even be a surprise or two along the way. The photowalk is limited to 20 people and you can sign up on the AllEars.net Facebook page (click here). We will meet up at the Studio Catering Company seating area between 12pm and 12:30pm.

A photographer sets up for a photo along one of the Streets of America in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
A photographer sets up for a photo along one of the Streets of America.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/320s, f/9, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 38mm focal length.

Will have some fun AllEars.Net swag to give to everyone. If you will be visiting Walt Disney World on May 29th, come join up with other photography loving-Disney fans and explore the concrete jungle in the backlot of the Studios.

April 8, 2012

Where in the World #224

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

To all who come to this photo trivia game, Welcome! Along the way, the photos can make us relive memories and see details Walt's Imagineers put into everything we love in Walt Disney World!

Happy Easter to everyone who is celebrating the holiday today!

Thank you, Vera Williams and Sophia, for your nice notes! I'm so glad you enjoy Where in the World; it wouldn't exist without all of you. :)

Glad to hear the school trip went well, Don Whiteman, for you and your 151 kids! THAT's a Happy Gathering! :)

Alan Mize, what an interesting question, thanks! I read every response that comes in each week, not a program to scan the answers or the whole photo blogger staff. If you're interested, each response get added to a main file that I download and import into a spreadsheet. I then read what each of you has sent (thanks again, Players, for being here each week!): on the first pass, I mark who has it right, who got it first, and the people who send person notes that I will answer. I grab the winners to put into the announcement and also copy them to a separate sheet for the entire month for when I pick the monthly winner. On the second pass, I see who I marked as personal notes to answer. Then I type up the post and get a photo for the next Challenge.

Here was last week's Challenge:
 Where in the World #223

And here's the answer:

Copyright © 2011 Erin Blackwell Canon PowerShot ELPH 300 HS, 12mm, 1/40s shutter, f5, ISO 800

OOO, what's on the television at The 50's Prime Time Cafe? That's the restaurant's official name, but Quincy Delcolletti and I call it Mom's.

Not did I keep my elbows off the table and ate all my veggies, Cousins Herb Miller, Matt Holley, Mike & Susan Hill, Robert Anderson, Chris Gallagher, Karen Schlumpf, Steve Knapp, Jared Orth, and Tom Buck, but I drew Mom a picture so she could put it on the refrigerator. :)
Beth Mcmeekin, I so agree with your son that pistachio pudding is the best green food; and it has pistachios, so that's healthy, like veggies, right? ;)

A lot of people said this was a favorite Disney restaurant, like Noah Schweizer. Me too. :)
Thanks to Kelli Sangston, I really want a peanut butter and jelly shake! And Quincy Delcolletti, thanks for the s'mores craving I have now. LOL!

I thought this was going to be a medium to difficult challenge, but you guys surprise me like always! We had 329 winners! And they are:

Lauren Thomas was the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Lauren and to all the readers who got the answer right: Clare S, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Bruce Jones, Theresa Rucando, Agnes Ciotti, Linda College, The Kahle Family, Kris Nixon, The Strukel Family, Ethan Johansen, Ken Jackson, Herb Miller, Chris Masse, Linda Scrivano, Matt Holley, Craig, Sharon Pierce, Don Whiteman, Mike O'brien, Wendy T Faler, Larissa Huda, Rachel Hall, Michael Geary, Amy Schweizer, Jennifer Rowell, Leigh Mertz, Leach Family, Allie Foster, Donna Veazey, Jennifer Cole, Bethanne Graustein, Martha Moore, Lindsey Nozal, Kathryn Willer, Kathy Rubin, Michael Phillips, Maureen Handy, Heather Johnson, Christine, Axel Beer, Paul Dickson, Misty Lyons, Dawn Fiege, Lauren Proutt, Allison Parkin, Debbie Boehm, Rob Blundin, Angela Johnson, Jacquelyn Law, Lindsay Downing, Erick Jauregui, Josh Weiss, Bill Cudney, Sara Colwell, Jenn Goad, Ana Blackwell, Rich Esker, Desiree Soppick, Courtney Payne, Claire Gregory, Gee, all these mentions on Where in the World are making me blush ) Thanks for all your hardwork and based on all the names I saw on the list this week, my hands were cramping up for you. I second the Villains challenge idea, I LOVE Disney Villains! , Back to this week, I believe its in the 50's Prime Time Cafe at Hollywood Studios, although I've never actually eaten there. I love Google image pages., Happy Easter a little early. I hope the Easter bunny brings you something eggs-tra special. , Claire, Bryan Fencl, Michelle Raimist, Lee Anastasi, Emily, Paul Moore, Elise O'connor, Steph Widger, Laurie Bisaccia, Mary Quarberg, Maureen Hanlon, Team Hill, Kathleen Egan , Kristie Johnson, Deb Ragno, Beth Mcmeekin, Katie Bray, Deb Ragno, Gabriella & Matthieu, The O'meara Family, Mckenzie Donald, Kandis Dawkins, Theresa Lucotti, Chris Yandow, Chris Bourassa, Kye Layton, Linda, Michelle Goodwin, Trina Noggle, Ellen Sullivan, Kyler Scott, Christine Dagney, Bridgette Gallagher, Erin Dagney, Duskin Henard, Quincy Delcolletti, Megan Krainski, Juliet O'hare, Debbie Poole, Justin Mejak, Tom Hermes, Bernie Sauppee, Scott Cullen, Sharon Dale, Erin, Scott Stubbs, Scott Stubbs, Jolynn Digiallonardo, Jamie K, Dwn Burns, Belicia Cullen, Kenny, Paula Terrill, Erin Connell, Mary, Deb Tyree, Steve Johnson, Double Family, Jennifer, Nicole Parker, Kelly Zanauskas, Bryan Murphy, Emily Hudson, Misty Mehelic, Jennifer Hooks, Amy B., Pollyanna Buff, Eileen Wiederspan, Karyn Glass, Hannah Couture, Kim Mobley, Dawn Bach, Carla C, Jennifer Lalli, Vera Williams, Jeffrey Martin, James Steele, Govier Family, Uk, Joyce Flavin, Sarah Francis, Christopher Barnes, Elyssa H., Joy Johnston, Olszak Family, Rebekah Anguish, Annette Nuenke, Virginia Pierce, Louise Barton, Jason And Melinda Lenz, Heather Young, Kerri Coggins, Kathy Mokychic, Erin Loring, Dennis Loring, Jen Cerce, Jennifer Rupert, Andrew Rabuck, Paula Massarelli, Christi Ison, Kellie Harpel, Donna Currier, Karen Duchnowski, Nick Bentz, Noah Schweizer, Jodi Cook, Pasquale Crea, Phil Vickers, Matta Danielle Murgia, Derek Williams, Les Stewart, Marie Phillips, Hillary Waldroop, Susie Howard, Mike Walter, Laura, Les Whitten, Ashley Rylander, The Emich Family, Chris Bruce, Cristen, Stephanie M, Angela And David Blevins, Daniel Record, Robert Anderson , Katerina, Michelle Boykin, Kerry |mccaffrey, Matthew Jadro, Rob And April - Team Vanderpool, Chris Kelly, Callie & Mason, Brent Lollar, Erin Hammer, Jonathan Ward, Jaime Madden, Rachel, Tara Weaver, Jason Skow, Derek Carty, Brian Haas, Julie And Kody Rider, Ken Kross, Chris Gallagher, Nicole Benjamin, Sandra Edwards, Dallas, Vicki Edwards, Kerrie Hogan, Mike Gillardi, Nancy Crossman, Betsy Silvestri, Shelly Borella, Cathy Connors, Melesia Love, Robin Mcconnell, Ashley Wilson, Paul Ignudo, Jr, Ricky Garcia, Jonah Rigby, Kate Fischer, Maryann Eckenrode, Elizabeth Scarborough, Michelle Roth-smoot, Jeremy Reichelt, Patti Mccaffrey, Chris Forner, Mary Virginia Clause, Dee Dee Kenney, Nicole Duddy, Annie Snodgrass, Diane Ramos, Rebecca Keenan, Kelly Smith, Sara Holloway, Allyson Sodrosky , Kristen Carde, Allison Caputa, Heather Stevens, Marc Lorenzo, Carolyn R. Conway, Patrick B., Aaron Duff, Scott Greenbaum, Cj Utt, Alan Mize, Emily Simpson, Amanda Campbell, Jamie Poynton, Dave Carriere, Jeff Finger, Jennifer Horst, Emma Poprock, Hayley Valk, Karen Schlumpf, Chris Bauman, Hunter Armstrong, Kay Moss, Kris , Pam Tees, Sophia, Lori Posey, Ashley Hill, Heidi Goodhue, Matt Degrandis, Brendan Abel, Kelli Sangston, Karen, Kyle, Amanda, Sabrina Kenney, Clay Anthony, Brian, Steve Knapp, Brian Grabowski, Samantha French, Jeff Holt, Amber Slifer-again :), Ashley Elizabeth, Wayne Witherspoon, Cara Richards, Mike Schultz, Karen Hotchkiss, Jared Orth, Ken Rhinehart, Jason Geberdt, Al Desimone, Alexis Hutchison, Liz Weiter, Caryn Schill, Patti Deluca, Patti Deluca, Regina Seaner, Brenda Strohmeyer, Jeremy Mccaffrey, Kate Flanagan, David Ballard, Cameron Love, Tom Buck, Jennifer Bogdan, Liz Moreau, Kevin Miller, Audra Miller, Clinton Dickinson, Joshua Swainston, Sally Pooler, Wendy Kemp, Robert P. Flaherty, Barclay Bakkum, Monica Owens, Sherry Rice, Sherri Pell, Staci Plunkett, Jenny Haas, Maggie Klotz, Lori Netti, John Pasqueralli, Teresa Plunkett, Walter N. Clark, Doug Olson, Hailey Gill, Kristen Mccoy, Chris Stockton, Maryann Romagnano, Richard Hall, Kelsi B, Shannon Thomas, Paul Knott, and Barb. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #224: Where in the world is this?

It's still all about the parks, Players!

 Where in the World #224

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, April 12th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

March 11, 2012

Where in the World #220

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

Time for another Where in the World from AllEars!

Hi to the Hoekzema Family! Thanks for the nice note!

Diane Ramos, I knew you feel all our warmth and magic as we waved Bon Voyage to you!

Here was last week's Challenge:
 Where in the World #219

And here's the answer:

Copyright © 2011 Erin Blackwell Canon PowerShot ELPH 300 HS, 14mm, 1/100s shutter, f5, ISO 100

I need the children of Paul Dickson, Doug Olson, and Scott Cullen, plus Deb Ragno's granddaughters, to draw closer. Because you, like Hunter Armstrong, Clint Curfman, David Blevins, Tommy And Kelli Sangston, knew this answer right away! Your parents and grandmother might win the monthly drawing because of you! (Kerry Mccaffrey, thanks for bailing out your sister Patti too. ;)

It's Ducky Momo at the Phineas and Ferb Meet and Play Experience in Disney's Hollywood Studios! Specifically, it's a large recreation of Candace's beloved Ducky Momo plush!

Mackenzie D., the families that love Phineas and Ferb together, rock together!

Tina Santacroce and Chris Stockton, please lead us in the Ducky Momo song since you so nicely sang it in your answers:

Ducky Mo
Ducky Momo (Quack quack quack!)
Ducky Mo
Ducky Momo (Quack quack quack!)
Ducky Mo
Ducky Momo (Quack quack quack!)
He's your very best friend!
Who's the happy-time toy toy
For every girl and boy boy
Who's the fuzzy enjoyment
Make fun with Ducky Momo!
Ducky Mo
Ducky Momo (Quack quack quack!)
He's your very best friend! (Quack quack quack!)

EVERYONE got this right! I think that's a new record!! Good for you, Players!

Kevin Miller was the first to send in the correct answer for the second week in a row! Congratulations to Kevin and to all the readers who got the answer right: Kevin Miller, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Chris Masse, Audra Miller, Brian Yesutis, Paul Dickson, Steve Jordan, Julie Wickware, Millie Tenreiro, The Kahle Family, Mary Beth Tarbet, Scott Greenbaum, Kerry A, Kye Layton, Scott Otis, Vera Williams, Doug Olson, Lee Anastasi, Ronni Selzer, Jonathan Thomas, Lauren Thomas, Isabel Johansen, The Hicks Family, Brian Haas, The O'meara Family, Laurie Walker, Debbie Desimone, Al Desimone, Mackenzie D., Jennifer Harmon, Sharon Pierce, Clint Curfman, Brian Gallant, Paula Massarelli, Bridgette Gallagher , Janet Thorn, Evelyn Wilson, Chris Kelly, Deb Ragno, Elyssa H., Dawn Burns, Peter Strukel, Danny T. Mann, Jennifer Rupert, Mike Haeberle, Emily Hudson, Stephanie Visco, Louise Barton, Adam Mcfarland , Kyle Parker, Troy Parker, Paul Knott, Matt And Danielle Murgia, Sam Fritz, Nicole Shuler, James And Kathy Berry, Stefanie Vandiver, Belicia Cullen, Hoekzema Family, Scott Cullen, Tom Koval, Laurie Malesky, Christopher Linscott, Elizabeth And Vicki Edwards, Elaine Tomko-deluca, Carla Nale, Christopher Barnes, Tina Santacroce, Tom Buck, Nicole, Emily Simpson, Dee Dee Kenney, Kerry Mccaffrey, Julie And Kody Rider, Agnes Ciotti, Mark Diba, Pam Tees, Rob And April - Team Vanderpool, Gabriella And Matthieu, Megan Krainski, Larissa Huda, Jacquelyn Law, Alan Law, Duskin Henard, Jacque Law, Kris Nixon, Patti Mccaffrey, Amanda & Ryan Perkins, Tracey Mayfield, Kenny, Walter N. Clark, Kirsten Stark, Kristyn Scibienski, Linda College, Nicole Duddy, Alison Rosenberger, Hillary Waldroop, Vincent Maltese, Shelly Borella, Andy Schumacher, George Mundy Jr, Rebecca Keenan, Brian Mcwithey, B. Kinner, Leigh Mertz, Nathan Firth, Diane Ramos, Mitchell Holmes, Anastasia Macneil, Abigail Grasso, Kerri Coggins, Luis Rodriguez, Susie Howard, Tommy And Kelli Sangston , Matt Degrandis, Jonah Rigby, The Kertes Family, Brian Miller, Clay Anthony, Jim Ludwig, Matt Maas, Linda Mac, Kelly Smith, Les Stewart, Andrew Bailey, Sarah Holodick, Team Hill, Kristi Strembicki, Anne Campbell, Jeremy Mccaffrey, Michelle Brown , Thomas Auckand, Hunter Armstrong, Barclay Bakkum, Sherri Pell, Melissa Kirk, Noah Batista, Theresa Rucando, Angela And David Blevins, Linda Allen, Andrea Kruszewski, Chris Stockton, The Patterson Family, Margie Larmon, Josh Weiss, Dayna Guay, Mike Cerce, and Mandy. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #220: Where in the world is this?

Now, here is the new challenge:
 Where in the World #220

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, March 8th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

February 14, 2012

Disney Pic of the Week: Mary Poppins

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

I remember the first time I saw Mary Poppins, Walt Disney's Oscar winning movie which mixed live action with animation, when my sister and her boyfriend set me up at a drive-in theater on a blanket with lots of food and soda outside the boyfriend's car. I was too young to understand why I was outside but happy with the arrangement and the magic of the movie. I figured out why a few years later!

I recall that memory every time I am on the Great Movie Ride in Disney's Hollywood Studios when the audio-animatronic likenesses of Julie Andrews as Mary Poppins and Dick Van Dyke as Bert come into view singing the Oscar winning song, Chim Chim Cher-ee.

Mary Poppins and Bert singing inside the Great Movie Ride at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Mary Poppins and Bert singing inside the Great Movie Ride.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11-16mm, 1/80s, f/2.8, ISO 6400, EV 0, 16mm focal length.

Lisa will be here on Thursday with her Disney Pic of the Week photos about Mary Poppins.

As you read yesterday, Barrie is leaving Picture This! to concentrate on her business. Both Lisa and I will miss Barrie's weekly contributions and the work she did behind the scenes to keep the weekly themes on track. For the immediate future, the Disney Pic of the Week posts will be on Tuesday and Thursday.

February 12, 2012

Where in the World #216

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

Smiley from millan.netGuess what, Players! I need you to think back to one year ago. What happened then? Hmmm..... oh yeah! I joined you on Where in the World Photo Fun! That's right, it's my one year anniversary hosting-posting-never able to fill Barrie Brewer's shoes here! Can you BELIEVE it? Me either!

Hi, Ken Maikowski! Thanks for the question! I get a different number of answers every week; it depends on the picture. This week, I had 281 people send in answers; last week, I had 48. One week, we had over 500! We have tripled in the amount of players since the game started, which is a HUGE thrill to all of us! So thank you to Kerri Coggins, Jeffrey Botelho, and all of you for supporting us each week!

Whoo hoo, Caroline Burmester is back!

Here was last week's Challenge:
 Where in the World #215

And here's the answer:

Copyright © 2011 Erin Blackwell Canon PowerShot ELPH 300 HS, 4mm, 1/40s shutter, f2.7, ISO 800

The start of the Yellow Brick Road in Munchinkinland! Courtesy of the Great Movie Ride in Disney's Hollywood Studios! And thanks to Tiffany Gibb, Steve Jordan, and Danielle Ciotti, I've been singing the song all day!

Follow the yellow brick road
Follow the yellow brick road...

Kerrie Hogan, you were so probably RIGHT this week! Booyah! And Rob Vanderpool, that was just the right amount of information. :)

Janet Fosbender, I need you, your daughter, and Andrew Loft to come over here: there ARE some scary things in this ride like aliens, the Witch threatening to get us and our little dog too. So let's hold hands and get through this together... ready? OK, don't let go, 'cause the skeletons scare the beejeezus out of me. (you can also help me look for the hidden C3PO and R2-D2; I can't get a picture of it. Maybe you can.)

We're off to see the Wizard!
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz!

Darn you, Tiffany, Danielle, and Steve!

Pam Tees, I'm so glad you like the picture! And James And Kathy Berry, new scenes in the Great Movie Ride would be awesome! Oh look, Kerry and Patti Mccaffrey just HAD to point out they were just in Disney on this ride. LOL! :)

Agnes Ciotti, did it work when you clicked your heels 3 times and said, “There's no place like Disney!”? Because if it did, I'm getting a pair of ruby slippers and joining you!

Wait a minute: Elaine Tomko-deluca, your son, when he was little, wrote a story where Dorothy took the Red Brick Road for a change? I give that a standing ovation! Good for him for creativity and thinking outside the box!

Virginia Pierce was the first to send in the correct answer for the second week in a row! Congratulations to Virginia and to all the readers who got the answer right: Virginia Pierce, Chris Masse, Sharon Pierce, Jennifer Harmon, Barbara Ajak , Debbie Desimone, Tim Jeltes, Brian Haas, Julie Wickware, Maureen Handy, Al Desimone, Kathryn Perkins, Russ Morgan, Victor Gonzalez, The Kahle Family, Team Hill, Judy Koslowski, Caryn Schill, Peter Strukel, Jamie K, Brian Yesutis, Tim Johansen, Kye Layton, Larissa Huda, Nicole Ruzinski, Kris Nixon, Matt Holley, Dale Knight, Dee Dee Kenney, Kenny, Leigh Mertz, Emily Hudson, Billy Wills, Chris Wallace, Don Whiteman, Maryann Eckenrode, Jonathan Hommel, Bill Mckim, Richard Memmory, Scott Cullen, Belicia Cullen, Tim Wingfield, Josh Weiss, Jacquelyn Law, Vicki Edwards, Angie Young, Hannah Couture, Doublefamily, Dave Wang, Freya Schmidt, Lori Rienhardt, Mary Beth Tarbet, Shelly Metcalfe, The O'meara Family, Dawn Bach, Les Whitten, Heather Young, Scott Otis, Patty Carty, Michael Smart, Aaron Harpel, Jen Cerce, Linda Scrivano, Ken Jackson, Craig, Dawn Burns, Troy Parker, Ruth Woodhouse, Jonah Rigby, Matt Degrandis, Paul Dickson, Denise Cayz, Erin Dagney, Christine Dagney, Curtis Bille, Kerri Coggins, Jared Orth, David, Michael Kertes, Jimi Mac, Tracy, Bruce Hinterleitner, Betsy Silvestri, Katie Bray, Tracy Discher, Sharon Dale, Penny, Lauren Thomas, Janet Fosbender, Paulnewman, Hoekzema Family, Jerry Felder, Tiffany Gibb, Kerry A., Bob Destephano, Pam Tees, Rob Blundin, Donna Currier, Erin Rix, James And Kathy Berry, Mary Virginia Clause, Vera Williams, Patrick Broaddus, Pollyanna Buff, Rick Shea, Steve Jordan, Kelsi B., Chris Kelly, Jacquelyn Law, Christopher Linscott, Sam Fritz, Suzanne Denham, Victoria Caputo, Mike O'brien, Paul Knott, Mike Walter, Ashley Hill, Barbara Sims, Brian Miller, Teresa Murray, Beth Mcmeekin, Ed Suscreba, Jodi Cook, Jennifer Lalli, Christie Condit, Evanna Huda, Stephanie Visco, Rick R., Wade A. Williams, Melesia Love, Paula Massarelli, Cameron Lange, Dallas Hamilton, Kerrie Hogan, Diane Ramos, Christopher Hall, Nancy Daniele, James Greene, Elyssa H., Heather Metzler, Karrie Duffey, Doug Olson, Kristen Mccoy, Nicole Duddy, Bob Henriksen, Samantha French, Rob Vanderpool, Jullie Pudem, Jodi Johnson, Diane Hunt, Shelly Borella, Dan Mangini, David And Melissa Lizewski, Andrew Pettit, Chris Forner, Chris Bauman, Jeffrey Beauchamp, Alan Mize, Phil Vickers, Antoinette Leblanc, Karen Aguiar, Jim Thompson, J Brizzle, Cathy Connors, Mickey Eckert, Michael Campe, Dan Johnston, Nicole Michael, Elaine Tomko-deluca, Tricia Petty, Dave Fullerton, Jennifer Tremley, Kathryn Hughes, Harry Wilson, Richard Smith, Amber Slifer, Kim Steiner, George Mundy Jr, Scott Sangston, Susan Petr , Patty Newton, Mark Franklin, Mandy, Amanda Campbell, Melissa Kirk, Christopher Barnes, Nick Bentz, Pam Lorenz, Morgan W., Philip Badcock, Scott Greenbaum, Michael Pyle, Clay Anthony, Mike Haeberle, Sharon Lee, Joshua Swainston, John Dupre, Carol Bolger, Brian Sheets, Wayne Chadourne, Andrew Loft, Ed Elder, Kelly Zanauskas, Kerry Mccaffrey, Rachel Hoover, John Sheridan, Jennifer Mercier, John Pasqueralli, Sarah Haas, Wendy T Faler, Davidw, Kelly Smith, Patti Mccaffrey, Jessica Iglesias, Robert Bostic, Diane Furtado, Leslie Hill, Jennifer Bogdan, Chrissie Smith, Alyssa Bibbee, Karen Hotchkiss, Ashley, Cyndi Baldwin, Jerry Weldon, Robert P. Flaherty, Tom Koval, Elizabeth Silhol, Denise Montgomery, Tracy Cegielski, Heather Hynes, David Ballard, Adam Inlander, Jamie Poynton, Barclay Bakkum, Carol Donoghue, Sarah Holodick, Dayna Guay, Wendy Mowery, Walter N. Clark, Les Stewart, Jon Solomonson, Angela Johnson, Caroline Burmester, Dave Carriere, Karen Adamakis, Nicole Shuler, Brian Skinner, Danielle Ciotti, Agnes Ciotti, Gary Bracknell, Shirley Garcowski, Jeremy Mccaffrey, Michgael Simmons, Amanda Laplante, Andy Hickey, Jeffrey Botelho, and Deary. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #216: Where in the world is this?

I promised you we would go outside the parks this week and we are! That's right, Alan Mize, I put the park tickets to the side, even though it's hard to leave those wonderful four places, but here we go!

 Where in the World #216

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, February 16th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

February 5, 2012

Where in the World #215

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

Diane Ramos, you have a great week too!

Here was last week's Challenge:
 Where in the World #214

And here's the answer:


Copyright © 2011 Erin Blackwell Canon PowerShot ELPH 300 HS, 6mm, 1/60s shutter, f3.5, ISO 1000

Mural of Sleeping Beauty Castle by Herb Ryman, inside One Man's Dream at Disney's Hollywood Studios! This is one of the great additions added to Walt's tribute in 2010, bringing the beautiful concept art for “Disney Land's” castle to the public eye at the Florida resort at last. It's also, as Craig tells me, in the Disney University building. Oh, and in his family room. Way to go, Craig. I should do that when I re-do my family room! :-)

Like Mary Beth Tarbet and Luis Rodriguez, I never miss this attraction. It's a must see for this and any real Disney fan.

Larissa Huda was the first to send in the correct answer for the second week in a row! Congratulations to Larissa and to all the readers who got the answer right: Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Kye Layton, Agnes Ciotti, Peter Strukel, Matt Holley, Megan K, Mary Beth Tarbet, Dee Dee Kenney, Betsy Silvestri, Hannah, The O'meara Family, Clint Curfman, Craig, Emily Hudson, Analisa Louise, Evanna Huda, Paul Dickson, Louise Barton, Chuck Sands, Danielle Suscreba, Rob Blundin, Luis Rodriguez, Scott Otis, Diane Ramos, Tim Johansen, Sharon Dale, Wendy Palmquist, Kendra, and Sarah Holodick. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.

Speaking of which, guess what time it is?! Time to announce the monthly winner! That honor goes to: strong>Joyce Matta ! Congratulations, Joyce! You've won AllEars® goodies from Deb Wills herself! I will contact you soon on how you can claim your prize!
_____________________________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #215: Where in the world is this?

I know I said I'd do something outside of the parks this week. But... it didn't happen. I'll work on that, I promise. But meanwhile, we're still in the parks!

 Where in the World #215

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, February 9th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

See you next week, Players!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

December 16, 2011

AllEars.net 15th Anniversary Photo Essay

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

This is my account of the AllEars.net 15th Anniversary December to Remember events I attended between December 8 and December 11, 2011. I was not sure if Deb Wills and the All Ears team could pull it off. Read below to see if they did.

The kick-off event was held in the Convention Center at Disney's Contemporary Resort. Disney historian Jim Korkis talked about the history of the Carousel of Progress. Like the Wilderness Lodge meet I attended back in October, Jim covered the Carousel of Progress from Walt Disney's initial ideas to how it came about to be included in the 1964 New York Worlds Fair before finding a home in the Magic Kingdom's Tomorrowland in Florida by way of Disneyland. Jim filled in mystery's and included entertaining side stories. For instance, when Walt needed a song for the Carousel of Progress, he went to the Sherman Brothers and told them it had to be uplifting and only 13 and half seconds long.

Jim Korkis entertaining a room full of All Ears guest at the Contemporary Resort, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Jim Korkis entertaining a room full of All Ears guest at the Contemporary Resort.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/60s, f/5, ISO 3200, EV 0, 24mm focal length, flash.

I missed out on the Toy Story Mania Eat and Play Meet (click for Laura's coverage) and meet up with the All Ears team and fans for A Night of Sweet Bites and Street Lights in the Art of Animation building at Disney's Hollywood Studios. This event had two parts. The first was a dessert party in the Meet and Greet area. Of course, Minnie and Mickey came out for photos. Barrie and I got a taste of being PhotoPass photographers (that is Barrie on the left below) as we took turns photographing all the All Ears fans with the famous duo.

Barrie doing PhotoPass duty at A Night of Sweet Bites and Street Lights meet in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Barrie doing PhotoPass duty at A Night of Sweet Bites and Street Lights meet in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/100s, f/8, ISO 1000, EV 0, 28mm focal length, flash.

The second part of the night had all of us being escorted across Disney's Hollywood Studios to an empty and dark Streets of America. Deb Wills had the honor of throwing the switch to turn on the Osborne Spectacle of Lights (see below). We all spent the next thirty minutes enjoying, photographing and being amazed at the new enhancements to this year's display.

Deb Wills turning on the Osborne Lights in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Deb Wills turning on the Osborne Lights in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/30s, f/5.3, ISO 720, EV 0, 98mm focal length, flash.

The next day, around 40 people showed up for Barrie's and mine Smile and Say Jambo at Animal Kingdom photowalk very early the next morning. After a brief introduction, we raffled off some photos, photo gifts and other cool stuff. We then reconvened in Harambe Village for a walk on the Pagani Exploration Trail to photograph birds, meerkats, hippos and gorillas. Most of the group then went on a Kilimanjaro Safari. We filled up most of a safari jeep and had good photo opportunities of antelopes, elephants, giraffes, white rhinos and cheetahs.

A jeep full of All Ears photowalk attendees on the Kilimanjaro Safari in Disney's Animal Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
A jeep full of All Ears photowalk attendees on the Kilimanjaro Safari in Disney's Animal Kingdom.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/13s, f/3.5, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 28mm focal length.

After our Africa adventures, it was time to relax at the Open House in one of the Grand Villas at Kidani Village. The villa was a two level, three bedroom suite complete with kitchen, dining and living rooms.

I attended a Hidden Mickey tour with author Steve Barret around the resort's lobby and hallways.

AllEars.net team member and Hidden Mickey author, Steve Barrett, in the lobby of the Kidani Village, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
AllEars.net team member and Hidden Mickey author, Steve Barrett, in the lobby of the Kidani Village.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/80s, f/3.5, ISO 3200, EV +0.3, 28mm focal length.

The villa's balconies overlook the wildlife preserve where we all watched and photographed antelopes, giraffes and zebras. Inside, people collected All Ears trading cards, enjoyed snacks, cold beverages and a few raffle give-a-ways by Deb Wills.

All Ears guests watching animals from the Kidani Village Grand Villa, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
All Ears guests watching animals from the Kidani Village Grand Villa.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/125s, f/3.5, ISO 500, EV +0.3, 28mm focal length.

The next morning, we were all in for a special treat as Don "Ducky" Williams gave an hour long talk about how he became a character artist for the Walt Disney Company. His story was full of funny anecdotes, interesting insights and, finally, triumph as he was hired (or more like never asked to leave). The whole time he drew Disney character after Disney character like the one of Ariel below. Afterward, Deb Wills raffled off each of the 22 different characters Don had drawn that morning. Each one was signed by him.

Don Ducky Williams finishing up a character portrait in the Odyssey restaurant in Epcot, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Don Ducky Williams finishing up a character portrait in the Odyssey restaurant in Epcot.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/60s, f/8, ISO 2500, EV 0, 200mm focal length, flash.

The last event of the four days was an Illuminations Dessert party held in one of the VIP rooms inside the American Adventure. It had turned rainy which prompted the change in venue from the Italy terrace. The dessert tables were filled with fruit, cakes, sweets and even some melted chocolate to pour over them. Below you see two All Ears team members enjoying the treats. The rain stopped just before Illuminations and about half of us went out to enjoy the show.

AllEars.net team members Mike Scopa and Jack Marshall enjoying delicious desserts at Epcot, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
AllEars.net team members Mike Scopa and Jack Marshall enjoying delicious desserts at Epcot.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/60s, f/4, ISO 200, EV 0, 28mm focal length, flash.

It was a jam packed four days. Deb Wills and her All Ears team truly did create a December to Remember. Thank you!

October 23, 2011

Where in the World #200

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

Be careful! I have a bad cold and you don't want to catch my cooties while you read this. :)

Patti Mccaffrey, this is such a magic coincidence! My nickname is Kerry (don't try to figure out how you get Kerry from Erin, because you don't. Long story. ;) ) and here you have a sister named that. Wait, she's a World player. Hi, Kerry! Have a great trip in January and remember that Katie, Cassie, Bailey, Jeremy and Maddie will be hoping you bring them back something. ;)

And now on to Challenge #199:
 Where in the World #199

And here's the answer:


Copyright © 2010 Erin Blackwell Canon PowerShot SD890 IS, 7mm, 1/13s shutter, f/3.2, ISO 3200

It's the Sci-Fi Dine In Theater in Disney Hollywood Studios! I loved when they used to call out to what was going on the screen. : )

Cara Richards was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Cara and to all the readers who got the answer right: Jeffrey Dunne, Rob Blundin, Tina Santacroce, Brian Sheets, Paul Dickson, Debbie Desimone, Al Desimone, Clay Anthony, Carri Marotto, Denise Cayz , Kellie Harpel, Zachary Ott, Matt Degrandis, Paul Ignudo, Jr., Josh Weiss, Patti Deluca, John Foggo, Michelle Katz, Pam Tees, and Mike Hill. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
__________________________________________________________________________

Challenge #200: Where in the world is this?

LOOK! This is the 200th Where in the World challenge! TWO HUNDRED! Everybody celebrate! Smiley from millan.net

Now last week was a tough one for all the players who love them! What about this one? We're outside the parks this week: who is this guy and where do you find him?

 Where in the World #200

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, October 27th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

See you next week, Worlders!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

October 11, 2011

Disney Pic of the Week: Beauty and the Beast

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

My favorite Disney animated film is Beauty and the Beast. The combination of story, characters, music, songs and some of the best mix of hand drawn and computer assisted animation still has it as the only animated film to be nominated for Best Picture by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the Oscars. It was natural then for Disney to bring the story and characters from Beauty and the Beast to its themeparks.

In Disney's Hollywood Studios, you can watch a 20 minute Broadway-style production of Beauty and the Beast, Live on Stage in The Theater of the Stars on Sunset Blvd. several times each day. This production which has added elements from the real Broadway version has been entertaining guests since 1991.

Belle gives the audience a kiss goodbye at the end of the Beauty and the Beast Stage Show in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Belle gives the audience a kiss goodbye at the end of the Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/125s, f/5.6, ISO 400, EV +0.7, 150mm focal length.

Barrie and Lisa will be here on Thursday and Saturday with their favorite Disney Pic of the Week photos of Beauty and the Beast in the Disney parks.

October 10, 2011

December Disney Calendar

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

Can you believe this month marks the end of the third year that I've been posting these calendars? I am constantly amazed at how quickly time passes. These cute little carolers are part of the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights exhibit at Disney's Hollywood Studios. I'm posting this month's calendar a little early to make up for last month's being a little late. Enjoy " and Happy Holidays!

You will need to have Adobe Reader on your computer to download the calendar(s). Just click on the photo to download the calendar you want. When printing CD Jewel Case size, make sure “Page Scaling” in your print dialogue box is set to “None” to ensure that the calendar prints out at the correct size.


This one prints out at 8.5" x 11". It's handy if you need a calendar that you can write on.

December 2011 8.5x11 Calendar


This one prints out at 4.75" x 4.75", the perfect size for a CD Jewel Case frame.

December 2011 Jewel Case Calendar

And finally, this desktop wallpaper is for your monitor screen.

12-11_wallpaper_sm.jpg
1024 x 768
1280 x 800
1280 x 1024
1440 x 900
1600 x 1200

September 25, 2011

Where in the World #196

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

I can't believe it, I didn't put the list of winners for last week! I AM SO SORRY!! I listed everyone below!

Obviously, I'm not in the position to give wise advice, Leslie Stewart, but never turn down a chance for a Disney vacation! But as you can see, we all make mistakes. At least you probably had a reason. Mine was just stupidity. :)

Hello to the Schweizer brothers! Noah who ties with Isabel for youngest player at 7 years old, and Daniel who celebrates his 12th birthday this Tuesday: Happy Birthday, Daniel! Have a magical day!

This was Challenge #195:
 Where in the World #195

And here's the answer:


Copyright © 2010 Erin Blackwell Canon Powershot SD890 IS, 7mm, 1/15s shutter, f/3.2, ISO 320

Oh no! Do what Sarah Smee warns and hold on to your wallet, because the bank has been robbed and a large tram of Disney guests has just been taken hostage by the bank robber! It's probably the spot that woke up Bart Patterson, and it happens in The Great Movie Ride in Disney's Hollywood Studios. Because as Kevin Weidenweber reminds us, “anything can happen in the movies”.

And Caroline Burmester: way to buck up and put Studios instead of MGM!

Nancy Ahlsen, I think... I'm pretty sure.... this means you win. So it's a good thing you ventured (and that Claire Gregory gave all that detail), because you gained with the other winners. :)

Chris Masse was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Chris and to all the readers who got the answer right: Lee Anastasi, Linda Scrivano, Larissa Huda, Ken Jackson, Sharon Pierce, Sharon Dale, Jennifer Harmon, Mary Beth Tarbet, Tracy Henkel, Kerry A., Dawn Burns, Christine Dagney, Theresa Rucando, Tim Johansen, Kye Layton, Caryn Schill, Jeff Schoeling , Kim Steiner, The Hicks Family, Katie Bray, Dawn Bach , Kirsty Butler, Matt Holley, Erin Dagney, Quincy Delcolletti, Dave Wang, James Berry, Alan P, Kathy Berry, Michelle Raimist, Maureen Handy, Heather Young, Betsy Silvestri, Elaine Tomko-deluca, Scott Otis, Paul Dickson, Kris Nixon, Cara Richards, Stuart Hale, Carla Nale, Angie Young, Sarah Holodick, Craig, Scott Greenbaum, Ed Elder, Karen Ramirez, K. Beasley, Carla C., Linda College, Curtis Bille, Phil Vickers, Jamie K, Tim Wingfield, Margie, Patty Carty, Deb Ragno, The Perras Family, Jonah Rigby, Nick Bentz, Ken Maikowski, Julie Wickware, Jerry Weldon, Mike Hill, Vicki Aponte, Jennifer Chartier, Stephanie Newell, Chris Linscott, Karen Hotchkiss, Mouse Junkie Adam, Mia W., Vicki And Elizabeth, Willam, And Thomas Edwards, Mike Walter, Kimberly Kusser, Millie Tenreiro, Josh Weiss, Carolyn Como, Jim Thompson, Emma Poprock, Kerry Mccaffrey, Diana F, Brian Yesutis, Leslie Stewart, Gregory Kuhn, Jeffrey Dunne, Mike Haeberle, Kaitlynn Gipson, Dave Fullerton, Jon Cohen, Karen Schlumpf, Victoria Caputo, Sam Fritz, Claire Gregory, Evan Rapone, Michelle Thompson, Ken Fischler, Matt Cofone, Kathryn Perkins, Ed Hogan, Ed Aleszczyk, Jason Lenz, Chris Kelly, Kristen Mccoy, Jennifer Townsend, Linda Mac, Melina Anne Hillis, Rob Blundin, Dee Dee Kenney, Rich Kacprowicz, Shaun Leake, Amanda Campbell, Brian Haas, Jeremy Hardy, Bill Daniel, Brian Skinner, Christie Condit, Kelsi B., Jodi Cook, Ian Falk, Lisa Wight, Scott Junkin, Brian Gallant, Bob Patterson, Dallas Hamilton, Harrison Grasso, Jen Cerce, Nathaniel Clements, Krystal Pound, Karen Smith, Kevin, Christopher Hall, Genevieve Trudel, Bruce Arnold, Jeremy Reichelt, Jullie Pudem, Michael Mclucas And Jackie Mclucas, Andrea Kruszewski, Bruce Jones, Dale Knight, Bob Hendrix, Karrie Duffey, Freya Schmidt, Carri Marotto, Jim Finley, Kathleen Kennedy, Terry Fleming, Dan Johnston, Rebecca Keenan, Mark Franklin, Sarah Smee, Ashley Baker, Kelly Smith, Ashley Elizabeth, Jeannine, Jared Orth, Joanne Tomko, Kevin Weidenweber, James Greene, Pj Popsuj, George Mundy Jr, Erin Rix, Donna Currier, Scott Sangston, Amy, Danny And Analisa, Patti Mccaffrey, Cameron Lange, Caroline Burmester, J Brizzle, Mark Cullison, Suzanne Denham, Doug Buchheit, Lauren Thomas, Kelly Mager, Christopher Barnes, Derek Brown, Matt And Danielle Murgia, Kelli Reedy, Matt Degrandis, Jimi Mac, Kenny, Jeff Blank, Diane Furtado, Kelly, Dave Mickley, Shelly Borella, Kerry Finnamore, Ashley Wilson, Matthew Jadro, Mickey Eckert, Bart Patterson, Karen Korcheski, Alan Mize, Marc Fumo, Michelle Palazzo, Debbie Desimone, John Pasqueralli, Ed Suscreba, Marie, Tom Wert, Amanda Gagnon, Madison Reynolds, Ashley Deitchler, Jo Ann Bailey, Patti Deluca, Bryan Timko, Paul Knott, Luis Rodriguez, Debbie Poole, Colin Buchanan, Tom Koval, Brian Grabowski, Tom Higbee, Teri Michalski, Dan Owens, Nancy Ahlsen, Melissa Duhamel, Dennis O'donnell, Kate Flanagan, Paula B, Dave Carriere, Anastasia Branco, Pat Hargesheimer, Laney, Jill Martin, Barclay Bakkum, Nicole Duddy, Jennifer Bourg, Caitlin Rush, Mary Greger, Brent Lollar, Chris Stockton, Jeremy Mccaffrey, Jennifer Rupert, and Amy Schweizer. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
__________________________________________________________________________
And DRUM ROLL PLEASE for the very patient winners from last week's Where in the World!

Drum roll!

Dale Knight was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Dale and to all the readers who got the answer right: The Kahle Family, Bruce Jones, Theresa Rucando, Mary Beth Tarbet, Chris Masse, Megan C. Krainski, Virginia Pierce, Kris Nixon, Erica Binder, Evanna Huda, Lauren Thomas, Sharon Pierce, Josh Weiss, Caryn Schill, Mackenzie D., Maureen Handy, Melody Salemi, Greg Papa, Jeff Hoover, Betsy Silvestri, Odaly Victorio, Brianne, Eric Schaffer, Jeff Hoover, Kathryn Perkins, Erin Dagney, Christine Dagney, Millie Tenreiro, Rob Blundin, Erika Loboda, Jamie K, Mary Virginia Clause, David Andd Angela P, Angela Fennell, Tom Hermes, Kelly Seymore, Lauren Sullivan, Kelsi B., Tricia Petty, Danielle Ciotti Harsley, Agnes Ciotti, Scott Otis, Walter Fletcher, Donnie, Jodi Cook, K.l. Beasley, Kye Layton, Bridgette Gallagher, James Berry, Scott Greenbaum, Kathy Berry, John C. Lacasse, Stuart Hale, Michelle Thompson, Karen Genda, Annette Nuenke, Gloria Martin, Janet Thorn, Karen Ramirez, Jennifer Tremley, Diane Curfman, Craig Livingston, Antoinette Leblanc, Katie Bray, Maryann Eckenrode, Stephanie Hardhouse, Tim Sanchez, Kelly Mager, Linda Scrivano, Larissa Huda, Phil Vickers, Robert Anderson, Andrew Weed, Kim Steiner, Mike Walter, Erin Hammer, Amanda Campbell, Isabel Johansen, Claire Gregory, Jennifer Horst, Louise Barton, Mary Jo Gallion, Vicki And Elizabeth Edwards, Victor Gonzalez, Carol Baranowsky, Elizabeth Scarborough, Stephanie Newell, Les Whitten, Lori Rienhardt, Scott Stubbs, Julie Wickware, Nick Bentz, Matthew Herman, Jenn Steele, Daniel Record, Ashley Deitchler, Kellie Harpel, Jane Bradley, Paul Dickson, Tom Koval, Patty Carty, Derek Carty, Michael Gainey, The Perras Family, Diana Fitzgerald, Craig, Lily-pierre Couet, Wendy Faler, Christopher Barnes, Doug Reichl, Nathalie Doiron, Melody O'donnell, Sharon Dale, Allison Burgess, Sam Fritz, Leslie Stewart, Freya Schmidt, Diane Furtado, Bruce Arnold, Mike M., Jessica Gruhlke, Carol Gamill, Leigh Ridgell, Jennifer Harmon, Ian Falk, Ken Jackson, Tanya Hinnes, Hannah Couture, Jessica Deans, Jonah Rigby, Evan Rapone, Elizabeth Macgregor, Luis Rodriguez, Michelle Sunde, Kerry Mccaffrey, Jen Schultz, Jeremy Hardy, Timothy Fuerst, Double Family, Alan P, Jason Skow, Becky Hosinger, Matt Holley, Herb Miller, Steven Bowling, Ron Renz, Scott Junkin, Wendy Snelgrove, Bob Patterson, Heather Hynes, Brian Gallant, Deb Gallo, Ken Fischler, Mark Franklin, Chris Bauman, Jennifer Toto, Dawn Buras, Sherry Trapp, Ryan Smee, Kevin Weidenweber, Alison Rosenberger, Vincent Maltese, Kelly Smith, Karen Hotchkiss, Nicole Duddy, Nancy Ahlsen, Jim Finley, Katherine Fallon, Robert Mccoy, Karrie Duffey, Mike Venere, Michael Nanney, Danielle Sauthoff, Carri Marotto, Cara Richards, Chris Bourassa, Marie Phillips, Ashley Baker, Jen Richardson, Al Desimone, Lisa Honard, Shane Stack, Mike Haeberle, Michelle Palazzo, Steve Jordan, Dan Johnston, Tiffany W., Jullie Pudem, Sarah Holodick, Shelly Borella, Rebecca Keenan, John Sheridan, Ashley Ryan, Karen Smith, Miguel Gonzalez, Paul Ignudo Jr, Karen Calabria, Patti Mccaffrey, Mike Hill, Danielle Suscreba, Bryan Timko, Bob Hendrix, Heidi Goodhue, Linda Mac, Shannon Brueggemann, Kate Fischer, Sandra Shaw, J Brizzle, Carla C., Kristen Mccoy, Melissa Duhamel, Jeff Finger, Kristen Carde, Megan E., Belicia Cullen, Hillary Waldroop, Susie Howard, Sharon Leitgeb, Roxanne Kliebert, Robert Burge Jr, Tom & Susan Lindre, Tracy Discher, Debbie Poole, Kevin Miller, Audra Miller, Jane Johnson, Jennifer Bogdan, Ashley Hill, Joseph M Zafia, Jennifer Mills, Clay Anthony, Patti Deluca, Mary Tackett, Dylan Weidner, Gary Bracknell, Teri Michalski, Pj Popsuj, Allison Daubert, Marissa D'ambrosio, Jeremy Mccaffrey, Dawn Bach, April Haddock, Dick Smith, John Pasqueralli, Brent Lollar, Chris Stockton, Bart Patterson, Kat, Ashley Barrera, Heather Pedulla, and Barrie Brewer. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.

__________________________________________________________________________

Challenge #196: Where in the world is this?

Staying in the parks for a tougher one since we have players who love the tough ones! I think it's a toughie, but you guys can really surprise me sometimes with how easily you guess them.

That is my arm and my red t-shirt sleeve. Can you guess what attraction's seat that is?

 Where in the World #196

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, September 30th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

See you next week, Worlders!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies!

September 24, 2011

Citizens of Hollywood

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

 Citizens of  Hollywood
Copyright © 2009 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D300, 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF-S DX VR, 1/125s shutter, f11, ISO 200

Happy to oblige, the Citizens of Hollywood stop their vehicle to mug for the camera. I'd like to introduce you to Melvin Macheezmo, Joodie Patootie and Veronica Vanisht, Streetmosphere performers at Disney's Hollywood Studios.


September 23, 2011

Dining Under the Stars at Disney's Hollywood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

I will be going to Walt Disney World next month to meet up with some fellow photographers as I did back in 2009. Before returning to Walt Disney World, I like to review my past trip photos. Over the next four weeks, I am going to share with you locations in each park starting with my favorite, Disney's Hollywood Studios (DHS).

Like the real Hollywood, Disney uses large sound stages to create unique and fantastical experiences for their guests at DHS. Drive-In Theaters are rare in today's America but back in the 1950's and 1960's they were extremely popular with families and teenagers to watch such classics like The Blob or The Attack of the 50 Foot Woman. To capture such a fun era, the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater restaurant was created. No matter the time of day or year, people found themselves dining under the stars in front of a large movie screen showing trailers from some of the "best" (I use the word loosely) science fiction movies made when drive-ins where popular. Sprinkled in between the movie trailers are animated shorts and Walt Disney even introduces one of his favorites.

Guests enjoying a meal at the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Guests enjoying a meal at the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11-16mm, 1/8s, f/2.8, ISO 8000, EV +1.0, 16mm focal length.

Did you notice what people are sitting in? The "tables" are made up of cars which sit four to six adults. Towards the back of the restaurant they have bigger cars for groups and even tables near the concession stand (the kitchen) like the old drive-ins used to have.

Guests sitting in their cars at the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Guests sitting in their cars at the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11-16mm, 1/25s, f/2.8, ISO 8000, EV +1.0, 16mm focal length.

The Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater restaurant is a favorite of my family and has the best milk shake in the park (notice I did not say resort). If you have not tried it, better make your reservations as soon as you can as it is very busy and popular as the old drive-ins were on Saturday nights.

September 20, 2011

Disney Pic of the Week: Streetmosphere

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Citizens of Hollywood were first termed Streetmosphere when Disney's Hollywood Studios opened as Disney-MGM Studios. All parks have streetmosphere performers and are a ball to interact with. If you Search our blog for streetmosphere, you will find lots of our blog posts feature these sparkling entertainers. My favorite Streetmosphere performer is Frederick Lewenowsky who is a member of the Hollywood Public Works team.

Streetmosphere performer Frederick Lewenowsky in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Streetmosphere performer Frederick Lewenowsky in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/20os, f/5.6, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 150mm Focal Length.

Barrie and Lisa will be here on Thursday and Saturday to share their favorite Streetmosphere performers for their Disney Pic of Week.

August 28, 2011

Where in the World #192

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

I really enjoyed meeting some of you in Disneyland! Thanks for your wonderful comments on the contest! I even got to talk about Where in the World with a Nash bartender from the Adventurers Club who now works at Trader Sam's! Hi, Jennifer!

Speaking of thanks, Thank you to the team of Patti, Jeremy, and Bailey for the note in this week's contest and your Disney spirit!

And to Tom Koval, I'm so glad you enjoy Where in the World!

I also have to apologize to Chris Kelly who got the answer correct, but I missed putting in Chris' name with the winners. Chris, I have you with the winners for the monthly drawing and I'm sorry for the mistake!

This was Challenge #191:
 Where in the World #191

And here's the answer:


Copyright © 2010 Erin Blackwell Canon Powershot SD890 IS, 9mm, 1/250s shutter, f/3.2, ISO 64

The sign for Sunset Market Ranch guy on Sunset Boulevard in Disney's Hollywood Studios.

Ed Aleszczyk was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Ed and to all the readers who got the answer right: Virginia Pierce, Dale Knight, James Berry, Kathy Berry, Carla C., Clay Anthony, Linda Mac, Craig, Karen Smith, Rob Blundin, Sharon Pierce, and Paul Dickson. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.I
__________________________________________________________________________

Challenge #192: Where in the world is this?

We're going to a different park for another tough one " finishing the difficult ones for this month!
 Where in the World #192

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, September 1st, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

See you next week, Worlders!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

July 19, 2011

Disney Pic of the Week: Counter Service Restaurants

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

There are nearly a hundred counter service restaurants in the Walt Disney World Resort. They offer everything from complete meals to a quick snack. Over the last few years, Disney has added many new offerings at these restaurants to better service their guests. People have their favorites at the parks and resorts. Some of mine are the Columbia Harbour House at the Magic Kingdom, Pizzafari in Disney's Animal Kingdom, Yorkshire County Fish Shop in Epcot and the Backlot Express (pictured below) at Disney's Hollywood Studios. Do you have a favorite counter service restaurant?

Backlot Express counter service restaurant in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Backlot Express counter service restaurant in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D700/18-300VR, 1/320s, f/9, ISO 200, EV -0.3, 32mm Focal Length.

Barrie and Lisa will be here on Thursday and Saturday to share their favorite Disney Pic of Week for Counter Service Restaurants.

July 10, 2011

Where in the World #185

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

Sigh... Again, no notes for me this week. ;)

This was Challenge #184:
 Where in the World #184

And here's the answer:


Copyright © 2010 Erin Blackwell Canon SD890 IS, 7mm, 1/80s shutter, f/9, 80 ISO

It's the “Travel the World” agency window, the faux store window on Streets of America in Disney's Hollywood Studios! As you can see, it's also for the Disney Vacation Club.

Linda Mac was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Linda and all other readers who got the answer right: Tiago De Oliveira, Kye Layton, Evanna Huda, Kelley H, Sharon Dale, Maryann Eckenrode, Maria Madsen, Bonnie Jenkins, Nicole Duddy, Tom Koval, Adam Mcfarland, Mackenzie D., Jeannine, Sally Daugherty, Jennifer Bourg, Larissa Huda, Sharon Pierce, Kate Bowling, Jeanette Luce, Jennifer Rupert, Brittany & Jesse Siminitz, Paul Dickson, Ashley Maheu, Brianne, Jennifer Tremley, Emma Poprock, Stephanie Thomas, Deanna Kyre, The Hicks Family , Nick Bentz, Kristen Carde, Stella Meyer, Jen Norris, Vicki Edwards, Tricia Petty, Jen Cerce, Holly Anderson, Veronica Monteiro, Millie Tenreiro, Ken Taylor, Bev Carson, Stephanie Visco, Sherri Pell, Nancy Ahlsen, Caroline Burmester, Hilary Scuffell, Tracy Bradfute, Patti Mccaffrey, David, and Krista Penno. Each of you are entered in this month's winners' drawing.
__________________________________________________________________________

Challenge #185: Where in the world is this?

A couple people mentioned that the contest was too easy for awhile. I do balance out easier entries with medium to difficult. So for those who asked for it, here's a toughie!

 Where in the World #185

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, July 11th, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

See you next week, Worlders!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

July 1, 2011

Lost in Disney's Hollywood Studios on Route 66

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Guests stop to ponder a map of Disney's Hollywood Studios on Route 66, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Guests looking lost on Route 66 in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11-16mm, 1/80s, f/14, ISO 200, EV 0, 16mm focal length.

I throughly enjoyed the Disney/Pixar movie, Cars 2, this week and it reminded me of this photo I took in Disney's Hollywood Studios on Sunset Blvd. of some guests checking out their park maps. Almost looks like they are lost on Old Route 66 doesn't it? When I am touring the parks I am always on the lookout for strong human element photos that tell a story.

June 21, 2011

Disney Pic of the Week - Gift Shops

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

A few weeks back, our Pic of the Week subject was storefronts. We're still in a shopping mood, so this week we'll be taking a look inside some of the gift shops around the Disney property.

Writer's Stop
Copyright © 2009 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D300, 18-200mm VR, .25s shutter, f8, ISO 6400

The Writer's Stop in Disney's Hollywood Studios is a real hidden gem. Tucked away on the Streets of America, this little shop is the perfect place to take a break from the heat of the day. You can grab a snack and a beverage, pick up a book from the shelves and sit and enjoy a little peace and quiet on a comfy piece of furniture. It's amazing how refreshing twenty minutes of shopping in this gift shop can be. Did I mention that it's air conditioned?

June 2, 2011

Sunset Club Couture on Sunset Blvd.

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

The Sunset Club Couture shop on Sunset Blvd. in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
The Sunset Club Couture shop on Sunset Blvd.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/15s, f/3.5, ISO 1100, EV +0.7, 28mm Focal Length.

As I was waiting in line for Fantasmic! on Sunset Blvd., I noticed the Sunset Club Couture shop's interior all lit up with clothing for the younger set with designs featuring the Disney characters we all know and love. Makes for my Disney Pic of the Week on Storefronts.

May 31, 2011

Disney Pic of the Week - Storefronts

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

If you were to say to me “Let's go shopping!” you'd likely get an answer something like, “Um, gee, sorry, I'd rather clean my gutters.” That is of course, unless we were at Walt Disney World " especially if I had my camera with me. I may not be big on shopping but I love all the creative details that make all of the shops unique. Even before you enter the store, the Disney Imagineers have already begun to create the story with the design of the storefront, and that is the topic of this week's Pic of the Week " Storefronts.

The Darkroom Store at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Copyright © 2009 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D300, 18-200mm VR, 1.6s shutter, f11, ISO 400

Here's a picture of The Darkroom from Disney's Hollywood Studios. It is definitely not “straight out of the camera”. I decided to get creative with the processing on this one. After experimenting with the exposure and applying some various filters, this is where I landed.


May 26, 2011

Luke Skywalker at Disney's Hollywood Studios

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

Luke Skywalker
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D350, 18-200mm VR, 1/500s shutter, f25, ISO 200

In honor of Star Wars Weekends, my Pic of the Week hero is Luke Skywalker from the Stars and Motor Cars parade at Disney's Hollywood Studios.

April 17, 2011

Where in the World #173

Where in the World by Erin Blackwell

Hello to my friend Ed Elder: hi, Ed! And you're welcome, Brian Grabowski. :)

Now, this week's contest!

This was Challenge #172:
 Where in the World #172

And here's the answer:


Copyright © 2010 Erin Blackwell Canon PhotoShot SD890 IS, 15mm, 1/30s shutter, f/4.5, ISO 200 (Auto Mode)

This is from “One Man's Dream” in Disney's Hollywood Studios, from the display of an animator's desk with a video representing Walt first drawing Mickey Mouse. Bonus kudos to Danielle, Agnes, and Matt for the fun point of, in that moment in history, it's actually a drawing of Mortimer Mouse since Lillian hadn't named him Mickey yet, plus a Booyah to Kyler who called him the “beloved Mickey Mouse”. :-)

Craig was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Craig and all the other readers who got the answer right: Bridgette Gallagher, Daniel Record, Lori Rienhardt, Lee Anastasi, Belicia Cullen, Amanda Campbell, Christine Dagney, Jen Cerce, Danielle Aston, Erin Hammer, Gretchen Barnes, Steven Bowling, Kate Bowling, Sharon Dale, Clay Anthony, Ken Jackson, Carolyn Como, Danielle Ciotti, Agnes Ciotti, Becky , Ken Fischler, Vicki Edwards, William Edwards, Cara Richards, Anastasia Macneil, Bonnie Bradford, Jay Bradford, Kim Steiner, Dan Owens, Christopher Hall, Matthew Tremley, Courtney Crowe, Mike Cerce, Jared Orth, Kelly Smith, Jullie Pudem, Marc Lorenzo, Erin Rix, William Edwards, Joseph M Zafia, Julie Wickware, Karen Nelson, Karen Davis, Brian Grabowski, Kelly Henry, James Berry, Kathy Berry, and Kyler Scott. Each of you are entered in the April winners' drawing.

_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #173: Where in the world is this?

Why, look who you can partially who you can partially see in the picture! So, where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #173

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, April 21st, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

See you next week, Worlders!

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

April 16, 2011

ESPN Mountain Biking

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

A boy takes a mountain bike for a spin during ESPN: The Weekend in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
A boy takes a mountain bike for a spin during ESPN: The Weekend.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/320s, f/14, ISO 200, EV -0.3, 90mm focal length, flash

When Disney's Hollywood Studies hosts ESPN: The Weekend, they set up an interactive sports area between the Rock'n Roller Coaster and the Tower of Terror. Here, a boy takes one of the mountain bikes for a spin on a dirt track of hills and banked turns to see if he can beat the best time for his age group. Makes for a fun photo for my Disney Pic of Week on Sports.

April 8, 2011

Riding the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

This week I am taking you on one of my favorite rides, the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith in Disney's Hollywood Studios. I know some people may have never ridden RnRC so here's your chance.

After waiting in the queue (hopefully you used FastPass), you are ushered into a recording studio where Aerosmith is listening to a classic mix of one of their hits.

Rock 'n' Roller Coaster pre-show in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Aerosmith gives us backstage passes but we need to get across town.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/60s, f/3.5, ISO 5600, EV -1.7, 28mm focal length.

Soon, their manager comes in and tells them to get going or they will be late for the concert across town. However, the band wants their fans (you being one) to have backstage passes. Their manager has to make it happen and calls for a stretch limo. Tells us to move out to alley as she got us a really fast car.

Out in the alley you get in the limo and pull down the safety restraint and off you go around a tight corner as a Disney cast member waves happily. You might wonder why she is smiling.

A cast member waves to guests as they head to the on-ramp of the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
A cast member waves to guests as they head to the on-ramp of the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/5s, f/3.5, ISO 8000, EV -0.3, 28mm focal length.

You get a fun countdown and when the green light turns on, you are launched from 0 to 60mph in less than 3 seconds. Don't forget to smile as this is when your ride photo is taken. Your limo's radio is locked on the special Aerosmith ride mix station.

Guests are given the green light to enter the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster ride in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
A Super Stretch Limo ride vehicle is launched into the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster..
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/5s, f/3.5, ISO 1600, EV +0.3, 18mm focal length.

After a couple of inversions and speeding over California highways you arrive at the concert. Your heart will be pumping from the exhilarating ride. There's a red carpet here to take you to the "concert" cleverly disguised as a store where you can pick up your ride photo ( you did remember to smile, right?) and other Rock 'n' Roller Coaster goodies as Aerosmith tunes continue.

Arriving backstage after a ride on the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Arriving backstage after a ride on the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/60s, f/3.5, ISO 5600, EV -0.3, 28mm focal length.

Finally, you make your way out the backdoor of the concert as sponsor banners fly overhead. Already ready to get right back on so you can hear a different song on your next cruise to a concert.

Fans exit the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Fans exit the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/15s, f/3.5, ISO 8000, EV -0.3, 28mm focal length.

Notice the ISO settings of these photos. I used a noise reduction program called Noise Ninja to clean up the digital noise such high ISO's create. A few years ago, I never would have imagined using ISO numbers above 3200.

April 1, 2011

Hollywood Studios in Chrome

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

In the past I have told you about how to use selective focus. Further, I have said it is a good way to make busy backgrounds disappear into a soft blur called bokeh. In looking over my past posts, I never showed you an example.

Have you all seen the car on Sunset Boulevard under the canopy in front of the Legends of Hollywood shop? Thanks to Nanette Jamieson from flickr for allowing me to use this photo.

The Golden Era by Nanette Jamieson.
The Golden Era by Nanette Jamieson.
Sony A200, 1/200s, f/5.6, ISO 100, EV 0, 11mm focal length.

The car, a gold 1941 Cadillac Series 62, fits the era of Disney's Hollywood Studios and sports a large chrome hood ornament. I set my lens to its largest aperture of f/5.6 at 300mm to completely throw the large Labor Day crowd out of focus and put the ornament in very sharp focus.

Cadillac hood ornament at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Cadillac hood ornament with blurred background.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/320s, f/5.6, ISO 200, EV 0, 300mm focal length.

That blurred bright background is what a few dozen people look like out of focus. Leaving the hood ornament as the main subject in all its reflective glory of days gone by.

March 26, 2011

Indiana Jones' Hat

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

A young women modeling the Indiana Jones hat in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Scott's daughter modeling the Indiana Jones hat in the Indiana Jones Adventure Outpost shop.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/60s, f/4, ISO 400, EV +0.3, 27mm focal length, flash

For my Disney Pic of Week on Indiana Jones I had my daughter model the famous Indiana Jones hat in the Indiana Jones Adventure Outpost shop next to the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular at Disney's Hollywood Studios. There was no way I was going to give her a whip. Having her stand next to the t-shirt mannequin was much safer!

March 25, 2011

Disney in Negative Space

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

I never studied art so the concept of negative space has eluded me. I would get comments on my photos saying they had made good use of negative space. Turns out every photo has negative space which is defined as the space around an object of attention. Photos can have little or a lot of negative space. To me, negative space was kind of wasted space. However, negative space generates attention as it puts a stronger emphasis on the subject.

The Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest found in China around Epcot's World Showcase only takes up about a third of the frame yet the contrast of the very ornate structure is easily the main subject of the photo. The blue sky and clouds do work to draw attention to the structure.

Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest in Epcot's China pavillion, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Negative Space using sky and clouds.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/160s, f/6.3, ISO 200, EV _0.3, 58mm focal length.

To be honest, I do not think much about negative space and concentrate on the subject. As I compose a photograph with a lot of negative space, I fall back on the Rule of Thirds. This is what I did when I took this photo of the spires and towers of Cinderella Castle in the Magic Kingdom.

Spires and towers of Cinderella Castle in the Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Spires and towers of Cinderella Castle.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/125s, f/11, ISO 320, EV 0, 100mm focal length.

Another use for photos with a lot of negative space is for title photos in photo galleries, slideshows and videos. Using the Cinderella Castle spires and towers photo above I made a title photo for a gallery or slideshow to share with friends and family.

Cinderella Castle title photo.
Cinderella Castle title photo.

I read a lot about negative space this week and I will return to this subject later this year after I return to Walt Disney World with the added knowledge. There is more to negative space than empty space. I know this because Disney uses it in their adviertising.

Toy Story Mania billboard outside the entrance to Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Toy Story Mania billboard outside the entrance to Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/125s, f/22, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 24mm focal length.

March 24, 2011

"Don't Pull the Rope" Gag in Disney's Hollywood Studios

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

Indiana Jones Well in Disney's Hollywood Studios
Copyright © 2009 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D300, 18-200mm VR, 1/400s shutter, f5.6, ISO 200

Oh no, don't pull the rope! If you haven't given it a try, do pull the rope on this well near the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular in Disney's Hollywood Studios. Better yet, get one of your unsuspecting travel mates to do it. Don't worry; it's nothing scary " just a little Disney fun!

March 15, 2011

Disney Pic of the Week: Pixar

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Disney did one thing right when they teamed up, and later bought, Pixar Studios. Disney knew computer generated imagery (CGI) was the future of animated movie making. Pixar was not only ahead of every other studio in CGI but had the talent and creativity to produce good stories to go with the technology.

With the acquisition of Pixar, Disney has brought Pixar's characters to its themeparks. Toy Story Mania in Disney's Hollywood Studios has been a huge success with FastPasses gone only two to three hours after the park opens. This was my family's plight on the day we wanted to go on the ride. We decided to take the time and go through the stand-by line. We weaved through bigger than life sized toys and games from the Toy Story movies before coming to the highlight of the queue: an interactive, audio-animatronic of Mr. Potato Head. Featuring the voice of Don Rickles, the actor who voiced Mr. Potato Head in the movies. He even called me a Hockey Puck! He must have guessed about my ice hockey playing days back in high school, eh?

Mr. Potato Head greets guests in the Toy Story Mania queue in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Mr. Potato Head banters with guests in the Toy Story Mania queue.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11-16mm, 1/50s, f/3.5, ISO 200, EV -2.0, 16mm focal length

Barrie and Lisa will be here on Thursday and Saturday with their favorite Disney Pic of the Week photos of Pixar characters, rides, parades or movies.

March 14, 2011

May Disney World Calendar

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

Here's one for all you Star Wars Weekends fans. This stormtrooper was standing guard over the entrance to Disney's Hollywood Studios when I snapped his picture. Now he can guard whatever you want him to!

You will need to have Adobe Reader on your computer to download the calendar(s). Just click on the photo to download the calendar you want. When printing CD Jewel Case size, make sure “Page Scaling” in your print dialogue box is set to “None” to ensure that the calendar prints out at the correct size.


This one prints out at 8.5" x 11". It's handy if you need a calendar that you can write on.

May 2011 8.5x11 Calendar


This one prints out at 4.75" x 4.75", the perfect size for a CD Jewel Case frame.

May 2011 Jewel Case Calendar

And finally, this desktop wallpaper is for your monitor screen.

5-11_wallpaper_sm.jpg
1024 x 768
1280 x 800
1280 x 1024
1440 x 900
1600 x 1200

February 13, 2011

Where in the World #164

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

erincamera.jpg

Before we get into this week's contest, I'd like to take a minute to introduce you to Erin Blackwell. Erin is my friend and a member of the AllEars® Team. She handles the Fort Wilderness section of the site as well as other areas, but her biggest job (so far) is the Menu section. As if that isn't enough, Erin is adding yet another job to her AllEars® profile. She is going to be your new host for the Where in the World photo contest!

I've been running the contest for about 2 ½ years and it's been a blast! It's time to let someone else have some fun though. I'll still be posting Monthly Disney Calendars, Pics of the week, and occasional photo tips. But it's Erin who will be challenging you every Sunday with a new Where in the World photo. In fact, Challenge #163 came from Erin. So, without further ado, may I present your new contest host, Erin Blackwell!

Woohoo! Streamers and confetti and wild applause ensue!


Where in the World by Erin Blackwell


This was Challenge #163:
 Where in the World #163

And here's the answer:
Electric 694 Gift Cart at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Copyright © 2010 Erin Blackwell, Canon PhotoShot SD890 IS, 6.6mm VR, f/9.0 , ISO 3200 (ISO 3200 SCN Mode)

You will find the answer at Disney's Hollywood Studios on Sunset Boulevard. It's a gift cart that looks a trolley and is marked with Pacific Electric, car number 694. The 694 represents the month and year that the Studios opened!

Larissa Huda was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Larissa and all the other readers who got the answer right: Julie Wickware, Bill Mckim, Evanna Huda, Betsy Silvestri, Sharon Pierce, James Berry, Kathy Berry, Kevin, Irene Kleintop, Paul Dickson, Tim Rachuba, Patti Deluca, Sharon Dale, and Kristin Dormuth! Additional kudos goes out to Irene Kleintop and Patti Deluca for knowing what the 694 represented! Each of winner will be entered in this month's winners' drawing.

_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #164: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #164

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, February 17, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

January 30, 2011

Where in the World #162

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #161:
 Where in the World #161

And here's the answer:
Streetmosphere Performer at  Disney's Hollywood Studios
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200mm VR, 1/200s shutter, f/3, ISO 200

Vladimir Pooey, the renowned Romanian film director, at work in Disney's Hollywood Studios. Vladimir is one of the Citizens of Hollywood, or Streetmosphere characters, who entertain guests on Hollywood and Sunset Boulevards.

David Tarbet was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to David and all the other readers who got the answer right: John Leach, Maureen Handy, Larissa Huda, Julie Wickware, Dave Wang, Evanna Huda, Jennifer Tremley, Marissa D'ambrosio, Lee Anastasi, Cathy Skiba, Lilli Blake, Amanda Campbell, Matt And Danielle Murgia, Betsy Silvestri, Jerry Weldon, Sharon Pierce, Nathan Cripe, Bruce Hinterleitner, Jodi Cook, Kelly Kobiela, Christine Yesutis, Ken Jackson, Michael Campe, Jim Riley, Sharon Dale, Diane Furtado, Paul Dickson, Colin Buchanan, Cheryl Buchanan, Kathleen, Sarah Holodick, James Berry, Kathy Berry, Patti Deluca, Karen Schlumpf, Kristin Mazur, Ethan Manchester , Mike Timmer, and Marcia Mardirosian! Each of you will be entered in this month's winners' drawing.

_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #162: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #162

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, February 3, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

January 27, 2011

Earful Topiary Disney's Hollywood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Earful Tower topiary on the Backlot Tour in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Earful Tower topiary on the Backlot Tour in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/250s, f/8, ISO 200, EV 0, 125mm focal length.

Here's a topiary of a park icon with the icon in the frame. The Earful Tower and its topiary can be seen on the Backlot Tour in Disney's Hollywood Studios and is my Disney Pic of the Week on Topiaries.

December 24, 2010

Angels Overhead in Disney's Hollywood Studios

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Angels overhead in the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida

Did you know there are 130 angels in the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights display at Disney's Hollywood Studios.

Happy Holidays and a Merry Christmas to You!

I will be taking my annual holiday break next week as I spend the holidays with friends and family. See you in 2011!

December 19, 2010

Disney Pic of the Week: Park Entrance

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

A Walt Disney World park entrance is like the opening credits to a movie and sets the theme for the guests as they enter. Disney's Hollywood Studios patterned their ticket booths after the popular art deco used in theaters back in the 1930's, 40's and 50's. This choice of an entrance gives a guest the feeling of nostalgia for a bygone era. One, in which they are about to re-enter in the Hollywood that never was but is.

Disney's Hollywood Studios art deco ticket booths greet guests at the park's entrance, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Disney's Hollywood Studios art deco ticket booths greet guests at the park's entrance.
Nikon D70/Tokina 11-16mm, 1/400s, f/10, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 11mm focal length

Barrie and Lisa will be here on Thursday and Saturday with their favorite Park Entrance for the Disney Pic of the Week.

December 3, 2010

Picture if you will

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

When using an ultra wide angle lens like the Tokina 11-16mm remember to get up close to the main subject of the photo. That is what I did when I photographed the ride photo kiosk you see upon getting off the Tower of Terror elevator. I was a mere six inches from the Picture if you will... sign when I took the photo you see below.

The Tower of Terror ride photo area in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Picture if you will... The ride photo kiosk in the Tower of Terror.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11/16mm, 1/13s, f/2.8, ISO 8000, EV 0, 16mm focal length

Click here for 10 More Tips on Using a Wide Angle Lens.


November 26, 2010

Grab the Light

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

I have harped on always being ready and alert when you are touring the Walt Disney World resort. Here's another example. After leaving the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular, I was headed over to see the finale show of the American Idol Experience. I looked around and noticed a very interesting sky. Storm clouds to the east with a low Sun to the west. Knowing such weather conditions brings about great lighting, I looked around the park both high and low as I walked. I saw the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror in the distance being hit with golden sunshine.

The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror in golden sunshine at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror in golden sunshine.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/160s, f/6.3, ISO 200, EV 0, 300mm focal length

I got two more photos before the Sun got covered up by a bank of clouds leaving the Tower in some not so golden light.

The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror under clouds at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror under clouds.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/125s, f/5.6, ISO 200, EV 0, 300mm focal length

When you see something you want to photograph and the light is just right. Stop for a minute and do so. You many never get the chance again. Then apologize to your family and continue on your way.

November 25, 2010

Big Ears

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

The Earful Tower at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
The Earful Tower at Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/320s, f/9, ISO 200, EV 0, 112mm focal length

For my Disney Pic of the Week on Mouse Ears I choose the ones with a hat size of 342-3/8 which can be seen during the Backlot Tour on the Earful Tower at Disney's Hollywood Studios.

November 20, 2010

Tony Dorsett, NFL Running Back

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

NFL Hall of Famer Tony Dorsett during ESPN: The Weekend at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
NFL Hall of Famer Tony Dorsett during ESPN: The Weekend at Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/250s, f/5.6, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 200mm focal length

I attended ESPN: The Weekend at Disney's Hollywood Studios back in 2009. After taking a motorcade down Hollywood Blvd., famous sports figures took to the stage in front of the Sorcerer's Hat to take questions from the guests. National Football League Hall of Fame running back, Tony Dorsett of the Dallas Cowboys, is seen here answering one of the questions and makes for my Disney Pic of the Week about Celebrities at Walt Disney World.

November 9, 2010

Disney Pic of the Week: Rock 'n' Roller Coaster

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Walt Disney World has a good mix of rides and attractions. If you like thrill rides, you have Splash Mountain, Expedition Everest and others. Another thing Disney Imagineers do is make their thrill rides fun with their immersive story telling and innovations. Rock 'n' Roller Coaster in Disney's Hollywood Studios is no different as it uses a launch mechanism which take guests from 0 to 60mph in 2.8 seconds and features 5 speakers per car (120 per stretched limo ride vehicle) playing classic Aerosmith songs re-mixed especially for the attraction.

Rock 'n' Roller Coaster in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Rock 'n' Roller Coaster in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11-16, 1/100s, f/16, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 16mm Focal Length

Look for more thrills on Thursday and Saturday with Barrie and Lisa's Disney Pic of the Week on Rock 'n' Roller Coaster.

November 2, 2010

Disney Pic of the Week - Balloons

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

Isn't it funny how the simplest thing can just mean the world to a child? No matter how much technology seems to change what kinds of toys our little ones are attracted to, balloons never seem to lose their charm " especially a balloon from Walt Disney World. Those are extra special for sure! This week Scott, Lisa and I have some balloon pictures to share with you for our Disney Pic of the Week.

Balloons
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200 VR, 1/500s shutter, f11, ISO 200

Mickey and Minnie are the stars of the show on these balloons in Disney's Hollywood Studios.

October 29, 2010

A Terrifying Trip

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Twilight Zone Tower of Terror at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Twilight Zone Tower of Terror.

Scott is visiting Walt Disney World this week enjoying all the Halloween festivities including riding the spooky and scary Twilight Zone Tower of Terror at Disney's Hollywood Studios. He'll be back next week to share some of his thrilling photos.

October 24, 2010

Where in the World #149

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #148:
 Where in the World #148

And here's the answer:
Props from Backlot Express Seating Area
Copyright © 2009 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D300, 18-200mm VR, 1/40s shutter, f/8, ISO 400

Ooh, that one was tricky. Most everyone guessed either the China or Japan pavilion in Epcot. That's why I included some of the other things on the wall as a hint. Only three people knew exactly where this is " in the seating area of the Backlot Express restaurant at Disney's Hollywood Studios. Way to go Sarah, Tim Rachuba and Colin Buchanan. Other winners this week guessed that it was part of the Backlot tour. I thought that was close enough to be entered in the drawing.

Sarah was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Sarah and all the other readers who got the answer right: Daniel Record, Susan Thompson, Claire Gregory, Dawn Bach, Tim Rachuba, Jeffrey Dunne, Timmy Saunders and Colin Buchanan. Each of you were entered in this month's winners' drawing.

It's time for our monthly drawing. Drumroll, please! This month's big winner is Patrick! Congratulations Patrick, you are the lucky recipient of a fabulous Disney book and some really cool AllEars schwag!

_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #149: Where in the world is this?
 Where in the World #149

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, October 28, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

October 22, 2010

My American Idol Experience

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

One of the elements of visiting a Disney park I enjoy seeing is when cast members will make a guest feel special. It has happened to me or a member of my family a few times. During the pre-show of the American Idol Experience on my last visit, I found myself being part of the show. No, I did not perform.

The comedian who warms up the audience before the show starts saw me photographing from the fourth row. Before I knew it we were doing an impromptu model shoot. It lasted a whole two minutes and got some laughs from the audience. I did not catch his name and he is not wearing a name tag. If anyone knows his name, please, leave me a comment.

As I mentioned in last week's tips on photographing the Kilimanjaro Safari, when at Walt Disney World or any Disney property, be ready as you never know when an exciting photographic opportunity will happen. Here is My American Idol Experience...

My American Idol Experience at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
My American Idol Experience.

Heading back to Walt Disney World next week. This time it is for vacation! I will also be photographing for future blogs. If you have anything you would like me to cover, drop me a comment here. See ya real soon!

Oh, I'll be tweeting comments and photos, too. You can follow me @Scottwdw.

October 1, 2010

Preset Your White Balance

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

I decided to do the standby line for Toy Story Midway Mania so I could enjoy the queue area. I did love all the icons of games and toys I played when I was growing up. I was not too thrilled with the photos I was taking. They were very yellow from the lighting used especially the whites.

I knew to fix this I needed to do a Preset White Balance often referred to as a custom white balance. For my Nikon camera, I pressed the White Balance (WB) button and using the rear command dial to move to the PRE icon on the upper LCD screen. I then released, pressed and held the WB button until the PRE starts to blink. I then filled the viewfinder with a white object (in the case of the TSM queue, I used one of the oversized dice) and clicked the shutter. I checked the LCD screen and it told me I set it correctly by saying 'GOOD'. If it had said, 'No Good', I would have had to try again.

To show you the difference. The first photo was taken using Auto White Balance.

Chutes and Ladders ceiling in the Toy Story Mania queue in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Chutes and Ladders ceiling in the Toy Story Mania queue using Auto White Balance.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/60s, f/3.5, ISO 1600, EV +0.3, 28mm focal length

The second photo was taken after Presetting the White Balance.

Scrabble and Barrel Full of Monkeys ceiling in the Toy Story Mania queue in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Scrabble and Barrel Full of Monkeys ceiling in the Toy Story Mania queue using Preset White Balance.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/50s, f/3.5, ISO 8000, EV +1.0, 28mm focal length

It is a simple process which only takes a few seconds. Just remember to switch back to your normal white balance setting upon leaving the area.

September 26, 2010

Where in the World #145

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #144:
 Where in the World #144

And here's the answer:
Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular
Copyright © 2006 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200mm VR, 1/500s shutter, f/4.8, ISO 720

The answer to this week's challenge is the Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular, located in Disney's Hollywood Studios.

Caryn Schill was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Caryn and all the other readers who got the answer right: The Kahle Family, Tom Hermes, Cara Richards, Michelle Raimist, Katie Bray, Amanda Linde, Linda Mac, Kye Layton, Tyler Worley, Ed Suscreba, Jennifer S., Keith Sharp, Matt Cofone, Brian Haas, Emily Currier, Julie Wickware, Stephen Hafke, Craig, Daniel Record, Dawn Bach, Paul Newman, Bruce Hinterleitner, Misty Mehelic, Carol Baranowsky, Steve Smith, Bill Daniel, Chris B, James Berry, Linda Abbate, Jonathan Thomas, Tom Koval, Julie Houser, Kameo Crea, Raffy, Larissa Huda, Mike Kaczanowski, Bruce Lawson, Michelle Mcspadden, Jeremy Reichelt, Brian Gallant, Elizabeth Scarborough, Jared Orth, Dennis Blackburn, Jocelyn Carpenter, Terry Fleming, Chris Connors, Matthew Jadro, Jim Finley, K Schlumpf, Karen Dresser-smith, Donna Currier, James Berry, Nancy Daniele, Kathy Berry, Ken, Jenny Schell, Matt Degrandis, Kevin Miller, Jessica Deans, Erin And Christine Claeys, Thomas Auckland, Walter Clark , Paula, Nicole Duddy, Joyce Eastman, Lauri Phillips, Jennifer Mercier, Donna Hood, Garry Willis, Vicki Edwards, Rob Blundin, Kristen Mccoy and Louise Barton. Each of you will be entered in the October winners' drawing.

_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #145: Where in the world is this?
 Where in the World #145

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, September 30, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

September 17, 2010

Doing the High ISO Dance

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

One of the things I was looking forward to doing with my new equipment was using it on Walt Disney World's dark rides. For the dark rides I set up my camera for spot metering and Auto ISO to go as high as 6400 with the slowest shutter speed of 1/125th of a second. I then put on the Nifty-Fifty, the Nikon 50mm f/1.8 lens, before going on the Great Movie Ride in Disney's Hollywood Studios for a trip through the history of movies as only Disney can do it.

One of my old time favorite Hollywood musicals is Singing in the Rain with its famous scene of Gene Kelly singing and dancing in the rain. Disney Imagineers re-created the scene using audio-animatronic technology.

An audio-animatronic Gene Kelly is Singing in the Rain during the Great Movie Ride in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
An audio-animatronic Gene Kelly is Singing in the Rain during the Great Movie Ride.
Nikon D700/50mm, 1/125s, f/1.8, ISO 4000, EV -0.3

The D700 did not disappoint allowing the fast shutter speed with little digital noise even at an ISO of 4000.

September 10, 2010

New Gear!

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

I want to first thank everyone who followed my trip down to Walt Disney World last weekend. I tweeted over 35 photos from my iPhone and many other tweets. I hope you all enjoyed it as much as I did.

What I did not tell you last week was I was bringing my new camera and lens to the parks for the first time. I purchased a new-to-me Nikon D700 digital SLR camera and new Nikon 28-300VR lens. This is a tremendous upgrade from the Nikon D70 dSLR camera and 18-200VR lens I have been using for the past three years. The D700 is a full-frame camera with a larger sensor (12 Megapixels) and high ISO capabilities. The 28-300VR lens was designed for the full-frame Nikon digital cameras and is the same range in 35mm terms as the 18-200VR for cropped camera bodies.

For this week, I want to share with you some of the photos I took with the new equipment. If you have any questions, leave me a comment!

The larger sensor allowed me to crop this photo of the explosive finale in the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show in Disney's Hollywood Studios and not lose the the detail of the fire and water in the air.

Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show explosive finale in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show explosive finale.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/1600s, f/5.2, ISO 200, EV -0.3, 92mm focal length

The Nikon D700 technology is five years newer than the D70 and its photos take a lot less time in post production. In fact, this photo of Lotso from Toy Story 3 in the The Magic of Disney Animation tour is straight out of the camera except for a little sharpening.

Lotso from Toy Story 3 in the Animation building at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Lotso from Toy Story 3 in the Animation building.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/100s, f/4, ISO 200, EV -0.3, 28mm Focal Length

Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular begins with a low light scene where Indy locates a golden idol. In the past, I was limited to a maximum ISO of 1600 which was also very noisy. The D700 has little noise up to 3200 ISO and even as high as 6400 is very clean.

Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular scene at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Indiana Jones sizing up the golden idol.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/125s, f/5.6, ISO 3200, EV 0, 300mm Focal Length

While it is not the camera that creates the photos, new tools can help a photographer improve even more through technological improvements in their gear.

September 2, 2010

Night Hat

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

A night photograph of the Sorcerer's Hat at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
A night photograph of the Sorcerer's Hat.
Nikon D70/Tokina 11-16mm, 8s, f/11, ISO 200, EV +1.0, 16mm focal length, tripod

Many photographers who love to photograph at Walt Disney World have a love-hate relationship with the Sorcerer's Hat at Disney's Hollywood Studios. The Sorcerer's Hat is a great subject to photograph, especially at night, but makes it very hard to get a good shot of the Great Movie Ride without using a wide angle lens. I selected a different photo of the Hat for my Disney Pic of the Week for the Sorcerer's Hat.

August 31, 2010

Disney Pic of the Week - Sorcerer Mickey Hat

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

For this week's Pic of the Week we'll be sharing photos of the Sorcerer Mickey Hat. I think we first saw Sorcerer Mickey in Fantasia as the Sorcerer's Apprentice. Now you can find depictions of Sorcerer Mickey with his bright blue hat throughout the Disney parks.

Sorcerer's Hat
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200mm VR, 4.1s shutter, f8, ISO 800

I chose to go with the hat in its most conspicuous form, the park icon for Disney's Hollywood Studios. This giant, 122 feet tall, Sorcerer Mickey Hat has been standing at the end of Hollywood Boulevard since September 28, 2001, when Walt Disney World kicked off its 100 Years of Magic Celebration.

August 28, 2010

FORE!

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

A guest practices his tee shot at ESPN: The Weekend's Ultimate Sports Experience at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
A guest (not Brett Favre) practices his tee shot at ESPN: The Weekend's Ultimate Sports Experience.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/40s, f/13, ISO 200, EV -0.3, 31mm focal length

I attended ESPN: The Weekend back in 2009 and enjoyed walking around and photographing guests participating in the Ultimate Sports Experience set up between the Rock'n Roller Coaster and the Tower of Terror. Fans of all ages had a great time including this one practicing his tee shot which is my Disney Pic of the Week for Golf.

August 20, 2010

Reflective Disney

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Reflections at Walt Disney World can be found in mirrors, windows, metal surfaces and in the rivers, lakes, fountains with still water. When using a reflective surface make sure you are not in the photo (unless your intention is to make a self portrait), watch for distortions and over exposed areas. It is hard to find a perfectly still body of water unless the air is very still. Water reflections can still be beautiful even if the water is rippling. Such was the case of the photo of Disney's Hollywood Studios taken at night with a long exposure which smoothed out the water.

Disney's Hollywood Studios water reflection, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Disney's Hollywood Studios water reflection.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 20s, f/16, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 95mm focal length, tripod

Windows can be a bit tricky. Some are more reflective than others depending on their use. Time of day and angles play a large part so as you walk around the parks, keep your eye out for the windows you see in the buildings and shops. Last December I was invited to watch Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show in Disney's Hollywood Studios from the VIP seating area right behind the show's control room. The top of the control room featured very reflective windows which I used at the end of the show for this photo.


The set of Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show reflected in the control room windows.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/400s, f/5, ISO 200, EV 0, 18mm Focal Length

If you search for the word "reflection" in the Search Box for the Picture This! blog you will find other examples of how Barrie, Lisa and myself have use reflective surfaces at Disneyland and Walt Disney World.

Program Note: I will be taking the next two weeks off from blogging for my annual summer break. However, I will be announcing something special for the Labor Day weekend so check in to see what it is.

August 6, 2010

On Hands and Knees

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

When Disney's Hollywood Studios opened back in 1989, the Great Movie Ride was its "castle". The entrance to the ride which features famous movie scenes using audio-animatronics characters is a replica of the famous Mann's Chinese Theater in Hollywood, California.

Entrance to the Great Movie Ride in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Entrance to the Great Movie Ride is a replica of the famous Mann's Chinese Theater in Hollywood.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/60s, f/13, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 18mm focal length

Like its Hollywood counterpart, the Great Movie Ride's forecourt has cement handprints and footprints of famous actors (both real and animated) and other entertainers like one of my favorite pop singers, Neil Diamond.

Neil Diamond's hands and greeting in cement outside the Great Movie Ride entrance in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Pop singer Neil Diamond's hands and greeting in cement outside the Great Movie Ride entrance in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D90/18-200VR, 1/40s, f/10, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 18mm Focal Length

I got on my knees to take this photo of Neil Diamond's hands and greeting. Showing people walking into the Great Movie Ride adds the human element to the photo.

July 22, 2010

R2-D2

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

R2-D2 readies your Starspeeder to Endor in the Star Tours queue at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
R2-D2 readies your Starspeeder to Endor in the Star Tours queue.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/60s, f/5.6, ISO 1600, EV +1.0, 170mm Focal Length

The Star Wars saga started back in 1977 when home entertainment was a TV hooked up to a stereo system with large speakers. VHS tape, DVD and Blu Ray Hi-Def players still in the future. The first Star Wars movie stayed in movie theaters for over a year and I saw it numerous times as a college freshman. Here we are some 30 years later and we can now ride a hi-tech motion simulator with a real robot pilot into our own Star Wars adventure to the planet Endor. Isn't technology grand?

R2-D2 is my favorite character from the Star Wars movies so I had to feature him for my Disney Pic of the Week on Star Tours.

July 20, 2010

Disney Pic of the Week - Star Tours

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

Why I scheduled myself to be the one to introduce this week's Pic of the Week, Star Tours, I'll never know. I usually try to match the topics with the interests of Scott and Lisa and myself. For example, Lisa got to introduce Princes " that totally makes sense, right? Unfortunately, I know very little about Star Wars, and therefore Star Tours. They're kind of related I think. I do know I like the ride " it's WAY fun! But if I tried to share any tidbits of trivia with you, I'm afraid I would probably just end up offending someone. So I'll just get on to the photo…

Tatooine Traders
Copyright © 2010 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D300, 18-200mm VR, 1/1000 sec, f/8, ISO 200

This is the outside of Tatooine Traders, the merchandise shop that you end up in at the end of your Star Tours journey. It was remodeled sometime ago to resemble the Mos Espa village in Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. Pretty impressive that I knew that, eh?

I copied it from the Star Tours page.

May 7, 2010

Walt Disney World at f/2.8

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Fast lenses for digital SLR cameras have a maximum aperture of f/2.8 or bigger. Except for the Nifty-Fifty which are 50mm prime lenses at f/1.8, fast lenses are expensive. Most of the lenses in this class are considered some of the best ever made. Over the last three years, I have purchased two f/2.8 lenses which I have enjoyed using at Walt Disney World. The Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 DX Ultra Wide Angle and the Nikon 70-200mm VR f/2.8. The following photographs were taken with these lenses at their wide open aperture of f/2.8.

The Tokina has gotten a large following among Disney photographers. For the price of around $650 in either Canon or Nikon versions, this is one of the better bargins in f/2.8 lenses. At it's widest setting of 11mm, there is some distortion of things near the edge of the frame. To cut down on the distortion, I try to make sure to keep the camera level and perpendicular to what I am photographing.

I found a post to lean against at my favorite counter service restaurant in the Magic Kingdom, Columbia Harbour House, to take this photo of the ordering area. The lens was able to capture the windowed ceiling, the tall ship paraphernalia on the walls and the cast members and guests ordering their food. I'll take the fish and chips with a bowl of New England clam chowder, please!

Ordering area for the Columbia Harbour House counter service restaurant in the Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Ordering area for the Columbia Harbour House counter service restaurant.
Nikon D70/Tokina 11-16, 1/30s, f/2.8, ISO 720, EV +0.3, 11mm focal length

Night photography at Walt Disney World is very popular as the parks have a whole different look after the Sun goes down. This is one of my favorite views of Spaceship Earth when walking towards the park's entrance. The colored lights on the palm trees were not as bright as I have photographed them in the past making the geodesic structure the star of the photo. At f/2.8, I was able to hand hold the camera at 1/15th of a second using a reasonable ISO of 900.

Spaceship Earth in Epcot's Future World, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Spaceship Earth in Epcot's Future World.
Nikon D70/Tokina 11-16, 1/15s, f/2.8, ISO 900, EV -0.3, 11mm focal length

For those who have vacationed at Walt Disney World in December, you know it can get cold at night. Returning back to my room in the All Star Sports resort late one night, I took this image of the steam rising off of the main pool area. I thought the sign made a good foreground subject for the story I wanted to tell.

No Lifeguard on Duty as steam rises from the Main Pool at the All Star Sports resort, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
No Lifeguard on Duty as steam rises from the Main Pool at the All Star Sports resort.
Nikon D70/Tokina 11-16, 1/15s, f/2.8, ISO 900, EV +0.7, 11mm focal length

The Nikon 70-200 VR, VR is for Vibration Reduction which is what Nikon calls their Image Stabilization system, has long been considered one of Nikon's all time best lenses. Nikon recently updated this lens with the new VR II version going for around $2,400. I picked up my VR I version used for less than half of that so deals can be found on eBay and other used lens websites.

Fast lenses have one more trait I should mention: they are heavy. The Nikon 70-200VR weighs in at a little over three pounds. While I have no trouble using it without a tripod, in low light situations like Fantasmic! in Disney's Hollywood Studios, I used my tripod like a monopod (the tripod legs were folded in) to help steady this image of Mickey Mouse welding his fire sword to oust the dragon from his dream. Just a note, this is one lens where you leave the VR on when used on a tripod or monopod.

Mickey Mouse welding his Fire Sword during Fantasmic! in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Mickey Mouse welding his Fire Sword during Fantasmic!
Nikon D70/70-200VR, 1/200s, f/2.8, ISO 1600, EV 0, 140mm focal length

The Festival of the Lion King does allow the use of flash photography during the show but, by using the lens at f/2.8 and zooming in, I had more than enough light to take this photo during the Can You Feel the Love Tonight duet scene. This shows the nice bokeh the Nikon 70-200VR creates when used wide open.

Can You Feel the Love Tonight duet during the Festival of the Lion King show in Disney's Animal Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Can You Feel the Love Tonight duet during the Festival of the Lion King show.
Nikon D70/70-200VR, 1/50s, f/2.8, ISO 1600, EV 0, 200mm focal length

I have tried for years to take a good photo of the fire dancer during the heina scene of the Festival of the Lion King show. By focusing on the performer's face, I picked up this photograph of some lingering fire on his tongue. The brightness of the fire gave me the fast shutter speed of 1/1600th of a second.

Fire dancer performing during the Festival of the Lion King show in Disney's Animal Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Fire dancer performing during the Festival of the Lion King show.
Nikon D70/70-200VR, 1/1600s, f/2.8, ISO 800, EV 0, 180mm focal length

These two lenses allowed me to get photos of higher quality than I have been able to in the past. Yes, they are expensive but you can rent them for a fraction of their costs.

May 4, 2010

Disney Pic of the Week: Dark Rides

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Dark rides are the most challenging for us Disney photographers. Light is only available directly on the places Disney wants it and, while our eyes have no trouble, our cameras get starved for light. For years I got blurry photos. In fact I still do but I've gotten better. Fast prime lenses like the 50mm in all its iterations and image stabilization technologies have given me and many others some success. For my Disney Pic of Week on Dark Rides I choose to photograph the start, in fact, a very fast start to one of the fastest dark rides, the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith.

A Super Stretch Limo ride vehicle is launched at Disney's Hollywood Studios Rock 'n' Roller Coaster, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
A Super Stretch Limo ride vehicle is launched into the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/5s, f/3.5, ISO 1600, EV +0.3, 18mm focal length

Rock 'n' Roller Coaster thrill seekers go from zero to 60mph in 2.3 seconds into a series of loops and high speed turns through California highways to the Aerosmith concert.

Lisa and Barrie will be here on Thursday and Saturday with their favorite dark ride photos.

April 24, 2010

Tower of Terror in HDR

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Tower of Terror in HDR as seen from the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster queue in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Tower of Terror in HDR as seen from the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster queue.

I have used the Tower of Terror for many Disney Pic of Week photos so I had to review them so as not to show you a duplicate. Came up with this High Dynamic Range (HDR) image of the Tower as seen from the queue of Rock 'n' Roller Coaster for my Disney Pic of Week on Tower of Terror.

April 23, 2010

Fire Slide

Last week I talked about using long exposures to show water as silky flow over waterfalls. The same technique can be used to show movement for other subjects.

During the Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show is an exciting chase scene with motorcycles ending with the bad guy sliding through a wall of fire. I took in this show twice on my last visit to Walt Disney World and caught this scene two different ways. The first with a fast shutter speed of 1/800th of a second.

Motorcycle sliding through fire during the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Motorcycle sliding through fire during the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show with a fast shutter speed.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/800s, f/7.1, ISO 200, 135mm focal length

During my second showing, I had a better angle for the slide action and slowed my shutter down to 1/80th of a second. Ten times slower than the first photo.

Motorcycle sliding towards a wall of fire during the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Motorcycle sliding towards a wall of fire during the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show with a slow shutter speed.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/80s, f/16, ISO 200, EV +0.6, 170mm focal length

The motorcycle and rider are blurred as they slide towards the wall of menacing fire while the rest of the image is in sharp focus. This technique works for any moving subjects like amusement park rides, race cars and any place you find things that move.

My site was nominated for Best Photography Blog!

April 22, 2010

Tower of Terror Disney's Hollywood Studios

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

Tower of Terror
Copyright © 2009 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D300, 18-200mm VR, 1/320 sec, f/11, ISO 200

Here's my Pic of the Week of the Tower of Terror at Disney's Hollywood Studios. I took this from the far side of Echo Lake, standing next to Gertie the dinosaur.


April 11, 2010

Where in the World #127

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #126:
 Where in the World #126

And here's the answer:
Walt Disney in One Man's Dream
Copyright © 2010 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D300, 18-200VR, 1/60s shutter, f/3.5, ISO 1600

Walt Disney models his top secret Florida Project for the first time on television in One Man's Dream at Disney's Hollywood Studios.

Brian Yesutis was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Brian and all the other readers who got the answer right: Danusia Rogacki, Sharon Pierce, Christi Ison, Millie Tenreiro, Sharon Dale, Belicia Dawson, Travis Grim, Scott Cullen, Dave Cole, Daniel Record, Kris Nixon, Ed Aleszczyk, Kathy Berry, James Berry, Julie Wickware, Robert Anderson , Deb Ragno, Michelle Mcknight, Annette Nuenke, Paul Cooper, Jared Orth, Karen Ramirez, Tiago De Oliveira, Bob Patterson, Denise O, Jen Bruno, Craig, Paul Dickson, Frances Phebus, Ken Jackson, David Boyarsky, Lauren Foss, Christopher Barnes, Tim Wingfield, Carrie Rampy, Dennis Dunkman, Jennifer Tremley, David P. Tarbet, Michelle K., Megan, The Moore Family, Louise Barton, Noreen Rachuba, Matthew Waga, Jeremy Dow, Kameo Crea, Kevin Toomey, Scott Otis, Mckinley Yeaman, Dawn Burns, Krista Penno, Kim Steiner, Ronnie Lane, Todd Ritter, Lee Krueger, Rob Blundin, Dale Knight, Timothy Hutchinson, Rina, J Breezy, Terry Fleming, Mike Venere, Mike Walter, Cathy Fleming, Louise Herrick, Alan P, Ed Suscreba, Howie T., Katie Mccardell, Tim Rachuba, Tony L, Rachel Hoover, Jill Davoll, Isabelle Boivin, Christine Dagney, Jennifer, Bonnie Smith, Cari-ann, Paula Munson, Brenda Strohmeyer, Tracey Mayfield, Jessica Deans, Barclay Bakkum, Wendy Snelgrove, Diana Barthelemy, Joann Albrecht, Kelly Mager, Erin Rix, Penny Urell, Carol Donoghue, Brent Baker, Dan Mangini, Liz Mckinnell, Brent Lollar, Colin Buchanan, Shannon Joyce, Kelley H, Brooke French, Kelly Kobiela, Sherri Pell, Steve Pocopanni, Brian Johnson, Sandy Johnson, Debby & Andrew Webber, Theresa Rucando, Heidi F Goodhue, Anthony Weimer, Cheryl Buchanan, Derek Carty, Jody Erdfarb, Gail Hirsch, Kristen Mccoy, Sharon Blickensderfer, Ken Kleiner, Tina Cole, Aruna, Kerry Cormier and Patti Purdy. Each of you will be entered in the April winners' drawing.

_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #127: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #127

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, April 15, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

April 9, 2010

The Red Beast

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Bad White Balance
Remember this photo? This is how my photos looked when I first attempted to photograph Beauty and the Beast, Live on Stage with my Nikon D70 camera. Up until then, the camera's automatic White Balance setting was handling photographing around the Walt Disney World resort a breeze. I was able to save this photo via an online photo editing site. But you and I both know, it is best if you can get it right in the camera itself.

The next time I found myself in the Theater of the Stars for this production, I set my camera's image quality to RAW. This allowed me to alter the photo's white balance in a photo editor later. This worked well but I still was not totally pleased with the results. Reds continued to be blown out with reddish skin tones.

You might be wondering why I have such trouble with this show? Actually, I had trouble with a lot of Disney's stage productions and here is the reason: They use a lot of colored lighting during the show. Red being one they use a lot. My camera is always setup to capture vivid colors. When my camera and those red lights meet...Pow! Red heading off the charts or, in my case, the histogram.

I did some research on how I can best handle this situation and came across some articles about the Expodisc Filter by Expoimaging. This white opac filter fits over the front of your lens and, by telling your camera to take a custom White Balance setting, you point your camera and lens towards the light source. I emphasize "towards" because in your camera manuals you are told to point your camera at a white or middle gray surface to set a custom white balance. I do not understand the science behind the Expodisc but I do know that it works very well.

Before the show started, I popped on the Expodisc onto the front of my lens, set my camera to get a custom white balance and aimed it at the lights in the theater. I clicked the shutter and my LCD told me I had gotten a Good White Balance setting. I took off the Exposdisc filter and I was ready to go. I must say, with this simple solution, I got photos right out of the camera with near perfect color.

For the photo below of Belle singing during the opening number of the show, you see her bathed in white light with good skin color while some of the village's people behind her are in red light. This is as I saw it on stage.

Belle singing during the opening number of Beauty and the Beast, Live on Stage in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Belle singing during the opening number of Beauty and the Beast, Live on Stage.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/250s, f/5.6, ISO 400, EV +0.6, 200mm focal length

Next up was Gaston's outfit. In the past I have returned with Gaston in neon red shirts and capes. After using the Exposdisc, I got the correct red for the one guy in town who's got all of it down. And his name's...Gaston.

Gaston singing his praises during Beauty and the Beast, Live on Stage in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Gaston singing his praises during Beauty and the Beast, Live on Stage.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/125s, f/5.6, ISO 400, EV +0.6, 200mm focal length

Here are a couple more of my favorites from the show. Taken with the custom white balance via the Expodisc filter.

The library scene with Belle and the Beast in the Beauty and the Beast, Live on Stage in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
The library scene with Belle and the Beast.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/125s, f/5.6, ISO 400, EV +0.6, 200mm focal length
Belle blowing a kiss to the audience at the end of the Beauty and the Beast, Live on Stage in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Belle blowing a kiss as the curtain falls to end the show.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/125s, f/5.6, ISO 400, EV +0.6, 200mm focal length

The authentic Expodisc Filter by Expoimaging may seem expensive but I have used it in a lot of settings since I took these photos. It's fast, simple and gets closer than anything else I have tried when faced with tricky lighting conditions like a stage show at Walt Disney World.

March 29, 2010

June Disney World Calendar

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

For a city slicker, there's no better place to be in June than sitting on the stoop with an ice cold beverage. This San Francisco street scene can be found in Disney's Hollywood Studios.

You will need to have Adobe Reader on your computer to download the calendar(s). Just click on the photo to download the calendar you want. When printing CD Jewel Case size, make sure “Page Scaling” in your print dialogue box is set to “None” to ensure that the calendar prints out at the correct size.


This one prints out at 8.5" x 11". It's handy if you need a calendar that you can write on.

June 2010 8.5x11 Calendar


This one prints out at 4.75" x 4.75", the perfect size for a CD Jewel Case frame.

June 2010 Jewel Case Calendar

And finally, this desktop wallpaper is for your monitor screen.

6-10_wallpaper_sm.jpg
1024 x 768
1280 x 800
1280 x 1024
1440 x 900
1600 x 1200


March 6, 2010

Coins in the Fountain

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

Rats in the Muppet Fountain
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR lens, 1/250 sec, f/8, ISO 200

I love the antics of these enterprising little rats in the Muppet Fountain outside of Muppet*Vision 3D in Disney's Hollywood Studios. If they aren't careful, that boat of theirs is going to sink from the weight of all those coins.


March 2, 2010

Disney Pic of the Week: Water Fountains

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Walt Disney World imagineers use water throughout the resort. While most of the water is used for transportation purposes, water is also used for entertainment in shows like Fantasmic and for decoration like the Imagination fountain in Epcot. If you are designing a themepark about movies, why not use an old movie prop for some water decoration? I found the mermaid water fountain from the 1984 movie, Splash, near the entrance to the Backlot Tour and makes for a good start to Disney Pic of the Week on Water Fountains. Barrie and Lisa will be here Thursday and Saturday to share their favorite water fountains at Disney themeparks.

The water fountain from the movie, Splash, in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
The water fountain from the movie, Splash.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/250s, f/8, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 18mm Focal Length


February 21, 2010

Where in the World #120

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #119:
 Where in the World #119

And here's the answer:
Muppet Stuff
Copyright © 2010 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D300, 18-200VR, 1/200s shutter, f/11, ISO 200

I always check when I go to Disney's Hollywood Studios, but I don't think those Muppets are ever going to finish painting this building. Stage 1 Company Store is the go-to place for Muppet merchandise.

Jeremy Coto was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Jeremy and all the other readers who got the answer right: Alicia Roth, Ana And Lucas Marlett, Andrea Schnur, Angie Young, Avery & Evan Zanauskas, Beth Crossland, Dale Knight, Daniel Record, David And Angela Blevins, Jared Orth, Jen Bruno, Jessica Ripley, Kelley H, Kelly Kobiela, Lee Anastasi, Linda Scrivano, Lisa Cash, Louise Barton, Madi M., Mckinley Yeaman, Mike M., Noreen Rachuba, Phil Tavares, Robin Fitts, Sara Beth Wade, Scott Otis, Sharon Dale, Theresa Rucando, Tim Rachuba, Tim Wingfield and Walter Clark. Each of you will be entered in the February winners' drawing.

_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #119: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #120

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, February 25, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

iPhone Wallpapers
Sorry I missed last week. Thank you to everyone who sent me get well messages.

I did mention that I would try to make it up to you with something special. Now I know not everyone has an iPhone, but for those of you who do, I have put together a set of wallpapers sized to fit your phone. I can't say for sure, but I bet they will work on other phones too, though they may need to be resized.

The instructions for how to download the wallpapers are at the top of the gallery page. Hope you like them!


February 2, 2010

Disney Pic of the Week - Storefronts

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

The Darkroom
Copyright © 2010 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D300, 18-200VR lens, 1/160 sec, f/8, ISO 200

There's no such thing as a boring storefront when you're at a Disney park. Every shop is another opportunity for Disney's designers to tell a story and show their stuff. Take this camera shop at Disney's Hollywood Studios. There's no mistaking what you'll find inside here.

Later this week, watch for Lisa and Scott to share some of the storefronts they find most interesting.

January 29, 2010

Burst Mode

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

When photographing an event or show which features fast action, I use what photographers refer to as Burst mode. Camera companies call it Continuous mode. Refer to your camera's manual on how to set it. This mode will continuously fire your shutter as fast as the camera is able. The Nikon D70 I use is rated at 3 frames per second (fps). The cameras used by today's sports photographers can go as fast as 11fps.

At Disney's Hollywood Studios, I used burst mode when photographing the Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show to catch all the exciting action sequences like the finale you see below.

Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show finale sequence in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show finale sequence.



January 8, 2010

HDR Creation

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Three weeks ago I introduced you to HDR (High Dynamic Range) processing to increase the range of light when you are faced with a scene which shows a range from dark to light most digital cameras have trouble capturing. I discussed how you take a set of photos I referred to as an HDR set when you bracket around the "correct" exposure by plus and minus 2 EV (exposures). Then we went through a couple of examples.

I mentioned another way to create an HDR image from just one photo. To do this it helps to use a photo with the same characteristics as a scene you'd consider doing an HDR set with. Why didn't I do that in the first place, you may ask. Well, sometimes you either don't have time or you did not consider it. Especially at Walt Disney World.

Once you have selected a photo, you have to create an HDR set from it. Using your favorite photo editor, make two copies of the photo. It might help to rename them as you do so. Leave the first photo alone. The second one, change the exposure to -2. Most editors have an exposure slider to do this (if not, look at your software's manual or search in the Help section). On the third one, change the exposure to +2. When done you have a complete HDR set like I have below of a detail section of Mickey's Sorcerer Hat in Disney's Hollywood Studios.

HDR set of photos of a detail section of Mickey's Sorcerer Hat in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
HDR set of photos of a detail section of Mickey's Sorcerer Hat in Disney's Hollywood Studios.

Once created, I selected all three photos in the photo editor which for me is Apple Aperture 2 and choose to edit with the Photomatix plugin just as I did when I was using three different photos.

Final HDR image from one photo of Mickey's Sorcerer Hat in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Final HDR image from one photo of Mickey's Sorcerer Hat.

While this technique works pretty good. It's not as vibrant as using three (or more) bracketed photos. It is a good alternative for those photos you may otherwise discard.

December 20, 2009

Where in the World #114

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #113:
 Where in the World #113

And here's the answer:
Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1.6s shutter, f/8, ISO 800

Season's Greetings to you all! I thought this was a good week for a picture of the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights. Five million lights sure look beautiful decorating the Streets of America in Disney's Hollywood Studios. It is truly an awe-inspiring show.

Dave Wang was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Dave and all the other readers who got the answer right: Louise Barton, Robin Fitts, Scott Otis, Mckinley Yeaman, David Manning, Wendy Ip, Sharon Dale, Sarah Haas, Jen Cerce, Elizabeth Collins, Derek Mullins, Jerry Weldon, John C. Lacasse, Jeffrey Beauchamp, Brian Haas, Aubrey Cooper, Heidi Summers, Bill Androckitis Jr., Josh Kight, Double Family, Lee Anastasi, Clarence Diggles, Scott Cullen, Belicia Dawson, Annette Nuenke, Carrie Henderson, Jennifer Tremley, Jared Orth, Bruce Lawson, Jason Skow, Sue Mcdonald, Kelley H, Tim Rachuba, Wendy Snelgrove, Michael Nanney, Julie Wickware, Aruna, Gary E Genteman, Jay Reagan, Carri Marotto, Katarina Whitmarsh, Heather Coursen, Jennifer Schwing, Paul Cooper, Sharon Lee, Maureen Ohare, Sharon Pierce, Brian Miller, Daniel Record, Katy M. Robinson, James Berry, Kathy Berry, Jessica Deans, Jamie Poynton, Christine and Annie Goodenbour. Each of you will be entered in the December winners' drawing.
_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #114: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #114

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Due to the holiday this week, please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Wednesday, December 23, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

December 19, 2009

Hollywood & Vine Traffic Light

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

The famous Hollywood and Vine intersection as found in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida

The famous Hollywood and Vine intersection.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/200s, f/7.1, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 55mm Focal Length

In the Magic Kingdom, there are lands. In Epcot, worlds. In Disney's Hollywood Studios, you have famous streets like Hollywood Blvd., Vine St. and Sunset Blvd. As an added touch, Disney Imagineers put an old time working traffic light at the intersection of it's Hollywood and Vine for my Disney Pic of the Week on Disney's Hollywood Studios' Streets.

December 18, 2009

Walt Disney World in HDR

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

High Dynamic Range imaging which is referred to simply as HDR is a process to increase the amount of luminance between the lightest and darkest areas of an image. Digital cameras can handle from 4 to 7 stops of light. In contrast, the human eye can see 20 stops of light. People "see" in HDR. Photographers for years have done all kinds of things in the darkrooms to increase their photos dynamic range.

With the advent of more powerful personal computers, digital cameras and imaging software, photographers and software engineers created the HDR process of merging a set of digital photographs which would have taken hours of setup in a darkroom and do it in just a few minutes. Today's blog is just an introduction to HDR as I have recently discovered it myself.

There are two kinds of HDR images. One is created by a set of images I call an HDR set. The second is created from one image which I will cover in three weeks. So, what is an HDR set? To explain that I first have to introduce you to the term bracketing. In photography, bracketing means to take one picture at a given exposure then one or two brighter and one or two darker, in order to obtain the best image. I did this often whenever I was using slide film. Digital sensors are a lot like slide film so when I took up digital photography, I returned to bracketing, especially if the the subject I was photographing had very light and dark areas.

HDR imaging takes bracketing a bit further. Instead of changing a half or a full stop around an exposure, HDR photographers go 2, 3 and sometimes more stops. Digital cameras make it very easy as most come with auto-bracketing settings which will program your camera to take a series of photos plus and minus around the exposure the photographer decides to start with. Auto-bracketing can be truly automatic where one shutter press takes all the photos in sequence or, like my older digital camera, you have to press the shutter for each bracketed photo. To find out how your camera does auto-bracketing, check its manual (haven't bugged you about reading that in awhile!).

Now that you have an idea of what HDR is. Let me show you how it works. Most HDR books and web tutorials recommend you start with a 3 image bracket of +2, 0, -2 EV (exposure compensation). When I turn on auto-bracketing, the first shutter press will take the +2 EV photo first, the 0 EV photo second and the -2 EV photo last. This gives me the HDR set of 3 photos you see below of Expedition Everest from the bridge to Africa in Disney's Animal Kingdom.

HDR set of photos of Expedition Everest in Disney's Animal Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
HDR set of photos of Expedition Everest in Disney's Animal Kingdom.

When I first started doing this I had to get used to seeing such light and dark images and to NOT delete them which I did the first few times. Once you get the HDR set onto your computer the real fun begins. A couple of years ago, you really needed something like Photoshop to merge the HDR sets together. Most HDR gurus today recommend Photomatix either as a stand along program or plugins for Photoshop, Lightroom or Apple's Aperture. Since I use Aperture, I'll explain how easy it is to use the Photomatix plugin. If you get the stand alone version, Photomatix Pro, you have to create the JPEG images for it.

In Aperture, I selected the three images you see above and choose to edit with the Photomatix plugin. This launches Photomatix and imports the three images. Since I didn't use a tripod here, I told Photomatix to align the images. After a minute or less, the merged image is displayed in the plugin. The first time you see this you'll be amazed. Dark and light areas which in the "properly" exposed image had little to no detail, now have detail. The links below will go into more detail as to what all the adjustment sliders in Photomatix does. After a few minutes, below is what I ended up with. Notice how you can see details in the bright clouds and dark green foliage. In my normal processing, I would have had a hard time getting something even close to this.

Expedition Everest from the bridge to Africa in Disney's Animal Kingdom in HDR, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Expedition Everest from the bridge to Africa in HDR.

Remember, HDR works best with scenes which have very dark and/or very light areas. If the scene is very evenly lighted, HDR won't do much for you. With that in mind, lighted structures at night have a large contrast in light and dark. I had seen others do HDR images of Spaceship Earth at Epcot but I thought I would give it a try and see what I came up with. Below is the HDR set of three images. This time, I decided to do it manually by using my camera's light meter and a tripod. I kept the ISO at 200 and aperture at f/16 and varied the shutter speed to get the same exposure range of +/- 2 stops.

HDR set of photos of Spaceship Earth in Epcot's Future World, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
HDR set of photos of Spaceship Earth in Epcot's Future World.

Night HDR processing was a lot harder than I thought it would be. HDR increases noise. So, if you start with ISO 200 images, the HDR image turns out like an ISO 400 image. In very dark areas, like a night sky, noise can become very apparent. After a long time, I finally came upon the settings to keep the night sky black and not a grainy brown. The result you see below.

Nighttime HDR of Spaceship Earth in Epcot's Future World, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Nighttime HDR of Spaceship Earth in Epcot's Future World.

When HDR images first appeared, they were panned as being too cartoonish and not very realistic. As software engineers and photographers improved the tools and techniques, HDR images got better and better. For fun, you can still create those extreme HDR images like the one I did below of the set of the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show in Disney's Hollywood Studios.

Extreme HDR of set of the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Extreme HDR of set of the Lights, Motors, Action Extreme Stunt Show.

To me, this looks like concept art which might have been seen in the offices of Disney Imagineering when they were creating the show. What do you think? For more HDR examples from Walt Disney World, click here.

I have been rather vague as to how to use Photomatix. This is because like all photo editing software, there are no wrong or right ways to create an HDR image once it's in Photomatix. Below are some links which will explain further how to create HDR photos using Photomatix.

Stuck In Customs HDR Tutorial - Trey Ratcliff is considered a master of HDR photography.

HDR Tutorial by Pete Carr - goes into how adjustment sliders in Photomatix effect an image. (This is an update from the original link.)

HDRsoft's website - the maker of Photomatix which have 30 day trials of the stand alone and plugin versions for download.

Stuart Perry's Photomatix Presets - I know it's early but this is my Christmas gift to anyone who wants to try out Photomatix. This link has a download with over 80 presets you can use in Photomatix. It's a great way to see how each preset changes your images while in Photomatix. Enjoy!

December 17, 2009

Sunset Boulevard in December

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

 Sunset Boulevard in Disney's Hollywood Studios
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR lens, 1/5 sec, f/8, ISO 800

Sunset Boulevard in Disney's Hollywood Studios, all decked out for the holiday season.

November 27, 2009

Photographing Christmas Lights at Disney II

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Last year I gave you some tips on how to photograph Christmas light decorations at Walt Disney World and at home. This year I want to show you a couple of my results using those tips.

I visited the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights at Disney's Hollywood Studios last December. Putting my camera into Rear Sync Flash mode or what I referred to as dragging the shutter in last year's article, I was ready to capture those spectacular light displays. I used Manual mode and set the aperture to f/4. By using flash, I kept the ISO low at 200 but I had to be very aware of the shutter speed. In Rear Sync mode, the camera can use longer shutter speeds to capture as much ambient light as it can before the flash is fired. At a 1/4 of a second, I had to make sure to steady my camera using Da Grip and an image stabilized lens (the Nikon 18-200VR) when taking this photo of these lighted bicycles.

Lighted bicycles found at the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights in Disney's Hollywood Studios , Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Lighted bicycles are part of the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/4s, f/4, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 28mm Focal Length, Rear-sync Flash at -3 Power

Without the flash, you would only be able to see the colored lights. With the flash, you can see the bicycles, the flat tires, the sidewalk and the background. Notice I had the flash set to its lowest power setting at -3 so as not to wash out the lights. I don't randomly set the flash power. I take shots at various power levels until I find the one that works the best.

This technique can also be used for any lighted displays. The entrance to Mission: Space features a rotating Earth with the ride's logo with space ship leaving orbit and Hewlett-Packard's logo, the attraction's sponsor. While I would have rathered taken this photo at dusk with a tripod like I did in China, this was the last night of my trip and the tripod was already packed. Again, using Manual mode, I set the aperture at f/8 and a shutter speed of a half second. The longest shutter speed I would ever attempt a hand held shot. I did the best I could to steady my camera by getting down on one knee, using Da Grip and the flash set to Rear Sync and full power to cover the large area and distance. It took several photos to make sure I got some good images like the one you see below. The long shutter speed gave a nice blur to the moving globe while keeping everything else sharp. The flash filled in the dark areas nicely.

The Mission: Space sign in Epcot's Futureworld, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
The Mission: Space sign in Epcot's Futureworld.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/2s, f/8, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 18mm Focal Length, Rear-sync Flash at Full Power

Twitter fans, I will be tweeting from Walt Disney World next week on my @Scottwdw twitter account. Request to follow me and you'll be seeing lots of pictures from the Disney parks and Sea World.

November 22, 2009

Where in the World #111

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #110:
 Where in the World #110

And here's the answer:
Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular
Copyright © 2005 Barrie Brewer

This week's challenge is from the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular in Disney's Hollywood Studios. So many of you got it right this week " way to go!

Marc Lorenzo was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Marc and all the other readers who got the answer right: Frank And Sharon Pierce, Melody Salemi, Brenda, Scott Kinzel, Anthony Oneto, Marc Acosta, Donna Currier, Diane C., Ed Aleszczyk, Mike Malampy, Megan Krainski, Ken Jackson, Chrissie Rose Cooper, Kathy Love, Lee Lastovica, Liz Patterson, Eric Hoffman, Douglas Mcknight, Caitlin Barringer, Emily Currier, Teri Jo Fuson, Susan Doucette, Tim Rachuba, Alicia Roth, Anne Hainsworth, Paula Massarelli, Heather Williams, Misty Mehelic, Amy Filliben, Christopher Barnes, Brendan Abel, Barbara Cerimele, Dawn Bach, Mossimo Gallo, John Lacasse, Andrew Weed, Ed Nawrocki, Paul Cooper, Michael Jamison, Pollyanna Buff, Sherry Klinefelter, Betsey Whitehead, Caryn Schill, Angela And David Blevins, Brian Gallant, Bill Monahan, Bill Monahan, Katie Wolfe, Brittany & Jesse Siminitz, Rich T., Vanessa Olmedo, Courtney, Chandler, Jordan & Maryann Eckenrode , Mary Beth Tarbet, Wendy And Marina Crober, Mckinley Yeaman, Scott Otis, Brian Yesutis, Liz Zappitello, Sarah Haas, Clare C, Irene Kleintop, Stephanie Visco, Sharon Lee, Christie Condit, Tommy Carty, Michael Utesch, Becky Norman, Mike Walter, Tom, Paula Munson, Jerry Felder, Ben Dameron, Travis Grim, Barbara Sims, Nicole Amidon, Amy Leblanc, Lee Anastasi, Kathryn Perkins, Christine Benoit, Joy Johnston, Jeffrey Dunne, Chad Ryan, Brett Landry, Carolyn Como, Doug Brigger, Mark Brigger, Ronnie Lane, Christine H., Carla, Tim Johansen, Jeff Schoeling , Jen Bruno, Scott Cullen, Belicia Dawson, Melissa Ruggieri, Cara Richards, Heather Young, Daniel Toxey, Andrew Mcspadden, Ken Gravitt, Robert Anderson , Melea Broekers, Brian Haas, Joseph M Zafia, Nathan Cripe, Jen Cerce, Duane Wisniewski, Boris Beckert, David And Melissa Lizewski, Jackie Purcell, Harry Wilson, Judy, Bryan Gibson, Annette Nuenke, Tom Hertzel, Heidi Summers, Vincent Maltese, Daniel Record, Rick Hemsley, Julie Wickware, Erin Kubicki, Rochelle, Charlie Scheer, Laurie Walker, Betsey Whitehead, Elaine Tomko-deluca, Chris J, Sue Mcdonald, Amanda, Quincy Delcolletti, R Engel, Jeremy Coto, Samantha French, Chris B, Ron Renz, Nick Straka, Melissa Gvist, Gloria Martin, Dennis Kargol, Stephanie Pcolinsky, Hillary Waldroop, Linda Scrivano, Kameo Crea, Beth Mcmeekin, Kelli Olthoff, Garry Herrick, Mary Brennan, Karrie Duffey, Bob Hendrix, Z Cheven, Jennifer Dealmeida, Patrick Albrecht, Liz Weiter, Doug Buchheit, Bill Mckim, Ali S., Jennifer R, Pat W. , Kris Nixon, Jennifer Mccurry, Mickey Eckert, David Mickley, J Breezy, Chris Connors, Tj, Jaime Thomson, Lisa Hoffman, Jennifer Harmon, Joyce Tofflemire, Angela Quirk, Rich Kacprowicz, Irene Kleintop, Jared Orth, Nicole Alley, Charity Maas, Louise Maxwell, Steve Wilmot, Phil Vickers, Jill Fogg, Jessica Deans, Craig Canady, Betty Gurruchaga, Cari-ann, Berry Morris, Paul Sanschagrin, Ken Fischler, Dallas Hamilton, David Singer, Christopher Hall, Melesia Love, Thomas Hermes, Eric Gasser, Emily, Bruce Lawson, Wayne Witherspoon, Scott Button, J Breezy, Steve Pocopanni, Angela Fennell, Karen Schlumpf, Doug Armstrong, Russ Morgan, Kerry Kendrick, Chris Miller, Scott Junkin, James Steele, Alison Rosenberger, Matt Degrandis, Chad Ryan, Paul Ignudo Jr, Danusia Rogacki, Nancie Lymer, Sarah Connors, Mark Franklin, Caitlin Lewis, Tim Wingfield, Michelle Roth-smoot, Debbie Hicks, Bruce Arnold, Teresa Cole, Joe Armeni, Jim Riley, Wendy Snelgrove, Amy Lucas, Gennaro Rosato, Joseph M Zafia, Steve Jordan, Bryan Blochberger, Mary, Blake Schmidt, Jason Skow, Trish Babler, Kalin Johnson, Chris Grabowski, James Berry, Kathy Berry, Julie Olson, Dennis Blackburn, Stephanie Servaites, Mike Gillardi, Amanda M, Lauri Uzee, David Gould, Jennifer Schwing, Steve Knapp, Kevin Corcoran, Denise Cavallaro, Mike Kaczanowski, Kathy Slomka, Donna Hawkins, Kellie Carter, Tammy Mcenturff, Angie Sheffield, Samantha Krzewick, Collette Beuther, Kurt Knappman, Jody Erdfarb, Jennifer S, Jen Schultz, Angi Clark, Sharon Dale, Paul Newman, Mia W., Joe Armeni, Brian Miller, Jim Finley, Heidi Goodhue, Jerry Weldon, Todd Tavender, Kerry, Steve Toponak, Steve Bieniek, Double Family, Mark Swayze, Humberto Ciucio Junior, Matthew Herman, Kerry Fox, Vanessa Gordon, Gerald M., Susan M. Thompson, Danielle Fitzgerald, Amanda Perkins, Tim Jeltes, Carrie Kenney, Erica Adkins, Dylan Zendler, Christopher Jackson, Cheryl Costello, Aruna, Nick Dickens, John Arena, Dan Potts, Randy Dimarco, Katarina Whitmarsh, Jen Norris, Kelley H, Ed Suscreba, Rich Esker, Jennifer Townsend, Jennifer Horst, Veronica Haines, Karen Dresser-smith, Denise Dossat, Robert Dean Bostic, Tom & Susan Linder, Thomas Auckland, Isabelle Boivin, Gabriella Rizzo, Jo Ann Bailey, Diane Furtado, Glenn Meyer, Tammy Kallenbach, Renee Drainville, Carol Donoghue, Aesha Richardson, Renie Mistretta, Jennifer Bogdan, Keith Rawlinson, Lisa Cash, Roye Ann Morris, Brenda Strohmeyer, Marcella Spear, Matthew Waga, Sandy Miller, Janet Theriault, Kathryn Mccallister, Luis Rodriguez, Nicole Lopresti, Jane Johnson, Joanne O'brien, Michele Yon, L Hopkins, Peter Ball, Barbara Cerimele, Paul Thorp, Kelly Zanauskas, Bethany Mattiuz-king, Carinne Kight, Kristine Gallatin, Tom Higbee, Barclay Bakkum, Lori Hausrath, Leigh Mertz, Paula Massarelli, Jim, Josh Kight, Vicky Jacobs, Nancy Ahlsen, Jeff Finger, Sandra Ednie, Bill Monahan, Carrie Henderson, Claire , Matt And Danielle Murgia, Aurora , Lou Baker, Vickie Scioneaux, Matt Smith, Joe S., Jeff Blank, Jullie Pudem, Patrick Akers, Melissa Rebelo, Ron And Beth Dye, Gary E Genteman, Ashley Hill, Amanda Hostetler, Jim Thompson, Mark Cullison, Jay Reagan, Kirk Hardy, Matthew Jadro, Michael Nanney, Emily Nussbaum, Kim Steiner, Joy Palmer, Guillermo Morales and Sam Kovac. Each of youwere entered in the November winners' drawing.

It's time for the monthly drawing. This month's big winner is Evan Zanauskas! Congratulations Evan, you are the lucky recipient of a fabulous Disney book and some really cool AllEars schwag!

Good luck to everyone as we begin another month! Here we go…

_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #111: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #111

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, November 26, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

November 15, 2009

Where in the World #110

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #109:
 Where in the World #109

And here's the answer:
It's a Wonderful Shop
Copyright © 2009 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/100s shutter, f/8

It's always “that time of year” on the Streets of America with a snowman that never melts. You'll find this jolly guy outside It's a Wonderful Shop in Disney's Hollywood Studios, near Mama Melrose's. Seems this is a very popular photo spot. Several of you commented that this is where you take pictures of your growing children on every visit. Several others mentioned that they have used this as their Christmas card.

Ken Gravitt was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Ken and all the other readers who got the answer right: Jen Snapp, Sharon Lee, Tommy Carty, Theresa Rucando, Pollyanna Buff, Mark Swayze, Mary Beth Tarbet, Dale Knight, Todd Ritter, Marc Acosta, James Berry, Irene Kleintop, Kathy Berry, Sharon Pierce, Heidi Summers, Leigh Mertz, Roseann Brent, Caryn Schill, Ed Nawrocki, Lee Anastasi, Chloe, Stephanie Visco, Emma Poprock, Paul Cooper, Ashley Hill, Sherry Klinefelter, Jill Hiers, Kathryn Perkins, Linda Mac, Maryann Eckenrode, Jamie Kelly, Kris Nixon, Beth Mcmeekin, Courtney Marlowe, Sarah Smee, Emily Currier, Sue Mcdonald, Double Family, Sharon Dale, Karen Adamakis, Joy Johnston, Melissa Jennings, Mary Brennan, Brian Haas, Tim Johansen, Tom Koval, Scott Otis, Mckinley Yeaman, Frank F. Fincken Iii, Wendy And Marina Crober, Alissa Ammons, Pat W., Diane Furtado, Brian Miller, Kelley Lord, Darlene Harmon, Baines Family, Kristen Mccoy, Ronnie Lane, Annette Nuenke, Jason Skow, Tracy Sinatra, Mike Timmer, Brittany Siminitz, Michele Delorenzo, Michael Jamison, Lin Fales, Sarah Haas, Deb Staples, Stacey Hutchinson, Tiago And Rocco De Oliveira, T.j. Valentine, Christie Condit, Brian Yesutis, Kim Meyer, Tim Wingfield, Jane Bradley, Ashley Salters, Duane Wisniewski, Michael Utesch, Russ Morgan, Debbie Hudson, Alicia Henderson, Bob Kourofsky, Jessica Deans, Brenda Mcguire, Christine Lograno-weinstein, Sheilah Smith, Regina Shuster, Debbie Austin, Kathy Wong, Yulady Rodriguez, Regina Baker, Greg Gallo, Barbara Cerimele, Lori Fein, Heather Melito-dezan, Nadine Kuntz, Julie Eurich, Nik Morley, Scott Junkin, Mary Jane Keeble, Tom Hicks, Carol Baranowsky, Dara Giannotti, Suzanne Samse, Doug Brigger, Diane Boorum, Valerie Beals, Dave Soto, Natalie Ashton, Mary Butler, Judy Terrell, Mary Lynn Ranger, Betty Jo Howell, Michelle Stuck, Alison Rosenberger, Lesley Laplant, Susan Feeback, Charles Wright, Diane Welch, Tricia Noble, Margot Garofalo, April Ramey, Ellie Argaluza, Mercedes Cluck, Linda Scrivano, Kathleen Batchelder, J Brizzle, Janice Dion, Norm Balko, Ken Fischler, Linda Wigginton, Brandon Emerson, Julie Bridges, Judy Davies, Joni Januszewski, Matt Degrandis, Chad Ryan, Ruth Amaio, Andrew Gump, Cindy Hershey, Allie Laguardia, Molly Laspada, Tim Rachuba, Eric Enli, Laura Carter, Sarah Connors, Maria Alessi, Kim Requa, Debbie Hicks, Pam Vanaustin, Mike Schelfhaut, Marietta Falk, Jen Marx, Mike Gillardi, Nicole Lauzon, Joan, Mickey Eckert, Alison Mccrum, Teresa Cole, Laura Barnes, Loretta Reed, Jill Bent, Sandy Hamel, Carolyn Poirier, Lisa Mckenzie, Evelyn, Curtis Bille, Kendra, Elaine Tomko-deluca, Kurt Knappman, Lauren Russell, Kelly Zanauskas, Shane Stack, Robin Holcomb, James Greene, Glenn Meyer, Sandy Hunt, Carri Marotto, Cheri Mccoy, Michael Smith, Suzanne Kennedy, Linda, Amanda M., Amy Music, Jeremy Reichelt, Robin Mcconnell, Jay Reagan, Robert Anderson , Steve Lenkel, Laurie, Nicholas Gonzalez, Linda Reynolds, Brendan Abel, Jillian Domings, Debra Soley, Kirsten Stark, Cindy Ferenburg, Heather Courtney, Lorne Harris, Amie Mattson, Rochelle Moser, Stacey Cangemi, Charity Maas, Amie Mumpower, Betty Rozum, Craig Canady, Ken Jackso, Bonnie Ford, Jay Bradfod, Noreen Rachuba, Jen Norris, Tammy Mcenturff, Dionne Chamoun, Steve Pocopanni, Amanda Diresta, Jim, Allison Newman, Donna Mcguire , Matt And Danielle Murgia, Maureen Hanlon, Lynn Barber, Joanna, Emily Dagney, Sharon Leitgeb, Liz Moreau, Katie Wetzel, Bridgie Auckland, Mike Graham, Alicia Roth, Dominic Cooper, Mike Zendler, Mike Zendler, Mike Graham, Crissy Wertz, Christopher Barnes, Janice Broussard, Veronica Schreyer, James Hickey, Carol Donoghue, Terri Thornton, Angela Haire, Vanessa Gordon, Lisa Cash, Tom & Susan Linder, Jamie Poynton, Bob Mchale, Lauren Mcgowan, Mike Zendler, Dawn Bach, Ashley, Christine Dagney, Tracy Cegielski, Marie Phillips, Ashley Hill, Susan Hines-brigger, Peggy Hickey, Emily Nussbaum, Isabelle Boivin and Janet Theriault. Each of you will be entered in the November winners' drawing.
_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #110: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #110

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, November 19, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

October 18, 2009

Where in the World #106

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #105:
 Where in the World #105

And here's the answer:
Mama Melrose's Lobby at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Copyright © 2009 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D300, 18-200VR, 1/60s shutter, f/8, ISO 1600

I think Mama Melrose's is a real hidden gem. I'm a big fan of Caprese salad and the one I had here was delicious. This shot was taken in the lobby where there is a display of photos of the Legends of Disney's Hollywood Studios.

A lot of people guessed Hollywood Studios this week but remember, you have to give me a bit more detail than just the name of the park to be entered into the drawing. Dan Owens was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Dan and all the other readers who got the answer right: Alissa Ammons, Robert Anderson , Douglas Mcknight, Brianne F, Bruce Hinterleitner, Kristin Olmedo, Baines Family, Mike Thomson, Kye Layton, Karen Schlumpf, Sharon Lee, Jerry Weldon, Caryn Schill, Emily Currier, Amanda Campbell, Jennifer S., Scott Otis, Jennifer Townsend, Melody Salemi, Daniel Record, Doug Brigger, Kristen Gainey, Jen Norris, Danielle And Matt Murgia, Vanessa Gordon, Karrie Mooney, Lisa Graham, Ashley Salters, Ed Aleszczyk, Matt Cofone, Mike M., Lisa Mccormack, Anne Hainsworth, Jeremy Reichelt, Eric Gasser, Carri Marotto, Travis Grim, Tiffany Keenan, Sarah Connors, Matt Degrandis, Penny, Aubrey Cooper, Jillian Domings, Katy & Emily Robinson, John R. Frangakis, Donna Currier, Melissa Dye, Leigh Mertz, Lauren, Heidi Goodhue, Alicia Roth, James Dezern (dzneynut), Christopher Bourassa, Craig, Jessica Reed, Marie Phillips, Ashley Ryan, Holly Anderson, Nicole Mason, Barbara Cardarelli, Marianne Goode, Roye Ann Morris, Debbie Poole, Alicia Henderson, James Berry, Kathy Berry, Tim Rachuba, Theresa Rucando and Ronnie Schreyer. Each of you will be entered in the October winners' drawing.
_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #106: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #106

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, October 22, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

September 11, 2009

Where in the World #101

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #100:
 Where in the World #100

And here's the answer:
Min and Bill's Dockside Diner
Copyright © 2009 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D300, 18-200VR, .0015s shutter, f/8

This tramp steamer, the S.S. Down the Hatch, houses Min and Bill's Dockside Diner in Disney's Hollywood Studios. Back in June, Jack Spence wrote a wonderful blog about the Dockside Diner. Given how many of you got this right, I bet a lot of you already saw it. If not, be sure to check it out for some interesting facts about this unusual eatery.

Louise Barton was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Louise and all the other readers who got the answer right: Chris Masse, Douglas Mcknight, Christine Holzman, Sharon Pierce, Jennifer Harmon, Belicia Dawson, Evelyn Wilson, Paula Massarelli, Scott Cullen, Jodi Cook, Robert Anderson , Berry Morris, Leslie Dameron, Michelle Raimist, Dave Cole, Brian Yesutis, Jaclyn Koller, Elizabeth Macgregor, Emily Currier, Mike Thomson, Marc Acosta, James Berry, Kathy Berry, Sharon Dale, Jennifer Kaufman, Neil Taylor, Denise Owen, Shannon Brueggemann, Ken Maikowski, Peggy Saeger, Monica Hatch, Stanley J Zajchowski, Amy Filliben, Jane Bradley, Deb Ragno, Michael Pyle, Kristen Mccoy, Misty Mehelic, Jennifer Tremley, Diane Ramos, Jerry Weldon, Hillary Waldroop, Melea Broekers, Teri Jo Fuson, Joann Albrecht, Christie Condit, Cassady Fudali, Debra Soley, Craig Canady, Amanda Campbell, Elizabeth & Anthony Collins, Anjanette Tournillon, Amanda Perkins, Michael Gainey, Mike Malampy, Scott Otis, Brian Haas, Sue Thompson, Chris J, Emma Ford, Ed Aleszczyk, Kris Nixon, Michelle Mcspadden, Donna Currier, Jen Cox, Lee Anastasi, Elizabeth, Matt Degrandis, Chris And Alison, Chloe, Nick Straka, Ellie Argaluza, Danielle Murgia, Penny, Bonnie Ford, Jay Bradford, James Greene, Kelly H, Karen Dresser-smith, David Wickware, Robert P. Flaherty, Keith Burwell, Tim Rachuba, Lisa Hoffman, Eric Hoffman, Sarah Smee, Leigh Mertz, Anne Hainsworth, Chris Miller, Jim, Christopher Hall, Wendy Snelgrove, Jeremy Reichelt, Blake Schmidt, Jake Christopher, Jim Finley, Kristen Gainey, Brian Gallant, Debbie Desimone, Bruce Arnold, Jamie Poynton, Liz Moreau, Tim Johansen, Melissa Kuehnle, Heather Coursen, Noreen Rachuba, Roye Ann Morris, Gary E Genteman, Joe S., Ssg, Sheila Saey, Mike Walter, Bryan Blochberger, Amanda Ober, Julie Fahrner, James Hickey, Christopher Barnes, Darrell Shortt, Alicia Henderson, Caroline Dupre, Lori Rienhardt, Karen Klein, Heidi Summers, Jen Cerce, Kevin Toomey, Alissa Ammons and Lynn Barber. Each of you will be entered in the September winners' drawing.
_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #101: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #101

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, September 17, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

July 31, 2009

MagicMeets Auction Print Preparation

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

One of the great events at each year's MagicMeets is the silent auction for the Make-A-Wish Foundation® of America. This auction is run by Lou Mongello's Dream Team Project volunteers and features hundreds of items for people to bid on. So far the auctions have raised $32,000 for Make-A-Wish. It's a beautiful way to share the Disney spirit!

Last year I was asked to donate something and I chose a professionally framed 16x20 inch print from one of my Animal Kingdom photos. This year I am again donating a framed print. A replica you can see below. This is a photo you may have seen here before as I used it when I talked about using tripods at Walt Disney World earlier this year.

Twilight Zone Tower of Terror in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Replica of framed Twilight Zone Tower of Terror print.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 25s, f/18, 200 ISO, EV +0.3, 80mm Focal length

When you decide to make a print of one of your digital images, you have to process it a bit differently than if you were going to display it in a digital frame or on the Internet. For instance, you must sharpen it differently and more aggressively. Have in mind the size you want to print it at and crop accordingly. For the Tower of Terror photo, I knew I was going to print it at 16x20 so I cropped it for an 8x10 (which is the same ratio as a 16x20). Set the DPI (dots per inch) at a minimum of 300. The human eye can not tell the difference beyond 300 DPI. As a comparison, most web images are at 72 DPI which create much smaller file sizes and load faster on our screens.

If you want to make sure what you see on your screen is what you'll see come out on your printer you should color calibrate both the computer's display screen and printer. You should check out your software's manual and supporting websites to get specific information regarding preparing your images for printing.

I use an online printer who color corrects and sharpens as needed before printing. For this year's auction print, I chose to use Kodak Professional Endura Metallic paper which is supposed to produce a striking, three-dimensional-like image. I'll let you know! I will have a local professional frame shop do the framing. What's nice about working with a local frame shop is you can bring the print in and match it up with a sample of hundreds of framing materials to find just the right one for the photo.

For those of you attending next week's MagicMeets, I'll be around photographing and helping out at the AllEars.net booth. Stop by and say "Hi!".

July 2, 2009

Action!

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

Sculpture at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Copyright © 2009 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D300, 50mm lens, 1/8s shutter, f1.4, ISO 400

This is a picture of a sculpture at Disney's Hollywood Studios. But you knew that already, didn't you? Filling the frame is the number one way to make your photos more interesting. Ever have someone look at one of your pictures and ask, “What is this picture of?” or say, “Nice building”, when what you really wanted them to notice was the fountain in front of the building? In most cases, you don't want to have to explain your photos. The photo should speak for itself. When you fill the frame with your subject, there will be no question as to what it was that you were trying to capture.

June 21, 2009

Where in the World #91

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #90:
 Where in the World #90

And here's the answer:
Buzz Lightyear at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/500s shutter, f/16

I took this photo of Buzz Lightyear at Disney's Hollywood Studios, during the Stars and Motorcars parade. Buzz travels around the world quite a bit. There was really no way to tell from my clue exactly where he might have been when I snapped the picture so I counted everyone who had his name in their answer, no matter where you thought he might have been at the time.

Robert Anderson was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Robert and all the other readers who got the answer right: Jennifer Snapp, Kirsty Butler, Shannon Milair, Cara Richards, Chris And Alison, Denise Owen, Kye Layton, Sherry Trapp, Benjamin Dameron, Jamie Difatta, Elizabeth Macgregor, Elizabeth Collins, Kameo Crea, Melissa Dye, Tim W, Joy Johnston, Tim Johansen, Vicki Vaught, Diane Leclercq, Jackson Hart, Susan Thompson, Wendy And Marina Crober, Louise Barton, Ivan Barton, Benjamin Barton, Jennifer S., Michelle Thompson, Heather Young, Kevin Toomey, Megan Krainski, Jeremy Finke, Evelyn Wilson, Stephanie Mendoff, Hayley Lawson, Stephanie Visco, Mindy Marinelli, Danielle Murgia, Karen Pizzuta, April Baker, Diane, Natalie Ashton, Ashley Pizzino, Kelly Torch, Jeremy Hardy, Hillary Waldroop, Tamara Lasher, Marc Acosta, Kristen Gainey, Heather Stanley, David Coates, Robb Fluet, Richard Uhler, Christopher Jackson, Scott Otis, Jennifer Shelor, Marietta Falk, Diana Salisbury, Scott O'donnell, Alex Karr, Angie Young, Clay Anthony, Jodi Cook, Stephanie Hardhouse, Abbie Newsome, Jen Cerce, Christina Rotella, Tina Santacroce, Will Bennett, Carinne Kight, Denise Cayz , Aly Nichting, Paula Massarelli, Brenda Mcguire, Olivia Lobaugh, Hailey S, Anjanette Tournillon, Barbara Sims, Rich Esker, Jen Murphy, Laurie Jensen, Alicia Roth, Douglas Mcknight, Michelle Mcknight, Nancy Merritt, April Pangburn, Paula Munson, Louise Maxwell, Chris Bourassa, Joy Palmer, Teresa Cole, Becky Terjung, Jared Orth, Jude Toups, Jay Kerznowski, Anne Hainsworth, Bruce Lawson, Irene Kleintop, Kelly Zanauskas, Sarah Connors, Dale Knight, Tom Hermes, Cara Arnold, Brian Yesutis, Melissa Jennings, Laura Pranaitis, Tere Given, Carri Marotto, Brittany Irish, Daniel Meagher, Jessica Marcotte, Christine Paniccia, Kristin Mayotte, Elaine Mazzara, Laurie Walker, Heather Stoskopf, Lesley Strawderman, Nikki Powell, Shane Stack, Carrie Kenney, Aubrey Cooper, Virginia Mackenzie, Darrell Shortt, Aruna, John Arena, Elaine Tomko-deluca, Robert Acosta, Leigh M, Jennifer Schwing, Jeffrey Beauchamp, Paul Knott, Elaine Leviner, Christie Condit, Susan & Tom Linder, Aj Perras, Devin Wisman, Marie Phillips, Elisa Dillon, Christi Ison, Amy Whitmire, Heather Mcfall, Kala Miller, Margot Garofalo, Anna Burch, Bridgie Auckland, Katie Fry, Mickey Eckert, Tiago De Oliveira, Barclay Bakkum, Heather Coursen, Candace Dadswell, Willie Tople, Dave Carriere, Sandra Edwards, Allison Dibiase, Amy Miller, Stacey Hutchinson, Sharon Blickensderfer, Maureen Ohare, Juliet O'hare, Roye Ann Morris, Paul Ignudo, Jr., Linda Scrivano, Carolyn Como, Sydney Walker, Mike O'brien, Sherrie Weber, Krista Penno, Tom Carty and Ssg. Each of you will be entered in the June winners' drawing.

This month's big winner is Kalin Johnson! Congratulations Kalin, you are the lucky recipient of a fabulous Disney book and some really cool AllEars schwag!

Good luck to everyone as we begin another month! Here we go…

_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #91: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #91

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, June 25, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Feedback Form link at the bottom of this post. Remember to be specific with your answer - just naming a park will not get you into the drawing.

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

June 8, 2009

August Disney World Calendar

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

The Sorcerer's Hat at Disney's Hollywood Studios is my choice for the August calendar. I think it looks best at night with the search lights fanned out behind it.

You will need to have Adobe Reader on your computer to download the calendar(s). Just click on the photo to download the calendar you want.


This one prints out at 8.5" x 11". It's handy if you need a calendar that you can write on.

August 2009 8.5x11 Calendar


This one prints out at 4.75" x 4.75", the perfect size for a CD Jewel Case frame.

August 2009 Jewel Case Calendar

May 17, 2009

Where in the World #86

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #85:
 Where in the World #85

And here's the answer:
ATAS Hall of Fame at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Copyright © 2009 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D300, 18-200VR, 1/100s shutter, f/5.6

This is the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Hall of Fame at Disney's Hollywood Studios. It features sculptures of famous television legends, as well as the second-largest Emmy statue in the world. You'll find past and present TV greats, including Lucille Ball, Oprah Winfrey, and as featured in this photo, Bob Newhart. That's Angela Lansbury in the background.

Caroline Dupre was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Caroline and all the readers who got the answer right: Emma Poprock, Jeffrey Dunne, Debbie Hudson, Casey Sullivan, Chris Grabowski, Julie Wickware, Jen Cerce, Steph Brontman, Belicia Dawson, Paul Cooper, Sharon Dale, Scott Cullen, Neil Taylor, Heather Young, Connie Suchodolski, Daniel Record, Stacey Van Dyke, Craig Canady, Boris Beckert, Jodi Cook, Kevin Cowdell, Michelle Mcspadden, Elizabeth Macgregor, Lori J Rienhardt, Cheri Weitkamp, Danusia Rogacki, Sue Mcdonald, Amanda Campbell, Kirsty Butler, Derek Carty, Katarina Whitmarsh, Paul Knott, Amy Schweizer, Kameo Crea, Michael Joel Gainey, Amy Filliben, Michele Delorenzo, Jeremy Coto, Matthew Jadro, Brian Gallant, David Coates, Ruth Woodhouse, Larry Heidenberg, Devin Wisman, Sharon Pierce, Tom Koval, Emily Dagney, Jennifer Hoffman, Chris Dagney, Robert Anderson, Joshua Swainston, Dana Hinterleitner, Bruce Hinterleitner, Curtis Bille, Dylan Weidner, Debra Kuklinski, Lee Anastasi, Susan Thompson, Matt Cofone, Ann Fowler, Bethany Cybak, Ronnie Lane, Chloe', Mike Malampy, Sara Moore, Tina Benco , Clarissa K, Lynn Barber, Hollie Hinton, Joyce Tofflemire, Sherry Klinefelter, Paula Munson, Scott Otis, Dave, Alicia Henderson, Kelly Kobiela, Melissa Dye, Derek Mullins, Brian Lafrazia, Bonnie Smith, Vincent Maltese, Christopher Hall, Jaclyn Kelch, Tricia Noble, Tim Johansen, Kyle Flodder, Elizabeth Scarborough, Karen Schlumpf, Kelly Zanauskas, Heidi Summers, Sarah Smee, Jillian Domings, Tim Rachuba, Travis, Erin, Misty Mehelic, Stephanie Servaites, Nick Straka, Heather Stevens, Carri Marotto, Michelle Roth-smoot, Blake Schmidt, Jamie Kelly, Deanna Simmons, Wendy Snelgrove, Travis Grim, Tiago De Oliveira, Amy Sapp, Sarah Biggs, Carinne Kight, Margie Thomas, Andrea Schnur, Louise Maxwell, Ellie Argaluza, Elaine Tomko-deluca, Marie Bertini, Ashley Deitchler, Mickey Eckert, Sarah Haas, Robin Mcconnell, Krista Penno, Jamie Poynton, Jessica Marcotte, Rhett Landrum, Bridgie Auckland, Jennifer Bogdan, Liz Moreau, Christopher Jackson, Chip Vermette, Kristin Williams, Tom Higbee, Chris And Alison, Tom & Susan Linder, Heather Coursen, Melissa Simmons, Nicole Lopresti, Kevin Scharf, Dee Dee Chapman, Debra Moscara, James Berry, Kathy Berry, Sherri Pell, Robyn Parrino, Aruna, Melody Salemi, Josh Schultz, Leah Nan Broussard, Cheri Palmisano, Kristen Gainey, Juliet Frances Ohare and Peggy Saeger. Each of you will be entered in the May winners' drawing.

_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #86: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #86

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, May 21, by clicking on the blue box below. Please do not post answers using the Comment link at the bottom of this post.

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!


May 7, 2009

Dopey and Snow White

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Topiaries of Snow White and Dopey dancing in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida

Topiaries of Snow White and Dopey dancing in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/250s, f/3.5, ISO 200, EV -1.0, 18mm Focal Length

I wonder if Dopey is thinking of auditioning for the American Idol Experience as he and Snow White are dancing in Disney's Hollywood Studios which I've selected for my Disney Pic of the Week on Topiaries.

April 24, 2009

Using a Tripod at WDW

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Hollywood Studios Entrance, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Hollywood Studios Entrance.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 30s, f/16, ISO 200, +0.3 EV, 170mm Focal length, Tripod

I have never carried a tripod into a Walt Disney World park until my last trip. I thought it would be too much trouble and a bother. However, if you plan ahead, it can be done without too much disruption to your family's enjoyment. First, you have to consider how to carry the tripod the times you decide to bring one. For me it started with the choice of tripod. I didn't want one too heavy or big and easy to carry. I settled on a Manfrotto 725B Digi Tripod with Integrated Ball Head and Carrying Bag which is all those things and cost about $135. This tripod has since been replaced by the Manfrotto 7302YB M-Y Tripod and still comes with a ball head and carrying bag at around the same price. The carrying bag allowed me to carry the tripod over my shoulder comfortably. Now, don't get me wrong, I would not carry the tripod all day long. The main reason for using a tripod at Walt Disney World is for long exposure photography in the early mornings, evenings and fireworks.


On the days I planned to use a tripod, I would rent a locker at the parks. The tripod fit easily in a LARGE locker (see photo) so make sure you ask for one of this size. It was also handy to store sweatshirts or sweaters if you are visiting when the nights cool down. This let me go on rides and attractions without having to deal with the bulkiness of a tripod. The lockers are located near the front entrances to the parks so be aware of how long it will take to retrieve the tripod. I tried to plan to be near the front of the park about an hour before sunset. That gave me more than enough time to get to the locations I had in mind.

So, what are the advantages of a tripod besides being able to shoot at long exposures. It lets you use low ISO setting which means less noise and better clarity to your photos. All of my tripod photos were taken at my camera's lowest ISO setting of 200. Tripods, used correctly, give your camera a rock steady platform with no shake. To insure as little or no camera movement as possible use a remote shutter release or your camera's self-timer. Some people even go so far as locking up the mirror (see your camera's manual on how to do this).

Temple of Heaven in the China pavilion in Epcot's World Showcase at dusk, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Temple of Heaven in the China pavilion at dusk.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 8s, f/8, ISO 200, +0.3 EV, 18mm Focal length, Tripod

I keep mentioning how I planned to use a tripod and to be at a certain place. Think of it as an extension of your normal planning process and make sure your family is involved so they know what you want to do and expect. For fireworks, your family will probably want to be with you. Other times, they may want to explore while you are waiting through 10, 20, 30 second or longer exposures. It pays to research locations. In previous visits, I would try and take a night photo which just wouldn't work hand-held so I would make a mental note. flickr is a great place to find locations as there are many photographers who specialize in Disney themepark photography.

Sometimes you might just come upon them as you walk around. On a previous trip, I walked the trail between Disney's Hollywood Studios and the Epcot resort area late at night. I looked over the canal to the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror all lit up in very moody colors fitting the theme of the ride and knew I would need to come back with a tripod which I finally did.

Twilight Zone Tower of Terror in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Twilight Zone Tower of Terror at night from the walking trail to the Epcot resort area.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 30s, f/11, ISO 200, +0.3 EV, 130mm Focal length, Tripod

This was taken late at night which is another way to capture unique night time photos at Walt Disney World when the parks are close to being empty of visitors and there's a chance the water around and in the parks is calm. I had such a night during my last visit and was able to get mirrored images around the Epcot resort area like in this photo of the Swan Resort.

The Swan Resort mirrored in the canal the Friendship boats use during the day, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
The Swan Resort mirrored in the canal the Friendship boats use during the day.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 30s, f/11, ISO 200, +0.3 EV, 18mm Focal length, Tripod

Using a tripod at Walt Disney World does take some effort and advanced planning but the rewards of capturing photos you could never get without one is worth it. Will I always take a tripod to a Disney park now? That will depend on what I have planned and who will be accompanying me but I will never think of it as a burden. Tripods open up far more opportunities when the Sun goes down.

Check out our Camera Section of the AllEars Amazon.com Store!
Camera and Lens
Accessories
Photo Books and Magazines

April 11, 2009

3-D Mania!

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Toy Story Mania rider gets ready for a series of 3-D midway computer games in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida

Toy Story Mania rider gets ready for a series of 3-D midway computer games.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/5s, f/3.5, ISO 200, EV -0.3, 18mm Focal Length

The newest interactive ride at Walt Disney World is Pixar's Toy Story Midway Mania which is part ride and part computerized midway gaming machine. The ride vehicle whisks you from one game panel to the next with Toy Story characters helping and cheering you along the way. Each panel uses 3-D visuals so you will be wearing those styling 3-D glasses. Oh and make sure you limber up your wrists while waiting in the queue. You'll thank me later. Hope you enjoyed my Disney Pic of the Week for Interactive Rides.

March 29, 2009

Where in the World #79

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #78:
 Where in the World #78

And here's the answer:
50's Prime Time Café sign
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/250s shutter, f/8

Looking for some great comfort food and some big fun? Have dinner at the 50's Prime Time Café in Disney's Hollywood Studios. The cast members there will keep you in stitches throughout your meal.

Hillary W was the first to send in the correct answer for the challenge! Congratulations to Hillary and all the readers who got the answer right: Brianne F, Robin Mcconnell, Sharon Pierce, Jill Fogg, Dawn Bach, Mary Beth Tarbet, Callie Conrad, Belicia Dawson, Scott Cullen, Kathy Berry, Heather Young, Holley Blyler, Deb Wills, James Berry, Rich Kacprowicz, Barbie Lawless, Christie Condit, Steph Brontman, Kelli Olthoff, Alex Karr, Shannon Milair, Jamie Kelly, Stephanie Visco, Caryn Schill, Peggy Saeger, Nick Straka, Derek Carty, Tommy Carty, Chris Masse, Jeffrey Dunne, Elaine Johnson, Brandy White, Jackie Purcell, Steph, Angie Young, Jackson Hart, Christine Dagney, Cathy Skiba, Emily Dagney, Dave Beedle, Tim Rachuba, Jamie Mize, Sandra Shaw, Jennifer Tremley, Megan Evans, Patrick Mcclelland, David And Melissa Lizewski, Joyanne Johnston, Robin Fitts, Alicia Roth, Kristin Cola, Chad Coppess, Travis Grim, Anne Hainsworth, Cara Richards, Cameron Love, Scott Otis, Maryann Eckenrode, Benjamin Dameron, Danielle Murgia, Jennifer Schwing, Tim, Amy Lucas, John Dupre, Robert Anderson, Lily May Summer, Lee Anastasi, Jane Bradley, Krystal Thomas, Karen Scheetz, Jennifer S, Nathan Cripe, Kelly Montgomery, Julia Wickware, Daniel Record, Gloria Martin, Kris Nixon, Karen Adamakis, Denise Owen, Diane Furtado, Austin O'blenis, Louise Barton, Richard Uhler, James Steele, Jennifer Snapp, Jennifer Harmon, Andrew J Weed, Nancy Munger, Sarah Smee, Jennifer Rupert, Tim Wingfield, Susan Pitts, Mike Kaczanowski, Brian Gallant, Aruna, Jen Cerce, Hollie Hinton, Erin Kubicki, Megan Krainski, Noreen Rachuba, Kelley H, Sarah Haas, Michelle Thompson, Karyn Christenson, Christine Bishop, Melissa Karolak, Paul Moody, Stephen Martin, Becky Norman, Hailey Sult, Eric Bouchet, Suzen Woolley, Caitlin Barringer, Denise Cayz , Damon Carter, Joyce Tofflemire, Jared Orth, Lisa Hoffman, Michael Joel Gainey, Marie, Romie Brown, Alicia Henderson, Eric Hoffman, Paula Munson, Kameo Crea, Lynn Barber, Jeremy Hardy, Double Family, Phil Vickers, Lou Baker, Diane C., Bonnie Smith, Dawn Burns, Julie Fahrner, Marc Lorenzo, Cameron Lange, Ian Falk, Jaime Thomson, Chad Ryan, Sue Mcdonald, Carla Leger, Brooke Stahl, Sarah Connors, Ken Jackson, Ashley Pizzino, Brittany Irish, Kim Peters, Cheri Palmisano, Jen Cox, Kim Steiner, Danusia Rogacki, Sarah H, Brian Yesutis, Melissa Dye, Jeff Surgent, Nicole Lauzon, Dave Roach, Chris Hall, Elizabeth Scarborough, Stephanie Servaites, Blake Schmidt, Kimberly Kusser, Jenny Haas, Tim Johansen, Joanne O'brien, Daniel Meagher, Brian Haas, Jenny Schell, Dana Schirnhofer, Evelyn Cowdell, Misty Lyons, Kristen Gainey, Brendan Burke, Maryjean Kancel, Carri Marotto, Amy Miller, Jamie Poynton, Andrea Mayo, David Singer, Joey Price, Brad Weaver, Katarina Whitmarsh, Amy Smith, Cheri Weitkamp, Laura Pranaitis, Josh Schultz, Michele Delorenzo, Karen Kristoff, Paul Ignudo, Jr, Joann Albrecht, Stuart Hale, Stephanie Logan, Daria Hagemeyer, Jen Norris, Amanda Diresta, Kellie Carter, Douglas Beasock, Willie Tople, Nicole W, Juliet Frances Ohare, Dusty Cheatham, Sarah Steill, Sal Derose, Karen Coto, Stacey Hutchinson, Kelly Kobiela, Ssg, Betsey Pickard, Matthew Jadro, Bubbasboo, Andrew Michuda, Karen Hotchkiss, Ken Calden, Michelle Roth-smoot, Kathy Lutz, Amie Mumpower, Stephanie Chambers, Christa P., Allie Reckendorf, Kristen Carde, Ashley Deitchler, Jeffrey Beauchamp, Matt Goulding, Dallas Hamilton, Karen Schlumpf, Kristen Pagliaro, Nikki Powell, Jonathan Thomas, Karen Dresser-smith, Cindy Motta, Nancie Lymer, David Coates, Aubrey G. Cooper, Shane Schmidt, Jason Webb, Christina Marie, Debbie Desimone, Kerianne Magee, Chloe' , Janet Robinson, Carol Donoghue, John S Lund, Dana Hall, Liz Moreau, Emily Nussbaum, Robin George, Brenda Strohmeyer, Jerry Mckinley, Sharon Leitgeb, Sherri Pell, Becca Balber, Chris Freeman, Z Cheven, Dave Cole, Kaitlin Kirk, Linda Diantonio, John Arena, Kellie Harpel, Tom Higbee, Clare C, Susan Linder, Tom Linder , Kate Fanning, Bruce Dormuth, Melissa Rebelo, Chris J, Sharon Dale, Dan Owens, Tere Given, Kim Requa, Krista Penno, Jennifer Bogdan, Jessica Reed, Melissa Kuehnle, Bryan Fencl, Christina Cella, Barbara Cerimele, Jeff Blank, Al Desimone, Wendy And Marina Crober, Nancy Bennett, Heather Coursen, Mickey Eckert, Mary Dannahey, Shane Stack, Teresa Cole, Heidi Goodhue, Candace Dadswell, Karen Nelson, Allison Dibiase and Shana W. Each of you were entered in the March winners' drawing.

And speaking of that monthly drawing… this month's big winner is Marc Lorenzo! Congratulations Marc, you are the lucky recipient of a fabulous Disney book and some really cool AllEars schwag!

_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #79: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #79

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, April 2, by clicking on the button below. Please do not post answers using the Comment link at the bottom of this post.

Click Here to Submit Your Answer
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

March 27, 2009

Hyper-Hollywood

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Hyperfocus is a term you may run across when reading about photography. It is a one word term to say everything in a photograph is in sharp focus from front to back. You see hyperfocal photos on the covers of travel magazines where a tropical beach is featured and everything is in focus from the people on the beach to the far away mountains. It is an easy technique to learn. In the "old" days of manual focus lenses, you had a distance scale where one of the settings was the infinity symbol. You set your focus to infinity at certain apertures and, even if it looked out of focus through the viewfinder, everything would be in focus once you got the film back.

These days, most lens manufacturers have done away with the distance scale and letting the camera do the work. For point and shooters, set to landscape mode which is the hyperfocus setting. For digital SLR users, it's a bit more complicated. The easiest way, is to put your camera into Aperture priority mode and use an aperture of f/16, f/22 or smaller. Then focus on a point about one third (1/3) into the scene you are photographing. The photo below of some Streetmosphere performers on Sunset Blvd. in Disney's Hollywood Studios is a good example of where to focus. Citizen of Hollywood Ready Freddy Fiddlesticks is about 1/3 into the scene of him and his fellow performers, the audience and the backdrop of Sunset Blvd. with the Hollywood Tower Hotel off in the distance.

Streetmosphere performers on Sunset Blvd. in Disney's Hollywood Studios., Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.

Streetmosphere performers Ready Freddy Fiddlesticks, Cloe Canard (big hat) and Tallulah Fruiti (blue dress) on Sunset Blvd. in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/200s, f/18, ISO 200, EV +0.3, 18mm Focal length

Citizens of Hollywood are the troup of cast members in Disney's Hollywood Studios known as Streetmosphere. Here at the Picture This! Photoblog, Streetmosphere is a popular subject. Lisa talked about how the "shows" are put together, I featured them in a Pic of the Week and Barrie used a piece of a Streetmosphere performer's costume in one of her "Where in the World" contests. AllEars.net recently updated the Streetmosphere information with more photos which identify some of the popular Citizens of Hollywood.

March 20, 2009

Photographing the American Idol Experience

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

There are lots of concerts held at Walt Disney World each day so knowing how to photograph one is a good skill to have. To show you how I do it, I selected the new American Idol Experience at Disney's Hollywood Studios. While concerts, unlike shows, are more spontaneous, the American Idol Experience does follow a script of sorts. That makes it a good place to learn this kind of event photography.

First, let's look at a couple of photos I took of the performers. Look closely at how they are lighted by the show's director and crew.

An American Idol Experience contestant performing at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/125s, f/5, ISO 360, EV +0.0, 70mm Focal length
An American Idol Experience contestant performing at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
American Idol Experience contestants performing under stage lights.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/100s, f/5.6, ISO 1600, EV +0.0, 170mm Focal length

When dealing with stage lighting like this it is very important to make sure you properly expose the performer and let the other parts of the stage lighting fall where it may. To do this, I used something I have talked about before: Spot Metering. Using spot metering, I could get exposures right off the performers skin. This tends to make a lot of the background dark which is what the show's director wants us to see so it works out.

Spot metering worked even on the judges as the lighting was directly on them. Randy, Paula and Simon's stand-ins looked pretty good and entertained us with their words of wisdom about each contestant's performance.

American Idol Experience Judges at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
American Idol Experience Judges commenting on a performance.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/60s, f/5.6, ISO 1600, EV -0.3, 130mm Focal length

When pulling back to take in most of the stage, I switched back to Matrix Metering (see the Spot Metering link for more about Matrix Metering) so the camera would give an overall exposure to balance out all the mixed lighting in the theater. Today's digital cameras do an excellent job most of the time with matrix metering. Notice how the camera can not capture the entire range from light to dark as the audience looks a bit underexposed. Something that can be fixed in a photo editor.

The American Idol Experience stage at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
American Idol Experience contestant listening to the judges under full stage lighting.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/125s, f/3.5, ISO 720, EV -0.3, 18mm Focal length

Lastly, during audience preparation and when announcing the winner of the show, the entire stage has very even and bright lighting. I, again, used Matrix metering which resulted in a good photo of the winner of the show being interviewed by the Ryan Seacrest-like host.

An American Idol Experience winner being interviewed by the host on stage at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
An American Idol Experience winner being interviewed by the host.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/125s, f/5.6, ISO 500, EV -0.3, 200mm Focal length

As you can see, to get the best photos during a concert or live show at Walt Disney World or any venue, you have to be aware of the kind of lighting being used at all times. For each of the three performers, the American Idol Experience director choose different lighting schemes to set the mood of the song they were singing.

Have any questions? Leave a Comment below (link on far right).

Reference Link: How To Photograph Rock Concerts

January 20, 2009

My Top Ten

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer


When Lisa suggested that we do a post of our top ten favorite things to photograph in Walt Disney World, I panicked. I knew I would have a terrible time trying to come up with my ten and I wasn't wrong. The truth is I love to photograph everything in Disney World. I can't imagine ever running out of interesting subjects there. And I have thousands of photos to prove it! Now, they aren't all good mind you, but still, it takes awhile to go through them all. So, I apologize for being late with my entry and without further ado, and in no particular order, here are my top ten favorite things to photograph in Walt Disney World.


Animals

Lioness on Kilimanjaro Safari
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/250s shutter, f8
This lioness photo was taken on the Kilimanjaro Safari in Disney's Animal Kingdom.


Entertainers

Sergio
Copyright © 2006 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50/55-200
This is Sergio. He can be found performing in Italy at the World Showcase in Epcot.


Props

Bike
Copyright © 2008 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D300, 18-200VR, 1/13s shutter, f5, ISO 640
This bike is one of the props that decorates Asia in Disney's Animal Kingdom.


Architecture

Discovery Island Rooftop
Copyright © 2008 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/800s shutter, f5.6
Discovery Island in Disney's Animal Kingdom has some of the most colorful and creative architecture on property.


Flowers

Mexican Orchid
Copyright © 2006 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200, 1/1000s shutter, f4.8
I snapped a photo of this orchid on my way out of the Mexico Pavilion at Epcot.


World Showcase Pavilions

Canada Pavilion
Copyright © 2003 Barrie Brewer, Nikon E3100, 18-200, 1/32s shutter, f5.6
This picture is from the Canada Pavilion. It's one of the earliest photos I have of Disney World, when I first got interested in photography.


Parades

Buzz Lightyear
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/500s shutter, f16
The parades are perfect for getting great shots of the characters. I took this one of Buzz Lightyear during the Stars and Motorcars parade at Disney's Hollywood Studios.


Fireworks

Hallowishes at the Magic Kingdom
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1s shutter, f8
This is a picture of Wishes, the fireworks show at the Magic Kingdom.


Resorts

Disney's Yacht Club Resort
Copyright © 2006 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/250s shutter, f5.6
One of my most favorite spots to take pictures is in the Epcot Resort area, around Crescent Lake. This is the Yacht Club Resort at sunrise.


Night Photos

Disney's Yacht Club Resort
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 4.1s shutter, f8, ISO 800
I love taking photos at night, especially at Disney World. This, of course, is the Sorcerer's Hat at Disney's Hollywood Studios.

January 4, 2009

Where in the World #67

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #66:
 Where in the World #66

And here's the answer:
Emerald City at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Copyright © 2008 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D300, 18-200VR, 1/30s shutter, f4.8, ISO 3200

We're off to see the Wizard, the wonderful Wizard of Oz! You can follow the yellow brick road on the Great Movie Ride in Disney's Hollywood Studios. That's where you'll find the Tin Man, Scarecrow, Cowardly Lion, Dorothy and ToTo too as they cross the poppy fields to the Emerald City.

Angie Young was the first to send in the correct answer for this challenge! Congratulations to Angie and all the readers who got the answer right: Sharon Dale, Vicki Vaught, Chris And Alison, Michelle Morrow, Dave Carriere, Tim Rachuba, Cheri Palmisano, Trish Babler, Jamie Poynton, Noreen Rachuba, Tim Wingfield, Paula Massarelli, Courtney Crowe and Lisa Doerr. Each of you have been entered in the January winners' drawing.
_______________________________________________________________________
Challenge #67: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #67

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, January 8, by clicking HERE!
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a cool Disney book!

January 2, 2009

Scott's Disney Photography Top 10

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

When Lisa first proposed doing an end of year Top 10 list on what each of us liked to photograph at a Disney resort, I was worried I could not come up with one. Turns out I could have done a few Top 10 lists but I'll start with this one. To be honest, except for number 1, the rest could have fallen in any position. However, that wouldn't make a very good list now would it?

10. Disney Cast Members. Lisa really encouraged me to take more Cast Member photos on my last trip and I had fun doing so. This is CM Steve who lead the Keys to the Kingdom tour I took at Mousefest.

Cast Member leader of the Keys to the Kingdom tour in the Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.


9. Disney Hollywood Studio Shows. Particularly the Beauty and the Beast, Live on Stage, which allows you to relive the magic of the movie's famous scenes and music in a live presentation.

Beauty and the Beast, Live on Stage in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.


8. Epcot's Spaceship Earth icon has captivated my camera's lens almost as much as Cinderella Castle has since I began visiting Walt Disney World in 1983. Here I was fortunate enough to ride in the front of a monorail and took this before orbiting Spaceship Earth.

Spaceship Earth in Epcot, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.


7. My college degree is in Wildlife Biology and when Animal Kingdom opened I was thrilled. Since then, I have taken more photos in Animal Kingdom then the other parks combined. On my last trip, I brought along the Nikon 80-400 VR lens and got this photo of a resting tiger on the Maharajah Jungle Trek.

Tiger resting on the Maharajah Jungle Trek in Disney's Animal Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.

6. In Disney's Hollywood Studios looms a ride taken directly from my TV Land youth. The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror dominates the end of Sunset Blvd. and looks as menacing during the day as it does at night.

The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.

5. I've taken photos of my daughters at Walt Disney World for the past 20 years. It's gotten so, when they are not with me, I still take some photographs of other guest's kids.

A girl sitting in Minnie Mouse's lap in the Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.

4. I enjoy doing night photography at Walt Disney World. It has been frustrating in the past. Thankfully, technology like Image Stabilization in cameras and lenses is making it less so. Of course, to really get good, sharp night photos anywhere, you have to use a tripod which I did for this photo of the Mexico pavilion in Epcot's World Showcase.

Mexico pavilion in Epcot's World Showcase, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.

3. Due to the nature of my personal Disney website, PSCalculator.Net, I take a lot of photographs of restaurants at Walt Disney World for the reviews I write. Like this one of Narcoossee's at the Grand Floridian resort.

Narcoossee's restaurant at the Grand Floridian resort, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.

2. Like a lot of WDW photographers, Cinderella Castle seems to have some sort of gravitational pull on my camera when ever I am in the Magic Kingdom. Disney Imagineers find all kinds of ways to make Cinderella Castle even more photogenic each time I visit. Also, like a lot of other WDW photographers, I am always trying to find a new way to photograph it. I took this from the Contemporary Resort.

Cinderella Castle in the Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.

1. I know you are all a bit bored with this photo since I first posted it earlier this year. However, my number 1 favorite kind of Disney photography is of my family and, especially, my daughters which I shared with you a couple of weeks ago.

Riding Big Thunder Mountain Rail Road in the Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.

January 1, 2009

Beast of a Show

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Belle kicks her way through a musical number in the Beauty and the Beast Stage Show in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Belle kicks her way through a musical number in the Beauty and the Beast, Live on Stage.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/80s, f/6.3, ISO 400, EV +0.3, 35mm Focal Length

Disney Hollywood Studios offers three stage shows and two stunt shows and by far my favorite is the Beauty and the Beast, Live on Stage based on the popular Disney animated classic. Disney helped to resurrect the Broadway musical when they brought this story to New York City in 1994 and later with traveling shows throughout the world. This is my Disney Pic of the Week for Stage Shows.

December 27, 2008

Osborne Lights

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

The Osborne Lights at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Some of the Osborne Lights at Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/8s, f/4, 200 ISO, +0.3 EV, 18mm Focal Length

A trip to Walt Disney World during the end of the year holiday celebrations isn't complete without a trip to Disney's Hollywood Studios' Streets of America where Disney has brought the Osborne Family Spectacle of Lights. A jaw-droppng experience which now dances to Christmas music.

November 8, 2008

Hot Stuff!

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

Lights, Motors, Action! at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Copyright © 2006 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 55-200mm, 1/640s shutter, f5.3

I like how nonchalantly the guys with the fire extinguishers walk up to this woman engulfed in flames. It's as if they see this kind of thing everyday… oh yeah, they do! These cast members are stunt performers in the Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show at Disney's Hollywood Studios. They do an amazing job of showing us all how some of Hollywood's most dangerous stunts are performed.

November 4, 2008

Disney Pic of the Week - Stunt Shows

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Ever wonder how those Hollywood stunts are done? The stunt shows at Disney's Hollywood Studios take you behind the scenes of how stunts are safely planned and performed and is this week's theme for Disney Pic of the Week. Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show features the Red Hero Car being chased all over the large outdoor set by a group of Black Villain Cars. Stay tuned as Lisa and Barrie will share their best stunt shots coming up this Thursday and Saturday. And you can share yours with us by posting your favorite stunt show photo in this flickr post.

Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show Hero Jump in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show Hero Jump.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/200s, f/8, ISO 200, 32mm Focal Length

October 25, 2008

The Dating Game

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

A Streetmosphere performance of The Dating Game in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
A Streetmosphere performance of The Dating Game in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon Coolpix 995, 1/137s, f/4.2, ISO 100, 0 EV

When I am walking around Hollywood or Sunset Boulevards in Disney's Hollywood Studios, I keep my eye out for those lovable characters Disney calls Streetmosphere entertainers. Back in 2003, I came upon them doing their version of the The Dating Game. The lady acting as the host gave me a look of "Do you believe he said that!" to an answer given by one of the eligible bachelors. It makes for a humorous entry for my Disney Pic of the Week on Street Performers.

October 24, 2008

Spirit of Walt Disney World

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

I recently read a wonderful book on travel photography. Since most of us travel to Walt Disney World, I found lots of great information which can be used there, elsewhere and at home. It talks about finding the spirit of where you are. This is how I approached all my photography before I even knew this was how many others also described their vision. The book, Spirit of Place: The Art of the Traveling Photographer, was written by Bob Krist, who's a contributing editor at both National Geographic Traveler and Outdoor Photographer, back in 2000. The year it was written is important as digital photography was in it's infancy then. Most of the equipment he talks about in the book is still SLR equipment but is not digital. However, it all has equivalents to today's digital SLR and advanced Point and Shoot world of today. Digital photography has come a long way in just 8 short years. So, keep that in mind if you decide to read the book.

The first part of the book goes in depth as to the equipment Bob uses, composition of a good travel photograph and how to get the best technical photo possible. Very good for a beginning photographer and an excellent review for those who have been shooting for awhile. All this information is geared towards a working travel photographer which we all are when visiting Walt Disney World with our cameras. Right?

The part I most enjoyed was Bob giving tips on how to photograph people all over the world. Walt Disney World is unique in you can do that all in one day at Epcot. It's a bit easier in WDW but still takes a little effort to ask non-character cast members for their picture. If you are traveling without children, remember characters will pose for your camera, too. I have seen many great character portraits on message forums and photo sharing sites like flickr.

Bob talks about how to capture the essence of a city. Written before the advent of Yahoo or Google, it is much easier today to research a location then his advice. No need to write to a travel bureau when you can "google" it in seconds on our computers. Still, what to look for is very relevant and Bob tells you the best kind of things like festivals, parades, holidays, historical events and other cultural happenings. Researching a trip to Walt Disney World is the same. When you go, there are different things going on depending on the time of year and you need to know what they are and when they happen. One advantage for us is there's usually a schedule online for us to find out these things.

There's even a chapter on photographing in the tropics. Great tips on how to get good photographs even at midday on a bright, sandy beach. While he is referring to Caribbean Islands, central Florida poses the same challenges.

Throughout the book, Bob goes over how to create stories with photographs. Many of us do produce these in trip reports to our friends, family and Internet communities. Bob shows how to do it like an editor would. Giving ideas and examples on how to wrap up all those hundreds of images into interesting essays using all the techniques and equipment he introduces us to in each chapter.

The book is filled with Bob Krist's exquisite photographs taken on his many assignments for National Geographic Traveler, Outdoor Photographer, Smithsonian, Travel/Holiday and many other publications. Yes, the book is a little dated when it comes to the equipment he talks about but the rest is timeless information for us who enjoy photographing the places we travel to and live in.

How do I capture the spirit of Walt Disney World in a photograph? For me, Walt Disney's spirit lives on in the parks and some of it rubs off on all of us who visit. Of course, there are many kinds of spirits, below is one of magic. A man's vision of two dimensional characters brought to life and giving a family's children and their parents a gift in a photograph to cherish for the rest of their lives. You can find Donald and Daisy Duck (and other lovable Disney characters) on Mickey Avenue in front of their On-Location Hollywood Star trailers in Disney's Hollywood Studios.

The spirit of Walt Disney can been seen in the faces of these children posing for their parents with Donald and Daisy Duck in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
The spirit of Walt Disney can been seen in the faces of these children posing for their parents with Donald and Daisy Duck.
Nikon Coolpix 995, 1/100s, f/3.6, ISO 100, EV 0

October 13, 2008

December Disney World Calendar

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

If you read my December 25, 2007 blog, you know that my holiday gift to you is that each month I will post a photo calendar page that you can print out and use at home or work during 2008.


Peace on Earth. I can't think of a better sentiment to bring a close to 2008. This beautiful scene is from the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights at Disney's Hollywood Studios.

I can hardly believe it's been nearly a year since I began posting these calendars! I've had such fun putting them together and sharing them with you that I've decided to go ahead and keep posting them into 2009. Hope that's ok with you!


You will need to have Adobe Reader on your computer to download the calendar(s). Just click on the photo to download the calendar you want.


This one prints out at 8.5" x 11". It's handy if you need a calendar that you can write on.

December 2008 8.5x11 Calendar


This one prints out at 4.75" x 4.75", the perfect size for a CD Jewel Case frame.

December 2008 Jewel Case Calendar


Click here to see all of the calendars from past months.

September 18, 2008

Tower of Terror in Black & White

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Twilight Zone Tower of Terror Lobby in Black and White in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Orlando, Florida
The Tower of Terror Lobby as it would have looked like in an episode of the Twilght Zone TV show.
Nikon D70/18-70G, 1/160s, f/6.3, 200 ISO, +0.3 EV, 50mm Focal Length

This week's Disney Pic of the Week Black & White theme gave me an opportunity to show you what the lobby of the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror would have been like in one of those classic Rod Serling produced episodes.

September 2, 2008

Disney Pic of the Week: Movie Set Sign

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

If there is one thing a Disney themepark has plenty of it's SIGNS. Signs telling you where you parked, what bus to take, when a show starts, who to see, and how to use the emergency bag in Mission: Space. There are humorous signs, serious signs, small signs, huge signs and purple road signs. So, this week's Disney Pic of the Week theme is (you guessed it) signs.

People tend to forget when they enter Disney's Hollywood Studios, they are entering one very large movie set. In essence, the backlot starts at the Studio's entrance. If you look at the signs, you'll get the feeling you are on a working set in almost every corner. This sign was across from the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular entrance.

A movie set sign across from the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
A movie set sign across from the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/80s, f/5.6, 200 ISO, +0.6 EV, 31mm Focal Length

Lisa and Barrie will be along on Thursday and Saturday showing you some of their favorite Disney signs.

August 28, 2008

Inside the Tower of Terror

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Tower of Terror Lobby in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
Tower of Terror Lobby.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/15s, f/3.5, 800 ISO, -0.6 EV, 18mm Focal length

For years I tried to take indoor photographs at Walt Disney World with very little success until I got the combination of the Nikon D70 digital SLR and the Nikon 18-200VR lens. Between the camera's ability to take acceptable images up to an ISO of 1600 and the lens' vibration reduction technology allowing shutter speeds as low as 1/15th of a second, handheld, I am now able to get some excellent low light photos in places I never would have tried with a film SLR or Point & Shoot digital cameras.

This was the setup I used to take a picture of the Tower of Terror lobby from an angle looking out from behind the hotel's front desk as my Disney Pic of the Week for the theme of Indoor.

August 25, 2008

The Time is Right

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer


Camera Shop at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/320s shutter, f9

Here's a quick tip: If you change time zones when you travel to Walt Disney World, remember to reset your camera's clock so that your photos are stamped with the correct time. It didn't occur to me to do this when I travelled to Europe. I organize my photos by date and I had a heck of a time sorting them out when I got home. Now, I'm careful to make sure the camera has the right time set before I start taking photos in a new locale.

August 22, 2008

Don't forget!

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

A young couple holding hands in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.
My daughter and her beau walking on New York Street in Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/200s, f/7.1, 200 ISO, 0 EV, 18mm Focal length

While I enjoy taking pictures of all the buildings, scenery, characters, parades and shows at Walt Disney World. I am there to enjoy it with my family, too. My daughters have grown up in the Disney parks over the last 23 years. I always have fun trying to find new ways to capture their time there. Last year, a new wrinkle was added, as my youngest brought her boyfriend with us. He had not been to Walt Disney World since he was very young. My daughter had fun sharing with him all the new rides and parks that have been added while he was away.

I was taking extra care to be aware of them and took lots of photos. Some they knew about and some they weren't aware of like the one above as they walked hand in hand through Disney's Hollywood Studio's Streets of America. So, as lovely as Walt Disney World is, it's those closest to us that make it truly magical. Don't forget about them.

July 12, 2008

Tower of Terror Garden Statue

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

A statue in the Tower of Terror's gardens in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
One of the creepy statues in the Tower of Terror gardens framed by American Sycamore trees.
Nikon Coolpix 995, 1/125s, f/4.4, 200 ISO, 0 EV

It is my opinion the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror is the best themed attraction at Walt Disney World. A few years ago, and before Disney invented FastPass, I spent a long time in the Tower's queue which snakes through some overgrown gardens before you enter the lobby. When looking around, I spied this creepy looking statue through some American Sycamore trees. I felt it would make a good contribution to the Disney Pic of the Week Queue Line theme.

June 24, 2008

Disney Pics of the Week: Night Photos

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This week Lisa, Scott and I will be sharing night photos in our Pic of the Week series. One of the most common questions I hear is, “When is the best time to visit Walt Disney World?” My favorite answer to that question is “After dark!” It's less crowded, cooler and absolutely beautiful! There's no better place to take night photos than Walt Disney World.

Grauman's Chinese Theatre at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1.2 second shutter, f8

My Pic of the Week is from Disney's Hollywood Studios. This is Grauman's Chinese Theatre which houses the Great Movie Ride. I love how dramatic the lighting makes this building look against the dark sky.

Be sure to check back on Thursday and Saturday to see Scott and Lisa's night photo picks.

June 22, 2008

Where in the World? #43

Focus on Disney World by Barrie Brewer

This was Challenge #42:
 Where in the World #42

And here's the answer:
Hollywood and Vine sign at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Copyright © 2007 Barrie Brewer, Nikon D50, 18-200VR, 1/10s shutter, f5.3, ISO 800

Only a few people recognized this as the sign from Hollywood & Vine, a full-service buffet restaurant in Disney's Hollywood Studios. Hollywood & Vine is home to a character breakfast and lunch featuring the Little Einsteins and JoJo and Goliath. Dinner is a non-character buffet.

Susan McDonald was the first to send in the correct answer this week! Congratulations to Susan and all the readers who got the answer right: Heather Coursen, Linda, Jamie Poynton, Cameron Lange, Tim Rachuba, Wendy Snelgrove, Bob Kowalski, Kyle, Pollyanna Buff and Dan McDonald. Each of you will be entered in the June winners' drawing.
_______________________________________________________________________

Challenge #43: Where in the world is this?

 Where in the World #43

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, June 26, by clicking HERE!
_______________________________________________________________________

Everyone who sends in a correct answer to a Where in the World Challenge this month will be entered in a drawing at the end of the month for some special AllEars® goodies and a copy of PassPorter's Walt Disney World by Jennifer Marx, Dave Marx, Allison Cerel Marx!

May 23, 2008

P for Program Assist

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

The past couple of weeks I've showed you how to control depth of field with Aperture Priority mode and to slow or freeze motion in Shutter Priority mode. What if I was to tell you about a mode which automatically selects a good exposure (aperture (f-stop) and shutter speed) to start with and allows you to change them for more depth of field OR slow or faster shutter speeds just by moving a control dial. Interested? I thought you might. The mode I am talking about is the P setting on the Mode Dial and stands for Program mode or Program AE mode, where AE stands for Auto Exposure. This mode differs from AUTO mode in that it does not change the camera's ISO number, Metering and White Balance (WB) settings giving you more control of your photography.

This is how I use Program mode. I set up my camera in Program mode, ISO starting at 200, White Balance at Auto -3 and Matrix metering. This gives me great flexibility for most shooting conditions I might encounter. (Note: I also use my Nikon D70's Auto ISO feature which starts at ISO 200 but when light falls off in a building or as day turns into night, the camera will raise the ISO for me. You may have to remember to change your ISO setting when shutter speeds go below 1/30 of a second.) Now, when I see something I want to photograph, I set my focus and see what exposure the camera calculates. If I don't agree, I can turn the command dial to vary the aperture and shutter speeds. It still gives you the same exposure but by turning the dial you can increase or decrease the f-stop controlling the depth of field. Like in Aperture Priority mode, the shutter speed will be changed for you. The reverse is true for moving the command dial to alter the shutter speed. The f-stop will be changed for you. When moving the exposure away from the camera's chosen one, an asterisk is seen next to the P on the upper LCD (for Nikon) to tell you you have selected a different exposure. It looks like this: P*. After pressing the shutter, the camera does not return to the starting exposure unless you move the command dial back to that position. This may be different for your camera so, again, check your manual to see how Program mode is implemented.

In the photo below of Sunset Blvd. in the Disney Hollywood Studios, Program mode initially gave me an exposure of 1/500s at f/5.6. I wanted more depth of field and moved the command dial until it showed 1/250s at f/8 which, for a focal length of 50mm or less, gives great depth of field. The slower shutter speed lightens up some of those deep Florida sun shadows, too.

Walking down Sunset Blvd. in the Disney Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Walking down Sunset Blvd. in the Disney Hollywood Studios.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/250s, f/8, 200 ISO, 0 EV, 46mm Focal Length, Matrix Metering, Auto -3 White Balance

The Disney Imagineers did a wonderful job on Sunset Blvd in the Disney Hollywood Studios. By using short utility poles and trees of the same height, they make the Tower of Terror look even bigger and with nice leading lines for us photographers to take full advantage of in our compositions.

Program mode is a great way to quickly get a good exposure to capture those moments we come upon at a Disney park, family event or walking around your hometown. It also lets you be creative by easily being able to change both aperture and shutter speed with the turn of a dial. However, Program mode does have it's limitations. It can't always reach the extreme slow or fast shutter speeds or smallest apertures your camera is capable of. In those cases, I still find both Aperture and Shutter Priority modes very useful.

For more information on Program Mode, follow this link: Mastering Your dSLR Camera: Program Mode

February 29, 2008

Photographic Innoventions: Watch Your Back(grounds) Again

We've all done it. You get off of the Tower of Terror a few minutes before the afternoon parade is to start and rush down Sunset Blvd. You get there and all the curb side places are taken. In fact, people had staked out their places hours before. As the crowd is three deep, you end up having to shoot over people's heads like this.

Click for Larger Image. Copyright © Scott Thomas Photography 2008
Lilo & Stitch Motorcar. Copyright © Scott Thomas Photography 2008
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/200s, f/8, 200 ISO, 35mm Focal Length

This is where a zoom lens comes in handy. You can fill the frame with your subjects. Eliminating foreground and background distractions. At full zoom, many times you have to shoot with a wider aperture which will cause the background behind your subject to get that