Mission Space Archives

April 20, 2018

On the Edge of Mission: Space

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

How many times have you gotten home or back to your resort room and, when going through your photos, you find distractions around the edges? I used to have a lot until I trained myself to see the around the edges before pressing the shutter button down.

Here's an example of what I mean. I took this photo of the Mission: Space entrance. You can see at the top of the frame a part of the building and takes away from the rest of the image. You want to eliminate such edge distractions so you do not have to do extra work later like cropping or having to remove the object via software.

Mission Space in Epcot's Future World, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Mission Space in Epcot's Future World with an Edge Distraction.
Nikon D750/16-35VR, 1/125s, f/16, ISO 180, EV 0, 16mm Focal Length.

In this case, I checked the camera's LCD screen and noticed the edge distraction. I recomposed the scene by lowering my angle a bit which got the distracton out of the frame.

Mission Space in Epcot's Future World, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Mission Space in Epcot's Future World without the Edge Distraction.
Nikon D750/16-35VR, 1/125s, f/16, ISO 220, EV 0, 16mm Focal Length.

Get in the habit of checking your edges through the camera's viewfinder. It will save you time later on.

April 28, 2017

Geometrics at Epcot

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

An image having a strong organization of shapes and forms, which is essentially the geometric elements of the photo, will create a strong composition. When I think Disney and geometric elements, I think Epcot's Future World.

The architecture of the pavilions use many geometric shpapes starting with the triangles on Spaceship Earth. In fact there are 11,324 individual triangles which make up the exterior of Spaceship Earth. Each one is an isosceles triangle meaning two of the three sides must be of equal length.

Triangle surfaces make up the exterior of Spaceship Earth at Epcot's Future World, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Triangle surfaces make up the exterior of Spaceship Earth.
Nikon D700/Tokina 11-16mm, 1/60s, f/16, ISO 1600, EV +0.3, 16mm focal length.

Looking at the glass structure of the Imagination pavillion, notice the steel framework. They are all parallelograms which repeat over and over.

Parallelograms framework on Imagination pavilion in Epcot's Future World, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Parallelograms framework on the Imagination pavilion.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, f/16, ISO 200, EV 0, 28mm Focal Length, tripod, HDR Image.

Getting away from straight lines and angles, Epcot's Mission Space pavilion is more rounded with curves and spheres.

Curves and spheres of Mission Space in Epcot's Future World, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Curves and spheres of Mission Space.
Nikon D750/16-35VR, 1/125s, f/16, ISO 450, EV 0, 35mm Focal Length.

You can find geometrics everywhere around us not just in Man-made structures but in Nature, too. Look for them the next time you are out photographing at Walt Disney World or in your backyard.

February 22, 2017

Disney Pic of the Week: Mission Space

Deb's Digest Blog

I'm the first to admit I am not a fan. I wanted to be! I always dreamed of going into space as a kid growing up with Mercury, Gemini and Apollo. I will say Mission Space allowed me to experience a rocket launch but that's about it. The rest is a blur.

Here's a nod to the past:


Oh and if you want to check out my report "To Boldly Go Where I Will Never Go Again", here you are!

February 21, 2017

Disney Pic of the Week: Mission: SPACE

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

With clouds above, I used a set of 5 photographs from -2EV to +2EV to create a High Dynamic Range (HDR) image of Mission: SPACE in Epcot's Future World.

Mission: SPACE pavilion in Epcot's Future World, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Mission: SPACE pavilion in Epcot's Future World in HDR.
Nikon D750/16-35VR, f/16, ISO 220, EV 0, 19mm Focal Length, HDR Image.

Deb will be here tomorrow to share her Mission: SPACE photo on our tour of Epcot's Future World.

September 29, 2015

Disney Pic of the Week: Mission: SPACE

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

For the next few weeks, Deb and I will be exploring Epcot's Future World pavilions. Starting with the modern version of a trip to Mars.

Mission: SPACE in Epcot's Future World is a very good re-enactment of a trip to Mars for a themepark environment. I know when it first opened it was a little intense for a lot of people. Disney had gotten the help of NASA astronauts in development of the ride. To those astronauts, Mission: SPACE probably seemed tame. Goes to show you the difference between people like us and them.

After a few tweaks, most people started to really enjoy the experience. While some, as Deb will tell you tomorrow, never did.

Mission: SPACE in Epcot's Future World, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Mission: SPACE in Epcot's Future World.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/60s, f/16, ISO 1250, EV -0.3, 55mm Focal Length.

I have always liked this late day photo I took back in 2011 of Mission: SPACE.

January 16, 2015

Focus on Epcot Photowalk

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Focus on Epcot Photowalk, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
Focus on Epcot Photowalk

As I mentioned awhile back, I will be traveling to Walt Disney World a couple of times this year. My first trip is next month and I have planned an All Ears Photowalk around Epcot's Future World. The focus (pun intended) will be on these three photographic items:

  • Hyperfocal Distance or Hyperfocus (Landscape Mode)
  • Selective Focus (Portait Mode)
  • Using a Polarizing Filter

The Photowalk will be held on Monday, February 9, 2015, from 9:30AM to 11:30AM. Meeting location will be outside the Nikon Camera Center. The location is across from Spaceship Earth on the right side as you walk in from the Future World entrance. While you may attend by just showing up, if you think you will be at the photowalk, add a comment to this post. I will not be publishing the comments but will use the emails to correspond with everyone interested.

Click here for Focus on Epcot Facebook Event Sign Up

Before the Photowalk, I will be posting blogs about each of the items to be covered. Note, you do not need a polarizing filter but one will be demonstrated along with a special tip.

June 3, 2014

Disney Pic of the Week: Space Exploration

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Walt Disney, as most Americans did back in the 1950's, had a fascination with space exploration. Disneyland, followed by Walt Disney World, had attractions which took guests to the Moon and later Mars. It was not until 2003 when the ride technology would finally be able to give people a taste of what it would be like to actually leave Earth and venture into Space. Mission: Space in Epcot's Future World opened at that time. It might have been a little too real at first, in fact. Still, it is the closest most people can come to feeling the kind of forces astronauts encounter during spaceflight.

As crew members wait for their launch team designation, relics from the history of Manned space exploration is on display in the queue of Mission: Space. An Apollo era Moon Buggy can be seen overhead.

An Apollo Moon Buggy on display in the queue for Mission: Space in Epcot, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida
An Apollo Moon Buggy on display in the queue for Mission: Space.
Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/10s, f/3.5, ISO 6400, EV +1.0, 28mm focal length.

Lisa will be here on Thursday to share an out of this world Disney Pic of the Week about Space Exploration.

April 13, 2014

Where in the World #327

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!

Guess what? My husband surprised me with a birthday trip to Walt Disney World this June! He worked with John Ames at MEI Travel to set it up and then showed me the trip on My Disney Experience! Afterwards, he said, "I should have waited until the night before to tell you." I, of course, handled the announcement with grace and elegance.

Now for Challenge #326:
Where in the World #326

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

"Beautiful sight, isn't it? Something to dream about on the way to Mars." Because we are looking at Mission:Space in Epcot! I had a fantastic group of people the last time I rode this attraction. When they told us we would be in hypersleep for three months, the woman next to me said, "Thank god, I need a nap!"

Susie Howard, is it wrong that I did this when I read the story about your husband:
From Millan.Net

Bruce Jones were the first to send in the correct answer! Congratulations to Bruce and to all our winners this week! Jennifer Rowell, Kristi Strembicki, Donna Frank, Beth Mcmeekin, Jim And Lorie Sonnen, Rob Blundin, The Koren Family, Ed Elder, Team Hill, Linda Scrivano, Kerri Coggins, The Kertes Family, Tricia Petty , Nan Amor, Claire Gregory, The Kertes Family, Tom Hermes, Phyllis, Jennifer Harmon, The Kahle Family, Jen Cerce, Gabriella, Terry And Matthieu, Kerry A., Mary Beth Tarbet, Dee Dee Kenney, Christina, Chris Kelly, Ed Suscreba, Karen Schlumpf, Melissa Such, Erin Connell, Robert Vadovic , Phil Vickers, Tina Kahl, Reasha Kling, Linda Ranatza, Judy Simonsen, Darlene Haven, Carol Ney, Jenny Brennan, Brenda Harrington , Deb Ragno, Andy Hickey, Sheryl Hicks, Mike Haven, Michelle Darabaris, Jon, Todd George Blosser, Rick Rollins, Nicolle Clement, Torrey Beasley, Robin Fitts, The Parker Family, Trish Roam, The Pearsall Family, Jennifer Jacobs, Claudette Laferriere, Kerry Hill, Mary Virginia Clause, Tom Donnelly, Kimyartta Mckines, Theresa Lucotti, Eric Johnson, Belicia Cullen, Kristina Rohrbach, Jack Lynch, Tim Johansen, Tim Thompson, Scott Cullen, Dennis O'reilly, Michele Smith, Trish Roam, Stuart Savage, Paul Knott, Morag Lemon, Taylor K, Matt Wildey, Bill Schmid, Angela Jones, Erin Peterson, Nicole Garon, The Gunnels Family, Ellen Sullivan, Sharon Pierce, Laura V., Megan Krainski, Jim Finley, Wendy Hupp, Karey Brown, Carol Lyons, Maggie Klotz, Cindy Pink, Jim Nitschke, Jodi Lupp, Jackie Cannata, Jodi Lupp, Kathy N Brooke, Donna Begley, Mike M., Amber Penske, Vicki Britt, Steve And Ruby Jordan, The Fosbender's, Tommy Montgomery, Sarah Orman, Pam Vanaustin, Kevin Wagner, Paul Dickson, The Emich Family, Evald Olson, Crystal King, Susie Howard, Brendan Abel, Kaja Durkis, Leigh Mertz, Bruce Hinterleitner, Robin Robinson , Katie Bray, Heather Long, Carla C, Tammy Kallenbach, Ken Jackson, Gina Smith, Richard Beverly, Julia Wickware, Michele Zowacki, Bill Mckim, Ken Maikowski, Rebekah Johnson, Weaselmouse, Maggie Biederman, Paula Massarelli, Kathy Wilkerson, Michelle Gurn, Olszak Family, Carol Collins, Duskin Henard, Katina Dehart, Robert Wescovich, Robert Wescovich, Les Whitten, Jeremy Hardy, Dan Cozby, John Stella, Jen Tremley, Dave Freemyer, Jim Martin, Tinkerbell Wells, Mary Dieuliis, Debbie Desimone, Mandie Hubbard, Al Desimone, Skip Broome, Stefan Owens, Antoinette Leblanc, Lauriebeth, Liam And Fiona Odonnel, Rita Henderson, Vera And Izzy Williams, Kenny, Peg R, Hunter Armstrong, Lana Hauth, Lana Hauth, Craig, Tom Koval, Hobbes And Snorky, Mike Malampy, Tammy Rice, Patty Carty, Daniel Record, Karen Costa, Virginia Pierce, Melissa Rymer, Pecosace, Christopher Thacker, Betsy Silvestri, Krista Serpi, Ken Clark, Laua Spangler, Derek Carty, Heather Pedulla, Patti Gumiela, Irene Ng, Eleanor Taberski, Eleanor Taberski, Juliet O'hare, Bruce Nash, Matt Petty, Heather Capraun, A. Beaulieu, Brian Mcwithey, Eric Berger, Kathryn Perkins , Jamesd (dzneynut), Arlene Vicek, Andrew Swiatowicz , Jackie Purcell, Kris Nixon, Chuck Sands, Colette Stanton , Joe Armeni, Anna Otts, Chris, Gretchen, And Katie Barnes, Josh Weiss, Lee Anastasi, Mary Ann Eckenrode, Leach Family, Chris Nichols, Diane Furtado, Wayne Chadourne, Ian Falk, Kameo Crea, John Menjes, Kelly Sroka, Doug Jacobs, Dawn Miller, Craig Livingston, Frank Abbamonte, Michael Pyle, Jonathan Thomas, Vicki Christensen, Anjanette Tournillon, Carolyn Como, Teri Jo Fuson, Maryann Romagnano, John Bickers, Terri , Theresa Maradei, Russ Morgan, Jeff Blank, Kevin Jones, Karen Ramirez, Terry Blair, Herb Miller, Les Stewart, Kelly Smith, Dallas Hamilton, Christian Langtry, John Dupre, Sarah And Chris, Mark Proper, Morgan M., Melody Odonnell, Christopher Hall, Kate Fischer, Matt Holley, Jeremy Reichelt, Chris Bauman, Richard Smith, Holmes Family, Erin Loring, Dennis Loring, Carri Marotto, Eric Raygor, Scott Sangston, Gail States, Karrie Duffey, Shelly Borella, Davida, Jeff Richardson, George Mundy Jr, Terry Fleming, Rebecca Keenan, Andy Schumacher, Michelle Palazzo, Matthew Jadro, Anastasia Macneil, Amber Slifer, Smitty, Nathan Gray, Matt Earl, Fred Shakeshaft, Herb Reeves, Jeff Finger, Tim English, Jan Rosato, Hannah Crowley, Alison Rosenberger, Cathy Connors, John Snider, Kim Paulakos, Jennifer Chartier, Team Meeker, Jeff Stetson, Lauren Pinder, Sean Diven, Darlene Collins, Matt Ciccone, Dayna Guay, Mike Haeberle, Steve Mills, Ron Harper, Theresa Rucando, Mickey Eckert, Kirsten Miller, Bryant And Ruben O'meara, Jorge Caso, Josh Carney, Karla Callen, Team Bonnie Sue, Luis Rodriguez, Franki Larocca, Brian Grabowski, Emily Hudson, Bobbie Mills, Lorine Landon, Jim Thompson, Hillary Waldroop, Liz Weiter, Scott Greenbaum, Mark Franklin, Annie Snodgrass, Tracy Discher, John Pasqueralli, Jo Ann Bailey, John Foggo, Michael And Kelly Barnes, Jennifer Fasy, April Stinson, Caitlin Lewis, Gallagher Family, Robert P. 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__________________________________ _____________________

Challenge #327 Where in the world is this?

Hi Ho! Hi Ho! It's off to another park we go! (But singing this song is not a clue.)
 Where in the World #327

Do you know? Do you have a guess? Please send in your answer, before the end of the day on Thursday, April 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!

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.

March 14, 2008

Photographic Innoventions: Before the Moment

Last week, I talked about Joe McNally's book, The Moment It Clicks. However, to start making photographs instead of snapshots, you have to think a bit before clicking the camera's shutter. It takes practice. So, when you are in a Disney park or an event and things start to happen fast or you are with family or friends and have to work fast, they become second nature to you to check the following:

1. Is my Shutter Speed correct to capture my subject properly?
2. Is my selected Focal Length or my Positioning optimal to capture my subject?
3. Have I chosen the proper Depth of Field to best highlight my subject?
4. Is my subject in Focus?
5. Have I checked the Edges of my frame to minimize distracting elements?

These were taken from 5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Tripping the Shutter.

I would have put "Is my subject in focus" in the number one slot. For me, if the main subject of a photo is not in focus, it takes away from the impact. Sometimes it's not always possible to get all of your subject in focus. In that case, select the most important part to you. For example, for people or animals photos, always try and get the eyes sharply focused.

If you are photographing action subjects like sports, shows or parades. You want to capture the action at it's peak points. By using your camera's burst mode to shot many frames per second, you can shot an entire sequence. Later, you can find all the gems you got. Try this the next time you are photographing the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular action scenes. For something moving repetitively, like a themepark ride, it's easy to find a place and wait for the action to come to you.

In the photo below, while I like it, I wish I had waited for the light to fully fill the "rocket thrust". I'll get it next time!

Mission Space...To Infinity and Beyond. © Scott Thomas Photography 2008
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1/250s, f/8, ISO 200, 0 EV, 32mm Focal Length

Further Reading: More Questions to Ask Before Pressing the Shutter (Some of these are redundant but not all.)

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About Mission Space

This page contains an archive of all entries posted to Picture This! in the Mission Space category. They are listed from oldest to newest.

Journey into Imagination is the previous category.

Seas with Nemo and Friends is the next category.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.