South Beach by Night (Miami, FL)

(click on any image to enlarge)

Back in February I spent a beautiful week in South Beach to escape the cold and dreary winter up in New York.  This week, finally, I'm going to finish up sharing my photos from that trip with a few more posts, so keep an eye out for those. 

In this first installment I want to focus on the reason I made room to fit a tripod in my carry-on bag (no checked luggage here).  The iconic neon lights of Ocean Drive call to every photographer that visits this colorful wonderland and I am no exception.  I had a great time experimenting with light trails and long exposure, so I hope you enjoy this adventure and get transported to South Beach with me for a little while.  

I was lucky enough to spend the week in an adorable boutique hotel right on the north end of the famous Ocean Drive called the Crescent Resort.  This spot is actually part of a time share program, but you can still stay there if you aren't a member.  The best part of this hotel?  It, and its neighbors, have neon signs that aren't as famous as the ones further down the street, which provides a bit of a unique view of this renowned street.

Walking south from the Crescent you come upon the famous Hotel Breakwater.  Located between 9th and 10th, this striking hotel dates back to 1936.  

There are so many great examples of art deco architecture along Ocean Drive, but not all of them have beautiful neon signs.  I'll look at some of those buildings during the daytime in my next post, but for now let's focus on the lights on one of the most famous stretches, the block between 7th & 8th Streets.  

After spending a week coming home to the bright pinks and greens at my hotel, the blue of the Colony Hotel and the red of the Boulevard Hotel seemed a little tame.  But, when put in a solid stretch with the Starlite and the Johnny Rockets, this really pops as the famous postcard scene.  

After spending a few nights making this walk and chasing light trails, I realized that I had managed to catch my own reflection on the side of a passing car in one or two shots. The next time you try long exposure don't forget to put yourself in at least one shot... even if it's only in the shadows! 

Thanks for coming on a walk along Ocean Drive with me, I hope you enjoyed the explosions of neon and that this inspires you to go out and try to catch a few light trails of your own! 

 

~V

 

Date & Locations: Wednesday, 17 Feb & Friday, 19 Feb 2016 - Ocean Drive, South Beach, Miami - Crescent Resort, Breakwater Hotel, Colony Hotel, Boulevard Hotel

Photos taken with: Nikon D5300, Tamron 10-24mm f3.5-5.6 Lens (Rented from BorrowLenses.com)

Photo credits:  Myself