Capital Lakefair – Olympia Washington


Lakefair Reflections

This past week Olympia hosted Capital Lakefair.  This is a fun event that has events packed into almost the entire week, there really is something for everyone, especially for photographers.  All 3 of the images in this post were taken from the capital grounds which overlooks downtown Olympia, you have already seen a number of images from me from this very place, and offers a great vantage point to take some long exposure images of the carnival.  Not only do you get the motion of the rides, but you also get great reflections from Capital Lake.  This first image is just that.  All of the images in this post were captured with my Nikon D7000, but more specifically with my Sigma 50-500 Bigma lens.  I absolutely love shooting this lens at night, I don’t know if there is a lens out there that does such a great job at creating gorgeous starburst effects around lights.

Spinning Wheels


One really interesting things that happens when you are shooting from a distance with a long lens is what is known as a compression effect.  This is the very thing that makes a telephoto lens popular for portraits, but when taken to the extreme, it can really make objects appear much closer than they actually are.  This second image is a great example of that.  For this shot I was zoomed in to just under 400mm and you can clearly see the ship “Global Wisdom” in the background.  That ship is a massive cargo ship that carries logs to Japan from the port in Olympia.  In this image, it looks like it is moored right at the “back door” of the carnival, but in reality it was almost a mile away according to Google maps.

Warp Drive


Finally, have some fun when you are out shooting.  This third image, which actually might be my favorite of the evening, was created by simply zooming my lens while taking a shot.  Give it a try, you can get very interesting results and each and every image you make this way will look different.  The trick is to try a lot of different things.  Zoom in on one shot, and out on the next.  Try different compositions, the composition you make a more traditional image with might not be the right one when making an image like this.  I made about 20 exposures to get one that I really liked, and while the rest are not worthy of sharing, IMO, they were a lot of fun capturing.

This entry was posted in Photography.


  1. Jim Denham July 24, 2012 at 12:46 pm #

    Man, that is some serious color! Really nice stuff Scott!

  2. Chris Wray July 25, 2012 at 12:14 am #

    Awesome compositions. Love the frenetic energy and color of these photos! How’s Washington treating you? A bit cooler than Phoenix, eh? :)
    Chris Wray recently posted..Lens review: Voigtländer 40mm f2.0My Profile

  3. Jan Winther July 25, 2012 at 5:38 am #

    Oh.. how cool!!!

    That just gave me a great idea for my next fireworks shoot.
    Jan Winther recently posted..It is written on stoneMy Profile

  4. Toad Hollow Photo July 25, 2012 at 4:13 pm #

    I’m gonna jump out on a limb here. Who invented those COLORS for you, Scott? Seriously.. are you living on a planet that was just made for your crazy good photography skills? I suspect yes. I just learn so much from following you and your work, it’s amazing. Always a source of joy for me, my friend, your work is just awesome!
    Toad Hollow Photo recently posted..Arriving In StyleMy Profile

  5. Christian Carvajal July 8, 2016 at 4:26 pm #

    Hi, Scott,

    My name is Christian Carvajal, and I’m the managing editor of a new Olympia publication called OLY ARTS. We would very much like to license one of your Lakefair images for use as the cover of our print publication (with a run of 8000 copies). Please reply to let me know terms. I can also be reached by phone at (360) 561-9590. We’re under a bit of deadline pressure, though, so the sooner the better on our end. These are truly fantastic.

    Christian Carvajal
    Christian Carvajal recently posted..A Classical Ear: Emerald City MusicMy Profile

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