Play the Waiting Game at Walt Disney World

Photographic Innoventions by Scott Thomas

Returning to Epcot for another tip on photographing in busy tourist attractions using Walt Disney World examples. This one can be tough if you are traveling with children but not impossible. Even as busy as a Disney themepark can be, if you wait a bit, an opportunity will present itself.

The first photo of the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest in the China pavilion, I took at 6:27PM. People were still going in and out and walking about the area.

People are seen entering the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest in the China pavilion at Epcot, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida.

People are seen entering the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest in the China pavilion.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 1s, f/16, ISO 200, EV 0, 18mm focal length, tripod.

I really wanted a people free photo so I waited. It only took 20 minutes and the Cast Members had closed the doors to the attraction. People would still walk up to the building but not very often. I was able to capture the scene a few times without anyone entering or leaving the frame.

A quiet Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest in the China pavilion at Epcot, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida

A quiet Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest in the China pavilion at Epcot.
Nikon D70/18-200VR, 30s, f/18, ISO 200, EV 0, 18mm focal length, tripod.

The added benefit of waiting was the start of Blue Hour which added color to the sky. Next time, take a few added minutes to see if where you are photographing clears of people, even at Walt Disney World.

Scott's "Photographic Innoventions" blog focuses on intermediate to advanced photography concepts and techniques relevant for Point and Shoot and Digital SLR cameras.

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3 Replies to “Play the Waiting Game at Walt Disney World”

  1. Thanks so much for including the EXIF data under your shots, Scott.

    I bet most people here didn’t realize that for your second shot you used a tripod and had an exposure time of THIRTY seconds! Most people won’t even wait that long to take the picture, let alone expose for that amount of time. LOL

    Dan

    Scott replies: Thank, Dan. It was something I have always done on my blogs. That gives people an idea of how I did the photograph so they can try and duplicate it. Of course, that’s only the beginning on how to know how to do it. Gives a good starting point.

    The length of time was needed to see Blue Hour. To our eyes, it looked almost white. A long exposure gives the sensor time to build up the natural color of the sky.

  2. Nice tip as always. The downside to the waiting game is for someone like me who is on the west coast and that is if I have only a few days at WDW I’d try and take advantage of every minute possible. It’s easier for the locals that have annual passes since they can take a slower pace because limited time is not a factor.

    Thanks for the tips. Now, how do I turn my camera on? 🙂

    Doug

    Scott replies: I do not live in Orlando either but am a frequent visitor. When my kids were younger, I got very good at the grab shot. As they got older, I made deals to have some time for photography while they did things I was not a big fan of like shopping. These days, I spend a lot of time photographing at the parks but leave my camera in the room for “vacation” days. 🙂

  3. Great tip, sometimes you tend to “be in a hurry” when at WDW. We have made it a point to slow down and take our time, we end up seeing things we would have missed. I used this tip in the past when taking a picture of the Himilayan Express. I had people thinking it was an actual mountain! The gardens next to Canada is also a great spot for photos.

    Scott replies: It is tough at WDW. I try to tell people this on their first trip. To not try and do everything and take their time. Like you do.