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Brandon Kopp
Works at Bureau of Labor Statistics
Attended Ohio State University
Lives in Silver Spring, MD
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Brandon Kopp

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Mabry Mill | Blue Ridge Parkway, Virginia

One of my favorite experiences from my Fall trips was spending a chilly sunrise at the Mabry Mill along with about 10 other photographers. A couple came and went over that time, but a few, like me, got there well before sunrise and stayed until about an hour after. I took dozens of shots of roughly the same composition, but wanted to make sure I walked away with at least one clean one I could share.

The cool thing here was that the wheel would stop for a couple minutes until it built up enough water to make it turn and dump it's contents. So I tried to get shots of both the steady wheel and the water dump. I preferred this view. It beat the previous night when the wheel turned with just a trickle of water so long exposures ended up with blurry wheel with no payoff of the water.
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Shelly Gunderson's profile photo
 
Gorgeous!
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Blue Hen Falls | Cuyahoga Valley National Park

This is a quick video of my experience photographing and filming a beautiful, though dry waterfall in Cuyahoga Valley National Park. I've made several of these videos now, but this is the first I've thought about ahead of time.

I still have some refining to do. I'm open to suggestions about how I can make them better in the future.

#NationalParks   #LandscapePhotography   #Video
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Kumi Bismark Stical's profile photo
 
Hi
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Elevation Profile Question

I used to make videos that give a rough idea of what to expect when you visit an iconic photo location (e.g., Bass Harbor Lighthouse in Acadia) or a scenic trail (e.g., Cascade Canyon in Grand Teton).  I am looking to get back to that because I can never find those sorts of things when I'm looking.

One small part of those videos (especially the trail ones) will be an elevation profile to show how daunting a trail might be.  I wrote some code that uses the +Google Maps API to look up the elevation for spots along a trail, which I then plot in Excel. I'm still working on the look and wanted to get your opinion.  

Which of the graphs below do you prefer?  I'll note that these are both pretty "busy" but not everything will be on-screen at once. These will be animated in the video so information is slowly displayed.   Are there things you prefer either one?  

I'd also like to hear any feedback you have about the idea of videos that show basic photography info about photography spots. I'll be going to a number of places this Fall and am planning on putting a few videos together.

Oh, by the way, this is Iceberg Lake Trail in Glacier National Park.

Thanks for viewing.

#NationalParks   #Hiking  
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Jay Rushing's profile photoViren Shah's profile photoFrank Monaldo's profile photoBrandon Kopp's profile photo
6 comments
 
Thanks so much for your feedback everyone. It's well taken. 

+Jay Rushing, A is my preference too. It is more "precise" in that you can actually see the elevation gain on the Y-axis.  I hadn't thought about what it would look like with up & down trails. I tried it with Old Rag, and you're right, it does get obscured.

+Viren Shah, the directional context is the main reason I was excited about the 3-D chart. It gives you a flavor of the trail. I will be showing a Google Earth flyover of the trail to give that context, but even with the 3-D in Earth, it's sometimes hard to tell how steep things are.

+Frank Monaldo. You're right. "A" doesn't give a good depiction of what the trail feels like and with the short time people will have to see it, I want them to get a feeling more than try to do calculations. The feel can be changed by how I stretch or squeeze the graph and by changing the Y-Axis. I'll play around with that more to make sure it makes sense.  I also like the idea of a label.

Overall, I think I'll go with A to start and since the 3-D ones are built automatically in the Excel sheet I made, there's no harm in seeing how those look and whether they have a place.

Thanks again guys. I'm sure I'll post the videos once I get them made. I'll be heading to a couple National Parks over the next 3 weeks so hope to get material for a couple videos at least.

If you'd like to see some of my earlier, less successful attempts, you can find them here:
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLSDLUTVenSUXW8zq1_KSgdIp_WFZtLrtj

Have a good weekend.
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Congaree National Park | http://nationalparks.brandonkopp.com

I had a thoroughly mediocre time in Congaree National Park, yet I did manage to walk away with some decent photos. Check out my blog post and decide for yourself if it's worth the trip.  Learn from my experience and make the most of your trip.

#NationalParks   #SouthCarolina   #Blog   #Photography   #Hiking
Congaree is the 15th National Park I've visited since 2012 and I hate to say it, but it is my least favorite experience so far. I didn't set this trip up for success by choosing to go during one of the hottest months of the year, but, there was plenty that I didn't care for on this trip.
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Cecilia Troncoso Sepulveda's profile photo
 
+Brandon Kopp So Beautiful!!! Congrats!!!!!
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Shenandoah National Park | http://nationalparks.brandonkopp.com

I finally got around to writing a blog post about the five trips I've taken to Shenandoah National Park over the time I've lived in the DC area. I try to write these in a way to give the reader some idea of what's available and whether some things are worth doing.

If you find it helpful, please share it. If you don't find it helpful, please leave a comment with some feedback. I'll have plenty more of these to write and I would like to improve them as I go along.

#NationalParks   #Blog   #LandscapePhotography   #Travel   #ShenandoahNationalPark   #Virginia  
Shenandoah is the park in my backyard. Well, an hour and a half away, but it's the park I've been to the most times and have had the most varied experience with. I've had the most basic experience, a drive down Skyline Drive, and one of the most intense, hiking Old Rag.
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Michelle Carr's profile photo
 
I love Shenandoah! What an amazing place!!
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The Boardwalk | Congaree National Park, SC

My plan on this morning was to get to the park around sunrise and find the sunlight beaming through the trees. I paid close attention to the forecast and saw that it was supposed to be overcast around sunrise, so I slept in and got to the park around 7:30. I was still the first person there, beating the rangers and any campers. The reason I know I was the first person there was that when I started walking the boardwalk, I hit spiderweb after spiderweb. I must have run into, no joke, a hundred of them. I had planned to hike the boardwalk and then a loop around Weston Lake, but got about a mile in and decided that I couldn't do it.  I like to think I'm pretty tough, but I was creeped out by all of the cobwebs and more importantly the spiders that I couldn't see.  I thought for sure I was going to get bit.

So I didn't fully enjoy my time at the park, but I do think it's worth seeing. I would like to get back there when the water is higher and more is open (about 1/3 of the boardwalk was closed for repairs).

#landscapephotography   #NationalParks   #Congaree   #SouthCarolina   #HDR   #Nature   #Hiking
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James Blumenschein's profile photoPatrick Archibald (PLA)'s profile photo
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I visited Congaree National Park June 7, 2015. Spider webs are disconcerting. I think I will go back in October. 
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Walker Camp Prong | Great Smoky Mountains National Park

One shot I knew I had to get in the Smokies was a cascade surrounded by Fall leaves.  The leaves hadn't changed in the lower elevations, but I spotted this scene along the main park road as my friend and I drove back from the Mingus Mill.  We didn't stop right then but I made a mental note to stop back. That night, after a day worth of rain, I headed back up. I shared this small area with about 20 other people, but luckily the slippery rocks scared away enough people for me to get this angle.

#LandscapePhotography   #NationalPark   #GreatSmokyMountains   #FallPhotography   #Fall   #HDR  
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Boneyard Beach | Botany Bay, Edisto Island, SC

Sometimes I take photos with a definite purpose and sometimes I'm just running around trying to capture different compositions before the good light is gone. This photo is one of the latter. I don't remember taking it. There was a month and a half in between me taking it and processing the images into an HDR, but I remembered the photos I took on either side of this one, just not this one.  When this popped up on my screen in Photomatix, I was surprised. I spent a long time playing with the sliders trying to get the lighting right because I knew this was a keeper. It was a difficult one to process because of all of the transitions between light and dark. 

#Seascape   #LandscapePhotography   #Landscape   #Ocean   #Nature   #SouthCarolina  
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Shelly Gunderson's profile photoЕлена Панасюк's profile photo
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Великолепно! Очень красивый свет!!!
 ·  Translate
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National Park Boundaries | Google Fusion Tables

LINK TO THE MAP AT THE BOTTOM OF THE POST

I upped my mapping game this week with the discovery of Google Fusion Tables. That along with some National Park boundary files I found on Data.gov resulted in the map pictured below.  I found it very interesting to see the data laid out this way. I wonder why the National Park Service doesn't have an interactive map on their website.  

Feel free to embed the map wherever you like, or merge the boundary data with your own Fusion Table and make something new and interesting.

https://www.google.com/fusiontables/embedviz?q=select+col12%3E%3E0+from+1sdhereiSpDPCGQ5ewtNqAC8rSDGf_Mwf2aBX9w6h&viz=MAP&h=false&lat=40.80431445958984&lng=-95.95219543749994&t=1&z=4&l=col12%3E%3E0&y=3&tmplt=3&hml=KML

#NationalParks   #Mapping   #Data   #DataDotGov  
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Smoky Mountain Map

LINK TO MAP AT BOTTOM OF POST

I enjoy building custom +Google Maps for trips. It forces me to think about what the key points are and become intimately familiar with the locations.  I built one for an upcoming trip to Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Do the experts on that area have any recommendations for things to add?

https://www.google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=zqY-hEQcTB9Y.kO_l5C9joz1A&usp=sharing

#NationalParks   #Maps   #Hiking   #Travel  
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Brandon Kopp's profile photoMargaret Hurstp's profile photo
3 comments
 
Correction, I meant Townsend. Pigion Forge is also crowded. Sorry about that.
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Folly Beach Pier | Folly Beach, SC

I took this photo on my last morning in South Carolina. About 20 minutes after this, I was in my car making the 10 hour drive back home.  This morning was one of the highlights of my trip. I had plenty of time to play around before and after sunrise with relatively few people in the shots I was trying to get around this pier. There were a lot of people out...I guess that's what you do when you're at an east coast beach at sunrise.   There were plenty of SLR-toting photographers too, but for some reason, they didn't want this as an interesting foreground piece. Lucky for me, everyone had other things on their minds.

For me, the key to this particular photo was lining my camera up so that the sun was at least partially blocked by the support for the pier.  I was getting a lot of flare and the shadow helped with that. I also wanted those shadows as leading lines.

#Sunrise   #SouthCarolina   #FollyBeach   #Pier   #Beach   #AtlanticOcean  
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Helen Natsioks's profile photoЕлена Панасюк's profile photoSam Antonio's profile photo
3 comments
 
Beautiful!
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Brown's Gap Fire Road | Shenandoah National Park

I took this photo during a trip to Shenandoah in mid-July last year. It was lush. I can't imagine how pioneers made their way through the mountains.  Despite being the early afternoon, it was dark. These moments of light breaking through were eye-catching and worthy of a photo.

#NationalParks   #landscapephotography   #HDR   #Shenandoah   #Virginia   #hiking  
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Cecilia Troncoso Sepulveda's profile photo
 
OMG!!!! This is wonderful!!!!
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Work
Occupation
Research Psychologist
Employment
  • Bureau of Labor Statistics
    Research Psychologist, 2010 - present
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
Silver Spring, MD
Previously
Columbus, OH - Coooperstown, ND - Fargo, ND - Twin Falls, ID - Mandan, ND
Story
Tagline
DC-Based Amateur Photographer (HDR, Travel, Architecture, Landscapes, Macro, and More)
Introduction
I love photography.  More specifically, I love the experiences that allow me to take pictures, the fun I have finding and framing pictures, the technical skill required to choose the appropriate settings, and the sense of pride I get when I show my quality shots to my friends and family.  Now, I'm looking to share my photos with the world by widening my presence on social media.

I got started in 2004 when, prior to a military deployment to Europe, I bought my first digital camera (a Canon Powershot A70).  That year I took more than 2000 pictures of everything from the Eiffel Tower to Army training.  I began to appreciate the ability to document and share my experiences in such an easy and inexpensive way.

Since then I've accumulated new equipment (I currently use a Nikon D300) and some new skills (I love HDR and have recently started doing some timelapse).  Photography really became more than just a hobby for me when I moved to Washington, DC and had an endless array of amazing places to photograph.  I've spent most of the last year and a half taking pictures of the sites in DC, going back to some places over and over until I get pictures I'm satisfied with.  Over this time I've accumulated knowledge about where and when to go, where you'll get hassled about having a tripod, and other things.  I started a blog where I pass along this information and post information about upcoming photography events in DC.  The blog is called http://www.PhotoTourismDC.com

My Circle Suggestions:

 _____________________________________

  1. Photography (General)
  2. HDR
  3. Nikon (and/or D300)
  4. Washington, DC
  5. Travel (this may be a bit of a stretch)
  6. Photography Blogger

_____________________________________

Education
  • Ohio State University
    Social Psychology, 2003 - 2010
  • North Dakota State University
    Psychology, 1999 - 2003
Basic Information
Gender
Male