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Tim Devine
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The Magic in Pixels.com
The Magic in Pixels.com

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KEVIN MILES RETIRES FROM THE DAPPER DANS

January 27, 2016 marked Kevin Miles’ final day as a member of The Dapper Dans, the barbershop quartet who entertain guests daily on Main Street USA at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom.  Mr. Miles entertained guests at Walt Disney World for 33 years as both a member of The Voices of Liberty and The Dapper Dans prior to retiring yesterday.  Kevin was known for the deep, golden bass tones of his voice and his humorous facial expressions.  He truly was one of the gems of Walt Disney World Entertainment.

On a personal note, Mr. Miles has always been a gentleman to both me and my family.  He also announced my grandfather as the Veteran of the Day in 2007 for the Flag Retreat.  Kevin always remembered me when we would cross paths at The Magic Kingdom and was quick to greet my family and me with a smile and a hello.

On behalf of the Devine Family and the readers and followers of The Magic in Pixels, we wish Kevin Miles a happy and healthy retirement and sincerely hope to cross paths again in the future.  God Bless and stay healthy, Kevin; we will miss seeing you at The Magic Kingdom.

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Mickey’s Christmas Carol is one of those timeless short films that really brings back childhood memories.  I first saw the film (which was first released in 1983) in the movie theater way when I was a little boy and it was part of a “double-feature” with The Rescuers (remember that one?)

These six photos depict the six dioramas from outside of The Emporium on Main Street USA in The Magic Kingdom.  Each diorama tells the story of each of the major scenes from Mickey’s Christmas Carol.  Sadly, these window decorations are often overlooked as guests pass by The Emporium as they go about their day; these windows have such a level of detail and quality that you really owe it to yourself to spend some time checking them out.

Scene 1 features Fred (Donald Duck) inviting his uncle, Ebeneezer Scrooge (Scrooge McDuck), to a holiday party.  His invitation is quickly rebuffed by the cold-hearted Scrooge.  Bob Cratchit (Mickey Mouse) watches on from his desk.

In Scene 2 , Scrooge is visited by his old friend and business associate, Jacob Marley (Goofy) who is wrapped in chains for eternity due to his greed and selfishness.  He warns Scrooge that Scrooge will suffer a similar fate if he does not change his ways; he also tells Scrooge that Scrooge will be visited by three spirits.

Scene 3 shows Scrooge watching the evil of past along with the Ghost of Christmas Past (Jiminey Cricket).  Scrooge is shown breaking the heart of his love, Isabelle (Daisy Duck), by foreclosing on their future honeymoon cottage because Isabelle was an hour late with the mortgage payment.

In Scene 4, the Ghost of Christmas Present (Willy the Giant) shows Scrooge how the Cratchit family, despite having little money, can still celebrate and be happy with each other.  Scrooge is told that there will be great tragedy within the Cratchit family if their fate does not change but just when Scrooge begs to know what will happen, the Ghost of Christmas Present vanishes, leaving Scrooge with no answers.

In Scene 5, Scrooge sees Bob Cratchit in the graveyard mourning the death of Tiny Tim.  Horrified, he asks the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come (Pete) if this future can be changed.  Scrooge is also shown his fate as he falls into a grave that had just been dug for “The Richest Man in the Cemetery” with no one there to mourn his loss, much to the amusement of the Weasels who had dug the grave.

Awakened as a changed duck in Scene 6, Scrooge goes to the Cratchit house with a huge bag of gold, presents, and food for Bob and Emily Cratchit (Minnie Mouse) and their kids, Martha (Millie Mouse), Peter (Morty Fieldmouse) and Tiny Tim (Ferdie Fieldmouse).  The story concludes with Tiny Tim uttering his famous line, “And God Bless Us Everyone!”

From the entire Magic in Pixels family to yours, a most joyous and blessed Merry Christmas!

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Mickey’s Christmas Carol is one of those timeless short films that really brings back childhood memories.  I first saw the film (which was first released in 1983) in the movie theater way when I was a little boy and it was part of a “double-feature” with The Rescuers (remember that one?)

These six photos depict the six dioramas from outside of The Emporium on Main Street USA in The Magic Kingdom.  Each diorama tells the story of each of the major scenes from Mickey’s Christmas Carol.  Sadly, these window decorations are often overlooked as guests pass by The Emporium as they go about their day; these windows have such a level of detail and quality that you really owe it to yourself to spend some time checking them out.

Scene 1 features Fred (Donald Duck) inviting his uncle, Ebeneezer Scrooge (Scrooge McDuck), to a holiday party.  His invitation is quickly rebuffed by the cold-hearted Scrooge.  Bob Cratchit (Mickey Mouse) watches on from his desk.

In Scene 2 , Scrooge is visited by his old friend and business associate, Jacob Marley (Goofy) who is wrapped in chains for eternity due to his greed and selfishness.  He warns Scrooge that Scrooge will suffer a similar fate if he does not change his ways; he also tells Scrooge that Scrooge will be visited by three spirits.

Scene 3 shows Scrooge watching the evil of past along with the Ghost of Christmas Past (Jiminey Cricket).  Scrooge is shown breaking the heart of his love, Isabelle (Daisy Duck), by foreclosing on their future honeymoon cottage because Isabelle was an hour late with the mortgage payment.

In Scene 4, the Ghost of Christmas Present (Willy the Giant) shows Scrooge how the Cratchit family, despite having little money, can still celebrate and be happy with each other.  Scrooge is told that there will be great tragedy within the Cratchit family if their fate does not change but just when Scrooge begs to know what will happen, the Ghost of Christmas Present vanishes, leaving Scrooge with no answers.

In Scene 5, Scrooge sees Bob Cratchit in the graveyard mourning the death of Tiny Tim.  Horrified, he asks the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come (Pete) if this future can be changed.  Scrooge is also shown his fate as he falls into a grave that had just been dug for “The Richest Man in the Cemetery” with no one there to mourn his loss, much to the amusement of the Weasels who had dug the grave.

Awakened as a changed duck in Scene 6, Scrooge goes to the Cratchit house with a huge bag of gold, presents, and food for Bob and Emily Cratchit (Minnie Mouse) and their kids, Martha (Millie Mouse), Peter (Morty Fieldmouse) and Tiny Tim (Ferdie Fieldmouse).  The story concludes with Tiny Tim uttering his famous line, “And God Bless Us Everyone!”

From the entire Magic in Pixels family to yours, a most joyous and blessed Merry Christmas!

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Pixelmania 2015 marked the final season for seeing the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights. 

To see the entire gallery of photos taken during the event, please click the following link:

http://www.themagicinpixels.com/photo-gallery/index.php?/category/osborne-lights-2015

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Pixelmania 2015 marked the final season for seeing the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights. 

To see the entire gallery of photos taken during the event, please click the following link:

http://www.themagicinpixels.com/photo-gallery/index.php?/category/osborne-lights-2015

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During Pixelmania 2014, one of our events was a “ride the queue” of the Kali River Rapids in the Asia section of Animal Kingdom.  The queue is magnificent and insanely detailed and is worth the experience, even if you choose to skip out on the ride itself.  Using both my Canon 1Dx and my Sony a6000, I took many, many photos during a trip through the queue that stretched out over nearly one hour.  We let many, many guests pass by in order to spend more time enjoying the sights and sounds of the Kali queue.

The queue has a quiet, nearly haunted, beauty and it really feels as if you are passing through a temple and shrine that time nearly forgot.  After passing through a garden with sculptures that seem to bid you “Namaste”, as pictured above,  you continue though a temple and past several other exhibits and tributes on your way to the loading dock.

This shot was taken using my Sony a6000 with the Sony 10-18 OSS wide-angle lens, as I wanted to capture the not only the stone idol in the foreground, but the other stone sculptures in the background along with some of the grass and foliage.  I then processed the shot through Adobe Lightroom 5 and Nik Perfect Effects 5  to get the completed image.

The Kali River Rapids attraction is a wonderful way to cool off in the hot summer sun as you WILL get drenched, however the queue can be enjoyed and experienced all year long.  I strongly suggest you check it out.
#disney #animalkingdom #asia  

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I took this selfie while messing around and killing some time in the area of Tower of Terror and Rock n’ Rollercoaster.  Not sure why I was killing time but this very show dawned on me as I was walking under the limousine arch heading back toward Sunset Blvd.  There is a VERY specific spot you must stand in to be able to get this shot.  I really like it because it is a very “off the beaten path” type of image and that keeps things fresh and interesting.  Nothing better than a selfie with a 50-500mm telephone lens… a lot more hard-core than using a selfie-stick!  Please drop some comments below if you like this photo.
#disney   #disneyhollywoodstudios   #rocknrollercoaster  

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If anyone knows me, I am always looking for unique angle on shots at Walt Disney World.  One of my favorite things to do is to shoot upward at ceilings to capture the details, especially in round, intricately detailed domes.  The Temple of Heaven in Epcot’s China Pavilion is certainly no exception.

For this shot, I used my Sony a6000 mirrorless camera with the Sony SEL16F28 16mm f/2.8 Pancake Lens and the Sony VCLECF1 Fisheye Conversion Lens to get an ultra-wide view of the ceiling.  The shot was SO wide that people’s heads were in the edges of the shot, which I cropped out as not to not be distracting.  I set the camera on the floor and used it’s on-board WiFi capabilities to trip the shutter via my iPhone so I was nowhere near the camera and also didn’t introduce any camera shake into the picture.  Lastly, I used the in-camera HDR function to take and merge three exposures because of the tonal range of the ceiling.  For post-processing I used my standard settings in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5 to finish it off.

Soooooo… what do you think?  Please leave your comments in the space below and thanks for checking in once again!
#disney #photography #epcot  

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TIMING IS EVERYTHING!! A villain car explodes after being shot by the hero in Lights, Motors, Action at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  I took this photo during Pixelmania 2014 and wanted to try to capture the split-second that the car explodes.  I pre-focused on the villain car and waited until the hero started shooting at the enemy and as soon as I saw the first flash of the explosion, fired the camera and caught it just right.  I really like all of the sparks from the explosion, making the photo much more dynamic than if it was just a puff a smoke. By zooming in very tightly and focusing on (no pun intended) just this one aspect of the action, it creates a very powerful image.   I often like to zoom in and isolate details or the “story within the story” and catching little vignettes such as this is a lot of fun.  Lights, Motors, Action has a lot of opportunities like this. I know how loud the explosion is inside of the stadium; how loud do you think it must be inside of the villain car?
#disney  

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Illuminations, the nightly fireworks spectacular at Epcot can be quite challenging to photograph.  Long periods of “inactivity” coupled with intense pyrotechnic moments combine for a difficult, yet rewarding, photographic experience.

This photo was taken during Pixelmaina, the annual signature event for this site.  My buddies were all setting up shop on the deck at Japan and I just happened to be able to get a spot dead-center, front-row between the two gift shops at the entrance to World Showcase lagoon and didn’t want to pass up the chance.

I used my new MeFoto tripod and a 3 stop ND filter on the lens to make this shot happen.
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