Panoramic Prints

Now offering panoramas

Beach umbrellas lined up on a summer beach day in Kitty Hawk North Carolina. (Daniel Waters)

Picture of Outer Banks ghost crab. (Daniel Waters)

Some photographs and subjects lend themselves to a long and skinny aspect ratio.

I am now offering both vertical and horizontal panoramic matted prints. Panoramic prints fit nicely in narrow niches that every house has. You can always find the perfect spot to hang a panoramic image.

A long 30 second exposure results in a unusual photograph of Bodie IIsland Lighthouse on the Outer Banks. (Daniel Waters)               Picture of the Outer Banks beach as a summer storm passes through. (Dan Waters)

The print size is 6″ x 16″ and the mat is 10″ x 20″. I chose this size to fit over windows or doors, almost anywhere you have a long narrow space. These matted prints, like all of my printed photographs, come signed on the mat, in a clear bag to protect them.

Here is a link to my new panoramic photo gallery.

Stray cat coming out of a hole in the side of a barn in Avon on Hatteras Island, NC. (Daniel Waters)

Three Willets photographed on the beach at Kitty Hawk NC. Willets are large sandpipers commonly found on the Outer Banks beaches in the fall and winter month's. (Daniel L. Waters)

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Now Offering Aerial Photography

I am very excited to announce a new photographic interest, aerial photography! It is so interesting to see the world from a different perspective, above. It surprises me how narrow and fragile the Outer Banks really is.

This is a link to my Aerial Photography Gallery

I am offering aerial real estate photographyaerial commercial photography and aerial private home photography.

I will also be available for other aerial assignments.

Contact me at:     Dan Waters  (252)491-8437

Below is a link to my Outer Banks aerial photo prices.

Aerial view of the Whale Head Club, Currituck Beach Lighthouse, and the Outer Banks Center for Wildlife Education in Corolla, NC. (Daniel Waters)


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Happy Valentine’s Day

A heart-shaped concrete patch on a Outer Banks parking lot.

A heart-shaped concrete patch on a Outer Banks parking lot.

You never know when you might run into an interesting photograph! My wife Tina and I went to lunch with my Outer Banks Photo Workshop business partner, Dan Bauvais and in the parking lot we noticed this heart shape in the broken concrete. Not one to pass up an opportunity, I had my “point and shoot” camera out and shooting in seconds.

 Don’t leave home without it!

I try not to leave home without my small, lightweight, and high Image quality, Sony RX 100 attached to my belt. The quality of small “point and shoot” cameras has grown in recent years by leaps and bounds. In low ISO settings and with photographing in similar conditions it would be hard to tell my Canon 5D Mark III photos from the Sony RX 100 “point and shoot”, especially when sized for the web.

There are lots of situations where my full set of gear is simply too much carry around. In these situations I rely on a much smaller and lighter solution.

What to look for in a “Point and shoot”

A few things to look for in a lightweight camera are:

  • being able to manually control the shutter speed, aperture, and ISO
  • a tripod socket
  • high-quality lens
  • full 1080 P movies
  • manual focus
  • adjustable brightness on the back LCD

There are a few things my Sony camera is missing:

  • a flash shoe for an external flash would be nice to have
  • more buttons to control the camera without having to go into the menu


There are some compromises you have to live with for a small size and lightweight camera, but on a whole I think they’re well worth carrying around, because you never know when you might run into the next interesting photograph.

Here are a few other photos I captured with a “point and shoot” camera.

Our cat sleeping in the sun.

Our cat, “Moe” sleeping in the sun by the picture window.

Our cat, "Moe" sleeping in the sun by the picture window.

Our cat, “Moe” sleeping in the sun by the picture window.

Car window and blue sky with ice crystals on a cold winter morning.

Car window and blue sky with ice crystals on a cold winter morning.

Car window and blue sky with ice crystals on a cold winter morning.

Car window and blue sky with ice crystals on a cold winter morning.

Foggy fall fence in the morning.

Foggy fall fence in the morning.

Clam shell surounded by ocean bubbles on the beach  in Corolla, NC.

Clam shell surounded by ocean bubbles on the beach in Corolla, NC.

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Happy Halloween!

Abandoned house near Roper North Carolina.

Abandoned house near Roper North Carolina.

Haunted House

When I first saw this abandoned house near Roper North Carolina, while I was on a CNPA camera club outing, it brought to mind a Halloween card, haunted house. Once I decided on an idea for my photograph, and what I was trying to convey, I tried to use my photographic knowledge to enhance the idea and eliminate anything that did not contribute to the idea of a haunted house.

Wide Angle Distortion

I used the distortion of my wide-angle (16 x 35mm) lens, set at 16mm to make the house appear to be leaning backwards. This makes for a more unsettling haunted house. I also wanted the leaves on the grass to be prominent in the photo. I set my tripod down low pointing up the short hill, about 10 inches from the first leaf. The distortion from the wide angle lens is greater the further from level the camera is tilted.


I could have captured the dynamic range of this photo in one shot since it was gray day with little contrast. But I knew that using HDR (high dynamic range) would bring details out in the clouds that one image couldn’t accomplish. I took three photographs, each two stops apart and combined them using Nik software’s HDR Pro plug-in.

Continue To Develop the Idea in the Digital Darkroom

While developing photographs in the digital darkroom I try to remember the idea behind the photograph and continue enhancing this idea with Adobe Lightroom. I made sure to disable the lens profile corrections, I even used the manual lens corrections in Adobe Lightroom to tilt the house back even further.

Nik Software

I want to thank my photo buddy and fellow workshop leader, Dan Beauvais for helping me with the filters in Nik Software, Color Effects Pro 4. We used the midnight filter and the detail extractor filter to really enhance the spooky feeling of this image. It was a lot of fun messing around with this photo, trying to create a spooky haunted house.


Happy Halloween!

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Published In Our State Magazine


This photo of Gaillardiia flowers, taken at Kitty Hawk beach access, was published this month in Our State Magizine on page 188. I am excideted to see one of my photos in such a beatufull magazine.

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The Making of “Shell Still Life”

Pile of whelk shells on a pier piling.

This was a case of seeing like your camera sees. While teaching a Outer Banks photo workshop, I arranged this pile of whelk shells on a pier piling so the students and I could photograph them. I set the shells up in the shadow of the fishing pier. The sun had been up about an hour and a half before making this photo. There was a lot of contrast, from the sunny beach highlights, to the shadows under the pier. I knew from experience the camera could not record this much contrast in a single image. I exposed for the shells and deliberately wanted the beach background to go pure white, without any detail. It worked as I envisioned, the scene seems to have been photographed in a studio with a white backdrop. I used my exposure compensation dial to add more light. The light meter was trying to average the scene, but I knew I wanted to expose for the darker shells and let the beach highlights turn pure white, so I added light by turning the exposure compensation dial up.

The camera sees completely different than we do, I could see detail in the shells and look at the beach and also see detail. The camera could only record one or the other. I could have chosen to expose for the sunlit beach and ended up with a silhouette of the fishing pier pilings and shells. Or, I could have taken two exposures, one for the shells, one for the beach and combined them with Photoshop layers and masks in order to have the correct exposure for both.

Seeing as your camera sees is an essential part of photography. I think envisioning how your camera sees, is what Ansell Adams meant when he said, “seeing with your minds eye”. If you can figure out, in your mind, what your camera will see before you click the shutter your images are bound to improve.

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Sunblock A Photography Technique

Sunblock is a technique I often use when I include the sun in my images. Blocking the sun with a tree branch, a structure, or even the horizon allows me to expose more for the subject and less for the sun. If I don’t use this technique I find the sun overpowers the image. If I expose for the sun, the foreground subjects become silhouettes, or if I expose for the foreground subjects the sun becomes this huge mass of overexposed unappealing white. By changing my position and putting something in front of the sun I am able to have a much more even exposure, with less contrast, more detail and better exposure in both the foreground and the background.

When I use the sunblock technique I still get the affects of a backlit scene, rim light, or semi-silhouette, but the sun is not as glaring and bright. When the sun is blocked it contributes to the image but does not have to be the main subject.

Avalon fishing pier against a backdrop of a orange sunrise and soft waves.               Rusty wheel house at sunrise.

The sunblock technique works well with any lens and has other benefits also. I find if the sun is partially blocked it usually reduces lens flare. Of course, I always remove filters when shooting into the sun. Even good quality filters can contribute to lens flare and polarizing filters have very little effect when shooting towards the sun or away from the sun. They are most effective when shooting at right angles to the sun. I also try to use a lens hood with this technique. When including the sun in my image a lens hood has limited effect, but it may keep reflected light from causing more lens flare.

Blackbird Silhouette

Block the sun by keeping it just out of the frame.

Another benefit to partially blocking the sun, is if I stop my aperture down to f/18 or f/22 I can create a starburst effect. The sun has to be just peeking out from behind something to create this effect. The starburst always adds drama to an image. I like to place the starburst on one of the rule of thirds cross points.

 Sunrise at the Wright Brothers Memorial in Kill Devil Hills North Carolina.               Sunrise under Kitty Hawk pier. 

Sunblock is a perfect technique for photographers who don’t have the Photoshop skills, or time to combine more than one image in order to get the correct exposure for the sun and the foreground.


The next time you include the sun in your image I hope you experiment and try the sunblock technique out. My only question is:

What SPF is it?


Brick Path to Bodie Island Lighthouse on the Outer Banks of NC at sunrise.

picture of the Outer Banks Jockey's Ridge State Park

Live Oak tree and sunburst in Corolla NC on the Outer Banks.

Morning shadows at Nags Head Pier.

Sunrise over the Atlantic Ocean on the NC coast.

Sunlight coming through the wheelhouse windows of a small fishing boat.



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In Honor of Mother’s Day

Three new photographs of roses in honor of Mother’s Day.

The 1st photo, the yellow rose with the metal fence was captured in Manteo, NC. I initially set up so I was shooting down into the rose. There was a light colored driveway on the other side of the fence in the background that distracted from the rose and fence. I settled on a lower angle of view with the house and porch in the background out of focus to give this photo a sense of place. I also used my 70 to 200 mm lens which has a narrow angle of view so I could control what was in the background easier. There was enough distance between the rose and the house to ensure the house was out of focus so, it would not be distracting.

The next 2 photos were  photographed in Corolla, NC in the same garden. Both of these photos were taken in uneven dappled lighting.  Luckily, I was prepared for this problem, in my camera  backpack I carry my trusty 5 and 1 diffuser and reflector. I used the diffuser to even out the light.

Roses and Mother’s Day just seem to go together. Thank you to all the mothers out there, happy Mother’s Day.



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Fetch With A Fish

I was recently at Wancheese NC on the Outer Banks, teaching a private photo workshop when we spotted this retriever playing fetch with a fishermen unloading his catch. The fishermen would throw a fish in the water and the retriever would dive in get the fish then swim around to the boat ramp and bring it back to the fishermen. The retriever had obviously played this game many times. We hung around and photograph the fishermen untangling the catch from the net, the retriever playing fetch, and some close-ups pattern shots of all the fish caught. It was nice of the fishermen to let us photograph them while they were working.

A retriever plays fetch with a fishIn Wancheese NC.

 Pattern of fish ready to be taken to market on the Outer Banks of North Carolina.               A fisherman untangles his catch from a net in Wancheese, NC on the Outer Banks.

Wanchese Harbor is a great photo destination. It is a real working fishing village located on Roanoke Island. You can expect to photograph everything from stacked up crab baskets, old rusty fishing trawler’s, colorful buoys, fishermen at work, and a multitude of close up photo opportunities. It is a little off the beaten path and most of the hundreds of thousands of visitors to the Outer Banks don’t know it exists. It is well worth the 20 min. drive from the beach. I also recommend having lunch or dinner at the Fisherman’s Wharf Restaurant overlooking the Wancheeses Harbor.


Below is a slideshow and link to my Wancheese photo gallery.

Wanchese Harbor – Images by Daniel Waters

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A Bit of Color

Recently the Chicago Art Source contacted me because they are working with a client that is renovating a restaurant in Charlotte, and they are looking for 3 photographs for the dining area, 40″w x 60″h each, or 48″w x 53″h each. The photos will be face-mounted to acrylic. They wanted black-and-white with a bit of color left in them. I adjusted the photos they were interested in. I then thought it would be nice to do more and put them on my website in a gallery titled, “A Bit of Color“. Below is a slideshow of that gallery.

If anyone notices other photos in my galleries that would work well with this treatment  please e-mail me and let me know which image and which bit should be in color.

Thank you for looking and your input.

A Bit Of Color – Images by Daniel Waters

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