Great view nighttime view of Los Angeles over Griffith Observatory

Sundown in Griffith Park Los Angeles

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The Background

It’s my second day in Serge’s workshop, my third full day in the Los Angeles area. So far I’ve spent two days in the classroom and this will be my second night in the field with the group. The plan for tonight is to shoot from the one and only Griffith Park and to capture a sunset with the Hollywood sign and downtown Los Angeles at night, right behind the Griffith Observatory.

Los Angeles California is a massive city with many landmarks, but the one that most people connect with the City of Angeles is the Hollywood sign, nestled under the radio towers on top of the hill located in Griffith Park. On the other side of this sign can be viewed from the Griffith Observatory. Our group arrives at the observatory for an evening of capturing some sunset pictures.

The Scene

It is HOT outside as the heatwave in Los Angeles is still very strong. Roughly 100 degrees and until the sun sets, I don’t see it cooling down. We talk into the observatory for a minute to catch a drink of water in hopes of cooling off for just a few minutes before taking the hike behind the observatory to get the best angle on both the Hollywood sign and the sunset. We come along to a ridge, and look to our left and see this amazing long, winding road that leads over to the sunset and the hills for the Hollywood sign. I grab a picture of this amazing view since I don’t know if anything else will look this amazing.

The Long and Winding Road to Hollywood viewed at sunset
The Long and Winding Road to Hollywood viewed at sunset

Next Up

I quickly grab my zoom lens, the 70-200mm beast, and put it on my camera. I look at the view and am able to capture the sun just prior to setting. The image quality on this shot was phenomenal. The colors in the sky were almost surreal, but this being my 3rd night in Los Angeles I had come to see this as the norm in this city.

Sun setting over Griffith Park with a perfect view of the Hollywood sign from just below Griffith Observatory.
Sun setting over Griffith Park with a perfect view of the Hollywood sign from just below Griffith Observatory.

The Money Shot

At last the sun has gone down and it finally starts to cool down outside and we see the lights of downtown Los Angeles start to light up. It is time for the “Terminator Shot” from the hills above the Griffith Observatory. Still dripping in sweat we start our hike up the hill past the observatory and on for another quarter to half of a mile on the other side. Walking up the winding dirt trail was therapeutic and it finally started to feel like we weren’t trapped in the heat wave. That is when we looked back and saw it, this amazing view. The trusty Sony A7R II with the 70-200mm didn’t let me down. I zoomed all the way to 200mm for this shot of Los Angeles. This is my favorite shot of the day and we all left happy.

Great view nighttime view of Los Angeles over Griffith Observatory
Great view night time view of Los Angeles over Griffith Observatory

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