The Festive Toronto City Hall

Toronto’s City Hall is no exception when it comes to decorating during the holiday season. With lights wrapped around the arches of the skating rink to those lined along the walls, you can’t not get into that magical mood.

I haven’t skated since my childhood years, so rather than attempt to showcase my fancy skating skills, I took to the rink and area with my camera instead.

1/3 sec. at f/9.0, ISO 800, 24mm

1/3 sec. at f/9.0, ISO 800, 24mm

It was by chance that I came here with my tripod, so it came in handy for all of these long exposures that I captured that evening. To illustrate the movement of the skaters, a slow, but not too slow shutter speed was used—it was just fast enough to capture still people’s faces, while the skaters were all a blur.

1/10 sec. at f/8.0, ISO 800, 70mm

1/10 sec. at f/8.0, ISO 800, 70mm

People skate in one direction, so to illustrate this movement, I took to the higher vantage point where I was able to capture the skaters going around and around. My timing had to be just right, however, since if I shot while few people were in the foreground, then I wouldn’t get that circular movement illustrated. I had to wait a bit until a large number of people came towards me. I also extended my shutter speed for this just a bit, so as to capture the curved blur as people skated around the corners.

0.6 sec. at f/9.0, ISO 800, 48mm

0.6 sec. at f/9.0, ISO 800, 48mm

The warm glow from the lights of the Christmas tree really provided that Christmas mood to the area. Standing slightly lopsidedly behind the rink, only a few people walked to it to take their requisite selfie “I was there” moment.

0.4 sec. at f/10, ISO 800, 70mm

0.4 sec. at f/10, ISO 800, 70mm

From afar, you can barely see the patterns of the lights, but from up close, you can see the netting over the tree, and all the bulbs decorating Toronto City Hall’s Christmas tree. What’s your favourite decoration?

1/25 sec. at f/2.8, ISO 800, 56mm

1/25 sec. at f/2.8, ISO 800, 56mm

In the photo below, my intention was to capture all of City Hall’s lights in one frame. I came upon an angle that managed to fulfill this requirement. The red glow of the building, combined with the orange glow of the tree, and the yellow from the arches really “lit up” this photo. Sorry for that pun.

0.5 sec. at f/10, ISO 800, 31mm

0.5 sec. at f/10, ISO 800, 31mm

Over the course of some time, skaters are asked to vacate the rink for about 10-15min. so the zamboni can clean the ice. This was a perfect moment to capture the skaters off the ice, resting and milling about while capturing the movement of the zamboni on the ice.

1/3 sec. at f/9.0, ISO 800, 55mm

1/3 sec. at f/9.0, ISO 800, 55mm

Once the zamboni did its job, the skaters took to the ice once again. I wanted to capture people in action as they darted off from the sideline on to the rink, but I may have missed the mark on this photo below. I did, however, capture that brightly shining moon!

0.6 sec. at f/9.0, ISO 800, 26mm

0.6 sec. at f/9.0, ISO 800, 26mm

The skating rink is a great place to be even for non-skaters like myself. Hopefully I managed to capture some of the spirit of the season in these photos. Hope you’re all having a great season this year!

0.8 sec. at f/20, ISO 800, 24mm

0.8 sec. at f/20, ISO 800, 24mm

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