The Monuments at Night Safari is offered every other Friday during Spring, Summer and Fall.
As the calendar changes, sunset times do, too. These Safaris start 30 minutes before sunset and last 3 hours.
Washington DC’s National Mall is the showcase of the nation’s capital, home to its most famous and historic monuments. One of the best ways to see it is through the viewfinder of your own tripod-mounted camera at twilight and at night, guided by a professional architectural photographer.
After giving you an orientation on the basic techniques of nighttime photography, Washington Photo Safari director E. David Luria will take you to the most photogenic areas of the National Mall. Your Safari begins at the Lincoln Memorial with its view of Washington Monument in that “magic hour” of deep-blue twilight. Then you walk along the famous Reflecting Pool , turn around and photograph the Lincoln Memorial itself in the twilight. We then photograph the poignant Vietnam Womens Memorial, the powerful Vietnam Veterans Memorial, the extraordinary Korean War Memorial with its illuminated, fear-filled faces of men in combat, and then back inside the awesome Lincoln Memorial with its majestic statue of President Lincoln beautifully illuminated in strong portrait lighting. We end up at the whimsical and brightly illuminated Albert Einstein Memorial at 22nd St and Constitution Ave NW.
At each location on this three-hour Safari, Mr. Luria reviews white balance settings for digital cameras in nighttime shooting, how to shoot at night WITHOUT using a flash, and how to achieve interesting composition with close-up detail that truly brings out the meaning of each memorial and statue. He purposefully does NOT bring his own camera so that he can spend more time on individual hands-on instruction. This Safari will help you achieve really beautiful, postcard-quality images of the nation’s capital. These monuments truly look and photograph much better at night than they do in daytime!
NOTE: Non-photographer companions/spouses are welcome to attend at no charge. However, please bear in mind that this is a workshop in nighttime photography, not a traditional “tour” of the monuments at night. We spend much more time at each monument and statue than one would spend on a typical tour, discussing such issues as composition, white balance, exposure, lighting and lens and camera usage, issues a non-photographer might find BORING! For a historic overview and genuine tour of the DC monuments at night, we recommend any of DC’s excellent guided tour companies.
Sturdy tripod and pocket flashlight required. There is minimal walking on this safari.
Offered every other Friday during spring, summer and fall.
“I took your Monuments at Night Photo Safari last night. I’ll never take pictures in daylight again!”
E. David Luria is founder and director of the Washington Photo Safari, Trip Advisor's 5-star-rated photo tour in DC that has trained over 32,000 amateur photographers in camera use and composition since 1999.
He is a commercial photographer specializing in architecture, editorial, event, food, art/still life and landmark photography. A member of the American Society of Media Photographers and the Society of Photographic Educators, he has had his images of the National Capital Area appear in over 100 publications, including the 2015 and 2016 calendars of the US Capitol Historical Society.
David is a US Army veteran fluent in Spanish, French and German and a graduate of Amherst College who studied photography at the Parsons School of Design in Paris with a protege of Henri Cartier Bresson.