Christmas Lights At Longwood Gardens

We went to Longwood Gardens, in Kennett Square, PA, for their annual Christmas light displays. These are just a few of the outdoor displays at night. There are also many other displays throughout the Conservatory and other buildings. One of the other very interesting displays was a room full of decorations with amazing ornaments made from books and other paper pages. They must have been cut/fabricated maybe by laser cutting. But it was amazing to see the intricate cutting & fabrication. I will post some of them next. Most of the images I shot with an Olympus OMD-1 mk I with a 14-140mm Panasonic lens (with the lens stabilization turned off). I was also using a Canon body with a 12-24mm lens,  but was relying more on the OMD for in-body stabilization. Much lighter to carry and with the stabilized body worked well for the images in early evening. I found the Olympus in-body stabilization worked better than the Panasonic lens stabilization. Plus if you stop down to f/22 you can get some really cool motion blurs or spins with the Olympus OM-D. I saw a few tripods being used, but you usually have to get a free permit for them and cannot use tripods after 2:00. Plus it was so crowded it would have been in the way, so they probably would not allow it for this time.

The featured image above was at 22mm with the 4/3 Olympus OM-D mkI.

We had to get there early, before 2:00 in the afternoon, otherwise, even being members, you had to have a timed entrance because of the huge crowds that come to see the night displays. Also getting there later you have to park off site and take shuttles to the facility. But there is plenty to see before the evening lights up! It takes hours to go through the Conservatory, which is all decorated for Christmas, and you still probably will not see everything.

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Late afternoon along the walkways, getting ready for the full impact of the lights at night.

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Fountains set to music – when darker they would have colorful lights

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Along the path to other fountains & displays starting to get dark.

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3 image panorama @14mm- assembled in Photoshop

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Birdhouse Display early evening before dark, 18mm, f/10 @ 1/5 sec

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Bird house display in the dark, f/ 5.6 @ 0.3 sec

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3 image panorama – 14mm. Also these were cascading lights, so in a way it is also an Image Stack that included the cascading lights as they “fell”.  14mm, 1/3rd of a second each exposure, handheld. Pano & stacked in Photoshop. f/8 @ 1/8 sec, handheld

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2 image vertical panorama & stack. Panorama to show reflections in water and stack to include more of the cascading lights.

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Single image, m43 15mm, 1/8 Sec to show green lights before changing to another color, handheld.

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Christmas Tree Changing Color of Lights, 1/13th sec, handheld, m43 @ 32mm

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Tree with Lights and Color Spotlights on Tree Trunk. f/ 4.5 @ 12mm Canon, 1/30th sec

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Another Tree with Lights, 12mm Canon, f/ 4.5 @ 1/13 sec. handheld

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3 image Panorama, 24mm Canon, f/ 5.6 @ 1/8 sec. handheld

7 Comments on “Christmas Lights At Longwood Gardens

  1. Beautiful captures, Reed! We were just talking about Longwood Gardens at Christmas time, how it has been years since we last went. Thank you for sharing these!

    • Thanks and Season’s Greetings! Other years seemed more spectacular for the outdoor displays, but it still was amazing! And fun! The Conservatory was very nice also and had areas open that I never had been in before. They had an area for Christmas Trees with decorations made by different grades of local schools which was nice also. So it was a Great Day for seeing and photographing!

    • Yes! It is an amazing place all year round, but especially at Christmas! The photos do not do it justice. The Conservatory there is also spectacular at Christmas. I will post those photos next. Merry Christmas!

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