Having attended twice before (several years ago), I knew exactly where along the parade path to stand - directly across the street from the Senator Theater. The classic theater marquee would provide some sorely needed extra light for my somewhat low-light challenged Fujifilm X-T10 with a Zhongyi Lens Turbo II and an adapted Nikon 85mm f/1.8 AF-D. The Lens Turbo II would provide close to an extra stop of light, and I hoped ISO 1600 and f/2.8 would be sufficient to keep the shutter speed around 1/160. That hope was dashed as I the sky darkened and the Senator’s marquee lights never came on. Oh well, push the ISO to 3200, open up to f/1.8, and hope for some well light parade floats. And after all, noisy images can be tamed a great deal when downsizing for the web.
The un-powered marquee, as well as the greater proliferation of LED lights (which tended to be dimmer, and can sometimes be tricky to shoot depending on your shutter speed and their power cycling) made most of my attempts to photograph people marching down the street futile. Fortunately, there was an abundance of colorful, creative, and (most importantly) well lit parade floats this year, which yielded a blog-gallery worth’s of photos from a camera that’s not particularly suited for conditions like this.