A quick bio about me. I’m Bo and I’m a freelance photographer in Virginia who has combined my love of amusement parks with my love of photography. So I get to take photos of amusement parks? Yes, and it’s as fun as it sounds!
Kings Dominion gave me this opportunity to blog about park photography. You don’t have to be a pro photographer to capture great images. The best camera is the one you have with you, be it a cell phone or high-end DSLR. So here are some general ideas and locations to have fun photographing while visiting Kings Dominion. Feel free to share your ideas in the comments.
But first, there are a couple of rules. Follow all park policies! No going into restricted areas! Don’t bring your phone or camera onto the rides and attractions! I suggest getting FunPix if you want on-ride photos of yourself; it’s safer and much cheaper than losing that $700 iPhone. That said, have fun!
As you enter the front gate, the Eiffel Tower and Royal Fountain welcome you for a day of fun and thrills! This is the most photographed area in the park and for good reason. The beautiful landscaping and scenic water fountains combine with the 315’ Eiffel Tower for the perfect backdrop to capture and share moments of your #KDBestDay with family and friends!
The observation deck of the Eiffel Tower is a great area to photograph large portions of the park from above. This is the only spot you can get an eye-level shot of the top of Intimidator 305, Drop Tower, and Windseeker.
Planet Snoopy and other family-friendly rides throughout the park can’t be beat when it comes to getting the perfect candid shot of your child. Whether it’s capturing them taking their first ever roller coaster ride on Woodstock Express, enjoying a relaxing moment on the Grand Carousel, or the excitement of meeting their favorite Peanuts character, these are the spots to take the photos you’ll cherish forever!
You don’t need to be a thrill seeker to appreciate the striking beauty of the rides and attractions. As a photographer, these twisted wood and steel behemoths are works of art just as much as they are fun and thrilling. The lines, textures, shapes, and patterns allow you to let your artistic side shine!
If you’re a landscape/nature photographer visiting the park, you can still get in on the fun with the park’s landscaping. The serenity of a flower and butterfly are a unique contrast to the thunderous roar of a roller coaster passing by. And if you go to Dinosaurs Alive, you may find a T-Rex or two hidden amongst the trees.
I personally prefer bright, vibrant colors and sunny skies, but what if it’s cloudy during your visit? Don’t fret! Cloudy days can help convey a dramatic mood. The red track of Intimidator 305 is a wonderful contrast to moody, grey clouds. If it’s raining, use a puddle on the ground to get an artsy reflection shot.
When the sun begins to set, the photography fun doesn’t end. Dominator is the perfect subject for amazing sunset photos! The Eiffel Tower and Royal Fountain come alive with a rainbow of colors. Delirium, Bad Apple, and Windseeker have awesome LED lighting packages that make interesting patterns if you’re into long exposure photography.
Did I mention fireworks? Because fireworks and roller coasters go great together! A tripod is a must if you want the light trails, but the results are worth it.
Another subject in the park I love photographing is the live entertainment. With the varied and ever-changing lighting levels during performances, this can be more of a technical challenge (no flash photography!). I’m always up for a challenge and it’s good practice for me.
Finally, autumn is one of my favorite times of the year to be at the park; the foliage starts to change and Haunt season begins! Have you ever wanted to try your hand photographing with theatrical fog and lighting? Now’s your chance! If you’re lucky, you can get a monster to pose for a moment to get that epic Haunt photo to send to your friends. Be warned, monsters are also prone to photobombing your selfies!
I’ve only touched on a few photography ideas currently at Kings Dominion. With the additions of Twisted Timbers and WinterFest in 2018, there will be even more reasons to bring your camera with you to Kings Dominion! Barrel roll drop, epic airtime moments, ice skating on Snowflake Lake, and the Eiffel Tower converted into a 300’ tall Christmas tree!? Yes, please! I’ll have my camera ready, and you should, too!!
Don’t forget to tag Kings Dominion and use #KDBestDay on Twitter and Instagram. Your photo may be featured on kingsdominion.com or on FunTV throughout the park!
to check out Bo Corbin's work - visit him on Instagram @coasterphotographer