02.17.19: Toward the monument

A runner and walker move through Constitution Gardens toward the Washington Monument, Washington, D.C.


Technical information

April 12, 2005,
10:43 a.m.

38°53'25" N
77°2'34" W
(Show in Google Maps)

Canon EOS 20D

Canon EF 28-135 (33mm) 


1/160th second


Washington, D.C., in the spring is a colorful area. The National Mall and areas surrounding many of the monuments are filled with blooming trees — cherries, dogwoods and other flowering trees — as well as trees showing fresh green leaves.

I was in Washington on business on this April 2005 morning and had time for a quick photo hike before meetings began midday. I visited the Vietnam Memorial and grabbed some photos, then headed back to the hotel through Constitution Gardens, along the north side of the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool.

As I walked I became intrigued by this curving pathway beneath flowering trees with the Washington Monument standing in the background. 

But the path was empty, which made for a boring composition.

So I held my position and waited for some pedestrians. A runner and walker both entered the scene at the same time so I grabbed a couple of quick shots.

I like how the runner and walker add action to the scene and how the walker’s flowery Hawaiian shirt adds additional color. I also like how the Washington Monument in the background identifies the location as Washington, D.C. Without the monument this would be a generic spring park photo that could have been captured anywhere.

This wasn’t a shot I had planned — the Vietnam Memorial was the reason I walked to this area — but it turned out to be a keeper.

Each week I will post a photo from my collection with an explanation of how I got the shot. Previous photos of the week are in the archives.