Cellpic Sunday – 5 December 2021

Phoenix, Arizona.

It started out as a simple trip to see the Phoenix Zoolights program in 2018. We so enjoyed walking through the lighted animal displays that we went again in 2019. Last year was a “bust” as it was closed due to Covid, but this year it was open again, and we went the day after Thanksgiving.

To be clear, don’t expect to see many real animals. They are all tucked away in their darkened areas for the night. We saw a camel that was giving rides to children of all ages. We saw flamingoes gathered near the edge of a walkway. In previous years, we saw live reindeer, but either we missed them, or they weren’t on display this year.

What we did see was the large collection of wireframe animals that were lighted internally. Their translucent skin is painted to match the markings of each particular animal. There are also wireframe outlines covered with tiny LED lights and many of the trees are also lighted with strings of LED lights.

Zoolights is open this holiday season through January 15, 2022. Some nights are drive-through, and some are walk-through. If you happen to be in the area, be sure to check their website here for details and to order tickets. From our experience, we’ve found the displays less crowded earlier in the evening. As we left around 7:30 PM, families were streaming in.

About the photo: This smiling tiger is but one example of the artistic style of these animal creations. I cropped the image to show the amount of detail that went into creating the tiger’s face. Take a close look at the detail in and around the eyes. There is an amazing amount of talent in creating these wireframe sculptures and then putting on the skin and shaping to fit the wireframe skeleton.

I captured this image with my Samsung S20U and cropped it in Adobe Lightroom. For basic processing, I clicked the “Auto” button and decided the image needed nothing more than cropping to a square to focus on the tiger’s face.

To take a closer look at the image in 2K HD, select the image for viewing on my Flickr site.

I am including this post as a response to the Photographing Public Art Challenge. The latest post from Cee in the challenge is here.

I encourage fellow bloggers to create their own Cellpic Sunday posts. I never have a specific topic for this feature, and the only rules are that the photo must be captured with a cell phone, iPad, or another mobile device… If you have an image from a drone or even a dashcam, that’s acceptable as well. The second rule is to link your challenge response to this post or leave a comment here with a link to your post in the comment.

John Steiner


      • Cool. 😀 😀 Just before we moved from Denver, Chris and I went to Denver’s Zoo Christmas lights. We were a member and got there before nighttime. It was so magical seeing all the twinkling lights to come alive. One of my best memories. Wish I was into photography by the, but was not. 😀 😀

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