Sunday, March 30, 2008

Disney World After Dark: Sorcerer's Hat

As part of the 100 Years of Magic Celebration, the Sorcerer's Hat took up its place in front of the Chinese Theater in 2001. Now It is considered to be icon of the park.

Instead of debating the merits of "the hat" and whether it should remain as a permanent fixture in Disney's Hollywood Studio, I would like to relate the story behind the photo.

In October 2007 I made a "research" trip to Walt Disney World. My primary goal was to photographic specific elements of the parks for pen and ink drawings that I do. I also wanted to work on my night time photography with my new d-SLR camera.

On October 22nd I was in Disney's Hollywood Studios (then Disney-MGM) with my camera and my tripod. I had worked my way through several areas of the park and came to the intersection of Hollywood and Sunset Boulevards intent on getting a nice photograph of "the hat". Oh, and I should mention that earlier that day in Disney's Animal Kingdom, I purchased a safari vest to carry my lenses, notes, and other things in. I felt that it would be easier than carrying a backpack, and it was.

What I didn't think about was how much this looked like a Photopass Photographer; me with my Nikon, my tripod, and wearing my safari vest. As I was setting up for my shot I was approached by several couples, families and a few solo travellers, all with their Photopass cards out and ready. "Excuse me, could you take our picture?" After a while it became easier to take their picture with their cameras than to explain that I was not a Disney cast member. It took me a good half an hour to get a reasonably good photograph.

I have long wanted to be a Disney cast member and may live that dream sometime in the future. But that is another post. For now, I have the memory of that October 22nd knowing that for a short window of time, I was a cast member. At least I was mistook as one.

Oh, and I hope the picture turned out alright.


-- Ryan P. Wilson said...

Love the picture and the story! You have to be careful though, other Cast Members might wonder why you were out of uniform.

So, when are you going to post some of your pen and ink drawings for all of us to see?

D.O.C. said...


You can look at my October 14th post to get a flavor of what I do. But honestly, I have been a little slow getting started on the Disney stuff.

Anonymous said...

Hey there,
Anyway we can have copies of the photos, Im bored of my own shoddy ones as back drops!

Bernd Lee said...

Is the admission extra to go to the Sorcerer's Hat or is it covered in the Disney World Tickets