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The official photo blog of J. David Buerk Photography.

Lexus Experience Amazing Drive Event

Last Saturday I attended the Lexus Experience Amazing Drive Event, which is a hands-on driving demonstration that showcased much of the Lexus lineup and its technology, similar to performance driving events I’ve attended for Jaguar numerous times, and Kia featuring the Stinger head-to-head with direct performance competitors from Porsche, BMW, and Audi.

I’ll be first to admit that, until this weekend, the only hands-on experience I’ve had with any of Lexus’ marque has been briefly sitting in each Lexus on display at the Washington Auto Show each year (including the new (as of 2017) LC 500). So, although this was my first time driving or even riding in a Lexus, it was not my first time sitting in and playing with Lexus’ top-of-the-line car. Nobody I know owns a Lexus; I simply have more experience with their direct competitors such as Jaguar, BMW, Audi, and Infiniti, as these are the brands I and my closest friends own and drive. The day started off with a presentation about Lexus’ history and the emphasis on craftsmanship, and some factoids about the LC 500 flagship sports coupe.

Copy of Liquid Lunch: Summer of 2019

Immediately following the introductory presentation, the group was led outside the tent to a series of ES 300h and LS 500h sedans for a ~2mi suburban circuit test-drive of each model. Driving the cars themselves was fantastic; each vehicle handled sharply but comfortably and predictably, and the interior craftsmanship (with the exception of the UX, which I’ll get to later on) was top notch. Truly refined, with comfortable leather in pleasing colors that coordinated with the dark wood tones found elsewhere in the cabin. The ride was quiet, even with A/C blowing, and the hybrids’ had the only Start-Stop system I’ve found completely unobtrusive - in fact, it was so quiet and gentle I didn’t know it was equipped with one for the first half of the drive until I started paying attention for it specifically (Start-Stop is a major pet-peeve of mine, but I can happily report that Lexus’ is the only Start-Stop I don’t hate). The only negative about a vehicle I can even mention from this demo isn’t really a negative; it’s a nit-pick. The ES 300h is slow. Even in Sport, it’s slow; in fact, I could not tell a difference between Normal and Sport. Even in “manual” (quotes because Lexus does not offer a single manual gearbox) in Sport, my passenger didn’t believe me when I told them I had the accelerator floored; its 8.1s 0-60 felt like my car at half throttle. But let’s be real here; nobody is buying the ES 300h for performance, with its 215hp drivetrain - it is a fuel-sensible luxury appointed mid-size family car, and a great one at that, eating the miles up at 44MPG. The LS 500h, with its 354hp, was impressively fast for its size and hybrid drivetrain, reportedly clocking a 5.1s 0-60 time.

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Next was the main event; a hot lap in the LC 500. Lexus’ flagship grand touring luxury sports coupe is equipped with a 5.0 liter V8 producing 471hp mated to a 10 speed automatic transmission produced by Aisin - note, it is not a DCT. The LC 500 goes 0-60 in 4.4 seconds, with a top speed of 168MPH. A 354hp hybrid model is also available, but I won’t be discussing it as it wasn’t present at this event, nor would it interest me unless it were being placed head-to-head against a BMW i8 much like the Kia Stinger was pitted against a Porsche Panamera 4. Sitting in the handsomely appointed interior, the first thing you notice is how incredibly quiet the car makes the world around you; the interior is a truly serene place - quiet, and engulfs occupants in the finest upholstery offered in Lexus’ sophisticated modern design language. The immediate attenuation of the outside world was the first thing I noticed when I sat in the LC 500 at an auto show two years ago, and that incredible soundproofing is still present in the production version. All that quiet allows the driver to enjoy the symphony, be that from the Mark Levinson audio system (which I did not test in any of Lexus’ cars), or more importantly, the LC’s throaty, exotic exhaust note. And it’s quite important to point out that in an age of electronic sound symposers from the likes of BMW, the LC 500 has clear influences from Lexus’ LFA halo car, in that the exhaust note you hear is 100% generated by the car itself, and not faked through the speakers. Surely the LC has undergone some form of sound optimization just like the LFA’s exhaust was tuned by Yamaha to create its unmistakably distinct note. The LC 500’s sound is more Aston Martin than the LFA’s F1 exhaust note, but with a base price of $93,000, you can buy four LC 500s for the MSRP of one LFA (or more, considering the LFA has only gone up in value, and as of this writing, only five of the 178 LFAs in the US are currently for resale), making the LC a bargain exotic.

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One of many ways the LC 500 demo event could have been improved is by pitting the LC 500 head-to-head against their RC F, which was on static display, but not even a standard RC 300 was available for test driving and comparison the entire event. The two cars are indeed in slightly different classes, with the RC standing as a direct competitor to the M4, Q60, and C63, and the LC 500 is pitted against the 840i, SL 550, and F-Type, and even the i8, NSX, and R8, but in a large way the comparison isn’t far off at all. A head-to-head comparison would have easily solved several event shortcomings with one fell swoop - course familiarization, which was totally absent, would be taken care of, especially with a mandatory “slow” lap, which could be marketed as a lap to try out normal driving dynamics before switching into Sport+ for subsequent performance laps, the RC would actually be represented in Lexus’ lineup, and participants would get more wheel time than a single lap and 5 VERY slow MPH through a chicane.

PS: Lexus, if you’re reading this, pretty, pretty please give the RC F a 6 or 7 speed manual transmission option - you’re losing every manual-loving potential customer to BMW and Porsche!

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The LC 500 itself is fantastic. In addition to the interior you’ll never want to get out of, and the exhaust note you’ll never tire of hearing, it handles beautifully, with safe and predictable understeer rather than erratic or temperamental oversteer, and the brakes stably guide the car into corners quickly and evenly. Even the trunk is surprisingly large, and could easily stow luggage for a weekend getaway, or a couple’s golf trip. The back seats are predictably low on headroom, but this is the only comfort gripe, and on a car like this it’s not an actual problem; the prospective buyers who actually care about rear headroom (all zero of you) can wait for the upcoming convertible model of the LC 500. In fact, the only negative about the LC I can even write about is its throttle response, and this seems to be more a symptom of the 10 speed transmission than the engine itself. Even in Sport+ there is noticeable throttle lag when pinning the accelerator, especially coming out of corners; it seems that the transmission, despite its 0.12 second shifts, can’t choose a gear and rev-match quickly enough to match demand. The engine itself revs quite freely, so lag seems to come from the drivetrain. It’s possible Lexus chose to forgo a DCT in order to avoid gear hunting lag they can also sometimes suffer from; shifting “manually” via paddles alleviates some of this throttle lag. At the end of the day, it’s a nit-pick issue, as it’s just a quirk of this car that owners will get used to as they become familiar with driving it, plus this is a GT car - it is a car meant to eat up miles on the highway, turn heads in the city, and drop with the valet. It’s not a track queen; it’s a luxury cruiser with performance capabilities refined beyond most of its competitors. And for the drivers who somehow need even more excitement than the already exquisite LC 500 offers, “an unnamed performance model” is in the pipeline - expect an LC F Sport model to be formally announced in the next year or so with a twin-turbocharged V8 supplying over 600hp.

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Next up was an agility demo of the new UX 200h. This course was tight, meant to simulate parking lot maneuverability. Participants were allowed to drive any of the available standard and hybrid UX models through the course as many times as they desired, which meant this demo provided the most wheel-time of any of the models demoed.

To be fully transparent, I didn’t even know the UX existed until arriving to the Lexus Experience Amazing Drive Event; I’d simply never heard of it or ever seen one. Naturally, I knew nothing about it, and while test driving it one of my friends was reading the sticker, and asked me to guess the list price - I was a full $9k over its $34,000 starting price for the hybrid model. At $32,000 for the standard model, I think the UX 200 is extremely competitively priced for what it offers, which is style and comfort in an affordable upscale CUV package, and there’s even AWD available on the higher trim UX 250 with either standard or hybrid drivetrains - that’s a huge deal! The UX is Lexus’ newest and more affordably priced crossover offering, seemingly geared toward the millennial yuppie; it offers a hybrid model, and seems to be the replacement for the CT 200h wagon, which I always admired. Undoubtedly to cut costs, the UX features abundant plastic in lieu of the wood and leather appointed interiors of the rest of Lexus’ lineup, but the supple, supportive seating NuLuxe surfaces feel identical to the leather in Lexus’ higher models, as is the optional premium infotainment and driver’s technology. And let’s just take a second to appreciate how beautiful the Nori Green Pearl paint job is paired with Glazed Caramel seating surfaces; my group couldn’t stop talking about it, because it’s nice to see a luxury marquee with paint offerings beyond monochrome variations. Unfortunately for you readers, since this was the least restrictive portion of the drive event, I spent my time demoing the UX rather than photographing it; you’ll have to check out Nori Green Pearl on Lexus’ website.

The final demonstration, on a 3rd course, was of the NX and RX’s agility and driver assistance and safety technologies. The course was, again, meant to simulate neighborhood and parking lot maneuvering, which is where these models thrive, as stereotypical soccer-mommy-mobile family-grocery-getters. These mid-size SUVs are ubiquitous in the parking lots of Whole Foods, World Market, Pottery Barn, and the like, and for good reason, as Lexus has made an exceptional family SUV product - after driving and riding in them, I now see why they are so popular. The RX is SO. COMFY. Although I was expecting the RXL to have a reclining rear seat, I was pleasantly surprised it also adjusted fore and aft, which meant that my already plentiful legroom expanded to an even larger expanse of flat floor surface area - and this RXL didn’t even have the optional rear captains chairs. The NX offered a sportier road feel through the steering wheel, and the RX was more plush, but both were equally pleasant to either drive or be driven in.

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The key demo for this portion of the Experience was the Pre-Collision System, which will automatically fully deploy the brakes in the event that front or rear sensors detect an object or pedestrian in the vehicle’s path, even if your foot is completely off the brake. To demonstrate this, participants back into a parking spot containing an obstruction, and are instructed to leave the vehicle to brake on its own (touching the brake will override the system, indicating that the driver is in control, and will allow objects to be struck). My group tried this several times, from a stop, at a single car-length from the obstruction, which meant vehicle speed was low enough that the Pre-Collision System emergency-stopped the SUV before striking the barrier - this can be seen in the video at the end of this blog. Next, someone tried testing the system at a slight angle to the flat barrier - the Pre-Collision System did stop as intended, but struck the barrier, knocking it over, before stopping in time. Finally, I chose to test the system at idle speed (the RX won’t reach idle on its own in a single vehicle distance), simulating the inevitable idiot driver who will buy one of these and think this system means they don’t need to use the brake while parking anymore; the Pre-Collision System again, predictably, stopped on its own, but not before striking and knocking over the barrier. Some of the event staff didn’t believe us when we said we were completely off the brakes when it hit the barriers, but to be clear, the Pre-Collision System worked completely as intended (and advertised on Lexus’ website), and this behavior isn’t entirely unexpected; the laws of physics always apply - greater kinetic energy requires greater stopping distance. While one staffer seemed annoyed and disbelieving, another who was much more helpful and informative was genuinely curious how we got the system to actually hit the barrier, and it sounded like they were going to try stress-testing it out more themselves after participants had left - we were all happy to describe the different things we had tried and the results for them to try it for themselves.

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That was it in terms of driving opportunities, but static displays of the UX, RC F, LC, ES, and LS were open to explore, but not powered on for tech demonstration like at a convention center auto show - a simple generator running power to all the cars could have solved this. The static displays provided the opportunity to try out the rear seats of the ES and LS, and the back seat is where you want to live in the LS. I have to say, I’m not a sedan person, and personally, in terms of the Lexus lineup, am most realistically interested in the RC F, but the LS 500h made the biggest impression on me. I have always and will always love grand touring coupes, so while the LC 500 was my favorite car of the day, it was exactly as great as I expected; the LS, however, is the one that really surprised me shaped my impression of Lexus. As someone unfamiliar with Lexus, but more familiar with most of its competitors, I’ve always thought of Lexuses as “fancy Toyotas.” I’ve been wrong this whole time. Very wrong. Pitted against the Jaguar XJ, the Lexus LS holds its own, and really just leaves buyers with a choice - do you prefer shiny British style, or modern Japanese aesthetic? The LS 500’s executive rear seats have adjustable recline, headrests, bolsters, lumbar, and the standard climate controls expected in an executive luxury sedan, all controlled through a touchscreen monitor in the armrest.

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I have a deep love of Jaguar’s emphasis on performance, but for an executive saloon, it’s hard to say no to that 354hp hybrid V6 that gets 28MPG. If you like the XJ’s Supercharged V8 470 ponies, Lexus offers the LS 500 F Sport with 416hp and still manages 21MPG for the AWD model; the XJ only offers AWD on the 340hp Supercharged V6 that only manages 21MPG, not the RWD-only 5.0L V8 that averages 18MPG. This comes down to a fundamental difference in direction the two manufacturers have taken - both are competing against German luxury frontrunners BMW and Mercedes-Benz, but have taken on the fuel economy problem in different ways. Jaguar has focused their efforts on all-electric vehicles, with the introduction of the I-Pace, and instead offer more economical Diesel engines on select models. Lexus fights the gas pump through its hybrids, and Toyota has always been the kink of hybrid technology. Hybrids are the immediate future of cars, and the fact that Lexus has so finely mated luxury, build quality, and performance out of a hybrid drivetrain - it’s impossible to ignore that.

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I’m looking forward to Lexus returning to DC next year for another installment of the Lexus Experience Amazing Drive Event, hopefully with an RC F, and eventually the LC F, which is rumored to be on sale for the 2022 model year. And next time I’m behind a Lexus in traffic, I’m sure to pay a lot more attention.

Best of 2016

Each year I release a set of photos showcasing the highlights I've photographed over the previous year.  It's a Year in Pictures, similar to how news outlets also compile Year in Review columns which rely almost solely on photojournalism (which is an important and unfortunately underappreciated art, by the way).  This year's "Best Of" is coming a bit late - I usually release this on New Years, but I've been rather busy and distracted upon return from my trip to St. Louis.

So now I present to you the Best of 2016: A Year in Pictures.  Photos are presented in order in which they were photographed, and contain captions and links to relevant articles when applicable.

Janet Echelman's  1.8 Renwick  at the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum.  This photograph of Echelman's woven sculpture is displayed upside down to create additional dramatic discord and illusion to the already intricate landscape of mesh. 

Janet Echelman's 1.8 Renwick at the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum.  This photograph of Echelman's woven sculpture is displayed upside down to create additional dramatic discord and illusion to the already intricate landscape of mesh. 

John Grade's  Middle Fork  at the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum.  Viewed from the base, or roots of the molded tree recreated from cedar planks, the natural béziers of organic growth are showcased with a feeling of fluidity.

John Grade's Middle Fork at the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum.  Viewed from the base, or roots of the molded tree recreated from cedar planks, the natural béziers of organic growth are showcased with a feeling of fluidity.

Portrait of Dennis Hazell, Customer Service Manager of Washington Dulles International Airport, photographed in Eero Saarinen's historic Main Terminal Building.

Portrait of Dennis Hazell, Customer Service Manager of Washington Dulles International Airport, photographed in Eero Saarinen's historic Main Terminal Building.

Rim and caliper of the 2016 Alfa Romea Giulia sport sedan, photographed at the Washington Auto Show.

Rim and caliper of the 2016 Alfa Romea Giulia sport sedan, photographed at the Washington Auto Show.

Cabin crew serve champagne in a First Class compartment aboard Emirates' new A380, which began inaugural service between Washington, DC and Dubai on February 23rd, 2016.

Cabin crew serve champagne in a First Class compartment aboard Emirates' new A380, which began inaugural service between Washington, DC and Dubai on February 23rd, 2016.

The First Class cabin aboard Emirates' new A380, which began inaugural service between Washington, DC and Dubai on February 23rd, 2016.

The First Class cabin aboard Emirates' new A380, which began inaugural service between Washington, DC and Dubai on February 23rd, 2016.

Portrait of Scott C. Booth, Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority Chief of Police.

Portrait of Scott C. Booth, Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority Chief of Police.

The Kitchen by Wolfgang Puck; a new restaurant offering at Washington Dulles International Airport.  Much of my work, many of which goes undisplayed on my website, is photographing commercial marketing imagery of concessions and products for the DC area's two airports.

The Kitchen by Wolfgang Puck; a new restaurant offering at Washington Dulles International Airport.  Much of my work, many of which goes undisplayed on my website, is photographing commercial marketing imagery of concessions and products for the DC area's two airports.

The bar inside The Kitchen by Wolfgang Puck; a new restaurant offering at Washington Dulles International Airport.  Much of my work, many of which goes undisplayed on my website, is photographing commercial marketing imagery of concessions and products for the DC area's two airports.

The bar inside The Kitchen by Wolfgang Puck; a new restaurant offering at Washington Dulles International Airport.  Much of my work, many of which goes undisplayed on my website, is photographing commercial marketing imagery of concessions and products for the DC area's two airports.

Portrait of Sidney Woods, Marketing Director at Washington Dulles International Airport, photographed in Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport's Main Terminal.

Portrait of Sidney Woods, Marketing Director at Washington Dulles International Airport, photographed in Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport's Main Terminal.

My own Infiniti G37S 6MT photographed in Frederick, Maryland on a day and place reminiscent of the iconic Windows XP background,  Bliss  by Charles O'Rear.

My own Infiniti G37S 6MT photographed in Frederick, Maryland on a day and place reminiscent of the iconic Windows XP background, Bliss by Charles O'Rear.

Wedding portrait of Amy and Brandon.

Wedding portrait of Amy and Brandon.

Wedding portrait of Nina; it rained on their wedding day, pushing the ceremony inside, and rushing the portrait session in Leesburg between bands of drizzle and high winds.

Wedding portrait of Nina; it rained on their wedding day, pushing the ceremony inside, and rushing the portrait session in Leesburg between bands of drizzle and high winds.

A Piper tow plane for Jersey Ridge Soaring takes off from Blairstown Airport (1N7), lifting a glider into the sky.

A Piper tow plane for Jersey Ridge Soaring takes off from Blairstown Airport (1N7), lifting a glider into the sky.

View inside the cockpit of a glider being towed to 2,500ft before release of the tow cable.  The tow plane is visible directly forward, with instrumentation on the console and the red lever which releases the tow cable.

View inside the cockpit of a glider being towed to 2,500ft before release of the tow cable.  The tow plane is visible directly forward, with instrumentation on the console and the red lever which releases the tow cable.

A selfie inside a glider soaring around 2,500ft.  A maximum altitude of 3,500 was reached on this flight using thermal for lift.

A selfie inside a glider soaring around 2,500ft.  A maximum altitude of 3,500 was reached on this flight using thermal for lift.

Aerial view of Blairstown Airport (1N7) from 1,000ft.  The small public use airport in New Jersey is home to Jersey Ridge Soaring, a glider service and school.

Aerial view of Blairstown Airport (1N7) from 1,000ft.  The small public use airport in New Jersey is home to Jersey Ridge Soaring, a glider service and school.

All-Nippon Airways' "BB-8"  Star Wars  777 departing Washington Dulles International Airport after a promotional visit by the aircraft.  The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority held a Discover Dulles event to mark the occasion, welcoming 50 lucky participants to watch the aircraft's arrival on the runway itself, and providing a tour of Airport Operations and Dulles' Ramp Tower.

All-Nippon Airways' "BB-8" Star Wars 777 departing Washington Dulles International Airport after a promotional visit by the aircraft.  The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority held a Discover Dulles event to mark the occasion, welcoming 50 lucky participants to watch the aircraft's arrival on the runway itself, and providing a tour of Airport Operations and Dulles' Ramp Tower.

LATAM Airlines begins inaugural service between Lima, Peru and Washington, DC on May 2nd, 2016.  LATAM is the result of LAN Airlines and TAM Airlines merging at the same time this inaugural flight took place; the LAN Airlines livery seen above has been discontinued.

LATAM Airlines begins inaugural service between Lima, Peru and Washington, DC on May 2nd, 2016.  LATAM is the result of LAN Airlines and TAM Airlines merging at the same time this inaugural flight took place; the LAN Airlines livery seen above has been discontinued.

Portrait of Manuel Rodriguez, Award Winning Chef, photographed making lamb chops in the kitchen of Kapnos Taverna by Mike Isabella.

Portrait of Manuel Rodriguez, Award Winning Chef, photographed making lamb chops in the kitchen of Kapnos Taverna by Mike Isabella.

An American Airlines Douglas DC-3 parked outside the original terminal building at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, formerly known as Washington National Airport.  The aircraft was on site to commemorate the airport's 75th anniversary, after opening it's doors on June 16th, 1941.

An American Airlines Douglas DC-3 parked outside the original terminal building at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, formerly known as Washington National Airport.  The aircraft was on site to commemorate the airport's 75th anniversary, after opening it's doors on June 16th, 1941.

Portrait of  Rose Corps , a synth-pop musician and singer, photographed at CityCenterDC for promotional portraits before the release of her first two singles  Frosted Glass  and  Making it Hard.

Portrait of Rose Corps, a synth-pop musician and singer, photographed at CityCenterDC for promotional portraits before the release of her first two singles Frosted Glass and Making it Hard.

Portrait of  Rose Corps , a synth-pop musician and singer, photographed at CityCenterDC for promotional portraits before the release of her first two singles  Frosted Glass  and  Making it Hard.

Portrait of Rose Corps, a synth-pop musician and singer, photographed at CityCenterDC for promotional portraits before the release of her first two singles Frosted Glass and Making it Hard.

Portrait of  Rose Corps , a synth-pop musician and singer, photographed at CityCenterDC for promotional portraits before the release of her first two singles  Frosted Glass  and  Making it Hard.

Portrait of Rose Corps, a synth-pop musician and singer, photographed at CityCenterDC for promotional portraits before the release of her first two singles Frosted Glass and Making it Hard.

Portrait of  Rose Corps , a synth-pop musician and singer, photographed at CityCenterDC for promotional portraits before the release of her first two singles  Frosted Glass  and  Making it Hard.

Portrait of Rose Corps, a synth-pop musician and singer, photographed at CityCenterDC for promotional portraits before the release of her first two singles Frosted Glass and Making it Hard.

Portrait of Savannah, a rising high school senior, Class of 2017, photographed at her stable where she cares for her horse Tosca, and trains with him for equestrian events.

Portrait of Savannah, a rising high school senior, Class of 2017, photographed at her stable where she cares for her horse Tosca, and trains with him for equestrian events.

Portrait of Savannah, a rising high school senior, Class of 2017, photographed at her stable where she cares for her horse Tosca, and trains with him for equestrian events.

Portrait of Savannah, a rising high school senior, Class of 2017, photographed at her stable where she cares for her horse Tosca, and trains with him for equestrian events.

Portrait of Alyssa McGuire, fitness coach and newborn photographer, photographed atop Stony Man Mountain in Shenandoah, Virginia.

Portrait of Alyssa McGuire, fitness coach and newborn photographer, photographed atop Stony Man Mountain in Shenandoah, Virginia.

Portrait of J. David Buerk, Washington, DC area commercial photographer, photographed by Alyssa McGuire atop Stony Man Mountain in Shenandoah, Virginia.  Photo by Alyssa McGuire, edited by J. David Buerk.

Portrait of J. David Buerk, Washington, DC area commercial photographer, photographed by Alyssa McGuire atop Stony Man Mountain in Shenandoah, Virginia.  Photo by Alyssa McGuire, edited by J. David Buerk.

Portrait of James Dingell, Airport Management Intern at Ronald Reagan National Airport for the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, photographed on his last day working for the Dulles Jet Center, where he worked continuously for over 10 years.

Portrait of James Dingell, Airport Management Intern at Ronald Reagan National Airport for the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, photographed on his last day working for the Dulles Jet Center, where he worked continuously for over 10 years.

A blue poison dart frog photographed at the Smithsonian National Zoological Park in Washington, DC.

A blue poison dart frog photographed at the Smithsonian National Zoological Park in Washington, DC.

Royal Air Maroc begins inaugural service between Casablanca, Morocco and Washington, DC on September 8th, 2016.

Royal Air Maroc begins inaugural service between Casablanca, Morocco and Washington, DC on September 8th, 2016.

A limited edition Translucent Pink autographed Lindsey Stirling "Shatter Me" 33 RPM vinyl on an Audio-Technica turntable.

A limited edition Translucent Pink autographed Lindsey Stirling "Shatter Me" 33 RPM vinyl on an Audio-Technica turntable.

Aerial photograph of the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Dulles, Virginia.  Photographed via helicopter, 250ft AGL.

Aerial photograph of the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Dulles, Virginia.  Photographed via helicopter, 250ft AGL.

"Superman" leads the way at the 23rd annual Dulles Day Plane Pull benefitting Special Olympics.  The Special Olympics team is always the first team to pull the FedEx 757 to kick off this family fun charity event which draws 10,000 - 15,000 visitors every year.

"Superman" leads the way at the 23rd annual Dulles Day Plane Pull benefitting Special Olympics.  The Special Olympics team is always the first team to pull the FedEx 757 to kick off this family fun charity event which draws 10,000 - 15,000 visitors every year.

Aerial photograph of Washington Dulles International Airport's iconic Main Terminal Building designed by architect Eero Saarinen.  Cranes which are part of the "Silver Line" rail construction project can be seen at the bottom of the frame, as construction of the Dulles Metro Station commences.  Photographed via helicopter, 500ft AGL.

Aerial photograph of Washington Dulles International Airport's iconic Main Terminal Building designed by architect Eero Saarinen.  Cranes which are part of the "Silver Line" rail construction project can be seen at the bottom of the frame, as construction of the Dulles Metro Station commences.  Photographed via helicopter, 500ft AGL.

A promotional image for the Dulles and Reagan concessions program, photographed at The Kitchen by Wolfgang Puck; a new restaurant offering at Washington Dulles International Airport.  Photographs from this photoshoot were selected to be used as cover images for Shop & Dine guides at Dulles International and Reagan National airports.

A promotional image for the Dulles and Reagan concessions program, photographed at The Kitchen by Wolfgang Puck; a new restaurant offering at Washington Dulles International Airport.  Photographs from this photoshoot were selected to be used as cover images for Shop & Dine guides at Dulles International and Reagan National airports.

View of the lounge area inside Turkish Airlines' new Business Lounge at Washington Dulles International Airport.

View of the lounge area inside Turkish Airlines' new Business Lounge at Washington Dulles International Airport.

A Turkish coffee with Turkish Delight served inside Turkish Airlines' new Business Lounge at Washington Dulles International Airport.

A Turkish coffee with Turkish Delight served inside Turkish Airlines' new Business Lounge at Washington Dulles International Airport.

Exterior promotional photo of Duty Free Americas after renovation at Washington Dulles International Airport.  Much of my work, many of which goes undisplayed on my website, is photographing commercial marketing imagery of concessions and products for the DC area's two airports.

Exterior promotional photo of Duty Free Americas after renovation at Washington Dulles International Airport.  Much of my work, many of which goes undisplayed on my website, is photographing commercial marketing imagery of concessions and products for the DC area's two airports.

Interior promotional photo of Duty Free Americas after renovation at Washington Dulles International Airport.  Much of my work, many of which goes undisplayed on my website, is photographing commercial marketing imagery of concessions and products for the DC area's two airports.

Interior promotional photo of Duty Free Americas after renovation at Washington Dulles International Airport.  Much of my work, many of which goes undisplayed on my website, is photographing commercial marketing imagery of concessions and products for the DC area's two airports.

Artist Katherine Riedel painting still-life in her Waterford, Virginia studio.

Artist Katherine Riedel painting still-life in her Waterford, Virginia studio.

The tide rolls in on the Chesapeake Bay with the Chesapeake Bay Bridge in the distance on a cool Summer day at Sandy Point State Park in Annapolis, Maryland.

The tide rolls in on the Chesapeake Bay with the Chesapeake Bay Bridge in the distance on a cool Summer day at Sandy Point State Park in Annapolis, Maryland.

Portrait of Katie, a rising high school senior, Class of 2017, photographed at her stable where she cares for her horse Retro, and trains with him for equestrian events.

Portrait of Katie, a rising high school senior, Class of 2017, photographed at her stable where she cares for her horse Retro, and trains with him for equestrian events.

Portrait of Katie, a rising high school senior, Class of 2017, photographed at her stable where she cares for her horse Retro, and trains with him for equestrian events.

Portrait of Katie, a rising high school senior, Class of 2017, photographed at her stable where she cares for her horse Retro, and trains with him for equestrian events.

Portrait of Katie, a rising high school senior, Class of 2017, photographed at her stable where she cares for her horse Retro, and trains with him for equestrian events.

Portrait of Katie, a rising high school senior, Class of 2017, photographed at her stable where she cares for her horse Retro, and trains with him for equestrian events.

Tire and rim detail on a bagged Ford Mustang at the first Regular Car Reviews car show in Orwigsburg, Pennsylvania.

Tire and rim detail on a bagged Ford Mustang at the first Regular Car Reviews car show in Orwigsburg, Pennsylvania.

A Translucent Green Lindsey Stirling eponymous LP 33 RPM vinyl on an Audio-Technica turntable. 

A Translucent Green Lindsey Stirling eponymous LP 33 RPM vinyl on an Audio-Technica turntable. 

Leo surprises Chelsea with a marriage proposal at the skating rink at Reston Town Center, Reston, Virginia.  She said yes!

Leo surprises Chelsea with a marriage proposal at the skating rink at Reston Town Center, Reston, Virginia.  She said yes!

Leo and Chelsea and their two dogs, upon getting engaged at the skating rink at Reston Town Center, Reston, Virginia.  She said yes!

Leo and Chelsea and their two dogs, upon getting engaged at the skating rink at Reston Town Center, Reston, Virginia.  She said yes!

2016 has been a great year in my photographic career, bringing me new experiences, introducing me to new faces, and taking me new places.  Here's to 2017 being just as interesting and continuing to take my career to new heights!  Thanks to all of my fans, and especially those who have helped to make my career the career of my dreams!  I'll see you all in 2017!

J. David Buerk, Washington, DC area commercial photographer, on Washington Dulles International Airport's R/W 1C high-speed hold-short line while photographing on assignment for the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority during the All-Nippon Airways' "BB-8"  Star Wars  777 event.  Photo edited by J. David Buerk.

J. David Buerk, Washington, DC area commercial photographer, on Washington Dulles International Airport's R/W 1C high-speed hold-short line while photographing on assignment for the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority during the All-Nippon Airways' "BB-8" Star Wars 777 event.  Photo edited by J. David Buerk.