There is a local spot referred to as “Top of the World” in Laguna Beach, CA. This spot has fantastic views of the Laguna Beach coastline and skyline, as well as the valley behind Laguna Beach. After a rain here recently, I knew there would be some great cloud action going on so I jumped in “Em” and jetted down to, er, up to TOTW.
Took a trip down to La Jolla, CA last Saturday for my wife’s B-Day and I couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful day! Since I wanted to give all my attention to her, I didn’t dare bring my camera…. because once I whip that thing out, it’s “bye-bye Andy” and we can’t have that on her B-Day, right? Right. Well, what I wasn’t counting on, nor was she, was that my new phone has a pretty awesome camera on it… This was my first time really digging into it and I was really surprised at how good some of the shots were!
Well, after this discovery and wading knee-deep into the oncoming rising tide taking photos, I caught myself and waded back out of the water before I got cold from the water and the cold shoulder from the wife . I only kid about that part though, she has no problem with these little mini excursions – she was taking pictures of me out in the water trying to get the shot below.
Happy 4th of July!
Taken with HTC One X phone
Me as my sanctuary rock is quickly getting swallowed up…
While out in Colorado, I came across this random dirt off the main highway. I turned down just out of curiosity and I am sure glad I did. I felt like I was out in the middle of nowhere with a fantastic view of the mountain line at sunset. It was a gorgeous sight!
I had the chance to take a few auto shots of my friend’s BMW M5 recently. This was my first attempt to shoot a car in an interesting manner, so there are a few different perspectives below. I didn’t quite get what I had imagined in my head, but it is a start!
The first two shots were taken using a new wide angle lens I recently got (Tokina 11-16mm F/2.8). I haven’t taken a lot of shots yet, but I am definitely liking it so far. The last two shots were taken using the Nikon 35mm F/1.8.
I had a blast shooting this car because that meant plenty of excuses to do speed runs! 0-60 in about 4.5 seconds….mmmmm5.
This last weekend, me and my wife officially “celebrated” Valentines day. We put the dogs in day care and went out and spent the weekend in Laguna Beach. It was a great weekend and we had a ton of fun. On Saturday we went for a little stroll down the coastline. I had to bring my camera for those ‘just in case’ moments. It was relatively uneventful, photographically speaking, but I did manage to get the two photos below that I appreciated.
While walking the dogs the other day I cam across a playground in a local park. There was this piece of the play structure that just had a bunch glass bulbs (like big marbles). During the right time of the day, the sunlight shines through these balls and I thought it was pretty cool. Here is a close up shot; it was dusk and the natural light was on the other side.
I very recently bought a new computer monitor, the Dell U2412m. Oh-My-Goodness!! I do not know how I was editing photos before I got this!! I kept my 2-year-old LCD flat panel for a dual screen setup and I can now view my photos on each screen… the color reproduction on my old screen is so sub-par when compared to my new one, it is almost useless (in a situation where proper color is vital). I would have edited my two most recent posts, My Wife & A Portrait with a Hat, totally different had I still been on my old screen. I had been editing photos this way previously???
This new screen has a plethora of features, including very accurate color reproduction, but one of the most important being IPS (In-Plane Switching) technology. In a nutshell, I can look at the screen from practically any angle and see the same color reproduction (among other things). This is huge when trying to color correct images. Did I mention that the resolution is 1920×1200 with a 16:10 aspect ratio (1920×1080 @ 16:9 is common)? I didn’t know I wanted it, now I do after just a week. So, needless to say, I am very happy with this new screen and look forward to when I replace my older screen with another one of these!
I bought it purposely for advancing my photographic post-production skills/results. I am already so pleased with my most recent results! I highly recommend an IPS monitor to anyone who does not have one – if color reproduction is important to you. I didn’t know how bad I needed it until i finally took the plunge.
Run towards the light!
I recently took a business trip to Calgary, AB Canada and, of course, took my camera. I still plan on posting a few more pics from the trip, but in the meantime, I had to share this Before & After image. The image below was captured at approximately 7:30pm in a rural park. It was very dark outside, but I had a fast lens (F1.4) on my camera and knew I would be able to extract some light; not to mention I shoot in the RAW format and this allows me to drastically adjust exposure to my own liking.
The park was so quiet, calm, and even serene. Being born and raised in the desert in Southern California only added to the spectacle I was experiencing. I snapped the shot below and knew I had a decent image, but I knew I would have to wait until I got it onto the computer to really see what I got. I was able to extract so much light, that the ‘After’ picture looks like it was taken mid day with the sun out! Also, the processing I did gave the image a slight “painting” feel as a result which I think really added to the final result, kinda surreal.
In any case, I think the latter picture really ‘feels’ like December and I wanted to share!
This last Friday it rained most of the day. As the rain stopped and the clouds began to clear, my wife and I decided to take the dogs out for a brief walk. Now I live on the 3rd floor of my building so when I went outside I was able to see that the ensuing sunset would probably be awesome (I could only see enough sky to be teased at what might be)! So, at that moment I decided that I had to see what the full sunset turned out looking like – I went back for my camera and car keys and decided to bolt up to a high ground I know to see if there was a view. I invited my wife and dogs, but they wanted to stay and pee on things (primarily the dogs, that is).
After I was at the spot for about 15 minutes, shooting pics, it hit me that on my dash out of the apartment I locked the door because I fully expected my wife to join me! Mind you it was pretty chilly this time of day and my wife, who needs a blanket when it is 75 outside, was in a T-Shirt and pajama pants with the dogs… and now locked outside. So after it finally hit me that my wife was locked out, probably freezing and without a phone, I [took a few more photos] bolted back home. When I arrived it had been about 30 minutes since I left and she was out on the sidewalk giving me a look that seemed to say “well, what do you have to say for yourself?” I just rolled the window down and said “SORRY”… Turns out she was very understanding and didn’t care. Whew!
I reached my spot and had a pretty nice view for such short notice. The sunset/sky/clouds were amazing. The natural grandeur of a “simple” sunset after a rain is breathtaking. I wish I could have spent a bit longer out there, but I was happy with what I was able to see and the few photos I shot.
Sign out where I was shooting