Lately I’ve been playing around with double exposures. There’s really nothing new about this type of photography; it has been around almost as long as photography itself. I primarily shoot with a Canon 5D Mark III which has (some) ability to do this type of thing internally. Although I haven’t had much luck doing this within my camera, I have found Photoshop to be quite astute with it.
I spent most of yesterday walking around Los Angeles near the historic Olvera Street. This particular area is one of the oldest in Los Angeles and offers fantastic photo ops. China town, the Union Station (see below) and the Grand Central Market are all within walking distance of Olvera Street. The Walt Disney Concert Hall (pictured above) is also a few blocks away.
It has often been said that when life gives you lemons, make lemonade. Last November, my wife and I moved into a new home. We had been thinking about moving for a few years and opportunity finally knocked. We moved right before Thanksgiving. I knew the move would consume my schedule for several weeks. With Christmas approaching and lots of other year-end madness, I didn’t anticipate shooting much until after the start of the new year. At the time, it never occurred to me that I would be taking a six month hiatus from photography.
A few times a year I have the pleasure of driving up the California coast from Los Angeles to the tiny, scenic coastline town of Cambria (about three hours north of Los Angeles). Cambria is absolutely beautiful and everything you would imagine it to be.
A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to spend a few days in Sedona, Arizona. For those unfamiliar with Sedona, it’s a very popular tourist destination located in the northern Verde Valley of Arizona. Sedona is an incredibly scenic area known for the bright red sandstone formations that sprawl across the desert floor. The area offers hundreds of well-groomed hiking trails to choose from. You could spend several days hiking there and never see the same trail twice.
Sometimes you go into something just knowing you’re gonna have a great time. My shoot with Addy was certainly one of those times. I had never worked with her before, but I quickly discovered that Addy has a deep, quiet energy that lends itself to focused intensity. When Addy arrived for the shoot, she brought some of the coolest props (see the included images). We shot at two locations and took a few hundred shots.
I just returned from a business trip to Oregon. If you’ve never been there, let me tell you – Oregon is absolutely gorgeous and offers endless photo opportunities. Each morning I made a short commute from my hotel and drove passed this beautiful stretch of beach near the town of Garibaldi.
If you’ve ever driven on California’s Interstate-10 through Palm Springs, you’ve undoubtedly seen the unusual wind farm that spans both sides of the interstate. I’ve driven through this area countless times and have often thought about stopping to photograph these massive sci-fi looking structures. For one reason or another (mostly a lack of time) I never stopped. However, a few days ago, I was passing through the area and decided to stop and take some photographs. On this particular day it was scorching hot – 103 degrees and extremely dry.
So I had been wanting to do a photo shoot in a wooded area for the longest time. I had seen recent work of other photographers and it got me thinking about a few ideas of my own. I decided to shoot in an area known as the Angeles Crest Highway (in Los Angeles). The Angeles Crest Highway is a scenic two-lane road located north of the Los Angeles basin. From a photography perspective, it’s very desirable.
If you’ve ever met someone you instantly liked, then you know how I feel about Alexis. I’ve had the pleasure of calling Alexis my friend for many years. Alexis is easy going and genuinely kind-hearted. She comes from a great family and is a good friend to everyone that knows her. Alexis was home schooled and says she never even stepped foot into a “real” school until college. While she initially studied interior design, she quickly decided to pursue a field dedicated to serving other people. After completing college she became a certified LVN and RN and now works as a postpartum nurse in Los Angeles.
Last fall, my wife and I traveled to the east coast for vacation and sight-seeing purposes. I shared some of the trip highlights in a post you can read here. The other night I was browsing through the images I had taken on the trip and discovered this one. This particular image was taken near the Charlestown Navy Yard in downtown Boston. Our hotel was very close to the Navy yard and I had the opportunity to take morning walks before busy crowds emerged. In the early morning hours, this part of town is surprisingly tranquil. Each morning a fresh harbor mist covers the tree lined streets. As the morning hours give way, the peaceful streets become ever crowded with tourists, sailors and local shop owners.
Squares are cool when they’re photographic images! Have you ever thought about the actual shape of an image when you look at it? Have you ever considered how shape alone may influence your perception or emotional reaction to an image? Until recently, I hadn’t given aspect ratios much thought. My digital cameras have a 3:2 aspect ratio. This ratio is the “norm” in digital cameras today and results in rectangular shaped images. My cameras have always generated rectangular images so that’s what I’m accustomed to seeing. In fact, rectangular images are so common today that their shape is somewhat subconscious. Even televisions are now designed with rectangular displays. While it’s true the majority of images we see today are rectangular, things were not always this way…
Living in southern California has advantages. The weather is fantastic and there’s always something happening. From a photography perspective, it’s hard to beat. Sometimes, however, you need a little change. For the past several years I’ve wanted to go on an east coast tour of the United States. Specifically, I’ve wanted to visit during the fall season to photograph the legendary fall colors. Well, this year it finally happened! My wife and I just returned from a spectacular two-week journey along much of the east coast. The cool thing is that other than our flight, we didn’t have a single reservation. This trip was about complete flexibility.
Shortly after I got into photography, my friend Keith Pytlinksi and I decided to dabble in wedding photography. While neither one of us had any desire to be a full-time wedding photographer, we thought it would be a good way to do the thing we loved while making a few bucks. So that we would each have time to pursue the specific type of photography we were drawn to (portraits for me and extreme biking for Keith) we decided to limit ourselves to about 10 weddings a year. It sounded like a great idea…
One of the best things about being a portrait photographer is meeting people. However, unlike meeting people casually in a social environment, meeting a model moments before a photo shoot can bring angst for both the model and the photographer. Models may feel a bit awkward at first about being photographed, and photographers feel the inner pressure that comes with desperately needing to get “the shot” that somehow (falsely) validates his/her existence as a photographer.
My brother Chris is a U.S. military officer. A West Point and Brown University graduate, he’s a hard working “achiever” in every sense of the word. He cares deeply about everything he does. He’s the type of guy that makes the world a better place. Although he has more academic and military achievements than I can recite, he would never mention them publicly. Chris is a man of honesty, integrity and humbleness. He’s also a dedicated husband and father. My brother lives a full life – one that comes from confident Christian faith. He loves the Lord like no one I have ever known. In fact, the relationship Chris shares with Jesus Christ is what first made Christianity appealing to me so many years ago.
When I was growing up, I had a lot of pets. Many of my pets were neighborhood strays that just appeared one day and decided to stick around. Over the years, I had several dogs – all of them were incredible companions to my family. I suppose this was the foundation for my present love of dogs.