Sunday, February 28, 2010

The Oaks

I've been trying an Orton Image technique. I like how it makes landscapes look.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Some Velvet Morning

It's good to see old friends and get caught up. They can bring cheer and laughter to a situation, and share special moments that are priceless.

What gang problem?

I keep wondering if I'm making the right decision to start getting ready to head out of State. I wouldn't be thinking about this so much if my back wasn't against the wall, but honestly, all the signs are there.

It just may take a little longer than I want. All good things...

Friday, February 26, 2010

When you gotta go

The signs were all there, saying time to leave. The closed stores, crumbling infrastructure, declining education system, falling wages, and vanishing opportunity.

It's been building up for some time, though when you're caught in the middle of just trying to get by, you don't always take a long hard look at your options.

That all changed yesterday. It became very clear that it's time to go. That's my goal, and that's what I'm working on.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Waiting to hear from you

Communication is important. It's a vital part of our lives, and yet we take it for granted and are not very good at it most of the time.

We seem to think that people can read our minds, and expect them to know what we are thinking, while at the same time our actions are ambiguous.

Just letting someone know your intentions and time frame on things can go a long way. When someone knows what to expect it brings a lot more harmony into the world.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Once a home

Nothing lasts forever, you just make the most of it while you can.

Not knowing where I'm going to be living has had my stomach in knots. You'd think with all the tools now available the search would be easier, and in a way it is. You can stay on top of the rental listings, but at the same time it can be overwhelming and depressing to see the dumps that landlords are trying to pass off as "good deals, great location, perfect setting", etc.

All you have to do is use Google Maps and Street View to find out how much the truth is stretched. If you've got a general knowledge of an area it's easy to weed out the rental listings.

It quickly becomes a short list with the good stuff going fast. You have to be on top of your game and hope for the best. So, it may be easier to find and sift through rental listings, but it's harder competing for the places where someone would actually want to live.

Monday, February 22, 2010

The night is filled with shadows

It's the unknown that brings with it an anxiety you can't bring into sharp focus...

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Holding Nothing Back

Shadows don't always offer safe places to hide...

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Friday, February 19, 2010

Final Days

I'm seeing way too much of this, closed businesses all over town. It's unsettling and doesn't give one the felling that things are getting better.

The bumpy ride continues.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Now or never

Yep, another shot of surfers. What I like about this one is the fact that I managed to get two surfers in the shot.

It's not like I plan these. I stand off in the distance and let people walk through my field of view.

In this case, one guy was waiting for the other one. Just imagine this shot with no people in it.... Would it hold your interest for very long?

I don't think so....

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

A perfect moment

I'm back and feeling a bit more inspired. The turn of events in the last couple of weeks has given me pause, and a lot to think about.... But enough of that.

I was down at the beach after work, and the conditions are just about right to try my hand at some more long exposures, such as the one here.

This was just off of Butterfly Beach, which I tried to go to the other day, but was unsuccessful. I really like to have something in the background for shots like this, so I'm going to have to come up with a suitable location. Wish me luck.

The Breaks

There are just some days where it's hard to focus.

Life can throw a lot at us...

Must be the reason I'm drawing a blank, and just sit staring at the computer monitor, hoping that a thought, or just a little inspiration comes forward.... but not today.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Breakwall Flags

In addition to taking photographs, I've started to take some videos of some of the places that I like to shoot. It gives the locations a different perspective, and is a great way to use technology to enhance what you're trying to capture about a place.

Monday, February 15, 2010

I missed it

My goal was to get out a take some sunset pictures. I thought I'd try a different beach, one only about a mile from my house. I gave myself more than enough time, but spent an hour stuck in complete gridlock. I heard that the traffic had been getting worse, and now I've seen it firsthand. Yuck!

Needless to say, I missed the sunset.

-- Post From My iPhone

Catch me if I fall

Like the clouds in the sky, I've been scattered of late.... working on budgets, planning for pay cuts, and now trying to find a new place to live. This certainly isn't the realm of focus and order... it's chaos.

Like all storms, obstacles in our lives will pass. We just need to step back and have a little faith....

Sunday, February 14, 2010

A place for thought

We all need one.... A place to collect our thoughts, to meditate, and to pray. Somewhere that takes us away from the distractions of the world.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

When he gets bored

Some time in the water, or just a walk along the beach is a great way to cure the blues.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Never look back

This is one of those shots where I was glad I decided to take a chance on the weather and headed out to take some photos.

Lonely Heart

One of the nice things about flickr is the photo statistics available. This allows you to see what people are looking at, how often, and where a lot of the traffic is coming from. It also shows the search terms used to find your images.

This image is by far one of my most popular images. I guess it's no surprise that there are a lot of lonely hearts out there.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


I'm amazed at the lack of geotagging being done on photos. This is probably because it does involve some extra effort. The solution is on the horizon, cameras with built-in GPS.

I'd venture to guess that about only 30% of the photos I see on Flickr are geotagged, and that number is probably too high of a guess.

-- Post From My iPhone

Sign of the Times

I'm an admin for a Flickr group called The Great Recession. I started the group so that I could post some images of all the businesses closing up around my town, and there are lots of them.

The news goes on and on about how the recession is over. That's entirely contrary to what I've been seeing. Not a week goes by that I don't see a new or hear about another local business closing up.

It's sad, and certainly indicates, to me, that this recession is far from over. We've got a long way to go.

That's my observation.

I could spend a day just driving around photographing all the closed businesses. As time permits, I plan on doing just that.

It's a bit of a release, and a way of documenting what I consider historic times. This isn't a "normal" recession.

The group has been growing rather quickly. Things are tough out there, and the images say that very poignantly.

Appreciate what you have and help out where you can.

In balance

Someone had balanced this driftwood on top of each other and left it behind on the beach, which I considered a blessing as it give me something to use as a foreground in this shot.

It also made me think at the time that we all need to work at keeping our lives in balance.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Coming in for a landing

Being in the right place at the right time can have its rewards. Like turning to look behind me and seeing this.

I only had a second to snap a couple of quick pictures. This shot could have been a lot better if I'd known this person was going to land his kite on the beach. I would have moved a bit to separate the person sitting in the foreground from the rock behind him. I didn't have the time, so I had to make do, and try to get an interesting composition is the few seconds that I had.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Keeping you off my mind

It's not all that difficult to get the results you want if you practice (which goes for most things in life).

The more I learn about and use cameras, the more I realize that even the "modern" digital camera is nothing more than a simple machine. It's very limited in its capabilities.

The trick really is to know what those capabilities are, and to squeeze as much from them as possible.

That's where practice comes in, and lots of it. That's how you learn what every dial and setting will do, and all the permutations of these.

Your reward will be getting better and more consistent results. No more guessing... You'll be able to look at a scene and quickly decide on the settings you need to get the results you want.

You'll know when to trust what the camera tells you is a good exposure setting, and when to override what the camera is telling you.

You're in control.

That's the magic. It's not in the camera. They don't take great pictures. People take them.

Light's last refuge

A longer exposure lets you squeeze the most out of the last remaining traces of the day. It also softens the waves into a reflective surface like you see here.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Smile for the Camera

When you get some time in a studio, with controlled lighting, you can have lots of fun.

The reason this shot is cropped so close on the top is because you could see the roll of the seamless backdrop. Sure, I could have cloned it out with Photoshop.

This just shows that you always need to pay attention to your background. Indoors and out.

This is a friend and his daughter. Just a one off. I sent him the original file, and since he's a Photoshop person by trade it wasn't an issue. I think he really had some fun and added a completely different background.

If this was for a client, get the shot right in the camera (always the best option) or do the cloning...

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Troubles to the wind

It would be so nice to be able to throw one's troubles to the wind and have them fly away.

Friday, February 5, 2010


The diversity of life is an amazing thing. Nature seems to be able to adapt in ways we could never imagine.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

New Government Symbol

This sure seems appropriate....

Abandoned Highway

Are we ever really sure where the road is going to take us?

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

I want to fly away...

I found out yesterday that I'll have to move out of the house I'm renting. So far, things aren't looking too good in the rental market, and the job situation keeps getting worse.

I may be forced to leave California sooner than expected.

I'm praying things work out.

There is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven...

No way to win

I was using an attachment on the camera lens that had the effect of blurring the outer edges of an image. I didn't know it was going to do this, the results are interesting, but they weren't intentional.

Life's a learning process....

The Hair

I took a lighting class a couple of years ago, but really haven't done much with lights and flash units since then. I'd really like to get back into that.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Red and Green

Color and shape by themselves often make a fine subject. Like they say, they just don't make them like they used to.

Monday, February 1, 2010