Monthly Archives: December 2013

Home For the Holidays

Where: Pittsford, NY

 

 

Between Meeting: Christmas Break

 

 

SnowballEpson is officially closed this week so it’s the time of year where I can finally edit the terabyte or so of Raw files I’ve been shooting.  And also spend time with my family.

 

 

Epson is located in Long Beach, CA and I while I’m originally from LA, I’ve been commuting to Southern California for 13 years from our home in Upstate NY.  It’s a long story….

 

 

Working in a warm climate and coming home to a colder climate allows me to appreciate small things in each of the climates that those living there, may not readily notice.

 

 

After being in LA for a week with temperatures in the 70s, I arrived home to a fresh blanket of snow on our front lawn.  The snow capped basketball left out overnight on the lawn told a wonderful story.  I’m sure our two kids were thinking to themselves, “What could Dad possibly see out there, its just snow.”

 

 

Posted in Between Meetings

Blah to Blur

Where: Hong Kong, China

 

 

Between Meeting: Day Before Meeting in Shenzhen

 

 

Hong Kong Blur Flat

 

I was producing a video on Epson manufacturing in Shenzhen China.

 

 

While there is an airport in Shenzhen, for a variety of logistical reasons it was easier to fly into neighboring Hong Kong the day before. This would also give me a free 1/2 day to shoot in the more colorful Hong Kong.

 

 

But the weather was lousy. It was overcast and basically, blah. So I decided to board a double-decker bus in a major shopping area. I wasn’t concerned where it was going as I was only interested in creating blurs through the windows on the upper deck to overcome the dull light.

 

 

I experimented with different shutter speeds and found that 1/6 of a second plus camera movement, gave me enough blur for interest but still retained enough detail that people could be recognized. After looking at several shots on the LCD, I forced myself to just keep shooting vs looking at every shot. I knew I just had to shoot a lot and look for a good image later in editing.

 

 

I made a bunch of images and when the it looked like the bus was moving out of a busy area, I got off, crossed the street, and got on another bus heading back to the congested area.

 

 

With the vibrance slider in Adobe Camera Raw combined with Viveza 2, I was able to take the gloom out of the scene transforming a wash-out day, into something visually interesting. Even the flare of the green safety glass at the bottom of the frame added interest.

 

 

 

 

Posted in Between Meetings

Smokin’

Where: Costa Mesa, CA

 

 

Between Meeting: Prepping for a Monday Presentation

 

 

SmokeyIt was another Sunday in the office getting ready for Monday. Knowing I would finish in time for the best light of the day, I did a search on, “Things to do in Orange County”.  I saw the Orange County Fair was taking place so I packed up for the day and headed south on the 405.

 

 

I love County and State fairs because they are often filled with colorful people in and around saturated colors.  But on this day, I was drawn to the desaturated tones caused by billowing smoke from an outdoor barbecue.

 

 

Remembering Jay Maisel’s, “I’m from New York, I don’t trust any air I can’t see” I spent most of my time shooing through and finding angles that enhanced the smoke. I knew that in Black and White I could take this daylight scene shot in a modern affluent community, and make it feel like 1950’s film noir.

 

 

When I made the conversion in post to black and white, I worked the midtone contrast to enhance the smoke, and capture the feel of the classic shafts of light from Grand Central Station on the grill.

 

 

Posted in Between Meetings

Grant Avenue

Where: San Francisco, CA

 

 

Between Meeting: On My Way to a Video Edit Session

 

 

SF-Bus-copyI was editing video at the San Francisco Film Centre in the Presidio and staying in Nob Hill.  I would take a different route to the Presidio each morning and one day headed straight down the hill on California St. to Grant Ave.

 

 

Grant Ave is the main artery in Chinatown and I gave myself an assignment to capture Chinatown without showing Chinatown.

 

 

When a bus drove by at Grant and Broadway, its windows reflected the awnings of the businesses on the street. Not being a great action photographer I missed the shot.  I decided to wait for the next bus that would stop for passengers so I could have 10 seconds to find the best composition and make sure I had the right depth of field to keep the reflections sharp.

 

Posted in Between Meetings

First Anniversary

Where:

 

Atlantic City, Boston, Philadelphia, Rochester, Long Beach, Agra, New York, Vancouver, Manchester, Washington DC, Las Vegas, Delhi, Irvine, Tijuana, Toronto, Dallas, San Francisco, Yangon, Chicago, Salton Sea, Sandusky, Benicia, Avalon, Tucson, Los Angeles, Venice Beach, Orlando, San Diego, Phoenix, Tokyo, Matsumoto, Oxnard, London, Black Canyon City, Albuquerque, Singapore, Mumbai, New Orleans, Miami, Santa Barbara, Portland.

 

2013-BlogWhen I was producing a video with Bruce Dale, I asked him what was the best way to build a portfolio with limited time. Bruce said, “Focus on making just one picture a week”.

 

 

When I started this blog a year ago today, I was going to do two to three posts a week. But I’ve settled into Bruce’s recommended one picture a week schedule.

 

 

To come clean, I’ve been doing one post a week from files captured Between Meetings at Epson since 2003.  While I almost always carry the camera finding time to capture images Between Meetings, I can’t seem to find the time to stay current with editing.  At present, I have over three years of Raw files that I haven’t had a chance to review.  These Raw, unprocessed files, total around one terabyte. So I should have enough content to keep the blog going every week for a while.

 

 

A big thank you to all who have sent comments my way.  This hardened New Yorker (even though I grew up in LA) continues to be touched when these arrive in my inbox.  An equally big thank you to those that have pointed out bugs with my site design and grammatical errors to fix.  I of course deliberately put those errors into the posts to see who catches them…

 

 

And on being touched, several have written that the pictures (above) from the past year, have inspired them to pick up the camera and start making photographs again.  These inspirational comments remind me of what Jay Maisel once said that is now part of my DNA, “I’m not interested in showing you how smart I am, but showing you how terrific it is out there, and it’s always out there.”

 

 

Posted in Between Meetings