Sunset in the Tetons

It really has been a couple of years since I have really had the burning urge to photograph life. That has been missing and I’m going to work hard at reviving that this year. Back in September 2010 I went on a trip from San Francisco to Utah and from there up to Yellowstone with my Dad and brothers. We learned a lot about each other during that trip as it was our first real trip as adults together. We were trying to use this trip to jump start a yearly adventure, but a 2011 trip didn’t work out so here’s looking forward to 2012.

During our adventure up to Yellowstone we stopped in the Grand Teton National Park for sunset. It was majestic. Watching the sun set through the giant peaks was amazing. I did a time-lapse sequence on one camera and periodically shot through another. There was a group of around 20 people at the stop we were at, and if memory serves almost everyone had a camera. Maybe this was a tipping point as I’ve often been feeling that landscape photography, while a personal passion of mine, really doesn’t have many places that haven’t been capture yet and surely this is even more prevalent in our parks. If you haven’t made it to Yellowstone, put it on your list, I can’t wait to go back.

George Washington Bridge from Fort Lee Park at sunrise

Took advantage of the DST change last weekend to go and shoot sunrise with my brother from Fort Lee Park.  We didn’t realize you couldn’t drive up into the park that early, but we were able to find parking on the street not far away and walked up.  Once we got into the parking lot we saw a few deer moving about, clearly scurrying along as fast as possible away from us.  Watching sunrise from here was pretty cool.  From here  you could see parts of New York City slowly come alive as the sun moved higher and higher, and then watching the street lights become overpowered by first light.  After we finished shooting, we started to head back to the car and along the path there was a deer just sitting in the bushes, checking us out, maybe 15 feet away.

Let this be a lesson to all out there.  I didn’t do any prep work other than charging batteries so after I took a few shots I realized there was a bunch of dust on the sensor.  A smack of the head and then a realization that my cleaning kit was in my other bag so the photos didn’t come out as good as hoped.  Alas, lesson learned and sensor and lenses now cleaned thoroughly.

As we were shooting, we started to debate if there is a “bridge of the east coast”.  We decided that if there was, it probably is the Brooklyn Bridge but certainly the GWB deserves some consideration.

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Gramp’s Greenhouse

Gramp’s Greenhouse

My Grandfather’s greenhouse is a place of a few memories, more so because it has become so run down since his passing.  After my grandmother passed, the greenhouse was cleaned out so that most of the brush that had begun to grow inside was ripped out. With many of the features unearthed, I entered with camera in hand.

There is a double door system to enter so that the heat inside would not be let out.

A rope holds the door closed to keep out the deer.

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Something’s Fishy

Shot with a Nikon 10.5mm f/2.8G Fisheye Lens.  I have to say the lens was fun to shoot with.   I didn’t do a ton of shooting with it, but think architecture and landscapes would be my best usage with the lens.  I tried some portraits and just did not like the way they came out.

I picked the lens up for a week-long rental from Borrow Lenses, who I’ve rented glass from a few times and always had a pleasant experience.  The last time I rented, I ended up falling down a hill and had one the rented lenses on the camera.  The lens hood was totally trashed and a screw ended up getting stripped inside the camera, luckily I got their insurance so whatever the cost to fix the lens will be, it will only cost me 12% of that instead of the full amount.

A Fall Evening

A Fall Evening

There was an awesome sky tonight just before sunset.  My Nikon was in the front of the house so instead of missing it completely, I broke out my iPhone and used Pano to generate a panoramic photo.  While it doesn’t look great in the small size embedded above, click through to see a larger resolution.

This reminded me of Chase Jarvis’ motto, The Best Camera Is The One That’s With You.  Chase has developed an iPhone app and community all around the idea that no matter what camera you have with you, you just need to have one.  So far the community effort is focused on the iPhone but I’m sure we’ll see some new developments around the Droid and other phones.

My Best Camera photos can be seen here.

Early Fall storm

Early last week we had a pretty sweet fall storm. From our apartment in Nob Hill, I was watching the wall of rain come in from the North Bay and work its way over Angel Island, then Alcatraz and finally hit landfall. I had the window in the bedroom wide open and let the first bit of mist just come into the room because it was that kind of rain that just smells good and brings back memories of childhood.  I shot some HDR photos during and after the storm, let me know what you think!

Fourth of July Fireworks in San Francisco

Its always a crapshoot in San Francisco as to whether or not you will see the fireworks show on the Fourth of July because of the impending threat of fog. We missed out on last years show because of the fog, but thankfully the cloud level stayed high enough that most of the show was below the clouds. Below are a few of my favorites from the show.