Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Lunar Eclipse over Los Angeles

Did a bit of bushwacking to get a south as possible to get the partial lunar eclipse setting over the heart of the skyline. Should have probably went a tad further south but this location worked out pretty well. This is a single frame at 500mm, and I will probably blend some later and probably put together a sequence of the set but wanted to throw this one out for those who were still in bed. 

Nikon D750, Nikkor 200-500, f/8, ¼ sec, ISO-50

Thursday, January 25, 2018

El Matador beach cave and Milky Way, Malibu CA

Everything is better inside a cave right? The El Matador cave is a bit harder to access than the Leo Carrillo one as tide really has to be low unless you are willing to get swamp feet. Plus its more of a trek down the beach. This one looks out more South facing and is a great line up for the Milky Way on a clear night. This is quite a big cave too and has a few different lookouts you can shoot from but this is the main view. Came here in the dark so had to shoot a separate foreground exposure for the cave to get any sort of details. Blended it with the standard MW exposure to get this final frame.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Firefall mist, Yosemite National Park

Here’s one from last season before the finale. It’s so cool to witness the progression of the event as the sun sets lower and the beam on El Capitan gets smaller and smaller. Even with the sun still well above the horizon, Horsetail Falls starts putting on a show. A generous flow and some wind can create some magical mist, in this case in the shape of an S. Nikon D750, Nikkor 70-200, f/14, 1/13 sec, ISO-50. Speaking of which, has Yosemite even gotten enough snow for this to happen next month???

Monday, January 22, 2018

Clouds and Stars over Malibu

Came up here after a beach sesh at El Matador. Wasn’t greeted by any sweet fog comin’ in from the coast but man look at those clouds. I probably got off 2-3 shots before they lost formation. This spot always delivers under any conditions. 

Nikon D750, Nikkor 14-24, f/2.8, 20 sec, ISO-1600

Friday, January 19, 2018

Palos Verdes cave sunset

Occasionally I will dig though archives to review the sesh for files I missed or skipped over at the time. I shot the PV caves a lot a few years back and got some incredible burns. My blending ability wasn’t as sharp as it is now so I ended up skipping over a lot of files that had major exposure variances in the shadows and highlights that I just couldn’t process how I wanted it to look. Here’s a set of exposures I recently worked on blending them to what you see here. Think I used about 5 files total. One for the cave, one for the water flow, and 3 for the sky. Until cameras can capture a huge exposure range, blending with luminosity masks is still the best way to achieve a natural and realistic blend to compensate for what technology cannot capture.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Malibu Canyon Road above the fog

We were fogged in last week so I headed out to Malibu to get above it. I usually shoot the cloudfall area at sunset but it wasn’t spilling over so we headed to the standard Malibu Canyon lookout and were treated to some great fog levels as it was filling up the canyon. I wasn’t expecting to shoot extreme telephoto’s so the longest lens I had on me was my 70-200. There was a house/road out in the distance that kept drifting in and out of the fog and I mainly used my telephoto to frame several shots such as this one. This is a small piece of Malibu Canyon road way way out there. I was originally going to blend trails to get a single smooth one but I like how there are cars in the middle that are stopped with trails in front and back so I kept it a single exposure. Since I didn’t have a long lens on me, this is at 200mm with a 1.4x teelconverter shot using my DX mode on my camera which is around 400mm. Gives you an idea on how far out there this was. I shot a ton of variations of this, including when the lights came on. Will share a bunch down the road.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Silver Lake Fall Pano, Eastern Sierras

Here’s a pano I did this past fall of the golden aspens lining the shore of Silver Lake just as the sun fully lit the scene. The calm wind allowed for some great reflections.

All shots were with the Nikon D750, Nikkor 70-200, f/14, 1/10 sec, ISO-50

Monday, January 15, 2018

Road to Aspendell Milky Way

This one is a composite. I always wanted to shoot the Milky Way around the Bishop area heading up towards Aspendell and North/South Lake. The road up at this spot faces the correct SW direction for the fall milk when I am usually there but I’ve never gotten the chance to shoot the sky out that direction as I am always shooting near Mammoth. So this is how I envision lining up the shot with my telephoto compressing the road and the mountains with a mean Milky Way. You can see more contrast in the mountains as the foreground was shot in the day, compared to when I shoot most of my blends at twilight after the sun has set. 

Friday, January 12, 2018

After storm sunrise in Los Angeles

Good day LA! Here’s Wednesday’s sunrise after the storm. Was hoping that snow capped Baldy would show but the fog layer covering the Gabriel’s was a tad too high. At least I was treated to a nice burn. This is after the main red burn as the palm trees from the house caught my eye so I framed this comp for a little something different. I’ve been trying to get a shot of the snow but the mountains have been covered since the storm. Maybe there will be a clearing this weekend. Nikon D750, Nikkor 70-200, f/11, 0.8 sec, ISO-50

Monday, January 8, 2018

Conway Summit fall milky way at 50mm

Here’s the 50mm version of fall milk over Conway Summit. Luckily the grove in front of where the Milky Way came out had some nice color left. Shot the foreground at twilight and the MW once it got dark. Such a cool spot for being right on the highway. The Eastern Sierras never cease to amaze me.

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Lundy Canyon aspens, Eastern Sierras

We stumbled upon this grove in Lundy Canyon and the grass on the ground was a great complement to the leaves. The spread out trunks made for a great comp and I backlit the scene which added some nice glow to the leaves along with shadows to add depth to the shot. The translucent trait of the aspen leaves make this kind of lighting the best for photographing it. 

Nikon D750, Nikkor 14-24, f/8, 1/125 sec, ISO-200

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Palos Verdes sea cave sunset

Here’s one of the recent winter burns from a local sea cave in PV. I’ve wanted to return here but always hesitant because it faces out south so a burn doesn’t always happen. Coming in winter gives a good chance as the sun sets more to the southwest. I had to setup pretty far out in the opening as the tide was lower and I wanted to catch some water motion in my foreground so luckily I had my 14mm on me for this one. The clouds filled a good portion of the sky and lit up nicely after the sun set. Blended a few exposures for the final shot you see here.