Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Goodbye 2014

The sun has set on 2014 and it certainly has been an interesting year.  I spent the day hiking at Big Basin which for me is the perfect end to the year.

I did the 11 mile loop among the towering redwoods and visited the 3 waterfalls the park is famous for.

Now, its time to get some rest and celebrate New Year's in East Coast time.  Happy 2015!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Bosque Sunrise

Bosque Sunrise - 1Ds3, Zeiss 21, f/5.6, 1/30s, ISO 100
Another spectacular sunrise image at Bosque del Apache from a few years ago.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Snow Geese in Flight

Snow Geese in Flight - 1D4, 300mm, f/9, 1/30s, ISO 200
Time to start getting pumped for Bosque del Apache.  This was from a trip 4 years ago, Bosque is a great place to do panning blurs of the Snow Geese and Cranes in flight.

Sunday, December 28, 2014


A year  ago I was sitting in my living room wondering if would be able to get out and do another serious hike.  It had been a couple of weeks since the surgery to fix my broken fibula and dislocated ankle.

I was happy to prove to myself today that the answer is yes (well very likely so).  I went on a ~7 mile moderately strenuous hike at Pinnacles National Park, about 2 hours south of San Jose.

This is an area that Kim I used to hike frequently when we first moved here and its a place with interesting views, caves and lots of trails.  However, its been several years since we visited the park and so took the opportunity to hike here with visiting family.

Up until this point, the most strenuous hike I have attempted is small 1-1.5 mile hikes with only moderate elevation changes.  I didn't want to schlep a bunch of camera gear as well so opted to take a little Panasonic LX100 and see what it could do.

I had forgotten all the interesting things to photograph in the park and so it was fun rediscovering these scenes.  I didn't do any processing to these images, just the VSCO Velvia preset in Lightroom and some quick tonal touchups.

In my peak hiking days and before my injury, a 7 mile hike with only a ~1300 ft. elevation change would have been an easy hike but at this point I am happy enough to just be able to do it.

Only my ankle feels sore, though I guess I'll find out tomorrow what else hurts.

Now I need to work my way up to the 11 mile Berry Creek Falls loop in Big Basin.  That will be the goal this spring.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Davenport Sunset

Davenport Sunset - D810, Zeiss 15mm, f/22, 0.5s, ISO 64
I managed to get down to Davenport Beach and make a few images.  Despite wispy clouds we didn't a sky full of color but still a little bit on the horizon where the sun was setting.   This is the first time I've been there in the winter, so the sun was setting in a different place that when I was last here in the spring.

The Crack

The Crack - 5D3, 17 TS-E, f/22, ISO 100, 80 frames stacked.
I am planning on heading to Davenport Beach with some family this afternoon for some photography and so looked back to the last time I was there.  In spite of being only an hour away from where I live, its been 20 months since I was last there.  This is Davenport crack, a deep channel which fills with water and drains as the waves come in.  I remember last time I forgot my filter set at home and so had to rely on taking 80 frames and stacking them in Photoshop to get a psuedo long exposure.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Basin Falls

Basin Falls - Alpa STC, IQ 180, Rodenstock 32mm, ~f/11, 8s, ISO 35.
This is Basin Falls, again in Uvas Canyon County Park.  I went back there this morning and its amazing how different the place was.  The volume of water flowing was considerably lower and the place was much dryer and the greens less vibrant.  We need more rain like the storms from a couple of weeks ago.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Stream and Moss

Stream and Moss - Alpa STC, IQ 180, Rodenstock 32mm, ~f/11,  3s, ISO 35
Another one from Uvas Canyon, this time a 100 megapixel panoramic.  I did something I don't usually do when making this image which is to use my wide angle 32mm lens with shift to stitch together a panoramic, but I had left my really wide lens at home so I had no choice.  I also wanted everything from the little brown leaf at the bottom to all the rocks along the stream in focus; a couple of degrees of tilt helped with that.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Stream and Falls

Stream and Falls - Alpa STC, IQ 180, Schneider 120 APO, f/11, 3s, ISO 35.
Uvas Canyon County Park is only about 30 minutes from my house and has several little waterfalls, making it a fun hiking spot and good place to practice some photography.  Only last week did I learn of this place from buddy +John Nack so I set out to channel my inner +Brian Matiash and make some moving water images.  I was a little surprised at how much there was to photograph there and am looking forward to returning many more times.

I was out to practice playing around with plane of focus control with tilt and for this image I used the latest addition to my technical camera kit, the superb Schneider 120mm APO lens.  On my Alpa STC, I was able to shift, creating this 140 megapixel vertical panoramic as well as tilt to bring the foremost foreground rock and the far back cascades and ferns in the same wedge of focus.  +Andy Biggs, you want this piece of kit buddy.

Ferns and Moss

Ferns and Moss - Leica S, 30-90 @ 42mm, f/8, 1/2s, ISO 100.
Another one from Purusima Creek from this weekend.

Sunday, December 21, 2014


Aspens - D800e, 70-200 @ 200mm, f/8, 1/13s, ISO 100
I didn't quite find the dense clump of Aspens on my last trip to Grand Teton, but by running a couple from top to bottom and framing to get color at the edges, I still got a mildly interesting image.

Saturday, December 20, 2014


Tentacles - Leica S, 30-90 @ 57mm, f/8, 2s, ISO 100
Its been nearly 2 months since I last went out with an intention to make photographs, so this afternoon my daughter Maya and I drove out to Purisima Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve for a little hike.  I had no expectations to make unique images, but only to exercise photographic creativity, which I definitely needed.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Sunrise Colors

Sunrise Colors - 1Ds3, Zeiss 21mm, f/5.6, ISO 100
Spectacular sunrises and sunsets are also frequent as Bosque del Apache, something else I'm really looking forward to.

Monday, December 15, 2014


Landing - 1D4, 800mm, f/5.6, 1/400s, ISO 400.
I'll be heading back to Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge in New Mexico in a few weeks for a couple of days of photography.  The last time was there was in 2010 and I've heard that conditions in the refuge have changed, so I'm curious to see what the snow geese and sandhill crane situation is like.  I've been looking at images from my past trips to get myself pumped up and I'll be sharing a few more from those trips this week.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Facing the Storm

Facing the Storm - 5D3, 70-200 @ 200mm, f/8, 1/640s, ISO 100
A group of King Penguins face an incoming storm on Salisbury Plain, South Georgia.

Sunday, December 07, 2014

Sink and Sand

Sink and Sand - Alpa STC, IQ 180, 60 XL, ~f/13, 5s, ISO 35
Even though the sand has taken over this room, its amazing how vibrant the colors on the wall were.

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

Abandoned Barn in Storm

Abandoned Barn in Storm - 1Ds3, 70-200 @ 200mm, f/5.6, 1/400s, ISO 200
I made this image on my 2011 trip to Grand Teton National Park and I believe it was just a quick snap made during the second shoot in the morning.  I just came across it in my library last night and it felt perfect for a black & white.

Sunday, November 23, 2014


Perched - D800e, 70-200 @ 155mm, f/8, 1/160s, ISO 720
Another image I found from last November while perusing my catalog in Lightroom this morning.

Friday, November 21, 2014


Stare - 1DX, 200-400 @ 560, f/5.6, 1/80s, ISO 1600
Exactly a year ago I was in the Okavango Delta in Botswana photographing Leopards, Lions and Elephants.  Good times.

Monday, November 17, 2014


Arabesque - Leica M9, 21 SEM, ~f/3.4, 1/30s, ISO 2500
I'm getting a little tired with my usual nature photos so time for something very different.  This was on a ceiling in the Alcázar of Seville, a royal palace in Spain.  I particular love the Arabesque form of art with its intricate geometric shapes, repeated patterns and scrolling lines.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014


Waiting - Leica M9, 35, ~f/6.7, 1/125s, ISO 160
Extras sit and wait for the scene to get set up on a movie shoot in Carmona, Spain.  I was once an extra in a movie and one of the things that surprised me was just how much time people spent sitting around waiting.  In my case, it was about 8 or 10 hours on the set to shoot about a half a dozen takes of two scenes.  In this case, I had no idea as we were just walking through the streets of Carmona and through this shoot.

Friday, November 07, 2014

King Penguins, St. Andrew's Bay

King Penguins, St. Andrew's Bay - 5D3, 400 IS II, f/4, 1/5000s, ISO 400
Most people think that one should go to Antarctica to see penguins, but its actually South Georgia Island where you get a variety of them and can get pretty close on land.

Sunday, November 02, 2014

Point Lobos

Point Lobos - Leica S, 30-90 @ 59mm, f/8, 1/500s, ISO 100
My older daughter Maya and I drove out to Point Lobos this morning for a little father/daughter hike/photo shoot.  We walked a couple of the trails and saw a deer.  Maya was most interested by all the middens she saw, stopping many times to photograph them.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Eagle Falls at Sunrise

Eagle Falls at Sunrise - Canon 5D2, 24 TS-E, f/14, 3.2s, ISO 100
The first light of the day lights up Eagle Falls, on the shores of Lake Tahoe.  I made this image in June of 2011, stopping off in the area for a morning shoot on my way back from Grand Teton.  The combination of very warm morning light and the graduated filters I was using makes the image very warm.  The warmest light was in the first 1 minute of the sun coming up from the other side and though it doesn't light up the entire waterfall evenly it was better to make the image then than to wait as even just a few minutes later the light had cooled off considerably.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Hollow Falls

Hollow Falls - Leica S2, 30mm, f/16, 1.5s, ISO 160
This is Hollow Falls at the North Table Mountain Ecological Reserve in California.  I haven't had the chance to return there since 2012 but that one hike after a storm was one of the most productive for me in terms of waterfalls.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Glacier's Edge

Glacier's Edge - 5D3, 400 II, f/5.6, 1/500s, ISO 100
The edge of a glacier in the Chilean Andes.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Big Sky Country

Big Sky Country - Fuji XE-1, 14mm, f/8, 1/600s, ISO 200
I figured that there was a good reason Montana was called "big sky country" but it wasn't until I drove through the state last summer that I experienced just how incredible it was.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Full Moon

The night before the eclipse about a week and a half ago, I set everything up and did a quick test exposure to make sure that everything would be ready to go at 3:30 am, maximizing my sleep time.  This was the test exposure, it was clearer that night than in the morning so there's more detail captured.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Cracked Earth

Cracked Earth - Alpa STC, IQ 180, 32 HR, ~f/13, 1/15s, ISO 35
Some little cracks, some big cracks.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Dune Lines

Dune Lines - Alpa STC, IQ 180, 32 HR, ~f/13, 1/8s, ISO 35
Wind swept dune lines leading to the landscape of the Namib Rand.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Keeping Watch

Keeping Watch - 1DX, 200-400 @ 560, f/8, 1/250s, ISO 200
One of two brothers that control a portion of territory in the Okavango, this one keeps a watchful eye for anything interesting.

Wednesday, October 08, 2014


Eclipse - Sony A7s, Canon 200-400, 1120mm, f/11, 1/5s, ISO 12800
The last time I photographed an eclipse was nearly three years ago, so when I learned of the one this morning, I decided to sacrifice sleep and do it again.  Part of the eclipse got interrupted by some thin, wispy clouds here but at least the whole thing was visible with the moon high in the sky.

Sunday, October 05, 2014

1 Red, 2 Green

1 Red, 2 Green - Leica S, 120mm, 1/30s, ISO 100
Tomato season is over and this year our plants' production was plentiful.  The cherry tomatoes are still continuing to produce, though at a much slower rate.

Saturday, October 04, 2014

Calgary from the Air

Calgary from the Air - A7s, 35, f/5.6, 1/640s, ISO 100
A view of Calgary, Alberta, Canada from the air.  I made this image about two weeks on quick trip up to Calgary.  You can see the tall buildings of downtown Calgary in the middle of the frame.  The blue just below is the Glenmore Reservoir and directly opposite that behind downtown is the airport (easy to see when zooming in).  The Bow river can also be seen snaking its way through the city (easier to see on the right side).  Finally, at the bottom is prairie, something Alberta is well known for.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Off to Germany

untitled - Leica M (Type 240), 21mm f/1.4 Summilux, ~f/8, 1/90s, ISO 200
Later this afternoon, I'll be off to Germany again for the week.  The fall time is one of my preferred times to visit Lübeck (the other is December, there's a lot of snow but then there's also Christmas markets!).  I made this image at the at a set of docks across the street from the hotel last August.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Reedbuck Impression

Reedbuck Impression - 1DX, 200-400 @ 490mm, f/45, 1/8s, ISO 320
A long (relatively speaking) exposure of a Reedbuck running in the grasslands of the Okavango Delta leaves just an impression.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Last Light at Garrapata State Beach

Last Light at Garrapata State Beach - Leica S2, 30mm, f/22, 8s, ISO 160
Its been over two years since I had last access to a Leica S camera.  Looking over the images I made with that camera, I really love the color I got out of it even with minimal to no work in Lightroom or Photoshop.

This was an 8s exposure made at Garrapata State Beach during the last light of the day.  I recently went back there and couldn't recognize the place, all the rocks I was familiar with seemed to have disappeared (or submerged I couldn't tell).

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

In the Wind

In the Wind - Alpa STC, IQ 180, 32 HR, ~f/13, 2s
The wind over the Namib Rand created the lines on the dune and also continues to wave the leaves of this bush.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Black-browed Albatross over the Southern Ocean

Black-browed Albatross over the Southern Ocean - 5D3, 70-200 + 1.4x @ 280mm, f/5.6, 1/1250s, ISO 400

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Early Morning on the Okavango

Early Morning on the Okavango - 1DX, 24-70 @ 24mm, f/5.6, 1/1000s, ISO 1600
The Okavango Delta in Bostwana photographed during the first light of the day.