Last Saturday was a fun day. Pete, Charlie, Irish and myself spent the day making cool videos and trying out lots of fun things. On Saturday night we decided to head downtown and let Irish drive. The rest is history.
Traveling to a place and exploring quirky places that capture the essence of the place is something that I really enjoy doing. Now Las Vegas is a pretty interesting and quirky place so there are quite a few attractions that boggle the mind. One place that is particularly interesting and rich in in Las Vegas History is the Neon Sign Boneyard. This place is the final resting place for neon signs. It’s a bit sad , funny and quirky all at the same time.
The story of how the graveyard came to be is a bit interesting as well. For many decades most of the neon signs in Las Vegas have been produced by one company – Yesco. This company specialized in providing the brightly lit Neon signs that sat above Casinos, Stores, Gas Stations, Motels and every other business that you could imagine. Now Yesco’s business model was a bit different than other companies and instead of selling their signs to businesses, they would create the signs and than lease the signs to the businesses and get paid each month a fee. When a business closed, went bankrupt or decided they no longer wanted the sign – the sign was given back to Yesco. The old decrepit signs were a bit of a nuisance for Yesco since they had to store them – which they did in an old dusty lot. Tourist, locals and other began to peek in the lot taking pictures and well after awhile a museum was opened up where the signs could be viewed by all. The museum charges $15 and you can only go walk the lot with a guided tour. Since the signs are old when tourist have been allowed to go on their own they have broken lights and damaged the signs so the museum implemented a plan where you could not take backpacks and where you could not go unguided.
Well I had a chance to visit the Neon Sign Graveyard and I was quite happy with it. There were some fantastic old signs that dated all the way back to the 1920’s for all types of businesses. This truly is a quirky and interesting place you can go to in Las Vegas if you are looking for something a bit different and off the beaten path.
Sometimes I think we have it way too good here in La Jolla. While the rest of the country battles sub-zero temperature in the midst of winter we have 70 degree days with lots of sunshine. When I take a drive through La Jolla on any given day I am really amazed how how much beauty there is in this place. Take for example today. I went down to La Jolla Shores and this was the scene right before sunset.
Two years ago I had just bought a new amateur video camera and a some equipment so I wanted to test it out. I called my sister Sarah because she was lonely and it was a Sunday and she had nothing to do. Well I shot some footage of her outside her apartment in Hillcrest. She had just moved in and it was very cute. She had a date the night before and she was very excited about it and she told me about it before I began taking the footage. Well I was probably there for no more than 1 hour but we shot some pretty nice feeling stuff. Oh, and the guy she had a date with, she ended up marrying and now they are having a baby. Pretty amazing day here for Sarah which makes this video all the more special.
Tu and I spent Friday watching Oliver at his home in Encinitas. I know it seems like I am posting more videos on the blog than usual but I guess that is a product of how I do photography and videography. With DLSR’s these days you get the option of either taking video or pictures. Because I recently got the new D3S, I have had the luxury of having a state of the art camera as well as video camera all in one package. I really like doing videography with DLSR’s for a couple of reasons. First you get to use your top of the line lenses. That means more wide angle shots and tighter super depth of focus shots with your better lenses. Combining that fact with the full frame sensor and you have a real winning combination for DLSR’s over traditional video cameras.
Here is a short video documentary of our time watching Oliver. As I always say, Oliver is one of my favorite subjects because he is so unique and so fantastically photographable.
Have you ever wished for a miracle that came true? You pray and pray for it, and then it happens? For Bill (my brother) and his wife Michelle that is exactly what happened 10 days ago when their little baby Isabella was born. After many years of trying and heart-wrenching losses and against every odd by any serious mathematician or statistician they conceived a baby. And that baby is the precious Isabela that they brought home a week ago. Congratulations to Bill and Michelle on this joyous occasion.
Joshua Tree National Park is located in Southern California – actually not too far from San Diego (but very close to Palm Springs). It is one of the newer parks in the US and was only established about 15 years ago. Joshua Tree was made famous by U2 who named their 5th and one of their most famous albums for the area. The iconic images from Joshua Tree are the pictures of the Yucca brevifolia which are the trees that are indigenous to the area. They are everywhere and they are beautiful. Joshua Tree was named one of the most beautiful places in the US and it is not hard to see why. It is particularly beautiful around sunset when the orange sky paints the landscape with a nice warm glow. Joshua Tree was somewhere that I wanted to go to for a long time and I was not disappointed.
Weddings and Engagement Photos; these are typical events that are the bread and butter of many photographers. Probably most of the best photographers in the world shoot weddings. Event photographers that shoot weddings become masters of the camera and of thinking creatively in stressful situations. I always admire good Wedding Photographers that really know how to capture the essence of a wedding beautifully. I have wondered how much of that is experience and how much is that they just see the world differently than other people. I always wish I had the capability to really shoot weddings well, even though I would never want to be a wedding photographer. Too much stress for me.
When my Sister in Law Camille gave the opportunity to shoot some engagement photos for her friends, I jumped at the idea. Willing subjects that would let me take pictures of them? I was game. I have to admit since I am only an amateur photographer that I get very nervous being the primary photographer for someone’s big day. We agreed to take the pictures at a pretty beautiful location in Point Loma – The Southwestern Yacht Club where they live on a boat. We picked a pretty gorgeous day and met about an hour and a half before the sun sets – I always think the only time to do outdoor portraits is the Golden Hour . You can get more beautiful pictures in 15 minutes during the Golden Hour than you could in several hours during the middle of the day.
I am still working on editing the pictures but it was a great experience to get out there and photograph someone’s big announcement. They were a very beautiful couple, full of life and energy so it was quite easy to shoot them. I am looking forward to editing the pictures and seeing what they think.
The Happy Couple
Kissing on the Beach
Caught in the Library