WHEN
07:30 PM
12.04.15

WHERE
SLS Beverly Hills, Los Angeles

This photograph captured the mood of the night at a corporate christmas party that I covered this festive season. The party had just started and guests were enjoying cocktails when I looked up and saw Adrienne walking towards me with a sway that the outfit called for. I quickly grabbed my camera and clicked clicked as she swayed towards me. She knew how to work it. Without a pause she gave me a project run-away pose and I had my shot! I was ready. My camera had been preset for the kind of shots I wanted at the moment. She later confided in me that it's a 60's dress that belongs to her grandmother and she was wearing it for the first time. She had just received it the previous day. And suddenly this shot took a whole different meaning. It became sentimental. What could be more fulfilling than that? 

 

Body: Nikon D700 Lens: Nikkor 24 - 70 2.8 Aperture: f/3.2 Shutter: 1/60 ISO: 500


Kenneth Hahn Park

Nikon D700  Lens: Nikkor 24 - 70 2.8  Aperture: f/2.8  ISO: 400  Shutter: 1/500

I love everything about this photography! For starters, I have photographed Kai from the time he was 2 years old. Kai and I connected from the moment his parents introduced us. Yes. Introduced us. Kai grabbed my hand and we walked together looking for a perfect location for our shoot. Every photographer yearns for that connection with his/her subject on a shoot. 

I knew there and then that I had a winner. Kai had the confidence and swag of a celebrity. Darn right! Look at him at 8 years old on this shoot! He's turned out to be quite a handsome young fella!

Photographing children requires a lot of patience on the photographer and a connection with the child (subject). Do you pose them? I don't. I simply let them be themselves. I let them bring their favorite toys with them. I let them play with them. I tell the parents not to worry about controlling them or telling them to sit still - I calm the parent's nerves by letting them know that I am not on the clock. I am enjoying myself. Photographing as I adjust to the situation.

The moment comes when they are not conscious of the photographer. They are relaxed. And that is when the magic happens.

On this day, we had moved from different locations as we photograph. Experience has taught me that the magic often times happens later down the road - when everyone is relaxed and comfortable. 

Kai found this lovely location and without a doubt i was ready! I was ready for the moment. I had my Nikon SB-910 mounted and hooked to pocket wizard and ready for it. I squeezed a few frames and voila! We had a winner!  

I love it when his parent's call him "Chief"!  That's how he rolls!


L.A Zoo 26th Annual Photo Day

 Nikon D700  Lens Nikorr 70 - 200 2.8  Aperture: f/2.8  Shutter 1/2500  ISO: 400 

           

It was chilly this morning for the 26th annual photo day at The L.A Zoo. On this day I was going to work alongside Mark Comon of Paul's Photo, Torrance California. I had my beanie, fingerless gloves and a comfortable enough heavy jacket. I was ready for a day of fun with approximately 260 signed up attendees. 

Leading camera manufacturer's were in attendance and loaning out their big lenses for use! How could you go wrong! It was a day of sharing wildlife photographic techniques and sharing photographic enthusiasm with all shutterbugs!

I spent about an hour at the hippo point waiting for the hippos to get excited and give me a "wide mouth" salute! I trained my camera on the hippos. Waited - waiting is the fun part - while talking camera techniques with fellow photo enthusiasts. I had my camera ready for the moment. I metered, I set my focus point and made sure the histogram gave me correct reading. I squeezed in a few test shots and adjusted my settings.

And then it happened! The hippo's roar came! and the camera went click click click click.....I went tight. I wanted a good portrait of rao! Oh! What's a rao you ask!!! Ha! It's Hippo in dholuo!

In photoshop I converted the image to black and white. I played with color but black and white got me excited! Here is a pointer - at the Zoo go tight. Stay patient and wait for the moment.

A day at the Zoo!


Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco

Nikon D-80  Aperture: f/10  Shutter: 2 Seconds ISO: 800

 

I had just purchased my first digital camera. Nikon D80. July 2008.  I was ready to take my photography to the next level. I was tired of "lucky" shots with my Nikon N65 SLR film camera. I had struggled with the fundamentals of photographic triangle of Aperture, Shutter and ISO.  

Then along came Jason my co-worker and Scott my neighbor. Two people who unselfishly shared their trade expertise with me and mentored me along the way. 

What I like about this photograph....immediately after purchasing the Nikon D-80 with the standard kit lens, I took a family vacation to San Francisco on a photo expedition. I wanted to shoot the Golden Gate bridge. I was ready for it!! I had a brand new digital camera and I now had a good understanding of Aperture, Shutter speed and ISO. More importantly, I have been practicing...practicing..practicing...Purchased Understanding Exposure by Bryan Peterson and read and practiced all that he talked about in the book - and practiced some more. I was ready!!

I behaved like a seasoned photographer. I had my tripod. I had my remote shutter trigger. And I had patience. Then I did the ultimate!! I sent my wife Natalie and daughter Zoe-jordan to cross the Golden Gate bridge on foot while I composed my shot. I did not want them to get bored. I did not want to get rushed either!!! I wanted time with the Golden Gate bridge. 

And after spending the next 45 minutes or so scouting the area for a perfect place to pitch my Nikon D-80 on a tripod, I shot several frames. Adjusting my settings and observing the histogram and the LCD. 

Why I like this photograph... This was the beginning. It's where it all started.  It's my masterpiece. It's beautifully framed in my living room.