I finally was able to catch a sunset at the beach last night. We’re getting our June gloom foggy weather already, which means sunsets are usually ruined. Lucky for me, last night the fog stayed off the coast just far enough.
This particular sunset wasn’t anything too amazing. I felt like I should use a few apps to make it look more beautiful in my eyes. First, I shot with TrueHDR. If you’re new to my blog, I use TrueHDR a lot because often times it makes for a more realistic image by combining two exposures. Next, I used Snapseed to brighten a little, add contrast, and bump up the saturation slightly. Then, I used TangledFX for the painterly/fibrous look. Finally, I used Snapseed again because I felt like the image needed more contrast and saturation.
While I was in the bay area this weekend, I decided to stop by the Winchester Mystery House to snap a photo for a friend. I lived in SJ for 21 years and I always end up making a few trips every year, but I’ve never been to the Winchester House. I didn’t take the tour this time because I was about to meet up with friends and it was more expensive than I expected.
This was a difficult shot to get because the lighting was so harsh. It was taken just before noon with the sun shining right into the lens. Using a regular camera app blew out the sky and lost part of the roof. In high contrast scenes you can use an HDR app to try and replicate what you see with your eyes. In this case, I used TrueHDR. I was pleasantly surprised with the result, save for the beam of light on the left.
The blended image from an HDR pretty much always needs to be edited in another app to add contrast so it looks more realistic again. I used Snapseed to do the trick. Then I decided I wanted more texture and drama in the image so I used SimplyHDR. Finally, I wanted to see what a ShockMyPic version would look like (below.)
In a funny coincidence, I have a photo featured on photobotos today. The one featured was actually shot up on top of the rock in this photo here.
This cave/arch thing is just a short drive from where I live. I didn’t even know about it until I saw another photographer post a photo of it recently. All I had to do was walk down a mountain of stairs to get to it. Maybe thats why I didn’t find it sooner.
The great thing about this beach is its at a hotel, so the crowds don’t know about it. I had the beach to myself most of the time until a couple came down to watch the sunset. I’m happy to have found another secret beach that the tourists don’t know about
This time out, I was mostly just scouting the location and observing the light at sunset. I don’t think the sun will ever rise or set through the arch, which is too bad. I’m still trying to figure out what time of day will give me the best lighting. I guess I’ll just have to do sunrise, sunset, and stormy. My guess is storm clouds will make the best scene.
Shot with ProHDR because TrueHDR was making the sky grey. Edited with Snapseed.
I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to take a photo with your iPhone after the sun has gone down, but it’s a challenge to get a shot like this. You absolutely have to use an HDR app that takes multiple exposures and merges them. If you try to use a regular camera app, you’ll end up with either a nicely exposed sky and a very dark foreground, or a white sky and a properly exposed foreground. Sadly, neither one is like what you were seeing in person.
For this shot, I used TrueHDR. Ideally, you’d set your phone up on a tripod for HDR, especially at this time of day. It’s very important to keep the camera as still as possible so the HDR app can merge the images more cleanly. If you click on the image to view it larger, you’ll notice the the trees in the middle of the image are slightly off, as well as the hill on the right. Luckily, its not too noticeable if you’re just sharing a smaller version with your friends. You may not have even noticed it if I hadn’t pointed it out.
I edited this one with Snapseed. The image straight from TrueHDR was very flat, meaning it needed more contrast and some pop.
This was shot out in Sacramento a couple of months ago. We stopped in Old Sac, for a break, on our way from Oregon to the central coast. There’s a high concentration of candy shops within a few blocks of each other. That’s mainly what I remember. That and the cool architecture of the old, haunted buildings.
I don’t really remember the apps used. I think it was TrueHDR for the camera. I’m not sure if I edited with another app.
The clouds were pretty interesting the other evening. Just for a few moments, the light and the colors of the scene were awesome. I was lucky enough to be there to witness it. Stupid me didn’t wait around for the sunset though. I drove to another part of the coast, chasing a cloud that I was hoping would make for a great shot at sunset. Unfortunately, it evaporated before the sun went down and I was left in the middle of agriculture fields with nothing too exciting going on.
This was shot with TrueHDR. Edited with Snapseed, Tangled FX, and ImageBlender. I liked the Tangled FX version, but wanted to dial it back a bit by using ImageBlender to reduce the opacity of the effect to about 70% just to bring back a hint of realism.
Since this one was well received on 500px, I thought I would share it with you all here. I’m sure the popularity has nothing to do with adding a girl to a landscape, or in this case a seascape. I will admit that its an idea I’ve had for a while now, girls and landscapes, but just hasn’t materialized yet. Models tend to be flaky, you know.
Lucky for me, I had Shannon (Seeing Spots Photography) with me out at Sand Dollar Beach near Big Sur, so I was able to snap a few shots of her during the beautiful sunset.
If you’re on 500px, please add me and I’ll be happy to do the same . My page is here. If you’re not familiar with 500px, its the photo sharing site photographers use when they’ve evolved beyond Flickr. I don’t mean that in a bad way, or an I’m better than Flickr way. Flickr is great for what it is, which is more for hobbyists and people just beginning to explore photography. 500px is a more experienced community inhabited by a stunning amount of talented photographers. Go check it out and see for yourself.
Shot with my Nikon D7000. Edited with magic dust
Ok I have a few minutes to kill before I hit the road again. That means you get to see one of my images from the last trip. This was shot with my Nikon D7000.
Thats not a small bridge, its a huge redwood. This was just on a random trail off of the Newton B. Drury Scenic Parkway in northern CA.
I was recently asked to write an article for bestbuymobile’s blog providing some tips for taking better photos with your iPhone. Yesterday it hit the front page of their site . Pretty exciting for a guy that started this blog on a whim.
David Pasillas, a professional photographer, was in between DSLR’s when he decided to get creative with his smartphone. Since then, he has shot gorgeous landscapes, vacation photos and wedding pictures simply using his iPhone. Check out David’s work on his blog and Facebook page. If you too love snapping pictures with your iPhone, try his simple tips and tricks for taking your pictures to the next level.
You can read the tips here
Along Highway 1 heading north towards Big Sur, there are a few turnouts with signs for trails. They all look pretty nondescript. The Salmon Creek Trail actually has waterfalls just a short hike from where you park. I’d never been before and was pleasantly surprised.
No, the leaves weren’t actually red. I’ve seen other photographers change the leaves to this shade of red before, and love the effect. This was my first attempt at it, and it was quite easy with Color Efex Pro 4. The Indian Summer filter is so much simpler than trying to mess with adjustment layers, which I also tried.
There were quite a few steps in this edit, and it all began with a single RAW file turned into 5 different jpg’s and processed with Photomatix.
To see a much larger version of this, you can go to my facebook page and look at it in fullscreen. I think this is the first time ever that the fb version looks best.
Shot with my Nikon D7000 and 18-55mm lens 1 second exposure.
I was looking through the images from this shoot again a few days ago and found another that I liked. If you’ve ever wondered how the heck I edit my images in photoshop, I’ll let you behind the curtain on this one. I made a blog post over on my website that will take you through the steps. Before & After
I was at my friends house the other day when we noticed an awesome sunset taking place. Luckily she has an amazing view from the balcony of the house. I just wish my Nikon wasn’t in the car. I only had time to snap a shot with the trusty iPhone.
Shot with TrueHDR and edited with Snapseed. Most of the editing was done in TrueHDR by applying a retro filter. I think it worked for this shot.
Oh, btw, I’d like to wish you all a happy new year. May 2013 be filled with tons of photos and creative growth. I’ll try to get back into the habit of posting more. Of course, that means I’ll have to shoot some more.
If you follow me on facebook, you’ve seen these photos. If you don’t follow me, you should change that because I’ve been really bad about blogging. Here’s my fb page.
This shoot with Monica and her horse, Troy, was a lot of fun. I’ve never taken photos of horses before, so this was totally new to me. We worked out a sweet deal where she said she will give me riding lessons in exchange for this shoot.
Since we got to the beach almost 2 hours before sunset, there was plenty of time to shoot and relax. While we waited for the light to get a little better, Monica talked me into climbing up on Troy and she walked me along the beach for a while. If you ever want to feel like a celebrity, ride a horse on the beach. Everyone stares at you and takes your picture!
I didn’t tweak the colors in these shots. It was just a magical sunset.
They went way out into the waves. I saw the water go over the horse’s back at one point. As you can imagine, Monica was drenched from head to toe by the end of our shoot.
After a long day of editing wedding photos and finishing up a 5th day of Sal Cincotta’s wedding photography business workshop on creative live, I was ready for some fun. I looked out the window and saw a bunch of cool clouds that were part of a passing storm. I knew this was going to be a good sunset, so I ran out the door with my camera and headed to the beach.
Btw, Sal’s workshop was amazing. I highly recommend it for wedding photographers, or anyone that wants their photography business to be more profitable.
I’m back in California for a while. I still have health issues to take care of before I can really get my life started in Oregon. I caught the sunset at the beach last night and I wasn’t expecting much because there was some thick fog rolling in. Luckily, it stayed away from the pier.
The first 2 images were shot and edited with camera+. The last 3 were shot with TrueHDR. I’ve had TrueHDR on my iphone for almost a year, but never used it because I liked ProHDR better. Well, apparently, TrueHDR’s updates have finally turned it into an amazing app because the results are pretty fantastic. I may have a new favorite HDR app.