The first Twilight Concert at the Santa Monica Pier was last night featuring Mayer Hawthorne and it was one of the more packed shows I have been to. It was so crowded that I couldn’t actually get up on the pier, so I wandered around near the pier and made these images. As always, click on the images so get a larger view.
I’ve been exploring the intimacies of night photography and recording the results here.
Free Music Thursdays in Santa Monica
I really like riding my bike down to the Santa Monica Pier for free music on Thursdays during the summer months. Last week was the final one for this year and one of my new favorite bands, Best Coast was playing. I brought my camera along for fun and made these images. I know it’s out of order, but the first image above was the last one I took that night. It was a beautiful, still night and the colorful lights from the buildings on the right just looked so perfect, and contrasted so well with the powerful orange glow of the city in the background. Check out the gallery for more great images I made from Venice and Santa Monica. Continue reading “Free Music Thursdays in Santa Monica”
I, like so many other people, have a fascination with the moon, some kind of inexplicable, odd attraction. Not that it inspires crazy actions or odd hair-growth spurts, rather it’s a majesty thing. The moon is a celestial body we can see differently from all the rest of the planets and stars and moons in the sky because it is so close to us. I guess it’s like a perennial child in that, it’s ours, it’s always there, and it’s always different. Precocious little thing, isn’t it?
So, when it made it’s closest orbit to us this past weekend I went out and made theses images of it.
[dc]T[/dc]he moon has inspired so many legends and tales and superstitions, but I think my favorite is one I’ve heard when I was on the Amazon river in Brazil. The Caboclos there have a myth that tells the story of how the mighty river was created. You see, it seems the Sun and the Moon were once lovers, but the Moon’s father forbid her from ever seeing the Sun. Like any forbidden love, they couldn’t be kept apart forever, so there are few but far-between times when they can come together. We call it the eclipse. But in those long breaks between their brief meetings, the Moon lamented her love and wept for her lover. And her tears created the Amazon river–a waterway so mighty it rises and falls 40 feet throughout the year. And the scientists say it’s due to extreme rainfall.
Shameless Self Promotion:
If you like that story, there are many more fantastic tales and outrageous myths that I’ve documented in a film I made about Life, Myths and music in the Amazon region of Brazil. You can buy or rent it at Amazon.
Balancing Sunset with a Foreground Subject, part 1
A technique I have been wanting to try for a long time now has been balancing a beautiful sunset with a good exposure on a person in the foreground. It’s not entirely simple as the subject should not be lit flat like from an on-camera flash, and the proper balance has to be found. This is my first attempt and I did not have the flash set up properly and didn’t have all the equipment I would have wanted because we just happened to be driving by the beach when we saw this sunset and ran out to grab some photos, but I made do and these are the images I came up with. Thanks to my buddy Bret for being such an accommodating victim. I learned a few things just from that brief foray and will refine the technique from here.
Hong Kong apartment building
Welcoming in a New Year
Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,
The flying cloud, the frosty light:
The year is dying in the night;
Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.
from In Memorium
by Lord Alfred Tennyson
It seems to be becoming a ritual for me to go out just before the New Year and make a few images and this year, just like last, I found myself in Chicago doing just that.
What I was trying to capture with this image was the sense of duality on Wacker Drive. Lower Wacker Drive has always fascinated me and has shown up in several of my other images in various forms, but as I was crossing this bridge I noticed the opening that allowed me to see both lower and upper Wacker Drive, so I composed this image which shows a night scene above ground with colorful incandescent lighting and the city lights reflecting off the fast moving clouds above, and the even warmer sodium vapor light spilling out the opening below.
There is an obvious juxtaposition at that opening also, where the trees and grass are fenced off from the concrete cavern.
From Wacker Drive I drove up north to have drinks and toast the new year with some friends, and on my way home I decided to make my first image of 2011 at the Water Tower on Michigan Ave. for no other reason than I thought it somehow a fitting beginning to a year that holds a lot of hope for so many.
Time lapse of the full moon rising over Joshua Tree
Joshua Tree National Park is a surreal landscape in the high desert called Mojave that is scattered with the foreboding, tree-like cacti from which it is named. It’s unique beauty is also reflected in the myriad of other hearty plants that dot the landscape and is oddly interspersed with other-worldly piles of gigantic rocks.
Toward the end of June the full moon came out and I shot some time lapse of it as it rose slowly over one such gathering of rocks appropriately named Jumbo Rocks.
Night Photography in Chicago II
It used to be a writers town and it’s always been a fighter’s town. For writers and fighters and furtive torpedoes, cat-bandit, baggage thieves, hallway headlockers on the prowl, baby photographers and stylish coneroos, this is the spot that is always most convenient, being centrally located, for settling ancestral grudges. Whether the power is in a .38, a typewriter ribbon or a pair of six-ouncers, the place has grown great on bone-deep grudges: of writers and fighters and furtive torpedoes.
Chicago: City On The Make
On a blue moon New Years eve Night in Chicago I wanted to get some more images of my hometown, so before going to the year end celebrations I wandered around the downtown river front until it got too cold. And at 17 degrees, that was a very short time and made the long exposures seem much longer.
The thing I like most about making images in a city at night are the colors, and in Chicago that generally means a golden straw colored hue juxtaposed with cooler tones in the buildings and sky.
Click on the images to see a lightbox of larger images.
Driving around the Chicago suburbs at night, checking out the Christmas decorations.