SATURDAY DECEMBER 07, 2013
Daily Photo: Twin Bridges Passing Overhead at Sunrise
There have been some crazy high levels of pollution in Shanghai the past week. And for the most part it is entirely a bad thing. However, one of the hidden benefits is that it makes for some epic lighting at sunrise. I got this actually out the window of a taxi cab as it was driving along bringing me to the office.
FRIDAY DECEMBER 06, 2013
Daily Photo: Korean Girls Staring With Wonder
These little kids were just so content in life at this moment. They weren’t fidgeting or hardly even moving. They slowly sat there quietly nibbling on little snacks and watching the world with big eyes. As I approached them to photograph them, I was extremely happy that I didn’t ruin the moment and was able to capture that feeling. It is really depressing when your camera breaks that trance and causes people to cover up and/or turn away.
THURSDAY DECEMBER 05, 2013
Daily Photo: Unforgettable Paddle Boat Cruise Through Tam Coc
One of my favorite parts of this photo is the Yin/Yang like symbol the clouds and colors in the sky have going. This shot on paper looks easy: a single object moving towards mountains is one of the go to formulas for awesome landscapes. But the tricky thing here is (a) I was on a moving boat and (b) these people weren’t hired actors or friends that I could stage. This shot existed for this split moment right as we emerged from a cave, and I just had to be ready to take advantage. How does the saying go? Luck is being prepared when opportunity knocks?
WEDNESDAY DECEMBER 04, 2013
Daily Photo: Dunes, Sunset, Sand, Wind
Walking in the desert is really really hard. The movies aren’t overselling it when they show clips of a hot sun, chapped lips, and dragging feet. I can’t imagine having to try and traverse a whole desert. Here my brother and I just did this bit of walking to reach this vantage point, and we were ready to call it a day then. However, seeing this ominous scene unfold...we knew we couldn't stop.
TUESDAY DECEMBER 03, 2013
Daily Photo: Pastry Chef Putting Finishing Touch on Candyland
Here we have a Candyscape. And it got me thinking that it has been way too long since I have made my own Gingerbread house. After seeing this at the Waldorf Astoria Shanghai and photographing it—it is only a matter of time before I make my own.
MONDAY DECEMBER 02, 2013
Daily Photo: Shanghai Waldorf Astoria Atrium in Christmas
Everything is so equally huge in this Atrium, that it is a bit tricky to properly understand how massive this is. All we have to put the size in perspective is the pastry chefs putting the finishing touches on their Gingerbread villages. But this place is truly magnificent. If you are in Shanghai for Christmas, don’t miss it. Just pop in for some hot chocolate as you are walking along the Bund.
SUNDAY DECEMBER 01, 2013
Daily Photo: Appetizers Are Served
This image was shot with a dreamy lighting effect. If you want, you can pick up this effect as part of my Lightroom Presets here. I like the color version because it makes all the characters pop. Diagnosing the scene, the entire setting (the table, chairs, wall, curtain) are some tone of white or black, leaving the actual subjects in the scene (the lady, the food, and the photograph) to stand out as the only objects in color. That works brilliantly. However, I also like it in a traditional Black and White as it highlights the compositional simplicity of the shot as well as lending a nostalgic 1950’s housewife feel to it.
SATURDAY NOVEMBER 30, 2013
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Daily Photo: Jolly Christmas Santa Store
Is it me or is Santa a bit creepy? Look at the people he associates with. Not to mention that he sneaks into people’s homes at night and has a strong affinity for little kids. He lives like a hermit. He’s way to happy. I mean, looking at him with 21st century glasses on and you be see red flags and hear alarms bells. But let’s look at him with 20th Century glasses on and see jolly folk and hear nostalgic music.
On a technical note—a shot like this is all about clever positioning. One slight step or even one slight body sway would throw off this whole composition. Moreover, you can see one little trick I like to do here for three person triangle portraits. Bring one of the side ones to the front, making it bigger. Then for the other side one (who will be smaller) put an unobtrusive filler above their head to cover the dead space. Like a lot of clever things in life: simple but effective.
FRIDAY NOVEMBER 29, 2013
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Daily Photo: What I Call the Christmas Sprint
Outsiders might think that China doesn’t celebrate Christmas. They have the Communist thing. They don’t believe in Christ. They don’t have that much disposable income. Ahhh…minor details at best. China, well at least Shanghai, seems to celebrate Christmas with gusto. This is the entrance to a shopping paradise. And this kid is sprinting towards it.
THURSDAY NOVEMBER 28, 2013
Daily Photo: White and Red at the North South Elevated Road
As I was shooting this all I could think of was the song “Red and Black” from Les Miserables. Sometimes I can get a bit loony while I am shooting by myself. I just start talking to my camera, talking to the scene, and making up words to make believe songs. “White, the color of HEADLIIIGHHTSS. Red, the color of BRRAAAKKKES.”
WEDNESDAY NOVEMBER 27, 2013
Daily Photo: The Beautiful Chaos of the City Freeway Exchange
Finding cool interchanges in cities is relatively easy. Look at a map to get a basic bearing, then drive along the freeway until you see causeways going in all different directions. Once you get to a promising spot, get out, and hike up all the near buildings/hills/trees you can find. If hiking fails, the semi-affordable fallback is a heavy duty remote controlled helicopter that you can pick up for $299. You can even secretly buy it for yourself by giving it to your kid (I'm not saying I did that...)
Here I snuck into an apartment building and cracked open the window in the stairwell towards the top. I say towards the top, because I think the top is a little too obvious.