Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Jacarandas are Blooming!

As the cars drive down the jacaranda-lined streets, you can hear the flowers pop! Nice blue S. CA skies this week... linking the iPhone photo (below) with Skywatch Friday. Click the link to check out incredible skies from around the world!

Friday, May 24, 2013

Let The Games Begin!

I mentioned in an earlier post that wife and I are working on a desert "property" we bought recently. I guess property is the right word... it's a HUGE mess and so a big project, and we started in earnest this weekend. It was one of those weekends I found myself thinking "Really? Why am I doing this again?"  No turning back now. Up to now it's been the two of us working like dogs filling up a dumpster on weekends with every kind of disgusting junk you can think of. But this weekend we brought in the "professionals"... a local guy who seems to know about construction (interesting and colorful story here, but not appropriate for blog-land), and a guy up the road from him who owns a Bobcat. So we were working today grading, trenching, and starting to lay the plumbing for the new outhouse. There will even be plumbing to the trailer and the original cabin (for a sink). Swanky, eh?

Bobcat with old desert cabin in the background.
From inside the cabin, looking out.
So meet Clarence (aka "Iron-man") and his wife Clarissa. Clarence is one of the hardest working individuals I've ever met! People all over the desert community call him to haul away their metal "junk", and Iron-man shows up with his little truck (which appears to be held together mostly with duct tape and wire) and miraculously manages to get an incredible amount of junk in his truck, way more than you would ever think is possible, then hauls it off for recycling. A really tough way to make a living, especially in the desert heat!

Clarence hauled off a B-B-Q, refrigerator, hot water heater, bathtub, screen door, large chair... and then went over and somehow got a full-sized washing machine in the back of his truck! And he did it all by himself... no help, no hand truck... just brute strength and determination! I'm in awe! Wish there were more people around like Clarence.
Clarissa & Clarence

Sunday, May 19, 2013

The Wedding (Part 2)

I promised you a couple more posts from Monica & Tim's beautiful wedding from last weekend in Palm Springs. A couple of things I learned from my experience:
1. It's tough taking outdoor shots (especially portraits) in an area like Palm Springs where the light is so intense and the shadows are deep. Keep your subjects in full shade if possible, or use reflectors or flash fill.
2. Speaking of flash fill, I don't use flash much. I borrowed my nephew's flash unit and didn't realize how quickly they burn through batteries. I had quite a few shots where the flash didn't go off (either the unit didn't recharge quickly enough or the batteries had been used up, not sure which). Bottom line:  If I shoot another wedding, I will need to get a lot better at using flash!
The groom... patiently awaiting his first view of the bride!
First view.... so beautiful!!

First kiss as husband and wife!
Time to celebrate!!
A great example of where my flash went off and filled things in with just enough light... no harsh shadows on the bride!

Linking with:
Weekly Top Shot #83

Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Wedding: Part One

So, as I mentioned a couple of posts ago, I photographed a friends wedding last Saturday. Been busy all week organizing and editing about 400 photos. My first impression? Wedding photographers work their butts off! It's hard work. Second impression? What an honor to be trusted to capture one of the most important days in a couple's life! Thought I would share a few of my favorite photos, so here's some from "part 1" (pre-ceremony).

Couldn't resist pulling off the road while driving into Palm Springs in the early AM and capturing the iconic wind turbines.
Bright blue desert sky... linking with Skywatch Friday

Getting ready....
Thanks for stopping by, and come back for Part 2 (the ceremony) and Part 3 (post-ceremony) photos.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Just Add Water...

Small blow-up kiddie pool... check! Connect the garden hose to the water heater... check! Fill up the little pool with warm water and add some baby-bath, and of course, a baby... check! Happy Mothers Day to all you moms out there, and especially to my Mom, wife and daughter (her first Mothers Day!).

Thursday, May 9, 2013


The telephone poles kind of remind me of goal posts... extra point looks good!
Happy Skywatch Friday.  Click the link to check out great skies from around the world!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Korakia Pensione

That's a mouthful!  The Korakia Pensione is a funky-elegant boutique hotel in Palm Springs. According to their website [], "the Korakia blends the silhouette of Tangier with a whisper of the Mediterranean". A friend of mine is getting married there soon, and she asked me to shoot the wedding. It's truly an honor, and as I've never done this before, and you don't get "do-overs" at weddings, I want to do my very best to do it right.  With that in mind, my wife and I drove out Saturday AM to check it out. The good news is it's very picturesque... a really beautiful setting. Wish me luck!
The property is right up against the rocks, and yet still close to downtown restaurants and shopping.

Ornate doors and locks seem to be all over the place!

Like I said.... funky! (in a good way!)

My favorite photo of the morning... my wife had to keep track of the chihuahua while I was busy clicking! If you're in the Palm Springs area, check out the Korakia Pensione... it's well worth a visit!!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Yucca Bloom & Joshua Tree

Took this one two weekends ago... the Mohave yuccas had some big, yellow blooms. Many of the joshua trees were in bloom also, but not those in this photo. I like the blue sky and purple mountains in the background, so linking with Skywatch Friday.
Have an outstanding weekend!!