Sunday, March 21, 2010

Postcards from Playa: Beach Cleanup

Playa del Rey, California
Remember my post about all the trash that washed up on the beach after the rains? I went to my first Heal the Bay beach clean up Saturday morning. I took a few quick shots with my point n' shoot. There were hundreds and hundreds of volunteers. It seemed like this was an unusually high turnout but the folks at Heal the Bay were super organized.

Playa del Rey photographer

Can I just say I never want to see another styrofoam container in my life. Although I picked up a few big pieces like a Hershey wrapper, a few cigarette butts, and random pieces of plastic, the majority of what I found was little teeny tiny pieces of styrofoam. I am not exaggerating when I say I probably picked up about 200 pinkie-nail-sized pieces of that stuff.

Playa del Rey photographer

Thank you to Heal the Bay for organizing. If you'd like to help out, they do a beach clean up every month at a different location.

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Sunday, March 14, 2010

Postcards from Playa: Sunset

Playa del Rey, California
As I turned onto Culver Blvd. last night I was surprised by this vibrant orange and red sunset. I knew I had less than a minute before the sun was completely down. I found a lone ice plant flower in the Ballona Wetlands, the houses overlooking the protected area silhouetted in the distance.

Playa del Rey photographer

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Friday, March 12, 2010

After...

Playa del Rey, California
Natalie and Gerald came by my studio for some baby portraits of Kainani. We started out in the park. Isn't she adorable?

Los Angeles mom and baby portrait photographer

Kainani is about two-months-old in these photos. Her fingers and toes are so tiny. But her face is so expressive.

Los Angeles baby portrait photographer


She's already a daddy's girl!

Los Angeles baby portrait photographer

Mom and dad love the beach so we took some family photos there.

Los Angeles baby portrait photographer

Los Angeles baby portrait photographer

Los Angeles baby portrait photographer

It started to get cold so we wrapped up. Don't cry Kainani, I'll take more photos of you when you're bigger.

Los Angeles baby portrait photographer

Thank you Natalie and Gerald for coming out here and introducing me to your beautiful daughter!

Los Angeles baby portrait photographer

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Sunday, March 7, 2010

Postcards from Playa: Sky Trees

Playa del Rey, California
It's hard to believe that palm trees are not native to Los Angeles. Although the California fan palm - Washingtonia filifera for you botanists - is native to southern California, many experts say it did not grow in LA. Now many different palms can be found all over the city, like these on Dockweiler Beach.

Playa del Rey photographer

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Sunday, February 28, 2010

Postcards from Playa: Reflection

Playa del Rey, California
I love this beachside neighborhood. I'd like to share some of my photos from the beach to the wetlands and everything in between in a series called Postcards from Playa.

This photo is a reflection of the park at Del Rey Lagoon on my car roof.

Playa del Rey photographer

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Saturday, January 23, 2010

One Person's Trash...

Not a Treasure

Playa del Rey, California
I was going to blog about how beautiful the beach looks after it rains. I can see all the way to Santa Monica and Malibu on one side, and the Palos Verdes Peninsula on the other. The views are sharp and crisp. Even the palm trees seem brighter against the blue skies.

Many people think photos, unretouched photos that is, don't lie. The truth is, every time you point your camera you are choosing what to show, and what not to show. As many of you know, I went to school for photojournalism and freelanced for several newspapers. A photojournalist's job is to tell the story truthfully. As a wedding photographer, my goal is to tell the story of your day honestly, but also beautifully. So if your wedding location is undergoing renovations and there's a construction-orange fence on one side (which did happen last year), I will choose the pretty trees as the background for your ceremony photos.

I could've done the same thing with this post, but instead I thought I'd share what I really saw on the beach.

Los Angeles rains storms Dockweiler Beach Playa del Rey ocean waves washed up sand junk water bottles motor oil photographer

The waves were massive, crashing to the shore.

Dockweiler Beach Playa del Rey ocean waves

I wondered if the ocean was mad as it spit out all the junk people threw into it.


Nestled in the kelp were pieces of paper, styrofoam, dozens of water bottle caps, and water bottles...

junk washed-up Dockweiler Beach Los Angeles

and labels...


and no less than 3 motor oil containers within ten feet of me. How much of that oil ended up in the ocean? One gallon of oil can contaminate one million gallons of fresh water.


Is this the great future in plastics?


Maybe you're sick of looking at photos of all this junk. So am I. And so are other Angelenos like the volunteers for Heal the Bay's Nothin' But Sand cleanups. Next clean-up for Dockweiler Beach is March 20. Anyone want to join me?

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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Picture Perfect Picnic

Playa del Rey, California
I've been super busy lately, which is good, but sometimes I forget to take a break. Today Michael and I went on a lovely picnic down the road from our place. I felt guilty relaxing when there's still photos to be edited - but I figured an hour or two away from my desk is good for the soul.

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Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy 4th of July!!!

Playa del Rey, California
Hope you enjoy a beautiful day today with friends, family and fireworks.



Our friends Adam and Bekah joined us in Playa del Rey to watch the sky light up.
Happy Independence Day!


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Monday, June 29, 2009

Here Comes the Sun...

Playa del Rey, California
I have wanted to shoot an engagement session in Playa since moving here last year. So I was super excited when Roxana and Claudiu came for their portrait session.



Roxana and Claudiu just moved from Ireland and I wanted to get a couple of photos of them surrounded by green.



We walked further and found some flowers.





Tree branches drape over this sidewalk creating the feeling of a magical secret garden.



We found an unused lifeguard tower.



Roxana shows off her gorgeous ring.



And Claudiu chases the seagulls.





Thanks for a fun shoot! I can't wait for your wedding in September!


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Thursday, January 22, 2009

MY Day in the Life

From Playa del Rey through Los Angeles and Hollywood to San Diego
A messageboard I frequent recently had this photo assignment for last Friday:

Document one typical day of your life in photos

I'm not sure what to count as the start of my day. I tend to stay up late working on photos and catching up on emails. I love the night. This is the time I am most productive. This day is no exception. It's after 2 am according to my Mac and I'm finishing up the final touches on some photos.



I am not a morning person. But I have a million things to do today so I drag myself out of bed.



Michael helps pack my car for my shoot this weekend.



First stop: the lab to pick up some promotional materials
How do you like this postcard?



The best equipment rental place ever. I have been going to Calumet for over a decade.



The lights



Off I go!



Along the way I see the coolest classic car.





I run a few more errands, stop by my place and change, and I'm back on the road. I love taking this street right by the beach. It's not the fastest way to go, but it's the most relaxing mile of my drive.





I'm not looking through the viewfinder since I am driving. Which is how I end up with this photo. For the record, I was trying to take a photo of a palm tree against the sky. But the blue is kinda nice, no?



The way to San Diego is rather uneventful. I'm concentrating on driving so no more car photos.

I have two boudoir sessions today. The first model E. wants some photos for her husband for Valentine's Day. I took a bunch of sexy photos and some fun silhouettes of her wearing these kick-ass boots.



The second model plans on sending photos to her fiance in Iraq. I think he'll get a kick out of the shots! C. was a lot of fun and gorgeous. I took a few hundred photos so she'll have lots to choose from!



I'm tired. And hungry. My friend Kim picks me up and we go try a new restaurant.



It's restaurant week in San Diego so we get to pick a three-course meal from a prix fixe menu. My favorite is the passion fruit creme brulee dessert. The food is good but the company is excellent!



Kim drops me off at the hotel. The city sleeps as I organize my gear for tomorrow's shoots.



The moon keeps me company.



Finally I am done and go to bed!


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