One of the things that I love to do when I am not shooting for clients is to shoot long exposure images at the beach. It is a way to relax while doing something I love and the resulting images have incredible tones and milky white oceans. The problem that arises during shooting long exposures during daylight with ND filters is also that there are normally other people around that randomly walk into frame. I used to think that this ruined an otherwise good shot but now that I look back at them I see an interesting pattern and have now decided that I will seek out areas where I know there is a high likelihood of people or animals walking into frame. Here are some of the images I found from the past which have inspired me and this project.
So at the end of January I was glued to my computer screen as I watched the ever creative Hailey Bartholomew teach her style of film shooting and editing on the learning forum CreativeLive. It was a bit of a slow time for us which really allowed me to explore filmmaking both through my own lens and by researching other filmmakers on Vimeo and Youtube. I spent days shooting hummingbirds and lovely little objects that looked interesting. We took day trips to the beach and Redwoods to get more and more footage. Every time we went out I grabbed my camera and Fig Rig. The more I learned the more my mind exploded with other ideas but I had to rein it all in for this project and just focus on finishing it without burying myself in clips. There was really no theme other than 30 days of shooting so the challenge was to create something that looked cohesive but still expressed the diverse and rich life I get to live on a daily basis. It was a wonderful struggle that left 95% of what I shot on the floor(including my previous video), never to see the light of day. I have a long way to go but am excited to continue down this path. Please look for more videos in the near future but in the mean time here is my 30 Days of Film
The last few month have been quiet photographically speaking and it has been a blessing in disguise. Mark’s mum had a heart attack anad he has spent much time down in Southern California helping her through the changes in her life and moving her into an assisted living facility until she can live by herself again. The lull has given me the opportunity to learn more about shooting and editing video which I think will become an important part of the services we provide. In the next few days I will post a short film of snippets, there is no story, just video clips of life put to music. It was a learning project and I am happy with how it turned out. On the last day I shot, Mark and I headed to Half Moon Bay and just hung out on the beach. He was playing with his flash as I shot video. After he turned his camera on me I asked if we could do a self portrait of the two of us and this is the result. So here is to learning and growing as we all move forward in the wonderful life.
I have been dabbling in video on and off now for a couple of years, learning the software, making mistakes and just figuring out if it was something that I truly wanted to pursue. A year ago Sue Bryce was on CreativeLive and she showed a promo video done by the incredibly talented Hailey Bartholomew and I was sold. I have been following Hailey since that day, so I was thrilled when Sue brought Hailey to CreativeLive to teach how she tells stories through video. Sue and Hailey also created a challenge to shoot every day during the Month of February and then edit a video to music for final review and judging(Learn more about the challenge on Hailey’s blog). I must confess that I haven’t been shooting every day but I have been shooting a lot more and this little video is one of the results of that effort. Once again I have to thank CreativeLive for everything they do and all the inspiration their presenters share. If you haven’t checked out their site yet, I suggest you do, it may just change your life.
PS. I still plan on doing my 30 day challenge and will post it here when it is done.
Huge thanks to Broadway By The Bay, artistic director Amanda Folena, volunteer cat Adrianne Walters and Margaret Toomey for helping with the costume and make-up.
My personal photo-blog, photo-sage, is where I began my reintroduction into photography 7 years ago. I have contemplated removing it since I don’t post to it anymore but it chronicles my progress in images from amateur to full-time photographer and there is some value in that.
In 2006, I was invited to join a photo-meme site called Weeklyshot.org by my sister. Once a week we would post 3 photos to a specified theme and they would get rated and published by the members. Many of those photographers also had their own photo-blogs where they posted all their favorite images. I decided that a similar set-up was the next step for me in my photographic journey so I set up Photo-Sage. With nothing more than a point-and-shoot camera and some vague ideas it became a personal creative outlet at a very difficult time in my life, it was also a way that a community of aspiring photographers communicated. Through Weeklyshot and my blog I met Mark Kitaoka, who, unbeknownst to me at the time, would become my partner in life and in business.
There is no professional reason for me to keep the photo-blog, especially since it is completely separate from this site, but I am kind of attached to it. Photo-Sage has sentimental value to me, without it I would not be where I am today, living a happy life doing what I love. It is a very random mix of street shooting, experimentation, nature, my connection to horses and family. It also shows a little bit of my life before I moved to California. I am certainly not proud of all the images, there are many that make me cringe but I also see so much fun. So feel free to go to the link above or you can peruse the images below.
2012 was a pretty epic year for me. I learned to drive. At 44 yrs old. In the second most congested city in the US. I see you all shaking your heads and wondering why it took me so long especially when a car is pretty much required to get around in the Bay Area. Well there are many reasons and excuses that I can give you but for the most part I enjoyed being a passenger and I was afraid of driving or rather being in charge. So with sweaty palms and deep breathing I now drive and at times I even enjoy it but mostly I like the freedom it affords me. So I want to continue to challenge myself and right now I am working on a video challenge thrown down by glamour goddess shooter Sue Bryce and the incredibly talented and creative Hailey Bartholomew. It is much harder than it seems but I am plugging away at it. Lastly I want to blog more. I would be surprised if I have anyone that follows me but I want to focus on blogging more and connecting with people this way rather than just through facebook. So if you want a challenge jump into the one below.
It is always special photographing dancers but when that includes the creative force of Reginald-Ray Savage it becomes magical. Through sheer force of will he is able to bring the absolute best out of each of his dancers before they collapse in a heap on the floor only to get up and do it again and again. You can learn more about OAS on their website and here is a video about OAS and Mr. Savage.
Sometimes you think you have time and then life gets in the way. Thus was the case when I started to update my website about 3 months ago. I thought I had a week and then we got quite a bit of work in and one day led to the next and my site ended up on the bottom of my to-do list. It still isn’t the way I wanted it but in the end having it online in some form was better than leaving it to internet purgatory. I will continue to update it as I can but it is now in an easier form to update and change from here on out. Thank you for your patience, hopefully I can reward you with some fun things happening in the next few months.
As a self employed photographer it is easy to work 12 plus hours, 7 days a week. Photography is fun work, especially when it is as varied as what Mark and I get to do on a daily basis; theatre, dance, publicity, portraits, studio fun. But after enough hours that fun can turn into a chore without a break from “the studio/office” which is our house. And when I say break, I mean a break from all technology(except cameras), email, phones, computers. So we pack up our car and go camping or disappear to a small B&B. In California there are an abundance of places where one can escape to and since we normally head to the coast we recently decided to go North and check out Lake Shasta before hanging around Crater Lake for 4 freezing nights.
It was glorious! Fresh air, silence, birds, swaying trees, water, all blissfully glorious. As we get busier with photography I no longer have the spare time to spend creating meals that are well thought out and balanced. But when we camp, I have all day to think about cooking and we typically eat much more lavishly on plastic plates next to a roaring fire than we do at home. We also do what we like to call “fishing”. We find a beautiful vista and then photograph nature with a tri-pod, this is our version of meditation, taking in the surroundings while shooting just to satisfy our own curiosity.
Camping may not be for everyone but breaks are necessary to recharge the creative batteries and whether it is indulging in a book, unplugging from our phones, going to Disneyland, or hitting the beach, we each need to take the time necessary to refuel so that we can continue to explore ideas and produce art/photography/theatre.
How do you recharge?
Here you can see 9 images including the one above, of Crater Lake in a much larger format to get a better idea of what a magical place it is.
Some shoots are just pure fun and energy and this was definitely up there on the fun scale. There are all beautiful and talented girls so if you have a chance to see “The Marvelous Wonderettes” please do so. For more information contact Broadway By The Bay.