california

A Bakersfield Engagement Session

Making a day trip to Bakersfield for some Engagement photos

A few weeks before deciding on plans for the memorial weekend my fiancé was contacted by an old co-worker who had recently tied the knot.  She had gone through the process of planning her own wedding and didn't book any engagement photos or wedding photographer.  Her Husband owned the tux worn on the wedding day and her dress was still in immaculate condition. Instead of trying to re-create the day we decided on taking very formal (dressed up) engagement photos.

One of the things I enjoy about photography is the ability to tell the story you want. The audience viewing your photos doesn't know if you took the photos before or after your wedding making an engagement session something that can happen at any time.

Before meeting up at The Park at Riverwalk in Bakersfield CA we made the day into a family road trip.  With the car loaded, and all batteries charged we set out from Van Nuys on a short one hour drive north.  Being the lightweight that I am when it comes to driving our first stop was McDonalds for some iced coffees.  Now were off and cooking.  With caffeine in my system I was charged and ready for the rest of the day.  Traffic on the road was really light given that it was a Holliday weekend. Once we hit Bakersfield we took some time to stretch our legs and give our son a break from his car seat.  The outlets at Tejon served that purpose for us.

After a brief break from the drive we were back in the car and off to meet our couple for their photo session.  The park was packed with lots of locals all with the same idea to cool off and enjoy some BBQ and ice-cream.  Taking a short time to survey the area I knew I would need to focus as much on my couple as I would on what or who is behind them.  Any random person, cooler, or BBQ pit could easily take away from the focus of the photos. 

To start out I had them standing in front of a stone pillar.  It adds some texture to the background and we started our shoot a little early so we had a little time before the sun would be offering premium lighting conditions.  This pillar was located at the front of the park and offered time for all of us to get comfortable with taking photos around such a large crowd. 

From there we moved to the water.  Kids were swimming in the background so again I adapted to the surroundings and positioned my couple accordingly so as to not have anyone interfering in the background.  By now we were all settling in and becoming comfortable.  This is the time where I break out the posing ideas.  My fiancé carried her phone with a few photo poses but I find its one thing to tell people how to stand or position themselves and its another to make them look natural or comfortable.  Here is where I provide the internal monologue for them as they pose.  I suggest what they might be thinking or what they might be looking at off in the distance.  Anything that breaks their concentration and gets a laugh or moment of relaxation.

By the end of the shoot the sun was offering some amazing light.  I shot this entire session with my 85mm prime lens and got some interesting lens flare with it.

Have you ever had your engagement photos taken after your wedding? Let me know in the comment section. If you are new to the blog, welcome! Be sure to head over to Facebook and add my photography page. Also you can follow me on Instagram links located above.

Exploring Pismo Beach

Photos not only capture a moment in time but are also a way to re-live a memory.

I was born and raised on the central coast of California. With that being said I am a little biased when I tell people that one of the best beaches in my book is Pismo Beach.  For as long as I can remember the ocean has always been a force that I have been drawn to. So naturally it is also a place I photograph often.

Most of the times I have been to Pismo to take photos it is down on the beach or at the end of the pier. For this photo I was spending the day with my mom when she asked if I'd like to catch the sunset from a new perspective.  She drove us to a spot I had not been to before, and the views of the beach from there were amazing.  To the far left of the photo is the Oceano Dunes and not included to the far right was a clear sight of the coast line leading to Shell Beach.

Once I had my camera set up we sat there for about an hour talking and laughing while waiting for the sun to set.  I took five photos to create this panoramic image.  I used my 50mm prime lens and stitched the photos together using Photoshop (lightroom had not yet added the panoramic feature) The sky that day was on fire once the sun began to set, and The small beach town below had a dreamy look to it.  The ocean was calm and the skies were clear.  This is a time I reflect upon often.  Life is an adventure, and the people you experience it with makes it that much better.

If you are new to the blog, welcome! Be sure to head over to Facebook and add my photography page. Also you can follow me on Instagram links located above.

Warner Center Architecture Photography

I've been combing through old photos to compare them with my more current work. Photographs like a lot of artistic mediums is something that continues to evolve and change. Moving my focus from finding composition I am starting to study color theory and how to fold that into my editing style.

Sunset and the City

Sunset and the City