Fun with Kids

Just goofing around with my kids after a recent photo shoot and I ended up producing four images that my wife and I simply love.


I was fortunate enough to get to Phoenix at the beginning of March and spend 3 days with my parents (mostly taking pictures). Here are a few of my favorites.

1) This first shot ended up being my favorite, and it was the very last shot I took, looking back over Arizona from the plane as the sun was setting. I love how the haze gives each mountain a very 3 dimensional look.

2) This is a shot of Cathedral Mountain in Sedona.
3) A view from the small hike in to Cathedral Mountain.
4) The dramatic effects of a polarizing filter.
5) More red rock. I also couldn't believe how much green there was in the dessert.
6) Your classic postcard picture of Cathedral Mountain.
7) The coolest church I've ever seen, built into the hill side in Sedona. If anyone wants me to cover their wedding at this chapel, it's free (just get me there).
** EDIT - My second shooter just informed me that she would also love to come along, so there you have it, 2 photographers for the price of airfare, food and hotel!
8) My dad and I came across this man (and his friends) in Miami AZ, and he reminded me of an old gold prospector (which Miami is famous for).
9 and 10. Taken in Miami AZ, this is what's left of a gold boom many years ago. Now they are famous for there copper (according to the guy above).
self explanatory
11) the white trees in Sedona provide a striking contrast to the red hills.
12) Taken for the car window at 70mph
13) I loved the contrast in this fallen tree.

The Intrigue of Fog

I've always loved foggy days, there is something mysterious about them. Of course if the fog hangs around for days on end it gets to be a little depressing.
I couldn't believe how thick the fog was on Friday morning so I set out to capture a few shots. Here are my faves...

The Effects of a Polarizing filter

In this digital age of photography, what's the point of adding a special filter to your lens when basically every kind of filter can be reproduced in Photoshop?
That was the premise I was working under on my recent trip to Arizona. So armed with my polarizing filter I took a couple test shots to show you the difference. It is true, basically every filter under the sun can be applied in post production (even Tiffen, one of the top producers of filters back in the film days... and still today, has produced a digital filter software so you can apply these effects to your images on the computer).
Except the circular polarizing filter! Technically speaking, this handy little piece of glass only allows certain rays of light into your lens (for a more scientific explanation try google). The result? When used properly it will cut reflections, give you deeper blue skies and richer color.
As you can see in the picture above (of Cathedral Rock) the sky is a deeper blue and the rock is a richer red/orange color. Now granted, some of the "without" side is shaded, but even looking at the non-shady areas, the results are as plain as day.
It is important to note here that neither picture has been edited! They were taken hand held, with the exact same camera settings, one after the other. I then merged the two together and added the text, that's it. It would simply be impossible to match the un-polarized shot with the polarized one in Photoshop, no matter how hard you try.

Stay tuned for the full Arizona set in a couple days... especially if you like pictures of rock!