Photographer’s Blog

Knowing I am a photographer but hiring a stranger.

I posted the following on Facebook 4 years ago.

A fellow parishioner came to me regarding experiences with her son’s wedding photographer which she said was not good. How many people know what I do but call on a stranger to provide photography services.

To my followers, I do photograph weddings, mitzvahs, and quinceaneros. My experience goes back to the film days, so I don’t take 1000’s of images. I know how to budget photo ops. Also I am more traditional. These events are also family reunions so posed groups and individuals are a must. I can get all the “photo-journalism” candids to let you know what happened during your day. My rates start at $2500 for an 8 hour wedding; $3000 for 2 photographers.

Why Posed Photos are Important for Special Occasions

For special occasions my photography style is both posed and candid coverage.  Weddings, Barmitzvahs, Anniversaries, Birthdays and similar occasions are also family reunions. Family members come from near and far to join the celebration.  It’s imperative that posed photos of families and other significant people be taken. One never knows how long a significant family member or friend may be with us.  I saw this at a wake of my sister-in-law when our niece, her daughter, was looking at her parents’ wedding album and seeing photos of family members no longer living.

Candidly my goal is to show the couple or others what went on during their celebration.  Surely they won’t remember everything in their minds. Photography, and video, are ways to preserve those precious moments.  We can offer video services also through associates.

Recently I photographed a series of group photos for a school client.  I used my group riser system.  Please note how I used the risers to get the most of each group photographed.
The major key to large group photography is manually focusing and large depth of field.  Manually I focused on someone in the second or third row, never the first row.  These images were taken at ISO 100, f:14, 1/200 sec using two Photogenic 600 watt second strobes on full power to fill shadows.  Photos were taken between 9:30 and 10:15am.  Sun was behind us.
For these two groups you see how I used my risers system.  I used my entire riser system to capture everyone.  My riser system is 5 sections wide and 4 steps high (16″).  I could add a front row sitting on the ground.  My system will accommodate up to 125.  I can rent a system to accommodate larger groups.  Also one of our photographers has a drone to photograph groups from the air.
This Group I placed each row on consecutive steps on the risers.
This Group I placed each row on alternating steps on the risers.   I could spread the group out but if ordering 8×10 format prints the group will fill more of the image.  Same would apply to the group above.

“Lock Bridges”

In Salzburg, Austria and other places on our recent cruise we came upon “Lock Bridges”. Couples place engraved locks on the bridges and throw away the key into the river. Last night I observed locks on McBean Pkwy’s bridge over I-5. I have seen the locks on the bridge but did not think much of it until last night walking home from the Valencia Marketplace concert. Where do the couples throw the key?

 

Use of Long Lens on our Viking European River Cruise

On our recent Viking River Cruise I lugged around a Canon 50d with a 100-400L lens on a monopod. People wondered if I would get a back and neck ache. No I did not. Here are images I took with that camera setup. Notice telephoto lenses compress background with subject matter. For many of the indoor photos I used a slow shutter speed, as slow as `1/25 sec.  That violates a basic photo rule of matching shutter speed to lens focal length.  Enjoy.

 

Zenfolio now on home page

I now have a Zenfolio.com button on the homepage of my www.1stimage.com website. You will find galleries of our travels with current images of the Eastern Sierras, last fall and last month, Yosemite, our Alaska tour & cruise last August and I will post images of our European River Cruise the next two weeks. Images are available for purchase.

Merced River with Vernal Falls in Background

Bridalvail Falls

Near Happy Isles

We just spent a few days in Yosemite.  I wanted to see and photograph the waterfalls which are abundant with water.  Much of Yosemite’s meadows are flooded with water.  Here are a few sample photos.  I wanted to get to Vernal Falls via Mist Trail but people were coming off the steps soaking wet.  I did not want to expose my pro camera gear to the “rain”.  I did not take the alternate route.

There are many minor falls created by this years heavy rain and snow events.

Upper Yosemite Falls

Upper Yosemite Falls

Near Happy Isles

Near Happy Isles

Bridalvail Falls

Bridalvail Falls

Merced River with Vernal Falls in Background

Merced River with Vernal Falls in Background

Graduation Season

1st Image Photography is available for your graduation ceremonies.  Whether photos of receiving diplomas, instant graduation portraits or graduation parties we can photograph your graduates’ special occasion.
 
Contact 1st Image Photography
(661) 254-4720  (800) 244-4720
photos@1stimage.com
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A Very Busy Day

Last Friday was a very long day.  Angie and I awoke at 4am to prepare to get to Cerritos College to photograph the spring 2017 nursing class portraits.  Set up was scheduled for 7:30, first session at 9am.  Photographer Andre and Angie would be there until 6pm.  I went to help set up and help.
Mid afternoon I went to the Quiet Cannon in Montebello to set up for Cathedral HS Mother/Son Dance.  I would be working with Jose running his instant portrait system to print 5×7’s and wallets for the couples to take home.
After Angie got done with Cerritos she came to the Quiet Cannon to help.  We photographed 147 couples.  We would be done at 11pm.  We got to bed at 1am Saturday morning.
Later Saturday I would umpire 3 baseball game, Loyola vs. Alemany and two Pony League games.
Attached are images from Friday.
Contact 1st Image Photography at
(661) 254-4720, (800) 244-4720 or photos@1stimage.com.
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Happy St. Patrick’s Day

HAPPY ST. PATRICK’S DAY
 
Today Angie and I, with dogs, head to Bakersfield for the 51st Annual Square Dance Fiesta at the Kern County Fairgrounds.  To those reading this post who may be square dancers and not aware of the Fiesta this is a great weekend getaway like RIVCO in Indio in November.  Angie and I have attended the Fiesta since 1981 except for 3 different years when I had photo business or involved with Knights of Columbus St. Patrick’s Day 5k run and dinner dance in Santa Clarita.
As a baseball umpire, working NCAA Division 1 and Pac 10 games, I always blocked this weekend from assignments as it was midseason in the 1980’s.
During the early years we attended this event the Fiesta would attract 3000 or more dancers at 4 levels from mainstream to challenge levels.  Angie and I are challenge level dancers though we will dance all levels this weekend. Many square dancers are RV enthusiasts, some full time RVers.
Unfortunately Angie’s 96 year old mom will miss attending this Fiesta. She fell a couple of weeks ago resulting in a very nasty bruise.  She is also having blood pressure issues. She’s in at the Rinaldi Convalescent Hospital, Hayvenhurst and Rinaldi, in Granada Hills.
For many in the education industry who read our post spring breaks are beginning.  We wish you well with your Rest and Relaxation.  Last night I read an article in Reader’s Digest on how being in nature, forest and other places, has such a positive affect on people’s well being.
Contact 1st Image Photography at
(661) 254-4720, (800) 244-4720 or photos@1stimage.com.
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