Friday, September 30, 2011

Next Photo Project?

Upon completing my 365 "photo a day" project in March, I began my "Day in the Life" project, capturing everyday life on B&W film, with my FM2 film SLR and 50mm lens. Six months into my project, I've come to realize it's difficult to shoot a "day in the life" project on film because it typically takes me a few weeks to shoot an entire roll of film. Personally, I feel a "day in the life" project would be more interesting if the photos and narratives were posted in a more timely manner.

Perhaps digital is a better medium for a "day in the life" type project? I'm going to continue the project on film for the rest of the year and consider some changes for next year.

I was thinking about a photo diary blog. Conceptually, it would be a "day in the life" type photo captured daily, with a short narrative summarizing the day. For this, I would consider purchasing a compact digital camera, so I wouldn't need to lug my digital SLR around everywhere, everyday.

Alternatively, I may try something a bit less ambitious, perhaps something on film. I have three months to think about this. Drop me a line if you have any ideas....

Guitar Heroine

Guitar Star

16 September 2011 - A Day in the Life

13 September 2011 - A Day in the Life

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Nikon 24mm f/2.8 AI-S

When I purchased my Nikon FM2 film SLR, my plan was to shoot it exclusively with a 50mm lens and primarily with black and white film. For the last six months, that's exactly what I did. However, over the course of time, I fell in love with the simplicity of a manual focus camera and began to shoot film the vast majority of the time. I finally decided it was time to purchase another lens.

I ordered my "new" Nikon 24mm f/2.8 AI-S manual focus lens from and received it two weeks ago. Unfortunately, I was in Las Vegas on business the week it arrived, but I was able to spend some time shooting it this week. I'm pretty excited about the 24mm lens. This focal length will allow me to shoot some landscapes on film. My goal is to get some practice this autumn, so I will be ready to shoot some beautiful, winter scenes in the upcoming months.

I only have a few shots under my belt with this lens, but so far so good. It's a wonderful lens and I look forward to running a lot more frames through it.

26 September 2011 - A Day in the Life

Authorized Personnel Only

Fenced In

Another Barbed Wire Fence

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Race for the Cure

Survivors by Wayne-K
Survivors, a photo by Wayne-K on Flickr.

The family participated in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, 5K walk in San Francisco. Looking at the mass of people today, I was amazed at the number of pink "Survivor" shirts and pink "Walking in memory of..." and "I race in celebration of..." signs. A lot of people are touched by breast cancer (and other types of cancer), personally experiencing it or knowing a friend or loved one who has experienced it. It was great getting out there today to do a small part toward finding a cure.

After a week of hot, dry weather, a system moved into the area, bringing overcast skies, cooler temperatures, and a small bit of precipitation. The weather didn't seem to dampen the crowd's spirit or enthusiasm. I especially loved the energy in the volunteers. They lined the streets and cheered on the walkers. It reminded me of marathon runs of yonder, with the spectators lining the route and cheering the runners. The cheering always seemed to bump up my adrenaline, giving me the small boost needed to get to the finish line.

We all experience challenging times and perhaps could use the help of a "cheering crowd" to help us get through it. When you see someone at their mile 22 and cramping, give them an emotional boost and help them get through it. Sometimes it's the little things that help get people to their finish line.

Racing for the Cure

In Memory of Marie Paynor

Komen Race for the Cure

Bay Bridge I

Monday, September 19, 2011

Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday! by Wayne-K
Happy Birthday!, a photo by Wayne-K on Flickr.


Today is Kailani's third birthday. She celebrated it on Sunday at home, with good food, a yummy cake, and cute Dora decorations. But, she got to celebrate it again tonight!

Kailani was over at our house today and when Auntie Mia went to the store to get some Parmesan cheese for the pasta.....she came back with a cake too! Now, I'm not sure if the cake was for Kailani, or if Mia just needed an excuse for dessert....hmmm? Regardless, Kailani was excited to blow out candles again...and eat more sugar!

Here are a few pictures of her blowing out the candle. More photos from her previous birthday to follow (after I develop the roll of film).

Happy Birthday!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Pleasanton Ridge

On Guard by Wayne-K
On Guard, a photo by Wayne-K on Flickr.

The Pleasanton Ridge is quickly becoming one of my favorite places to visit. I visited it three times this past week alone.

It's become the place I go after work to hike with friends. It's the place where I go trail running, when I need a change of pace from running on the road. It's also the place I visit when I want some solitude, to relax, and to take some pictures of nature. It's a place that's only minutes away, yet seemingly light-years from everything.

Fly on the Wire

Ridge Running Club

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Ten Years Later

Arroyo by Wayne-K
Arroyo, a photo by Wayne-K on Flickr.

Today had a somber feel to it. The morning sun struggled to sneak past the cloud cover, unusual for summers in the Bay Area. The neighborhood seemed quieter today and the temperatures cooler.

I can't believe it's been ten years since the jetliners struck the Twin Towers. The country came together that day and united. American flags dotted the landscape, showing pride in the red, white, and blue.

Where are we, ten years later? Bin Laden is dead, but are we a better nation? Are we better people?

As I looked out my window, I didn't see Old Glory flying anywhere. Have the patriotism and national pride dissipated?

As I read the newspaper, I didn't see our politicians working together toward a common good. Have we lost our sense of unity? Is towing the party line more important than working together to do what's best for the country?

The United States is a great country, but let's take the patriotism, unity, and energy demonstrated ten years ago...and make it better.

We can't fix the problems in Washington D.C., but let's make our local communities better. Start with the little things. Hold the door open for someone at the grocery store. Help the elderly lady cross the road. Close your neighbor's garage door when they have forgotten.

Norwegian Garage Door


Thursday, September 8, 2011

Go For A Walk

Cattle Grazing by Wayne-K
Cattle Grazing, a photo by Wayne-K on Flickr.

While working on my 365 photography project, I would frequently rise early on Saturday mornings before the wife and kids woke up and go for walks around town. I carried my Nikon D80 and 35mm f/1.8 lens and enjoyed the serenity of a sleeping town. I didn't worry about getting a photo, I just enjoyed the beauty around me, and snapped photos as they presented themselves. Similarly, on weekdays, I would pack my D80/35mm combo into a fanny pack and jog the trails in the hills of the local regional park after the workday was done.

I miss the solo walks and runs, and the enjoyment and solitude of these photography experiences. Earlier this week, I decided to pack my Nikon FM2 manual focus film camera and 50mm f/1.8 and went for a trail run on the Pleasanton Ridge, a local regional park. I left my hiking partners and dog at home and went solo. This allowed me the opportunity to really enjoy the wilderness, absorb the warm afternoon light, and snap photos as my heart desired.

For me, two things make these experiences special.

First, the simplicity of the gear. I don't carry my entire camera bag, four lenses, flash, tripod, ND grad filter, kitchen sink, etc. I travel light, with just my camera and normal prime lens, and enjoy my walk/trail run. I don't worry about what I cannot capture (because I don't have my wide-angle lens, telephoto lens, tripod, etc.), I just enjoy the surroundings and focus on capturing what I can capture.

Second, I go with a clear mind. I don't think about work, the crappy economy, the idiots in Washington D.C., or global warming. I go solo, so I don't have to tend to my dog or feel compelled to carry a conversation with my companions. This frees my mind and body to enjoy the surroundings and stop whenever I want to snap a photo. It also allows me to slow down and consider my camera settings and composition, without feeling rushed.

Life is busy. Make sure you make time for yourself to enjoy some quality photography experiences, even if it's just for an hour after work. Keep it simple and just enjoy the opportunity to relax, get some fresh air, and maybe even capture some wonderful images.

On a related topic, I came across this great article today. It really summarized my philosophy on shooting and what I loved so much about my solo walks and hikes....and why I love shooting my Nikon FM2 and 50mm f/1.8 manual focus combo these days.

Barbed Wire

Lost Glove


No Mountain Bikes Allowed

Moon Over the Ridge