Photographing the Calla Lilies in Big Sur, CA

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Big Sur has had a tough year with fires, rock and mud slides, and a condemned bridge.  We were able to make it into Big Sur a few months ago just after it opened up after some of the mud slides were cleared.  Several of our favorite shooting locations were closed, but we really came for the Calla Lilies.  Here is what we saw.  Continue reading

Photographing the Point Sur Light Station

Point Sur from the turnout near mile marker 55.

Big Sur has had a tough year with fires, rock and mud slides, and a condemned bridge.  We were able to make it into Big Sur a few months ago just after it opened up after some mud slides were cleared.  Several of our favorite shooting locations were closed, but we discovered how much we like the Light Station.  Here is what you might see.  Continue reading

A few photos of northern Big Sur

Rocky Creek Bridge

Rocky Creek Bridge

We have spent more than 10 days in the last two years photographing Big Sur.  Not bad for a couple of So Cal denizens.  The last time we were up there we spent half a day driving from Pebble Beach to Hurricane Point.  Because we were on “vacation” we did not get up early for sunrise and did our best with 10-to-2 shooting.  Here is what you might see. Continue reading

Fix Your Photo by Making it a Panorama

Pfeiffer Beach in Big Sur, CA

Pfeiffer Beach in Big Sur, CA

I have written here before that you can improve your photos quickly in just five steps – 1. Correct the exposure.  2. Increase contrast. 3.Increase saturation.  4. Increase structure.  Finally, 5. Crop it. (see our blog).  I think the most powerful crop is a panorama.  See why? Continue reading

Photographing the Southern Big Sur Coast (He Saw…She Saw)

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The large paved turnout at mile marker 37 (Mary’s photo based on an infrared original)

Mary and I spent Christmas week in Big Sur in 2012 and 2013.  In 2012, it rained heavily and CA Highway 1 washed out near McWay Falls and we were not able to drive south out of Big Sur.  In 2013, we had drought conditions and 70+ degree days.  We finally got to drive south, twice.  Here are some of the best views of the southern Big Sur coastline. Continue reading

Photographing McWay Falls in Big Sur, CA

McWay Falls sunset

McWay Falls sunset

McWay Falls is an 80-foot waterfall located in Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park that flows year-round. This waterfall is one of only two in the region that are close enough to the ocean to be referred to as “tidefalls”.  The source of the waterfall is McWay Creek and is one of the few waterfalls anywhere that empties directly into an ocean.  It is a beautiful spot that is easy to photograph.  Here is how: Continue reading

Photographing the Pigeon Point Lighthouse

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Pigeon Point Lighthouse is one of the most picturesque and photographed lighthouses on the California coast.  It is located along CA highway 1 between Half Moon Bay and Santa Cruz.  It is an fun and easy subject to capture.  Here’s how: Continue reading

Photographing the Pfeiffer Beach Arch

Here is the iconic composition

Here is the iconic composition

For any of you that follow us at all, the following assertion will not be news to you, but it’s good to remind everyone that things really don’t change (that much).  I love grand landscapes and have been known to show up to a location hours before sunrise or sunset to grab my spot for just one great photo (see our blog on Combat Photography).  Mary is much more creative (and is easily bored) with a single set-up or subject.  You can count on me to get the one “right” shot and you can count on Mary to bring back something incredibly surprising, creative, and interesting.  Pfeiffer beach is right in my wheelhouse and Mary just does it to be nice to me.  Here is what we captured in December: Continue reading

He Saw…She Saw…Composition, Point of View, and Color

McWay Falls color by Peter

McWay Falls color by Peter

After a photography trip, I love to see Mary’s photos.  If you have been following us for a while, you probably know the differences between her photos and mine.  Here is a good sample from our big December trip to Big Sur and Pismo Beach. Continue reading

Peter’s Top Ten Favorite Photos from 2012

#6 Moon-set Pismo Beach Pier

#6 Moon-set Pismo Beach Pier

It’s that time to reflect on all of the great trips from last year and pick our favorite images.  We went on twelve “named” photography trips/outings in 2012, just about one a month.  I probably produced 5,000 photos and processed and kept nearly a 1,000.  Here are my ten favorite photographs from 2012. Continue reading