Sunday, January 29, 2012

San Francisco 2012

Sorry guys for the delay in photos! I've been sick with a pretty bad cough recently. My immune system sucks like hell. LOL Anyways, today I got 18 photos from my recent trip to San Francisco! I hope you enjoy them! I went to Fort Point (like right under the Golden Gate) and Pier 39.

Cool Fact: San Francisco is widely know for its Golden Gate Bridge. The city is about 46.87 square miles and is home to about 808,976 people making it the 13th most populous city of the United States.

Full Resolution Photos and Prints: If you want to see full resolution photos or buy prints of any of the photos you see, they are up on my portfolio for viewing. To view my best San Francisco photos, use this link. To view all of my photos from this trip, use this link.

This is the Bay Bridge. I crossed it to reach San Francisco. I live around the area, so... Go there a lot! HAHA I took this photo with my hands out the sun roof. Don't worry, I wasn't driving. LOL

Alcatraz Island as seen from the fishing pier. The one that is kind of under the Golden Gate Bridge. The one where everyone catches crabs and fishes at.

The wildlife there are not scared of people at all... I took this photo at 55mm. I was like 2 feet away from the bird.

Hiked up the hill at Fort Point. This is the view of the Golden Gate Bridge there.

View of Golden Gate Bridge at the top of the hill near the pedestrian entrance to the Golden Gate.


On the left is Alcatraz Island. The close left object is the fishing pier I was talking about and far in the background left is downtown San Francisco. This photo was taken from the Golden Gate Bridge.

Also Taken on Golden Gate Bridge. There is a parking lot down there. Some kind of Historic Site I think.

Taken from on the Golden Gate Bridge. Far back is Downtown San Francisco.

Flower.

A boat.

Pier 39 Sea lions!


More sea lions!

 Wanted to get a photo of the sea lion jumping in the water, but was a bit slow... So I got a photo of the splash instead. XD

Another photo of the sea lions.

The rest of the photos of this post is sunset from Treasure Island. For all you foreigners who don't know what this is, Treasure Island is a small man-made island extending from Yerba Buena Island. Both islands are located between San Francisco and Oakland and can be accessed via Bay Bridge (both directions). If you are a photographer from the area and never been there, you should go! The view there is spectacular! You can see the entire San Francisco coast from the island. The view there is especially beautiful during sunsets. However, I don't recommended you fishing there because the water near the island is severely contaminated.


That is all the photos for today. :D Well I have no clue what I will be posting next time as I have a lot of different photos still not released yet, so make sure you check back soon! I hope you enjoyed it, please share with your friends and family members!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Circular Polarizer Demo

I have written up a newer version of this article that includes some new sample shots of another circular polarizer from B+W. I suggest you read this article, then go check out my new version of the article here.

Today, I will demo a few sample photos using my B+W 58mm Kaesemann Circular Polarizer. First off, let me tell you why a circular polarizer is good. First of all, if you love landscape photos, you have to get one, a circular polarizer helps contrast the colors and deepen the blue sky. Using a circular polarizer can also help get rid of glare from water and glass. A polarizer will also protect your lens from the elements like fingerprints, scratches, and water. It is a good idea to use a filter. I have also read online that a filter saved his L model lens from a fall! Definitely worth the investment because $100 < $5,000. LOL

If you are serious about photography like me, I recommend you not get the cheap ones because they cause unwanted glares in your photos and the polarizing effect isn't good. The one I have is a B+W 58mm Kaesemann Circular Polarizer which is a prime filter. It is a German made filter, and includes special nano-technology coating that causes water that collect on there to drip right off. There is also little vignetting at wider angles. However, this filter is pretty expensive, but most good ones are. This one cost me around $100.

If you don't know much about polarizers, you will find two types of polarizers. One type is the linear polarizer and one type is the circular polarizer. The linear polarizers will have a slightly better polarizing effect than circular polarizers, but will render your auto focus function useless as the polarizer will prevent the auto focus sensor from seeing light. Linear polarizers are usually cheaper than circular polarizers. Circular polarizers won't effect the auto focus sensor and is what most people use. Circular polarizers are more expensive.

The only down side to using a circular polarizer (like with all filters) is that since filters is suppose to filter out the light, it will also slow down your shutter speed. If the shutter speed gets too slow, make sure you have your camera on a tripod. 

Alright, let's move onto the sample photos I took. All these photos were taken at Lake Tahoe, California. If you want to see more Lake Tahoe photos, click here.

This photo was taken without any filter.
Update 2/22/2016: I visited this place again recently, and unlike my 17 year old self, I actually took note of where this actually was. This photo is shot at at Kings Beach, CA.

This photo was taken with my circular polarizer. See how the glare from the water just disappeared? :)
Update 2/22/2016: I visited this place again recently, and unlike my 17 year old self, I actually took note of where this actually was. This photo is shot at at Kings Beach, CA.

Lake Tahoe was cold, there was a think layer of ice on top of the lake near the shore. Lot's of glare from the ice right?

Polarizer on and part of the glare is gone and the bottom of the lake can be clearly seen.


 Another photo of how the lake bottom is now clear due to the polarizer.

I already posted this photo several days back, but the effect in this photo can only be achieved with a polarizer. See how the glare from the water is gone and you can see the rocks at the bottom? See how the colors are saturated? Beautiful photo isn't it?

I also posted this photo several days back. I wasn't able to remove all the glare, but this photo is a lot better than a camera with no filter. 

This is all the sample photos I got. Remember the filter I have is a  B+W 58mm Kaesemann Circular Polarizer. If you are going to buy it, please buy it through my link. :) I get referral money that way and you'll be supporting the costs of running this blog. Even if you don't, please click in to check it out. I understand this filter might be a bit expensive for a lot of people, there are cheaper filters out there, but I don't recommend those. Also, when purchasing, don't forget to check if you got the right size filter!

Thanks for looking at this demo. I hope you have enjoyed it. I have also written up a newer version of this article that includes some new sample shots of another circular polarizer from B+W. I suggest you also read that article here.  Please don't forget to share with your friends and family members! Also, if you want to get notifications when I post up more photos, "Like" us on Facebook or follow me on Twitter and Google+. These links can also be found on the top of the right sidebar.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Lake Tahoe 2011 Part 5

I recently went to Lake Tahoe for vacation. Took some photos. :) There wasn't a lot of snow this year though. The weather patterns have been really weird recently. Anyways. I hope you enjoy the photos!

Lake Tahoe is a large fresh water lake in the Sierra Nevada of United States. It is located on the state line of California and Nevada. The lake is 1645 feet deep making it the second deepest lake in the USA (#1 is Crater Lake in Oregon). Lake Tahoe is a major tourist attraction in both California and Nevada. It is home to a number of ski resorts, summer recreation areas, and other tourist attractions. The Nevada side also includes high amounts of casinos which also attracts quite some people.

Full Resolution Photos and Prints: If you want to see full resolution photos or buy prints of any of the photos you see, they are up on my portfolio for viewing. To view my best photos from Lake Tahoe and Truckee in 2009 and 2011, use this link. To view all of my photos from this trip, use this link.

Part: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 |

Today's post will be landscapes again. Most of today's photos were taken at Emerald Bay. After today, I will have a little circular polarizer demo with the rest of the photos I took at Tahoe.

Hiked a little bit into the Tahoe Forest and took this photo.

All that there is artificial snow. It was a dry season. Unlike Soda Springs, this park was free for everyone to play. :) I didn't play. LOL

Emerald Bay. Too bad the lighting was bad. :/ There was no light shining on the island.


Another view from Emerald Bay. 

Taken at Emerald Bay.

Still at Emerald Bay. The lighting sucked. :/ It was too late when I got there that day.

Taken at Emerald Bay.

So this is almost the end of my Lake Tahoe photos. During my trip, I took a few photos exclusively for a small circular polarizer demo. That will be coming on the next blog post. Thanks for looking at today's photos! Don't forget to share with your friends and family members! Also, if you want to get notifications when I post up more photos, "Like" us on Facebook!

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Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Lake Tahoe 2011 Part 4 - Including Donner Lake

I recently went to Lake Tahoe for vacation. Took some photos. :) There wasn't a lot of snow this year though. The weather patterns have been really weird recently. Anyways. I hope you enjoy the photos!

Lake Tahoe is a large fresh water lake in the Sierra Nevada of United States. It is located on the state line of California and Nevada. The lake is 1645 feet deep making it the second deepest lake in the USA (#1 is Crater Lake in Oregon). Lake Tahoe is a major tourist attraction in both California and Nevada. It is home to a number of ski resorts, summer recreation areas, and other tourist attractions. The Nevada side also includes high amounts of casinos which also attracts quite some people.

Full Resolution Photos and Prints: If you want to see full resolution photos or buy prints of any of the photos you see, they are up on my portfolio for viewing. To view my best photos from Lake Tahoe and Truckee in 2009 and 2011, use this link. To view all of my photos from this trip, use this link.

Part: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 |

Today's post will be landscapes again. There is only 7 more photos today. LOL I'm trying to evenly distribute the rest of my photos. Anyways, I think the first few photos is of Donner Lake. Not that sure though. XD Seriously Canon, why you didn't give the EOS 7D built-in geo-tagging features?!

 A photo of Donner Lake. On the mountain in the distance is the Abandoned Central Pacific Railroad (CPRR) Tunnels. 

Another photo of Donner Lake

This season was so dry. All that snow you see is artificial... This is Soda Springs. They were being very strict on who can get in this year. If you wanted to get in, you have to pay $5. I guess it is so the snow won't melt that fast as this would turn away a lot of people. I didn't go in. LOL Cheap Asian here. :P I took a few photos from outside and left.

Photo of Lake Tahoe. From up above!


Lake Tahoe

Beginning of the Truckee River. Right across the street from the Lake Tahoe Dam. 

A pier in Lake Tahoe.

The next post will be 7 more post of landscape photography. I have 12 more photos left, usually I'd put them all into one post, but a few of them I reserved for an introduction to circular polarizers. So... :) Anyways, don't forget to share today's post with family and friends!

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Saturday, January 7, 2012

Lake Tahoe 2011 Part 3

I recently went to Lake Tahoe for vacation. Took some photos. :) There wasn't a lot of snow this year though. The weather patterns have been really weird recently. Anyways. I hope you enjoy the photos!

Lake Tahoe is a large fresh water lake in the Sierra Nevada of United States. It is located on the state line of California and Nevada. The lake is 1645 feet deep making it the second deepest lake in the USA (#1 is Crater Lake in Oregon). Lake Tahoe is a major tourist attraction in both California and Nevada. It is home to a number of ski resorts, summer recreation areas, and other tourist attractions. The Nevada side also includes high amounts of casinos which also attracts quite some people.

Full Resolution Photos and Prints: If you want to see full resolution photos or buy prints of any of the photos you see, they are up on my portfolio for viewing. To view my best photos from Lake Tahoe and Truckee in 2009 and 2011, use this link. To view all of my photos from this trip, use this link.

Part: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 |

Today's post will mainly focus on landscape. Most of my good photo is in today's post. Hope you enjoy!

An effect like this can only be achieved with a circular polarizer. The one I own is a B+W 58mm Kaesemann Circular Polarizer. This photo was barely touched up in Photoshop. The colors on here are almost original. The only change was +3 on Vibrance.

The grass and bushes on the bottom of the photo acts as an "eye catcher" for the photo. If you were to just take a photo of the blue water, the photo will be too blue. The bushes on the bottom helps balance out the blue in the photo. To have everything in focus, it is also a good idea to put your camera in aperture priority mode and close down the aperture (high f-stop). The camera was pointed downwards on a hill to take this photo, so the water is farther away than the bushes in the foreground.

Photography Tip: Circular polarizers are great for getting rid of reflections from water and glass. It can also help saturate colors. It is especially useful for taking photos of things underwater (while you are above water) and landscapes. If you are serious about photography, try not to aim for the $10 or $20 ones. They will leave you with horrible glares. The B+W Polarizer I have costed me around $105.

A photo of Lake Tahoe. Remember the "eye catcher" trick I showed you yesterday? The rocks here act as an "eye catcher". Compare this photo to the next photo.

I zoomed in a bit and took out the rocks. See how this photo now looks average? It is good to have an "eye catcher" in your photos.

This effect, again, can only be achieved by a circular polarizer. Apart from your lens, a professional will always tell you that it is good to keep a variety of good filters on hand to achieve different effects.

This is another photo of Lake Tahoe. This is one of my good photos in my mind. See those 3 rocks? Those also act as the "eye catcher" for the photo. Like I said before, even if the photo is of landscape, the eyes still tries to look for something to look at in the photo. If they eyes don't find anything, you will feel like it is an average photo. When compositing a shot, always look for eye catchers for a beautiful photo.
Update 2/22/2016: I visited this place again recently, and unlike my 17 year old self, I actually took note of where this actually was. This photo is shot at at Kings Beach, CA.


Another photo of Lake Tahoe.

Stopped by the side of the highway and took this photo. The area looked more beautiful the the photo. That is what I mean "eye catchers". I couldn't find any.

Taken on the side of the highway.

Lake Tahoe's view from the peak of the mountain. Taken on the side of the highway. You know what the funny thing is? I think several years ago, I took a photo from the exact same place. The trees grew a lot! Take a look at my post from a few years back.

This photo was taken at a view point. 

I got more landscapes coming your way in the next blog post, so make sure you check back! Please share today's post with your friends and family! Also, please "Like" us on Facebook and get notifications when I post new photos!


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Friday, January 6, 2012

Canada Geese/Scenery - Lake Tahoe 2011 Part 2

I recently went to Lake Tahoe for vacation. Took some photos. :) There wasn't a lot of snow this year though. The weather patterns have been really weird recently. Anyways. I hope you enjoy the photos!

Lake Tahoe is a large fresh water lake in the Sierra Nevada of United States. It is located on the state line of California and Nevada. The lake is 1645 feet deep making it the second deepest lake in the USA (#1 is Crater Lake in Oregon). Lake Tahoe is a major tourist attraction in both California and Nevada. It is home to a number of ski resorts, summer recreation areas, and other tourist attractions. The Nevada side also includes high amounts of casinos which also attracts quite some people.

Full Resolution Photos and Prints: If you want to see full resolution photos or buy prints of any of the photos you see, they are up on my portfolio for viewing. To see my best bird photos from 2011, use this link. To view my best photos from Lake Tahoe and Truckee in 2009 and 2011, use this link. To view all of my photos from this trip, use this link.

Part: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 |

Today's post will show some landscapes and the Tahoe Forest floor. I hope you enjoy it. Anyways I got better photos to come in the following days. :) These weren't the best ones I took.

A small partially frozen creek. The creek flows into Lake Tahoe. Even though there wasn't snow, the temperature outside was cold enough for water to freeze. I literally had iced tea in my car when I got up in the morning! XD
Update 2/22/2016: I visited this place again recently, and unlike my 17 year old self, I actually took note of where this actually was. This photo is of Griff Creek at Kings Beach, CA. 

A small bridge allowing people to cross the small creek shown above.  I thought it would be fun trying to get across with out using the bridge, but almost fell into the water because the ice was not thick at all! LOL It was fun though. :P
Update 2/22/2016: I visited this place again recently, and unlike my 17 year old self, I actually took note of where this actually was. This photo is of Griff Creek at Kings Beach, CA.

 I saw a group of Canada Geese (Branta canadensis) resting on the ice and rocks and I thought it would make a great "eye catcher" for a landscape shot. Here you go! This is probably one of the best photos I took on vacation. :) The sun slightly under exposed my photo though.
Update 2/22/2016: I visited this place again recently, and unlike my 17 year old self, I actually took note of where this actually was. This photo is shot at at Kings Beach, CA.

Photography Tips: Every good photo needs an "eye catcher". Try different angles! Even if a place is beautiful, a landscape photo will look average with out an "eye catcher". See how the above photo have geese in it? When you look at a photo, your eyes will look for something that catches the eyes. The geese in the above photo acts as an "eye catcher". Try it and see for yourself! 

 More Canada geese. There is some frost on the neck of one of them.
Update 2/22/2016: I visited this place again recently, and unlike my 17 year old self, I actually took note of where this actually was. This photo is shot at at Kings Beach, CA.

Another landscape shot. 
Update 2/22/2016: I visited this place again recently, and unlike my 17 year old self, I actually took note of where this actually was. This photo is shot at at Kings Beach, CA.

Some great camera accessories for you camera! Remember, ad money helps pay for my camera equipment and online storage fees. :)

Tahoe forest floor. 

Another photo of the Tahoe forest floor.

A close up of the leaves on a bush. If anyone knows what it is, tell me. :)

Frozen ice balls on grass and dried twigs. Part of the water's reflection was removed with my circular polarizer
Update 2/22/2016: I visited this place again recently, and unlike my 17 year old self, I actually took note of where this actually was. This photo is shot at at Kings Beach, CA.

 Another shot of ice.
Update 2/22/2016: I visited this place again recently, and unlike my 17 year old self, I actually took note of where this actually was. This photo is shot at at Kings Beach, CA.

I have around 30 photos left. Most of my good photos will be in the next post so make sure you check back! Also, if you enjoyed today's post, please share it with your friends and family members! See you guys next time! Thanks for looking at today's photos.

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