Happy Birthday Shakespeare

I love photographing behind-the-scenes stuff. It’s like sports photography because the moments are fleeting, but the moments are more intimate.

Last week I had the opportunity to hang out with Brendan Bradley and Jared Hoy all day and take some BTS photos for Brendan’s project The Digital Stage. To launch TheDigitialStage.org Brendan invited his actor friends (and friends of friends) to come perform a Shakespearean monologue directly to the camera vlog style. People around the world can also submit their monologues to TheDigitalStage.org. Brendan’s goal is to get 450 monologues by April 23rd, which is Shakespeare’s 450th birthday.

I had a lot of fun seeing how actors prepare for their monologues and watching Brendan direct. And, bonus, I met a lot of really cool people. Here’s a few of my favorite shots.










The Most Magical Place on Earth

Disneyland is a magical place for so many people. I’m amongst those people. I remember being so excited before going to Disneyland when I was little that I couldn’t sleep the night before. 



It’s also a very sentimental place for me. Disneyland was the last family vacation we took before my Dad passed away in 1993. I didn’t go to Disney again until 2011 for my 26th birthday. I rediscovered why I loved Disneyland so much when I was a child. Now I’m hooked and I go as often as I can. The other week I was in LA overnight and the morning I was set to head back to Bakersfield I decided to go spend some time by myself in Disneyland. I took my camera along and tried to capture the way I see the most magical place on Earth. 








mansku11:

THE WHOLE DAMN TIME we were looking for Tens and there were NONE in our theater. But after the show we found these three who happily obliged our insane photo requests. I will forever be grateful for these awesome gentlemen. So I present: The Master campaigning, Ten sonicking the pins of my OTP (Nine & Rose), another Ten taking umbrage at my pins, a Ten and Master standoff, and the Master being chased by three muthafuckin’ Tens.

Vote Saxon!

Eleven and River. Souffle girl. Two. The Master.

I was The Master today for the showing of The Day of the Doctor in Culver City, California and I had some great friends with me.

At one point I got into a laser versus sonic screwdriver debate with the tenth doctor, but then I realized there were three of them so I had to run.

Also, look closely in the background of the last picture. Poor Eleven, standing there all awkward and confused just holding his dinosaur. 

Me and My Shadow

My friend Sarah took this picture of me waiting for her son’s soccer game to start today so I could take some pictures. I love this picture. I love soccer season.

My friend Sarah took this picture of me waiting for her son’s soccer game to start today so I could take some pictures. I love this picture. I love soccer season.

View my latest photo on Flickr: http://flic.kr/u/FSgPr/aHsjHUdaLFClouds

View my latest photo on Flickr: http://flic.kr/u/FSgPr/aHsjHUdaLF

Clouds
thefrogman:

It is my personal belief that if you really want to learn photography, you should get a DSLR. Point and shoots can take lovely pictures but they limit creativity, their sensors are too small to play with depth of field techniques, and they try to do too many things for you.  
Things you want in a camera…
The ability to change lenses
Lenses are probably more important than the camera itself. Fast lenses for night shooting and shallow depth of field. Zoom lenses for, well, zooming. Macro lenses for cool close up shots of tiny things. Tilt-shift lenses to make everything look miniature. Wide angle for landscapes. It goes on and on. The ability to change lenses is one of the most powerful creative tools and is something a point and shoot just can’t deliver. 
The ability to shoot in raw format
Raw images are essentially digital negatives. They have a wide number of variables that you can change after the fact. You can often save pictures that might otherwise be worthless. You can adjust white balance, exposure, shadows, highlights. The creative possibilities are endless. I highly recommend acquiring and learning Adobe Lightroom to “develop” your images.
Here is an image that started out in rough shape, but I was able to fix due to it being shot in raw format. 


Program mode (P)
Program mode is a better “auto” mode. The camera does its best to give you the best settings, but if you don’t like what it chose, you can quickly turn a dial or two and adjust it how you like. 
Aperture Priority (Av)
This mode allows you to choose the depth of field you want for the image and then the camera will automatically pick the best shutter speed so you get a proper exposure. Depth of field allows you to get that cool background blur. It can really draw the focus to your subject. Point and shoots have such small sensors, that almost everything in the picture is in focus. Which means you can’t do stuff like this. 

Shutter Priority (Tv)
If you want a cool motion blur or you want to stop action, you can adjust the shutter speed and the camera will then pick the best aperture to give you a proper exposure. It is incredibly hard to stop action with a point and shoot. 

Manual mode
You can choose both shutter speed and aperture. This is a difficult mode to learn, but you can really take some neat pictures if you master it. 
The ability to add an external flash
On camera flashes are terrible. They blow out the subjects and make everything look like they were taken in front of a nuclear blast. Not to mention red-eye and crazy animal laser eyes.

An external flash with a swivel head allows you to angle the light and bounce it off a wall or ceiling. It diffuses the light and allows you to light the subject much more naturally. 

Bulb mode and shutter remote
This is for long exposures. You press down the shutter button and it will collect light in the sensor for as long as you wish. If you want to take pictures in the dark, do light painting, or get cool pictures of the stars… this mode is for you. Having a shutter remote allows you to open the shutter without jiggling the camera and causing motion blur. In this image, night time almost looks like day and the cars passing by are turned into streaks of light. 

Burst mode
Vital for taking action shots. If something is moving past you at great speed, you want to be able to take as many pictures as fast as possible in order to get the shot. 

Manual focus 
This is incredibly important for macro photography. Auto focus is great most of the time, but to get a truly sharp focus on small objects, you want to dial it in manually. The detail you can get is pretty incredible.

DSLRs all have these features. Point and shoots can have some of them, but they rarely offer the same kind of control. If a DSLR is absolutely too bulky for you, a micro 4/3 camera might also be an option. 
So save up your money. Check ebay and craigslist. If you are serious about learning photography, do whatever it takes to get a DSLR. Even if you have to sell a kidney or valuable bodily fluids. 
Once you get the camera, learn how to use it. I have links to some excellent online courses here. 
If you want to do some research on different cameras, check out the reviews at Digital Camera Info.
And if you want to learn about all the different lens options, check out The Digital Picture reviews.

thefrogman:

It is my personal belief that if you really want to learn photography, you should get a DSLR. Point and shoots can take lovely pictures but they limit creativity, their sensors are too small to play with depth of field techniques, and they try to do too many things for you.  

Things you want in a camera…

The ability to change lenses

Lenses are probably more important than the camera itself. Fast lenses for night shooting and shallow depth of field. Zoom lenses for, well, zooming. Macro lenses for cool close up shots of tiny things. Tilt-shift lenses to make everything look miniature. Wide angle for landscapes. It goes on and on. The ability to change lenses is one of the most powerful creative tools and is something a point and shoot just can’t deliver. 

The ability to shoot in raw format

Raw images are essentially digital negatives. They have a wide number of variables that you can change after the fact. You can often save pictures that might otherwise be worthless. You can adjust white balance, exposure, shadows, highlights. The creative possibilities are endless. I highly recommend acquiring and learning Adobe Lightroom to “develop” your images.

Here is an image that started out in rough shape, but I was able to fix due to it being shot in raw format. 

image

image

Program mode (P)

Program mode is a better “auto” mode. The camera does its best to give you the best settings, but if you don’t like what it chose, you can quickly turn a dial or two and adjust it how you like. 

Aperture Priority (Av)

This mode allows you to choose the depth of field you want for the image and then the camera will automatically pick the best shutter speed so you get a proper exposure. Depth of field allows you to get that cool background blur. It can really draw the focus to your subject. Point and shoots have such small sensors, that almost everything in the picture is in focus. Which means you can’t do stuff like this. 

image

Shutter Priority (Tv)

If you want a cool motion blur or you want to stop action, you can adjust the shutter speed and the camera will then pick the best aperture to give you a proper exposure. It is incredibly hard to stop action with a point and shoot. 

image

Manual mode

You can choose both shutter speed and aperture. This is a difficult mode to learn, but you can really take some neat pictures if you master it. 

The ability to add an external flash

On camera flashes are terrible. They blow out the subjects and make everything look like they were taken in front of a nuclear blast. Not to mention red-eye and crazy animal laser eyes.

image

An external flash with a swivel head allows you to angle the light and bounce it off a wall or ceiling. It diffuses the light and allows you to light the subject much more naturally. 

image

Bulb mode and shutter remote

This is for long exposures. You press down the shutter button and it will collect light in the sensor for as long as you wish. If you want to take pictures in the dark, do light painting, or get cool pictures of the stars… this mode is for you. Having a shutter remote allows you to open the shutter without jiggling the camera and causing motion blur. In this image, night time almost looks like day and the cars passing by are turned into streaks of light. 

image

Burst mode

Vital for taking action shots. If something is moving past you at great speed, you want to be able to take as many pictures as fast as possible in order to get the shot. 

image

Manual focus 

This is incredibly important for macro photography. Auto focus is great most of the time, but to get a truly sharp focus on small objects, you want to dial it in manually. The detail you can get is pretty incredible.

image

DSLRs all have these features. Point and shoots can have some of them, but they rarely offer the same kind of control. If a DSLR is absolutely too bulky for you, a micro 4/3 camera might also be an option. 

So save up your money. Check ebay and craigslist. If you are serious about learning photography, do whatever it takes to get a DSLR. Even if you have to sell a kidney or valuable bodily fluids. 

Once you get the camera, learn how to use it. I have links to some excellent online courses here

If you want to do some research on different cameras, check out the reviews at Digital Camera Info.

And if you want to learn about all the different lens options, check out The Digital Picture reviews.

This weekend was the first annual Hot As Hell web series event in Palm Springs, CA. My friend Sarah and I went to meet the cast of Pretty the series. If you have not heard of it you need to go watch it right now, it’s hilarious. (http://www.youtube.com/user/PRETTYTHESERIES/search?query=pretty)

We had a blast meeting everyone and hanging out. The first night Sarah and I ended up playing a drinking game with Kirsten Vangsness’ friend Wendi West. The ice breaker was a game of bingo and the caller thought it was hilarious every time she said “balls” so we decided we needed to drink every time she said “balls.” We were feeling pretty good by the time the game was over!

The next night we got to hang out with all of the web series stars and the did live commentary on some of their episodes. We pulled most of them to our table (the cool kids table as we named it) and had a blast.

From top to bottom:

Terri Simmons (Pretty)

Michael Taylor Gray (Pretty)

The two of them with me, laughing at something Sarah said

MIchele Lee and Joan Van Ark from Knots Landing. I had to get this picture for my mom because she watched Knots Landing from day one and that show was the only thing her mother and her could talk about without arguing. The best part was Michele actually called my mom and left her a really long voice mail.

Steve Silverman, the creator of Pretty, Sarah, someone on the production team that I didn’t get the name of, Michael Taylor Gray, Stacy McQueen, Kirsten Vangsness, and me.

Me and Stacy McQueen being fierce

And my favorite picture, Sarah, Kirsten, Wendi, and me. We had so much fun together this weekend and I can’t wait to see them again.

Oil

Mykalynd and Austin at the park. I couldn’t ask for a better niece and nephew. 

Cat Mountain

Cat Mountain

Playing with streamers on the bluffs in Bakersfield, CA.