Hawaii

If you guys have not been there yet.. then you should. This was my first trip to Hawaii. I went to two Islands. I landed in Oahu, spent a few days there and then went to Maui. On the first day I landed in Oahu, I checked into a hotel in Waikiki. That evening I went to beach just a block down. It was a very pretty sunset. I did not have a tripod as I was traveling light with my gear, primarily because this was not a photography trip but a family vacation. For the first time I was without my office laptop.. it felt a bit weird. Any way below are the two images I created of the first sunset in Hawaii.

Waikiki Beach

Waikiki Beach

The next day we drove to the North Shore of the island. We first drove to the west side the drove up north. We drove through the Kualao Ranch on the West side. I did not end up taking any photos as it was middle of the day and the light was too bright, and there were way too many people. Eventually by early evening we reach the North shore to catc the sunset. The sun set behind a massive cliff, so that was a bummer. However though I got these two long exposure shots. As you can see there wasn’t any drama in the clouds, so int he second shot I tilted my camera down to avoid as much sky as possible.

North Shore of Oahu

North Shore of Oahu

The second day we drove south around the Island. The drive was  very pretty. We chilled out a Lanai beach in the afternoon. By early evening e started to drive back. We reach the Makapuu lookout point. There was a lighthouse there, but I did not hike up all the way. However the view from there was amazing. Some photos below:

Makapuu Lookout

Makapuu Lookout

The next day we went to see the Pearl Harbor and that evening we flew to Maui. We did a lot of driving there as well. I do not recommend the “Road to Hana” if you are travelling with little kids or babies. First day we drove to Lahaina to see the Luao in the evening. During the day we walked around the town then went to see Blowhole at Nakalele point. I could not get a good image there as it was raining and also a lot of people. I got some good videos though. You can see the videos on my instagram account. Below are some images from Maui.

Nakalele Blowhole Scenic lookout This was at the lookout at the Blow hole Kahakulao Scenic Lokout
This is at the kahakulao scenic lookout, north of Lahaina
Fire Dancer

Fire Dancer
A fire dancer at the Luao
kameole beach
This was the last day. Tried to catch the sunrise, but the light was not good.

Overall it was a great relaxing trip, we were there for 7 nights. We realized that the best way to enjoy Hawaii is to go to one island at a time and spend 8-10 days. So our next trip will be to Big Island. We will plan to stay there the whole while.

Bad Light? No Problem!

Two evenings ago I was at Coyote Hills Regional Park to create landscape images and capture the beauty of this local gem. I knew before hand going there that there was not enough  clouds to create a dramatic enough shot. But I was still hopeful and thought may be I’ll get some soft light over the rolling hills. But much to my dismay, below is what I saw :-\

bad

As you can see, light was dull, it was all beige and brown, no colors on the hill or the sky. Sun was setting behind the hills. Over all it was a dull and a bad day for nature photography. The only option I had at that point was to pack and come back home. But I didn’t.

Here’s the thing, photography is about seeing the details, its about seeing what usually people won’t see, its about your self expression, its about creating something out of nothing. And this is what i saw ..

At Coyote Hills RP

At Coyote Hills RP

At Coyote Hills RP

These three images are long exposure shots, showing the motion and the wind. I waited a bit till the sun was just above the rolling hills giving that last bit of light. I used a telephoto lens, zoomed in, cut out any background  or sky and just kept it simple.

 

Perspective

I’ve been living in the San Francisco Bay area for a few years now. And every time I am driving over the Dumbarton Bridge over to Fremont or Union City, I notice this red hut on right hand side in Don Edward Wildlife Refuge. This hut look really intriguing as its in the middle of the park and Inevitably always see it when I am on that road. I’ve been wanting to go for a hike in the park for a long time so last week  finally decided to go. I carried my camera along as well.

I finally came to this little hut to which you can get to via a small boardwalk. I realized that shooting this hut is going to be tricky. Depending on which ever perspective you take, you either get the highway 84 traffic at the back or lines of electric towers on the opposite side. Since I could not do much about that, I tried to walk around the hut and see what different angles would work better.  I tried a few compositions, on both the days I went there. Luckily for me both the times the light and the sky was great, so I was able to shoot some unique perspectives.

Don Edward Wildlife Refuge
Don Edward Wildlife Refuge

Don Edward Wildlife Refuge

Don Edwards Refuge

Don Edwards Refuge

Don Edwards Refuge

As you can see above, the images have been made with different angles, perspective, height, to avoid as much external man-made elements as possible. its the same Subject in every image but has a different perspective. So it is always important in landscape photography to reach the location on time and scout around to see how you can bet compose your image. Little bit of patience and planning goes a long way.