Tag Archives: los angeles

LA Hills – Excerpts From a Photo Shoot

In Last Weeks Post (The Jacaranda Tree), I mentioned that we were in Los Angeles for Memorial Day weekend visiting our daughter and son-in-law, but more importantly our first grandchild (just hit the 6 month mark). I had also mentioned that I volunteered to do the daily stroller outing into the neighborhood each day while we were there (she loves to be outdoors enjoying the fresh air, sights, birds, etc.). I was always wandering up into the hills with her as the climbing was good exercise for grandpa and the views were spectacular for both of us. At that point last week I talked about the Jacaranda Trees, but also mentioned I would come back to the views of that daily outing. This week I have attached 10 shots I took during that daily venture.

LA Hills 1

This capture gives you an idea of the typical hillside neighborhoods that dot the Los Angeles hills. The streets are narrow, windy and go up and down quit dramatically. On one side of the street you have the height of the home facing the street and the other side, just the top portion of that home with it’s height going down the backside of the house.

LA Hills 2

The homes represent a variety of architecture and mix in size. Interesting architecture and look as the next shot shows the same house from around the bend and down the other side….

LA Hills 3

Every few steps the scene is totally different.

LA Hills 4

Because land is so precious, there isn’t any space wasted as you notice the garages actually start just feet from the road.

LA Hills 5

Love the variety of architectural elements and color in the homes.

LA Hills 6

Creativity is necessary as the hillsides are quite steep.

LA Hills 7

As I alluded to earlier, the views between the homes (the views they actually have over each other) that you can see from the street are spectacular. This view looks southeast over Glendale, California towards the San Gabriel Mountains.

L.A. Hills 8

This view is looking in the same general direction as the capture above (you can barely see this facility in the far right portion of that view).

LA Hills 9

This is a capture of downtown Glendale, California which is located northeast of downtown Los Angeles and south of Burbank.

LA Hills 10

Then to the south of this location behind another set of hills is downtown Los Angeles. The final approach pattern to LAX takes planes just south of downtown and with the air traffic coming into LAX, not surprising that I captured a plane in this shot.  Thoughts?

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The Jacaranda Tree – Excerpts From a Photo Shoot

We were in Los Angeles for Memorial Day weekend (weekend before last) visiting our daughter and son-in-law, but more importantly our first grandchild (just hit the 6 month mark). We try and go as often as we can for obvious reasons. I volunteered to do the daily stroller outing into the neighborhood each day while we were there (she loves to be outdoors enjoying the fresh air, sights, birds, etc.). I always wandered up into the hills with her as the climbing was good exercise for grandpa and the views were spectacular for both of us (more on that next week in my post). One of the things I particularly enjoyed was the Jacaranda trees in full bloom.

If you’re not familiar with Jacaranda trees, they are native to subtropical regions of Mexico, Central America, South America, Cuba, Jamaica and the Bahamas. Having said that, this particular species of the Jacaranda family has been widely planted across the globe and regions well known for them now include South Africa, Australia and in the US, Florida, Phoenix, San Diego and Los Angeles. I love this time of year when they are in full bloom. I have seen pockets of neighborhoods across Southern California where they have been planted in abundance and this time of year you have a sea of purple.

I have attached five shots I took on one of our outings giving you an idea of the beauty of these trees in bloom.

Jacaranda One

You can see how they add a dramatic touch of color and of course you have the mess of dropped petals to contend with (well worth it to me…we had one at the end of our driveway in San Diego and the concrete was always covered in purple as the petals dropped).

Jacaranda Two

This shot shows two next to a driveway on our walk through the hillsides.

Jacaranda Three

The trees are scattered throughout these hillside neighborhoods and give you that pop of color.

Jacaranda Four

This gives you a close up look at the blooms…

Jacaranda Five

as does this final shot. Thoughts?

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Southern California Flower Garden – Excerpts From a Photo Shoot

I wanted to share a photo shoot I did last weekend while we were in Los Angeles at our daughter and son-in-law’s house. They have a lot of mature plants around their house and I usually do a quick photo shoot whenever we visit because something is always in bloom. As usual I wasn’t disappointed. I wanted to share the first capture just to give you an idea how thick and mature their gardens are. This shot was actually taken from a window looking out into what looks like a dense jungle. Just through those bushes is a green carpet of lawn, but from this viewpoint you just see bushes and a few stray lilies.

Southern California Flower Garden One

This next capture is the same lily from the first photo, but from the yard looking into the “undergrowth”. I loved the subtle lighting this single plant was getting.

 

Southern California Flower Garden Two

I took a stroll around the house and found the rest….

Southern California Flower Garden Three

Southern California Flower Garden Four

Southern California Flower Garden Five

Southern California Flower Garden Six

Thoughts?

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Griffith Park Observatory in Black and White

The shots I am attaching today actually tie into two prior blog posts. Last weeks post titled Phoenix Trotting Park is a result of the work I did on todays post and todays post is a result of a photo shoot I shared last October titled: Architectural Elements. So let me back up to the October post. That post was about a series of shots I took of the Griffith Park Observatory last fall that focused on the architectural element of the observatory. I love the details of this art deco building.

The observatory came up again in a conversation I had with someone in Los Angeles towards the end of last year. They were looking for some black and white prints for one of their rooms and specifically wanted shots of the observatory. They also love the art deco look of the building and thought shots in black and white would give it a retro look. That’s all it took for me to get rolling. I played with a number of the shots and came up with the technique I described last week on the racetrack photo shoot. Those shots were a result of me finalizing the technique on the observatory photographs.

I have attached the six art prints that resulted from that conversation. The client ended up buying three of them from a private gallery I set up for them. I wanted to share them, as they aren’t available yet to the public.

Observatory BW 1

Observatory BW 1

Observatory BW 2

Observatory BW 2

Observatory BW 3

Observatory BW 3

Observatory BW 4

Observatory BW 4

Observatory BW 5

Observatory BW 5

Observatory BW 6

Observatory BW 6

I’d be curious which one is your favorite and what your thoughts are around this black and white look with this type of building.

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Architectural Elements – Excerpts from a Photo Shoot

This post is about taking architectural elements of a building and framing them into a photograph that tells a story. The subject matter is the Griffith Observatory. This building is an iconic landmark in Los Angeles sitting high atop Mount Hollywood in Griffith Park. A very popular tourist attraction with an extensive array of space and science related displays. The observatory opened in 1935 and was built using an art deco style that was popular in that time frame. It is this style that I wanted to try and capture, specifically the bold geometric shapes.

Griffith Observatory 1

Griffith Observatory 1

The first capture is just a shot of the Griffith Observatory showing the central dome. I only use this shot as a point of reference for you. What isn’t shown in this shot is the full size of the building. On either side of the central done are observatories making the building very wide and geometrically balanced with three domes. I wasn’t in a position the day I was there to get that kind of shot, but if you are curious you can go to Wikipedia for a picture of the entire building.

Griffith Observatory 2

Griffith Observatory 2

The second shot gives you a perspective of just how high above the Los Angeles basin the building sits. You can see downtown LA through the haze. Also note the geometric shapes of the building as it curves around.

Griffith Observatory 3

Griffith Observatory 3

For the third shot, I have used my zoom lens and from the same spot, I framed just the edge of the building making downtown LA a larger part of the composition. This would be a spectacular shot on a crystal clear day.

Griffith Observatory 4

Griffith Observatory 4

The fourth photo is of one of the observatories in a tight shot. You can see the detail of the art deco trim around the base of the observatory and note the art deco detail on the observatory itself. I love the bold geometric shapes.

Griffith Observatory 5

Griffith Observatory 5

For the fifth capture, I have used a perspective that includes the lines of the arches (which is a walkway around the side of the building) and the detail of the geometric shapes as they support the central dome which is what the top part of the frame is. I like the lighting and shadows as an additional element to the art deco shapes.

Griffith Observatory 6

Griffith Observatory 6

For the sixth capture, I found an interesting angle to capture the intricacies of the aged copper roof over the front entry. The angle and framing create an abstract print of art deco shapes and color.

As always I try to find a unique perspective to a building in highlighting the architectural elements in a way that the photograph tells a story. Thoughts?

 

 

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