A friend of mine, Tony, came over to see the studio and talk about old times. I hired him years ago as a photographer/editor. He now is an assignment editor (nice promotion) and doing a heckuva job.
Tony produced a series on a young man who went to Iraq and left that war as a double amputee. The young man whose name is Adrian had been a star basketball player in high school. What Tony and viewers quickly learned about Adrian was that this young man's spirit refuses to allow his misfortune in Iraq, to poison his life. Adrian, besides loving hoops, is a huge admirer of comedian George Lopez. That tid bit will come into play later on.
Anyway, after producing the series, Tony came to befriend Adrian. It was quite something to see the level in which Tony dedicated his time and affections to Adrian. Eventually, news of Tony and Adrian and the story behind their relationship somehow caught the ear of George Lopez. The comedian flew the two to a concert in Los Angeles where he was performing, and soon also found himself wanting to connect in this infectious affair. Two years later we now have an authentic rendition of the 3 amigos, who are constantly in each others company and enjoying friendship at it's truest core.
Alright to wrap this up, as I said Tony came over to see the setup. We really didn't do a shoot, but he wanted to see how strobes work as opposed to hot lights. I fired off 4 or 5 shots and later converted this one to a black and white. I like it because he is also my friend.
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
Monday, July 7, 2008
This past 4th of July we took some family to Carlsbad Caverns. If you've never been there, this is an amazing Cavern system. The cave has over 300 entrances, I believe is 200 miles long and is still a living cave. Water along with other materials continue to grow stalactites and stalagmites. These pics are from the public entrance in the NPS. The cave here drops to 750 ft below the caverns entrance. Fortunately, hydraulic elevators carry you back to the top after you traverse to the bottom.
The first picture is looking back at the caves opening. Just below you can see a trail of people combing down. On the bottom of the pic is more people and another group in the foreground. This depth alone must be several hundred feet. The mouth looks very small, but I would guess it to be about 150' wide by 50' high??? Anyway, if you've never been there, you really should consider a trip, its like going to another planet.
This is my nephew Cameron, his wife Brittaney and their daughter Leahnay. They were down from Albuquerque to visit us. The picture almost looks like a composite. That's because the flash was probably about .5 seconds, but the exposure was probably closer to 3 seconds.
A tripod is almost a waste of time, especially on a holiday. The trail was packed and there is little to no light on the trails. From time to time there are areas to pull off of the trail, but again it is so dark and was so crowded I decided to forgo the use of sticks. I ended up propping my camera on the round trail rails... nearly impossible to stabilize, a frumpy diaper bag or went hand held. There are occasions where you should use a flash, but overall, most of the pics should be natural light. Either way, you end up with 2 to 3 second or longer exposures. It was quite challenging, but even the pics where there is some motion blur I was happy with.
The one room I wasn't able to photograph is the King's Palace. You can only see it with a Ranger guided tour. If you go, book it. This is the most amazing room at the Caverns. It is now closed due to the constant vandalism that people would do, by breaking off pieces of stalactites or other cave material. How very sad. This is the Big Room which is still pretty impressive, but is dwarfed by the King's Palace and doesn't have nearly the displays -- still, it's quite beautiful.