Saturday, January 30, 2010

Couple Maui Shots

Two versions of a stitched panorama we shot here in Maui as part of our photo tour.  The shot is looking east over the Haleakala crater about 30 minutes before sunrise.  I used a Canon 5D Mk II, EF 24mm f/1.4L, Induro C313 tripod, a Really Right Stuff BH-55 ballhead, and a RRS pano kit.

I stitched the first image with Photoshop CS4 and the second with Microsoft ICE.  Each image was processed slightly differently.

For those into the sky the Milky Way is clearly visible as is Scorpio (in the center) and the Southern Cross (at the lower right.

Leaving to shoot another sunset in a few minutes.

Fiat Lux!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Did We Mention Tim Grey is Back?

Tim Grey, former Manager of the Institute just posted a new description for his March 22-26, 2010 course.  I'll let Tim tell you about it at

We also just added Tim to the roster of incredible instructors who will be here for the California Photo Festival this September.  Check out more at

Give us a call if you would like any more information regarding Tim's sessions or anything else around the school.

Time to pack for Maui!

Fiat Lux!

A Few More AK Shots (Including a 24 shot HDR/Pano)

The shot above is from Deadhorse, AK.  A couple of rigs not in use this winter are quickly covered by ice and snow in the arctic conditions.  Very odd looking at what is in effect a "ghost" rig.  Couldn't help thinking of John Carpenter's The Thing, especially when it was a little darker.  This was just before the seasons first sunrise/sunset as the sun made it about 1/2 of the way above the horizon for 30 minutes.  Shots of the actual sunrise/set below.

The imaget is an HDR Pano built from 24 individual shots.  I used a Canon 7D and EF 24-70mm f/2.8L hand held in -43 degree temps with a -65 windchill.  Lightroom, Photomatix Pro, and Photoshop were all used in the process.

The two shots below are the sunrise/set from Deadhorse.  Unfortunately, there are very few interesting foreground elements on the tundra.  The shots are actually taken across the runway at the airport in "town."
Will put up a pano of a 737 and the sunrise soon.

Fiat Lux!

Rain, Rain, Rain = Wildflower, Wildflowers, Wildflowers

Back in California for a quick visit before I head to Maui for our Photo Adventure with Randy Hufford of IVA (  There is what I can only describe as a constant downpour outside.  Normally I might be bothered by such tremendous rainfall but I know what happens later in the spring because of it!

Donning my prognostication hat, the wildflower season is going to be amazing.  We'll update as the season progresses but expect big things.  Come out and join us with Jennifer Wu, Rob Sheppard, or Tim Grey during the season.

Fiat Lux!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Meanwhile..Back in Sunny California...

California Photo Festival is now official!
You can find out about our instructors and the festival at the website here:

Rick Sammon is our Keynote Speaker and we currently have 11 instructors from the top of the industry to come be a part of our first annual festival!
Planning is still going on for particular schedules and venues so check the site after February for any updates and often after that as we include Tim Grey and a few others up my sleeve!
This should be a great event!

We will be accepting volunteers application soon.
Information on that is going to be posted on our site later in February as well as the volunteer application.

I'm getting excited as I work on this hourly!
I have a lot in store for you as this has been a dream of mine
since I started going to Photoshop World years ago!

Stay tuned for more!


Monday, January 11, 2010

Couple Self Portraits

A self portrait last shot last night around 0230 local.  Northern lights were out (I'll put up some other shots without my unpleasant mug soon.)  Shot with a Canon 7D, EF 24-70mm f/2.8L, Benro C269, and RRS BH-40.  We are ghosted as I set the flash for first curtain and the second it fired we jumped out of the composition.  The shutter stayed open for another 15".  Why did we get out?  Because it was -40 with a -55 wind chill.  Too darn cold!

HDR self portrait from 3 shots 2 EV apart.  Have a pano version of this one as well.

Fiat Lux!

Monday, January 4, 2010

MNL Will be Back in February

To all of the MNL followers out there, Hal will be back in February.  His travel schedule for January leaves him only one day in Los Osos.  There will continue to be blog updates and new video tutorials not only on the blog but also at The Digital Photo Experience.  Check it out at

Take care and thanks for the support.

Fiat Lux!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Red Sky at Night

Beautiful burst of red at sunset last night.  Shot this four image stitched panorama with the Canon 7D, EF 24-70mm f/2.8L, Induro C213, Really Right Stuff (RRS) BH-55, and RRS pano kit.

It will be nice when the color space of the web is wider than sRGB.

Fiat Lux!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Looking East

15 shot HDR panorama
Canon 5D Mk II, EF 24-70mm f/2.8L, Induro C213, RRS BH-55 and pano kit

Noticed that most of the shots we post are looking west.  Decided to put up a quick HDR pano looking to the east over Los Osos and Chorro valleys.  Took the fifteen component shots during Jennifer Wu's course here at Light a few months ago.

The components were prepped in Lightroom, merged in Photomatix Pro, optimized in LR, and finally stitched in Photoshop CS4.

Happy New Year and Fiat Lux!