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Monthly Archives: July 2013

beach 4

This is the last in a series of night beach scenes I shot last December on The Big Island (Hawai’i).  Today’s image, as well as those from the last three posts, were all shot on one night by moonlight.  For the record, it was not a full moon, but roughly about half-full.  These were all 30-second exposures.

I didn’t really set out to do night photography per se that particular night.  Rather, a friend who lives on The Big Island and I were going to hike out to see and shoot the lava.  When we got to the end of the road, we couldn’t see much of a glow from the lava, and rather than “waste” a hike out and back, we decided to try again the following night.

So there we were at 3:00 AM, all dressed up and nowhere to go.  My friend decided to drive along the coast to show me some pretty beaches that visitors seldom find.  Since I had all my camera gear with me in anticipation of shooting lava, I shot some beach scenes instead.

Some people think there’s some trick to shooting these scenes at night.  Honestly, the adage of “90% of success is just showing  up” holds true here.  A tripod is a must.  It helps to have an eye for landscape composition.  Exposure is a little trial and error at first to get a well-exposed image with as slow an ISO as possible to minimize grain.

I’m partial to 30-second exposures because I like very blurry water.  But you can certainly try a 10 or 15 second exposure and see if you like the results.


beach 3

Another image of a moonlit beach on The Big Island (Hawai’i).  This is the third in a series of four images.  Tomorrow I’ll explain how I found myself doing night photography at zero-dark-thirty on these beautiful shores…

beach 2

A 30-second exposure in the middle of the night is enough to give plenty of detail to this beachscape on The Big Island (Hawai’i).

beach 1

See if you can guess what’s unusual about this image I took on The Big Island (Hawai’i) last December.   The graininess is a clue…  


A large fan that used to help keep a warehouse ventilated hasn’t turned a blade in many years.  It sits frozen and backed by a large piece of plywood, so that even if a strong breeze succeeded in making the blades move, they would have no effect on the air in the building.

I guess it doesn’t matter, since the entire warehouse appears to have been abandoned a long time ago.

I like the symmetry of the blades, and the way their color and texture stands out against the dark plywood background.  Eventually the fan will rust apart, along with the rest of the warehouse.

But for now it’s a wonderful photo-op, though not the type a typical Hawaiian visitor would choose to photograph.

But I’m not typical.  So in addition to visiting the beaches and jungles and waterfalls and volcanoes, I seek out the abandoned sugar mills, stores, cars and homes that tell a story of a time gone by…

Since this is a piece about a fan, would it be wrong say it’s “Gone With The Wind?”


That “lucky” horseshoe didn’t seem to do this unfortunate character much good…


Looking very much like a Hawaiian version of Munch’s “The Scream,” this is one of many ki’i (carved wooden figures) at Pu’uhonua o Hanaunau (Place of Refuge) on The Big Island in Hawai’i.

While not an exact body double (thank goodness!), he nevertheless accurately depicts my reaction to my hard drive crash earlier this week.  As Yoda would say, happy I was not.  I also said some things Yoda would probably never say, but I’ll leave those to your imagination so as to maintain the PG rating of this blog.  I wouldn’t want to make any of my sailor, trucker or Marine DI readers blush or squirm in discomfort.

The jury is still out on the state of the hard drive.  Any of my friends and acquaintances who have more tech-savviness than I do are being begged, cajoled and coerced into offering advice and/or making an attempt to get the !#%%&%^@$# thing working again.

Until that happens, you will seen an even stranger and more random series of images and posts than normal.  Go with the flow.  We’ll return to our usual strange and random offerings as soon as we are able.

Peace out.

love life

Were you expecting something else?

blue bikes

One of the things I love best about travel photography is the element of surprise:  you never know what you’re going to find when you go for a walk in a new place.

My first visit to Amsterdam was filled with surprises…and fun photo ops like the one above.

saint pippin

Saint Pippin, the patron saint of caramel apples…