Taking in Autumn

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Some recent Autumn scenes around here.  The air is crisp and the light is golden.  You may feel chilly when you wake up but the afternoon sun will always be there to warm you up.  I look forward to those every Autumn.

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First Time at a Corn Maze

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When I think of a life-size maze, I would think of those old music videos with a pretty girl in a long dress running through walls made out of nicely trimmed grass ,two times the height as her, feverishly looking for a way out. Al though I don’t fancy myself being that girl, running through corn maze has always seemed fun. Giant walls made out of grass and corns feels so majestic when you are being surrounded by them without knowing a way out.

This past week, I had a chance to try running through a corn maze. It was nice. I wouldn’t say it was crazy fun but I had a good time. It would have been more adventurous if we waited to enter after the sun has set but it was me that wanted to go a bit early so I had a chance to take some pictures. Nonetheless, I liked the experience and if I have a chance to go again, I will opt to go a night.

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Study of a Place

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I believe I have figured out what I enjoy photographing the most. I do not like to take portraits, landscapes or still lives. Going through my library, I realized I take a lot of shots of places. It is not photojournalism, it is not street photography but rather a sense of place. These are abstract study of colors and textures and the people and language of the environment. After figuring that out, I searched for other similar styles of photographers and projects and I found a workshop curated by Ms. Laurie Brown of Sense of Place Lab

During the workshop, Laurie reminded us to take in everything, not just the visual. Understand the background of the place you are at and figure out what to present. For example, we walked through Chinatown in S.F. and a new Bart station is being built bringing new ways of coming to the area. With that as a backdrop, a photographer can choose to document what’s about to change or to preserve what is there before the changes happen.

Here, I focused on the colors and geometry of Chinatown. Enjoy.

Chinatown is full of energy and characters. You can not walk a street without hearing actions and every time you look up, there is another story.

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Modern Art

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Love it when museums have free admission days, especially when it is Museum of Modern Arts.  I took advantage of the free admission day last week to go check out the amazing Cindy Sherman exhibition.  I wasn’t a fan of Sherman and had questions about her Untitled #96 when it was auctioned off close to $4 million last year.  My perspective changed when I had the chance to view her collection of photos in person.  At first, her “self” portraits seemed to be underwhelming when viewed on a computer screen, but when in person, the colors and lighting really popped. Sherman’s print size and the environment she put herself in also help with telling her stories.  You just have to see it in person.  (No photos allowed)

Here are some random shots I took inside the museum.  I can’t help but go into my abstract mode when presented with so much modern art. Don’t judge.

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August Photostream

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I have been keeping myself busy with work lately and trying to revamp my portfolio.  Looking at others’ website has been so motivating.  Hope I’ll find some new presentation soon.  Looking forward to some new directions.

Here are some snaps from August.

(Above images taken with iPhone. Apps used: MatteboxVscocamInstagram)

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The Fourth Annual S.F. Street Food Festival

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Here are some of the pictures from the S.F. Street Food Festival this past Saturday.  It is their fourth year doing this and my first time going. The festival spans six city blocks filled with famous local eateries and food trucks.  I’ve seen these vendors’ names many times and having them all together is the best opportunity to try them all at once.  And tried them all we did.

Shown here was just the first act.  We were having Tamales, Chicharrones,  Frankaroni and Creme Brûlée.  I really didn’t expect too much from the festival.  This wasn’t the time to really taste what these vendors had to offer.  It was such a busy day for vendors, you couldn’t expect them to have all their dishes prepared as they would on a regular day.  My favorite of the day was the Frankaroni (the Deep-Fried Mac & Cheees on a stick) from 4505 Meats.

But that wasn’t all.  We also had Thai, Japanese sandwiches, Fried Chicken with Sriracha sauce and then some more.  It was indeed a food fest.

 

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Just Playing Around

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I am posting two things I hardly ever do for this week’s post.  One, night pictures. Two, my own portrait.  I don’t like to take pictures at night because I hate to carry a tripod around.  I am so jealous at people’s beautiful night pictures but I know I just don’t have the patience to wait a second or two for the shutter.  I am that impatient.  I like to snap and go.  But having a manual lens lately taught me to stand still and wait.  I am slowing learning how to really create the picture.  So here, I let my shutter relax a bit and stretch out just a tad longer.

The second thing I hardly do is post my own portraits.  Simple reason being I am not fond of looking at myself and I believe not too many people are too fond of looking at me neither so I never like to do so.

I am trying out new things lately.  I read an interesting Q&A done by photographer Zack Arias on his Tumblr.  A reader asked him how he could improve on his vision.  Zack’s answer was to take picture of one subject until you exhaust all visions.  That was one of his suggestions among a few others. I think he brought up some good points and I will give those a try.  If you are interested, here’s what he said.

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Changing of Seasons

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No, summer hasn’t gone away but you would have believed me if I told you it was fall this weekend in San Francisco. This past weekend was chilly in comparison to the weekdays before it. I feel lucky yet also guilty for saying it is cold here while a large part of the country is having 3-digit temperature and stormy weather.

I enjoy looking at other photoblogs as much as I do taking pictures. I always feel like I am so much more behind in styling my own photographs than other photographers. My pictures lack a certain something. I hope to try a few new things I wouldn’t normally do. I don’t know when it became my habit but I started to make things less contrasty. Rather it is painting or processing photos, I always like to have some details in my shadows and highlights. But while I was looking at others’ photos that I adore, I realized that they do let contrast be contrast. So here, I am dipping my toes into dark shadows and bright highlights. Allow me to try with baby steps. Let me know if they are working or you can’t even tell. HA. Most likely, I would expect the latter.

Anyway, what better place to compare my own photographs than revisiting the Farmers Market at Ferry Building.

Those are some of the tiniest grapes I’ve seen. Besides the amazing produce, the best part of the market at the Ferry Building is the food stalls.

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