Thursday, September 19, 2013

Old Boat by the Seashore

I will just complain for a moment here about Customs in New Zealand. I can’t tell you how many hours me and the team has had to spend on the phone to get stuff shipped into New Zealand. Of course, this is my first time dealing with shipping Customs… and I, regularly, weekly, literally, get stuff Stuck In Customs. I’m constantly having to fill out forms, pay tariffs, and do all other kinds of nonsense that get in the way of the free flow of goods around the world. Of course, it’s not just New Zealand, but many countries around the world spend a lot of time slowing down commerce. Naturally, I’m sort of a “Free to Choose” Milton Friedmaneque libertarian, who has many clever things to say about protectionism… “It protects consumers from low prices.”
I was near Moeraki and taking photos at sunset. This was the only night I was there, and I was excited to eat at this legendary place I keep hearing about called “Fleur’s” — so I was extra-bummed to find out it happened to be closed on that one night in particular. What a bummer. But I walked around the back side to explore and saw this boat up by this tree…

Mont Saint Michel in Repose

Be sure to sign up for our free Newsletter. There’s always good stuff in there… and it’s full of photos that are email-to-your-family friendly. I looked at the stats, and our newsletters have over a 100% open rate — which is kind of crazy — this means they get forwarded all over creation… so, anyway, thank you !
I can’t wait to go back to this place! I really hope that I do. This amazing island-monastery has various degrees of “islandness” depending upon the time of day. I think next time I go I will plan out the tides even better so I am sure to get more shots from various angles. I also read on a few sites that there is “quicksand” out there… and if you go the wrong way to take a photo, you can get stuck in the quicksand! I think that sounds like one of the worst possible things in the world… so I was a little scared to go try. There was no one to throw me a vine, like in the cartoons…

Dinner in Carmel

We’re still working hard on this. It will be a free app when it is released, and I want to make this one absolutely perfect! The Android and iPad versions are already out there, so be sure to go grab those if you have not already! You can see a few sneak peaks at the new Mac version on the Stuck On Earth page.
I found this place thanks to my friend Vic Gundotra. I was searching for local places to eat on my phone, and I saw that he recommended it. If it’s good enough for him, then it’s good enough for me! Actually, I think I kind of like this new way of searching. I like that my friend’s recommendations are pushed to the top of the algorithm. It’s a much more interesting way to search… I’m trying to think of examples when it would not work, and I really can’t. Well, one example is I do have this one friend that has HORRIBLE taste in movies. I am kind of worried that if I search for a movie to watch one night that his ridiculous suggestions might come out on top!

The Lamp in Hakone

Down below I have a story of how things looked rotten then turned right as rain. Do you have a photo-story like that – where things looked horrible then turned out okay?
The entire time I was in Hakone, it would not stop raining. This is not a great thing, when you finally make it to a place you are very excited about and there is a torrential downpour. So what to do? Well I didn’t want to walk away empty-carded (new word I just made up – feel free to use it!), so I lugged out the umbrella and took a stroll to see what I could find. And now, I’m happy I did.

The Hat Store in San Francisco

I don’t know if you saw this or not… but you may enjoy Episode 1 of The Art of Photography tutorial. Here’s the whole thing in its entirety!
These are the kind of situations that really call for a wide angle lens. It takes every single line and makes it 2x as extreme. When you walk around with your “wide-angle” mindset, you start to pay special attention to high contrast lines. Lights, stripes in the streets, car streaks, and anything else starts to take on a new sense of drama. If you’re looking to make your photography a bit more exciting and see things in a new way, go borrow (or rent) a wide-angle lens and give it a try!

A Pink Sunset in the Fjords

A few weeks ago, I posted a YouTube video with b-roll from this very sunset. I didn’t want to embed it again (I feel like sometimes I put too much video on the blog, even though no one has complained?!??) — but anyway, there is a link for you.
I tried to make as much as I could out of this amazing sunset! I swapped lenses, tried every possible angle, aimed every possible direction — I knew how rare a sunset like this was. This is a often a very exciting (and fun!) time… when you sit through dozens of mediocre sunsets, you get overly excited when one goes off the charts like this. It must be a lot like a good day of fishing, but I would not really know, since I’ve never had one of those. Well, hehe, that’s not true… I was in Alaska as a kid with my dad and I caught like 70 fish in a day! But I was just a kid… and I could not really appreciate how lucky that was.

The Train Station in Dunedin

Do you know how much the internet on a cruise is? Oh my gosh…. it’s just offensive… Where are the Google Loon Balloons when I need them!??
I’ve only spent one night in Dunedin, which is on quite far south on the South Island of New Zealand. This train station is very famous and quite beautiful. There was a crazy sunset this night, and there was no train traffic at all, so I felt pretty safe running all around the tracks and jumping up on the train cars to get direction. Actually, jumping around train cars is not very easy. It looks like it might be easy, but everything is just beyond an easy jump or an easy boost!