Adversity and Mentality Through the Waves

black and white photography, Portrait photography

My gracious friend posing for me as we walked around Bodega Bay, CA. It was just after sunset so I had to think creatively to take his portrait. I used a good amount of shadows and played around with positioning. He took my direction well and was patient. This is one of the many pictures I took that day. It was disappointing at the time not to be able to capture photos during golden hour, however, it helped me face diversity and I feel like it made a more receptive photographer.

I’ve been reading “The Tao of Photography” by Philippe L. Gross & S.I. Shapiro. The book has me thinking more about photography and not just in the technical terms. The main message I got from the book so far is to forget yourself and forget the notion of the perfect shot. It’s to not be too hard on yourself and be willing to be receptive and shoot without a solid plan. It also mentions that you shouldn’t leave an area just because the shoot is difficult you need to keep your head up and fight again adversity to become a better artist.

I believe the Bodega Bay trip helped me to accept the knowledge in the book. So I am trying my best to keep reading it and further my understanding of myself, my creative process, my photography, and my mentality. It’s a tall order but it’s the path with the most resistance so it’s the one I need and want to take. There’s been too much laziness in my life and I have to accept that to live is to fight and if I want to live right I need to fight to live the way I want to. It’s been difficult but I am trying. I will not escape and I will obtain the life that I truly want.

Stay golden,

D

Side to Side

black and white photography, Portrait photography

Took a shot of my friend on a beach in Bodega Bay, Ca recently. My friend has one eye with double eyelids while the other has one. I took this shot to see which side looked better in photographs. I am proud of this shot, the shadows work well and don’t seem to overpower his face. I like how much shadow is over his eye. It’s a simple shot but I enjoyed experimenting with it in the editing bay. I’m thankful that my friend is always willing to pose for me.

Working hard to explore life more and to understand myself more. I’m reading “Mind’s Eye” by Henri Cartier-Bresson, who was a candid photographer. His book has me exploring more about the philosophy of photography as he considered his camera to be a sketchbook. It’s a great book so far that is pretty short but a good book to read if you want to think about photography at a greater depth. I will write more about it at a later date.

I’m still struggling with self-doubt but I’m not letting it stop me from doing photography or writing. I am going to keep pushing on. It’s hard but it has to be done if I want to have the life that I want.

More later!

“In order to “give a meaning” to the world, one has to feel oneself involved in what one frames through the viewfinder” – Henri Cartier-Bresson, The Mind’s Eye

Natural Portrait

black and white photography, Portrait photography

A quick portrait of my friend the last time we went to San Francisco earlier this year. One of the few times I took a portrait and didn’t want to make is black and white. I know I need a lot of work when dealing with portraits but I’m proud of this one. It’s simple, decent lighting and a good expression. My friend doesn’t bat an eye anymore when he sees my camera so it leads to more natural shots which I like.

Phew! Working on learning more about my craft. Haven’t been taking a whole lot of shots but have been editing and studying fashion photography. Looking to explore more genres of photography while creating a style and direction for my craft. It’s not a one day journey even though I want it to be. I’m doing what I can to take it day by day and as a photographer and as a man.

I working on myself as I’ve gotten lazy again. But I always remind myself life is too short not to give it your all. I’m making the decisions that I need and following through. Because no matter what decision I make I will be criticized.

More from me soon!

Pushing Through/Be True

architecture photography, black and white photography, street photography

As I explored Las Vegas I found myself off of the strip staring up at the Raiders stadium. My friend improvised his pose as I took this shot. I enjoyed the moment so this shot is special to me. I tried editing it many times but none of them felt right.

Phew! Working hard on being real with myself and putting my attention in the right places. I’m working on a project that is passing through the editing process. I finally completed two phases of my project and now all that is left is the design plus all the technical stuff.

Basically, decided to publish two books at the same time. They are not going to be photography books but rather they will be poetry books. I always wanted to be a writer with my name on the cover and spine of books. I’m going to be accomplishing that this year. Eventually I will experiment and combine photos with words but for now these two will be just poetry books.

I made a commit to myself to simply do as I please and work for myself. Thus this project finally started to see the light of day after so many days of daydreaming and talking about it. I don’t care for how well the books do, I want to simply fulfill my desires. Even if they bomb I will continue to publish books until I can’t write anymore or can’t take photos anymore.

That is my current goal at the moment and the one I’m focusing on with 100% of my attention.

Strive to be real with yourself as that is the only way to truly change.

Doing All I Can

Portrait photography

A shot of my cousin on our trip to Lodi a few weeks ago. I normally hate how he keeps his hair (he is lazy) but today it seems like his hair adds a cool effect to the shot. Need to brighten his eyes a bit but overall I’m getting better at portraits.

Phew, been a long day! Working hard on doing what I need to do and what I want to do. In the process of studying photography and starting a few projects that I was too lazy to attempt to do. Going to be publishing two private photo books for my friends. Sometimes I really just have to kick my own ass to get myself into gear. I procrastinate so much by drowning myself in the escapism of YouTube and Netflix that I don’t pay enough attention to my true passions.

Not going to say that I will suddenly get better but I am going to say that I am forcing myself to get into the right gear. Cutting out bad habits and replacing them with good ones and working on a schedule. For instance, I always take my time to update this blog but once I actually start writing a post I can go on and on. Just have to control my urges and do what I need to do.

More soon,

D

Always Seeking to Improve

black and white photography, Portrait photography

A shot that I took in Lodi recently. This was a spur of the moment shot of my cousin as we explored the nature park around Lodi Lake. This shot is plain to me but I do like the look in my subjects’ eyes. I will go back to this shot and plan something better. I would like to take a tighter shot with more focus on the eyes. I will need to work on my backgrounds as well as my editing. I’m looking forward to the process.

I finished work late today but I was highly motivated to work on my passions. Thus I spent the last thirty minutes editing photos and writing this post. Currently, studying product photography before I jump back into portraits. I built my own makeshift light box to dabble with my Gundam models. My next post might be about that, we will see soon. Going to be taking this more seriously and get out of my comfort zone by taking more portraits of different people. I still have to get comfortable with my new camera (Nikon D5200) and with portrait photography but it is something that I really want to try yet it strikes me with fear so I truly know that is my next step.

I want to see what happens when I put 100% of my heart and effort into this. Even if I fail I’ll be proud of my effort if I gave it my all.

Peace,

D

Working While Working

architecture photography, black and white photography, street photography

Always willing to take a shot even when I’m suppose to be “working”. Photography is a true love of mine and I’m always ready to take my shot. I over-edited this shot to try to see the end result. I obviously like it but I can see areas that I can improve like the floor and the walls closest to the subject.

Been working hard at my day job and not realizing how little effort I’ve been putting into my passions. I’m doing my best to incorporate more passion into my life while still getting a paycheck. Sometimes it’s tough as I’ve been getting overtime almost everyday. Even on my days off I just feel like resting.

I’m in the process of finding a new day job and redesigning this site. I’ll be dedicating more time to myself even as I’m on the clock. I experienced this at my last job but not going to allow myself to just float through life doing more work for others than myself. It’s time for a change and less resting.

I’ve got a few projects on my mind that I will be fleshing out pretty soon. Stay tuned there’s more to come!

Photographic Journey

black and white photography, Portrait photography

Took my little cousin to Lodi Lake in Lodi, CA to check out a restaurant and to walk around the lake. I’ve been introducing more and more photography principles to him as he has an interest in the field. It’s an interesting process as we can bond over our shared passion for this craft. I handed down my super zoom camera to him and once he has a better grasp of photography and wants to continue to pursue it fully then I’ll buy him a beginner level dslr. However, I don’t want to spoil him so I’m going to make him work for it.

I really love this field! At times I am swarmed by thoughts of self doubt but I step back and give myself a moment. I’ll look at my wall, which has my photos taped on 1/3 of it and just reflect. I know I’m not the best but I’m not trying to be. I am simply creating the shots that I want to and trying to be the best me that I can be. If I never get into Magnum Photos then so be it. I want to pursue this field out of genuine love even if I fail. Really just want to see how far I can go and tell a few stories along the way.

Updating this blog is a hassle until I actually sit down and write. I sometimes want to take the easy way out and just update a photo then go back to whatever show that I am watching. But I really can’t do it and don’t really want to do that. I want to present the world with what I can truly do but I believe that at times I try to do as little as possible so I can have a reason as to why I failed. 2021 is my year and I’m going to face all of my bad choices in hopes to create the right choices for me.

Been taking Skillshare courses on relevant topics which has helped me grasped certain issues I’ve had in the past and I’ve gained a lot of practical knowledge from the site. I will continue to take classes that will help me on this journey of mine. I am in the process of re-designing this website and I’m going to be more attentive to it. I have a few photo ideas that I want to flesh out. So beware that I will be having updating this more with content. Going back to my prolific creation roots.

Smile and Enjoy The Little Moments

black and white photography, Portrait photography

After a nice day and night in San Francisco. Me and my friends headed to Davis, CA to shoot some hoops and get some boba. This was my friends’ reaction to trying a new drink. We had fun talking about life and simply laughing as we learned about each other.

My coworker above slowly became my friend in a short amount of time. We simply clicked this to our mutual love of philosophy, creating, and music. We may have different tastes but we respect that and are willing to accept those differences. To me that’s how genuine friendships are created and I’m grateful for this one.

Happened to teach my friend more about photography and posing during this short trip. He was a willing student that asked good questions and seemed to grasp the various principles of photography that I taught him.

I’m not the best teacher but my passion for photography shines through despite my spur of the moment teachings that I cram a lot of things into. It was a good experience for the both of us. We walked away better creators in our respective crafts.

I’m fully pursuing photography, I’m about to purchase a new DSLR tomorrow. Still doing research about which one I will get but I have a general idea. Going to get the best one for me that will help me on my path. However, will not fixate on it and use the camera as another tool to further my pursuit of my passions. Working hard to develop the path that I truly want. It’s thought but I’m taking the baby steps necessary to do just that.

Take the first step!

-D

On my Own Path: No More Excuses

architecture photography, black and white photography, street photography

The worst thing about me is that I never truly given my all to something. I was afraid to fail or that was never good enough. So I looked for excuses to use for why I didn’t pursue something wholeheartedly. Read an article about the UFC Jon Jones who is considered by many to be the greatest MMA fighter of all time. He used drugs and alcohol as his prepared excuse if he ever lost any of his fights.

Even a man on top of his career field felt the need to come up with excuses. I really don’t want to live a half assed life full of regrets to match the repugnant excuses. It’s not too late for me to switch things around. I am doing just that.

2021 is my year. I’ve already got rid of some bad vices but I still have a lot of work to do. I’m chasing the greatest version of myself. In this year, I won’t plan it out anymore. I will simply carve myself into the being I have always desired to be. I’m reading, learning, watching, and listening to the world around me. Learning myself and truly following my principles.

No more excuses! I have a roof over my head, food in my belly, a car to take me places, and a bed to rest upon. I have all that I need to succeed. I just have to embrace the fear and make it my b$tch.

I love photography and expressing myself. Both require me to explore the world. This year I will pursue photography and becoming the best version of myself wholeheartedly. I will not stop even when I reach my goals. I’ll simply sit down and write out bigger goals.

Here’s to a much better year!

-D