Here’s a new video from Jason Silva. He mentions MAPS which is a great organization to which I have donated!
Daily Photo – Sunset in Aruba
Now that I’ve been living in the mountains and trees for so long, I’m thinking about how fun it is at the beach! It might be the opposite for people on the beach. Well, maybe not. I know people that live on the beach that would never even consider living anywhere else. You know how beach people are…
Photo Workshop party in New Zealand! We do have a formal photo workshop coming up in April, but yesterday I did a personal one with this gentleman, Brandin Cooks. He first visited me a few years ago at my studio here, then became an art collector, and then we started going on photo adventures together! He’s a really good photographer and a hungry student that asks lots of good questions. Brandin is one of the nicest guys I’ve ever met too… if any of you follow the NFL, then you probably know who he is. I think he’s actually carving out a very interesting niche by being the only pro photographer who is also becoming a pro photographer. Anyway, we had a fun little one-on-one day here in Skipper’s Canyon, then met his wife at Ferg before heading out to take sunset photos in Glenorchy.
Daily Photo – The Milky White Waters of Aruba
The water was like this each and every day. Not only was it this unusual color, but it was super warm and perfect. On our first day there, we went out paddleboarding, which was perfect for beginners because the water was so smooth. There was a lot of falling off anyway, mostly because Ethan was going around like a battleship trying to sink everyone else.
Here’s a video from our big family trip to Aruba. It has a few photo tips in here as well!
Daily Photo – Secret Swimming Hole
We found this secret swimming hole in Aruba. It looks kind of small, but it’s about the size of a normal swimming pool. It was kind of cool to be in that calm, warm water while huge waves crashed on the rocks all around us. It wasn’t exactly easy to get to because you had to climb over all these slippery rocks. I’m a go-slow-on-slippery-rocks kinda guy. And while I’m crawling like an old man, I see these barefooted kids sprinting this way and that across them, like little fearless monkeys.
Be sure to go check out my review of the Pixel 2 Phone and, even if you don’t get it, I still suggest you sign up for Google Fi. It’s the greatest phone network in the world! Again, they are not a sponsor or anything… I pay full price! 🙂
Daily Photo – Horse in Aruba
This is pretty good for a mobile phone photo, eh? And this was taken with the Pixel 1, which doesn’t even have as good of a camera as the Pixel 2. I’ve been sharing a bunch of my Pixel photos back with the team there at Google. I don’t have any formal relationship with them, but maybe someday… I’m such a fan of the phone!
I don’t know if I spelled that right. But, anyway, these are really great dogs! We’ve had Blueberry (the kids named her) for about 4 years now and she’s a really good dog. And doesn’t shed! Great with the kids… never barks… always a great disposition. She likes to play fetch A LITTLE TOO MUCH and is always bringing us stuff to throw for her.
Daily Photo – The Baths from Above
Birds have it so lucky! They can get this view anytime they want. I wonder if they have any kind of aesthetic sense. They probably do, in a way, prefer to live in beautiful places, since those places often have a great diversity of food supplies and fresh water. I don’t know what made me wonder what birds think. Maybe they spend very little time thinking at all… just sort of “being” in the bird-Om sense.
Aruba is one of my favorite islands I’ve ever visited. It has all these secret little spots like this. Well, it’s not that secret, but I guess it’s kinda secret because we were pretty much the only ones there! Here is a Map Link to the location in case you go on an Aruban adventure!
I had quite a hard time getting a paddleboarding photo while in Grand Cayman Island. I had this idea to do a 360 photo while paddleboarding. Seems like a good idea, eh? Well, it wasn’t. I had to paddleboard into this protected swimming area and get over a rope. But the back of the paddleboard has this inverse shark-fin thing. It because stuck on the rope. So I had to sit down (not easy) and untangle myself, all WHILE holding a very expensive 360 camera! Wow that was tough… not gonna lie.
Daily Photo – Paddleboarding in Aruba
This is just off the beach in front of the Ritz-Carlton there in Aruba. How amazing is that water? It doesn’t matter if you are a total beginner in paddleboarding because this is a great place to learn. If you fall, you fall into milky-warm water with snowy-soft sand underneath.
A lot of you know I am fans of Spotify and the Discover Weekly playlist. It’s pretty good. Maybe a bit hit-or-miss for me, but it does a generally awesome job. I saw this article about the algorithm which was interesting to me. Maybe a bit techy-nerdy, but still good.
Daily Photo – Sunset in Aruba
I never missed a single sunset in Aruba. Maybe I was just lucky during my four days there, but each one was just as perfect as this one. I love this kind of sunset because it’s the only time you’re allowed to look at the sun. I mean, I suppose it’s okay, right? People say not to look right at the sun, but I figure if it doesn’t actually HURT your eyes when looking at it, then it won’t actually hurt your eyes physically or permanently at all.
It doesn’t matter if you use an iPhone or an Android there are a few things you can do to get your mobile photography to the next level. All of the photos included with the tips were taken with my Google Pixel phone. I normally shoot with a big Hasselblad camera, but sometimes all I have with me is my phone. I’ve come up with some great tricks to make them look as surprising and incredible as possible.
1) Don’t hit that big circle on the screen to take the photo. Use the Vol Up button on the side! One, when you jab the screen with your finger, you’re causing camera-shake and it will make your photo more blurry. Two, using the volume up button allows you to hold the camera much more steady with one or two hands.
This was taken an underground Turkish bath in Budapest, Hungary. This is Olya, my crazy Russian videographer, who traveled through Europe with us to make some inspirational and tutorial videos.
2) Experiment with the mobile app Snapseed! It’s free and available for Android and iOS. This is, by far, the best app for editing your photos on your phone. There are many tools in there and many different filters. One great thing about Snapseed is you can layer many different filters together to really give your photo a unique look. People will wonder how you did it!
Here’s a fun family photo from a few months ago when we rode camels near the pyramids in Egypt. I used Snapseed filters to give it this “look.”
3) Take some cheeky street photos. If you’re like me, as you walk around the streets, you often see interesting people, crazy outfits, or just kooky things you find interesting. It can sometimes be embarrassing to blatantly aim your phone at these things, so get used to using the Volume Up button to take the photos. On the Pixel phone, for example, I can turn on the camera by double-clicking the power button. Then I move my finger to volume-up to take the photo. Your horizon will probably be off, but you can fix that later.
Here’s a cheeky street photo I took in Budapest, Hungary. This is my assistant Tane. He’s not posing; this is literally how he looks all the time.
4) Try combining your phone with an iPad or tablet to edit your photos to the next level. Professional photographers know that a photo reads differently on a larger screen. Next time you’re at a coffee shop, why not zap your photo over to your tablet (via Google Photos or Airdrop), then use Snapseed to edit it there. A good photo always looks better bigger on a tablet, so don’t feel like you’re forced to use that tiny little screen.
This a photo I took in Aruba. I was jogging on the beach, and of course I had my mobile phone with me. I was able to cover a lot of ground quickly, and there’s no way I would go on a jog and carry a Hasselblad! But it’s nice to always have the phone with me and take a ton of photos, picking out the best after I sit down to relax.
Near my home on the south island of New Zealand, there is this amazing place to watch the sunset called Lake Hayes. I forgot my big Hasselblad camera, so all I had was my phone. There’s a saying that the Best Camera is the one you have with you!
Here’s a panorama of three different photos I took while on a walk here near my home in New Zealand. Since I have an Android, I use Google photos. One great thing about Google Photos is there’s a little AI assistant that will “gift” you a panorama if it senses you took a lot of photos close together.
I came up with a new sub-hobby with my quadcopter – ship-chasing! I was sitting on the beach here in Aruba and watching these beautiful boats at sunset. They were too far away to get a good land-based photo of, so I launched the quad and started chasing them out there as far as I could go. I was a really bad judge of distance… this boat had to have been about 10 miles out at sea, but it only looked like 1 mile!