Kyle LeDuc 99 at the Grand Prix of Long Beach

Long Beach Grand Prix

Kyle LeDuc at Long Beach Grand Prix

Last weekend the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach was in full swing and @crna6pk and and I spent the day photographing all the cool cars and special events. Early in the morning, from the Pike parking structure, we noticed Lyle LeDuc rounding one of the corners with his truck pretty mangled up. But from the photo above you can see he was still able to drive it with no problems.

The Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach keeps getting better and better each year, you never really know who you’ll run into. For example, on Friday I was able to get a nice shot of Alfonso Ribeiro and Robert Patrick for my OCPix instagram account.

Both Alfonso and Robert were part of the Celebrity Race on Saturday, in fact, Alfonso went on to win that race for the 3rd time.

Overall, it’s a fun weekend that I look forward to each year.

Pumpkin Festival at Cal Poly Pomona

Pumpkin Festival Southern California

Crowds at the 22nd Annual Pumpkin Festival at Cal Poly Pomona

This past Sunday, my wife and I headed out for a nice afternoon drive to my old alma mater, Cal Poly Pomona. The 22nd Annual Pumpkin Festival was taking place so it was a perfect way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

Of course they had a corn maze, petting zoo, horse rides, entertainment, and lots of activities for kids. But the people really came for the pumpkins. And there were lots of them. With the wide open space it was a very colorful landscape.

As usual, I took my D5100 series camera and had a field day shooting the festival. Although the photos turned out great, I’m starting to notice that I may be outgrowing this camera setup. So maybe an upgrade is in my future? Perhaps a D7100 or jump straight into an FX body like the new D750?

Whatever I decide to do, there’s one thing I know for sure, great photos are created by the experience and technique of the photographer rather than equipment.

What do you think? What camera setup are you using to photograph this season’s fall/pumpkin festivals?

Santa Monica Pier at Sunset – Long Exposure

Long exposure setting

The Santa Monica Pier with Ferris wheel illuminated on a long exposure image

After a long day at work and much needed relax time, I grabbed my gear and headed over to the south side of the Santa Monica Pier. That special hour, just as the sun sets behind the wooden pier, is the best time to capture it.

I set my Nikon D5100 on a tripod and had the following settings: ISO 100, f/20, and a 30 second shutter. I also used a 52mm Bower ND variable filter to offset some of the harsh light from the sun overexposing the foreground.

By having the shutter open for 30 seconds it produced the cool lights on the Ferris wheel and smoothed out the water and waves at the shore. In a way the color of the water matched that of the Ferris wheel!

If you’d like to buy a print (or digital download) see it here on OCPix.com.

Brazilian Carnaval Club Nokia Downtown LA

Mardi Gras Dancers

Brazilian Carnaval World Cup at the Club Nokia in Downtown LA

This past weekend, Brazilian Nites hosted the annual Brazilian Carnaval at the Club Nokia in Downtown LA. I was there with a large group of friends, plus I had a special pass to photograph the event.

Later this year, I’ll be heading down to Brazil for the 2014 World Cup so this was a good warm up for me. I really loved the music, colors and all the dancing. The night was full of nonstop energy. And being able to photograph it for SocalDailyPhoto was a special treat.

In addition to the photo above, we added a full gallery of pictures from that night at our main photo site OCPix in the events section. If you were there that night you might want to look through them all, chances are you might see yourself!

Christmas Lights at Rick Caruso’s Brentwood Home

Brentwood Holiday Lights

Cool Christmas lights at Rick Caruso’s Home in Brentwood

This is one of the most elaborate and cool Christmas light setups I’ve ever seen. The home is located in Brentwood and belongs to Rick Caruso, the owner of The Americana at Brand, The Grove at Farmers Market and other popular properties in the Los Angeles area.

I’d heard about this holiday light setup from a co-worker and yesterday set out to capture it for this site. It was a little tricky since I had to setup my tripod across the street and in a little “island” of sorts in the middle of the road. You can see the lights of the cars zooming by. I kept my cell phone ‘flash light’ app on so cars would see me. I made it out alive so I guess it worked.

Here’s another photo from a different angle. This one is a direct shot in front of the home.

Continue reading Christmas Lights at Rick Caruso’s Brentwood Home

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