Tag Archives: black and white

San Francisco Engagement Portraits ~San Francisco Wedding Photographer~

Sara and Todd are getting married in May and after dealing with weather delays, typical to San Francisco, we finally did the engagement session at the Ferry Building in San Francisco.  It was great!  First, it was a place where no one has or will be able to take portraits again.  Very cool for me!  Secondly they were game for anything!  We had lovely Ellie with us but Sara and Todd were willing to stand on a glass box 3 stories up.  I’m not sure I would have actually done it but they both just jumped right up and went along with my whim.  They are a fun and beautiful couple and I can’t wait for the big day!

Black and White Portraits ~San Francisco Portrait Photographer~

I love film.  I love the contrast, the grain, the texture.  I love the tactile process and smell of the canisters!  Call me crazy but I think these shots of actor Eddie Alfano show just how amazing film is.  I get asked when people see me using film “how do you know you got the shot?”.  Because it’s my job to know!  I’ve shot a countless number of rolls of film over my lifetime and it was long before digital came along.  While you may not be familiar with film and don’t trust it, don’t discount it as a medium.  It was after all around long before digital came into the world!

New York City, Home away from home…

I lived in New York City eons ago.  I go every year a couple of times and walk my butt off each and every time.  I recently went for my birthday and as is my norm took my camera everywhere.  So just  a few images to share…

This is why….

I heart Misti Layne. She is stellar; her photographs speak for themselves; they make you stop and think. Take a look at her website. My words would not adequately describe what I feel about her work.

She was the last of three photographers we interviewed, and as soon as we met her, we knew she was the one. Misti has a warm, fun, friendly, open personality that we connect with, and that at the end of the day we would have gorgeous pictures.

She offers professional, high touch client oriented service, including being responsive by e-mail and phone, taking both digital and film pictures (she has a Holga; major points!!), and of course doing both color and black and white pictures. If you like, and I do recommend this, she will select the pictures for your album with your input and edits, of course. I tried selecting pictures myself and it was challenging given the number of great pictures. Another plus is that in her 2010 packages she offers 3×5 prints (high quality) of every picture that she and her assistant takes.

Our wedding pictures are nothing short of stunning. Looking at my pictures is like reliving my wedding day over again. I cry and laugh looking at them, and am so amazed at what she was able to capture. She captured our wedding.

I could not get over how people who are normally not that photogenic looked just radiant. AND she got candids of our folks, which is pretty much a miracle because they can spot a camera from a mile away and immediately pose. My mom loves her, and she’s difficult to please. Our family and friends are raving about the pictures too.

Misti advertises herself as your photographer for life. I would hire her again for our next life event, if she’ll have us! And of course I recommended her to friends.

Hire her! You’ll be just as thrilled.

Thank you Nirmala and TS!  You gave me a lot to work with and you guys are just too cute!

My Holga is Back!!!

At a wedding last month, oops it is June so two months ago, I walked around a bit with my Holga.  There were so many textures, points of interest and fun people it made for some great images.   I so love film.  The smell, the tactile factor, the heavy click in my camera (or in this case the LOUD click of the Holga).  These images are straight out of the camera too.  The vignetting and grain and all the things many might say are mistakes are gloriously beautiful.  I hope you agree!  If you are game add it to your photography request!

I love my Holga!

I’ve been shooting with a Holga longer than I can really guess.  I recently heard that the latest thing is shooting with them at weddings.  Well, ok, not the latest thing in my book!  I took this image at the wedding of Tse-Sung and Nirmala at Holly Farms in Carmel.  Gorgeous!  It was my favorite shot of the day by far.  I hope you agree!  It’s simple, old school, has texture and depth.  Film is so underrated and I find it simply beautiful.

Travel Photography in Ireland

What a beautiful country.  I always love traveling just at the beginning of the winter season.  The light is ten times more dramatic, far less tourists to contend with and the mood is always kind of more festive with the oncoming of the December holidays.  Last year I walked the streets of Auschwitz almost alone, saw the festivities of the holidays in town squares like Berlin and Vienna and Warsaw. It’s just more amazing than the blue sky and green grass of summer in my opinion.  So this year was a great follow up.  The skies poured on us often but left such amazing scenes to photograph.  You just don’t get that in summer.  So please enjoy my somewhat touristy photos and more artistic visions that happened during my time in Ireland.

Beautiful Pet Portraiture ~San Francisco Portrait Photographer~

I’m a total animal person.  Love them all.  So when I get a new toy yes, my ahem kids become my subject.  You have a great opportunity at home to photograph your pets.  They know you and trust you and that makes for the best access.  So some tips to get great portraits:

  1. Instead of shooting from afar and on your feet get on your knees or sit down with them.   Get up close and personal.
  2. Look at how they see the world when you look at them.  A lot of times I’m actually lying on the ground to get portraits.  It makes for much more interesting shots!
  3. Take close-ups.   A nose, ear, whiskers are all bits and pieces that make for cute little details in an album or a series of portraits.
  4. Make it easy and fun for them and for you.

Wedding at The Lodge at Sonoma ~Napa Wedding Photographer~

Congrats guys!  A beautiful albeit very hot day in Sonoma at the Sonoma Lodge.  Cindy looked just beautiful and Bharat was pretty darn handsome!  The florals were amazing and by Grandiflora. I wish you all the best!

Pregnancy Portaits and the Family ~San Francisco Portrait Photographer~

I photographed the wedding of Karen and Eric about 7 years ago.  This still amazes me!  Now they live in NYC and are expecting their first baby.  Karen is close to due but was a very willing and able subject as we used different places in their apartment on the West Side.  Karen is a shy type and was nervous but even dared to get just a little racy and looks beautiful!  Of course the feline kids got in on the action but what are you going to do…they are part of the family! Congrats guys!!

Some hints for pregnancy portraits:

  • Do it around the eighth month.  You are large enough to show but not so large that it’s uncomfortable.
  • Include the whole family!  The dad, other children and the pets.
  • Dress in the dad’s shirt or shorts.  It’s a way of incorporating him in the portrait that may just be belly.
  • Hands on the belly are so simple but say so much.

Travel Photography…NYC in the Fall

This is absolutely my favorite time of year and especially in New York City.  The crisp air, colors and light is just the best.  Here are a bunch of photos I took on my average 6 mile per day walk.  It’s the best way to see the City by far.  I used the Canon Mark II for this to test as I’d just gotten it which was fun but I sure missed my film camera!!!  Remember when you travel always keep your camera with you!  You just never know what you may see.

What a pretty girl! ~San Francisco Portrait Photographer~

So I love when I come across a random roll of film that didn’t make it into the lab.  Of course I hope it wasn’t from 34 years or weddings ago WHICH has never happened but I stumbled on this one recently and just thought I had to throw it up. I took it with a Holga and somehow, someway this little girl does not mind dressing up.

Essence Images by Misti Layne ~San Francisco Music Photographer~

OK, now we are talking about my heart.  I get razzed a lot about my choice to use film but I have to say I just won’t stop!  Some photographers will ask me why and I just say why not!  It’s beautiful, timeless and textural.   I love using toy cameras too and I had so much fun with a Holga that I took to Eastern Europe (I’ve been shooting with a Holga for years now on different things) that I just wanted to do more.  I guess I’m regressing against technology but I do remember the simpler times in life and have the fondest memories of those times.  I love these recent portraits I did and just had to share.  I call them Essence Images.  The idea is really just hitting the essence of the person.  No frills, no poses, letting a child just be no forced smile or capturing someone while they are introspective for a moment or just off guard.  I find them so beautiful and simple and just people at their core of who they are.  These images are not touched up in away…they just are what they are.  Call if you are interested but be prepared to answer the question “What is the inner core and essence of me?”