Tag Archives: scenic photography

Sandy, New York City and Me ~ San Francisco Photographer ~

Every year for many, many years I have gone to NYC once or twice a year.  I first went when I was 18, went to NYU and it holds a little bit of my soul.  This year was a bit different. I got caught in Hurricane Sandy.  It wasn’t so bad in Manhattan for me.  We were left in darkness but on 30th Street so walking to 39th Street wasn’t so bad.  For those downtown, it was a very different story.  My friend and I walked the Brooklyn Bridge then caught a cab back home.  Driving through Chinatown made me feel like it was war torn Vietnam.  No lights, nothing recognizable, no people and no English signs.  It left me with a sort of discombobulated feeling.  It didn’t feel like the place I’d known for so long.  I am glad I experienced it and of course, got home but for those who are still dealing with it I cannot fathom the pain and agony it has caused.    These images were taken with not the right equipment–I came prepared for head shots not a hurricane but I hope leaves some sense of what it was like to be there.

Support the Le Sueur Cheetah Project!

I had a truly life changing experience in South Africa and I’d like to do something in return. The Le Sueur Cheetah Project was just truly an amazing experience for me. They need money and more so now because one of the cheetahs is pregnant which is wonderful. Please consider purchasing one of my images. All profits will go to Le Sueur. They really need support and I hope to do just a little bit. Thanks a ton!

Purchase images here… Help Le Sueur Cheetahs.

Researching for the right Wedding Photographer

Researching wedding photographers and making the right choice…

This time of year I get inundated with tons of inquiries for weddings by brides.  So many couples get engaged on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve and most are on the internet quick!  I love to hear their excitement and enthusiasm for this new endeavor in their lives.  But it doesn’t take long either to hear brides say how overwhelming, time consuming and daunting the process is.  I absolutely understand!

The search for a wedding photographer usually begins with images the couple likes from websites, is narrowed down to who is in the budget and hopefully based on who the couple really like as a person and their work.  When you meet with someone and feel that click with a photographer that is huge!

Here are the steps I recommend in researching your possible wedding photographer:

1.     Start with reputable websites and blogs.  Some to check out would be www.weddingwire.comwww.yelp.comwww.theknot.com,www.stylemepretty.comwww.theflirtyguide.com.  If you are Facebook you can find lots of connections in this regard.  I try to keep my business page, Misti Layne, updated with new photos and news of what I’m doing.

2.    Look at photography associations like www.wpja.comwww.ppa.comwww.wipa.comwww.ispwp.com.  A good association will require a membership process and this means a photographer has been through a screening process.

3.    It may be tempting but stay away from craigslist and the like.  I’m a business person with insurance, rent, over-head and costs just like a normal business.  I’m constantly updating equipment and software and keeping myself educated.  You take risks with people who shoot on weekends or are just starting out.  Having a camera does not a wedding photographer make!

4.    Ask a wedding planner!  I really do recommend wedding planners.  They have the resources and the knowledge and will save you time and are so worth it!   Even having a planner for “day-of” wedding planning is going to be a huge relief and allow you to truly enjoy your day.

5.    Ask friends who love their photos and you like as well!  This is a great resource but as I said make sure they LOVED their photographer.

6.    Narrow down your favorite photographers based on their images.  The internet is a great resource but try to stay under five.  Having 16 favorite photographers is still overwhelming.  If the images make you react emotionally in some way like a tear or a laugh—keep them!

7.    Contact them by email or phone and ask about availability and pricing.  Does the email or conversation with the photographer feel right to you?  Keep them on the list.  A lot of personality can come through this way and if you don’t feel a connection or wary, take them off the list.

8.    Narrow the list down to your most favorite three; more than this wastes time.  If in that three you don’t feel the connection go back to some of the others but at this point you should have a good feel about them.

Next post will be the questions that are important to ask once you narrow down that list!  So stay tuned!

Wedding Photography, Arista Winery, Misti Layne Photographer

Ten tips for Travel Photography

The world is a much smaller place now than ever before and travel photography is something that is no longer done by a few professionals. Black and white photographs, portrait photography of locals and documentary or editorial photography is something we all do now with even the cameras in our phones. I recently returned from a Middle East tour of Egypt and Jordan. Both places I had been dreaming about going to for as long as I can remember. I travel a lot and it’s my biggest “vice” in life by far. Learning from other cultures and experiencing different ways of life can only enhance yours in a better way. It was a wonderful trip filled with amazing places and lovely people. So here is my 10 point bullet list for travel photography!

Click to continue reading “Ten tips for Travel Photography”

Holiday in the Middle East

I’ve always dreamed of seeing the Pyramids of Egypt and Petra and Wadi Rum in Jordan and finally made that dream happen this month.  It is an amazing place full of amazing people and just the best experience!  We had a very full 10 days but our tour director did a great job getting us around and seeing the most important things and learning a thing or two as well.  It’s a different world to be sure but we also share so many things and I walked away with great memories and many new friends.  A few marriage proposals too but alas I had to turn those down.   The Pyramids of Egypt were incredible and possibly the most amazing place I’ve ever been is Wadi Rum.  Truly breathtaking.

The people were so kind and fun.  At a mosque I was inundated by about 20 kids on a school outing who were asking me a bunch of questions and just as intrigued by me as I was of them.   I rode a camel that decided it didn’t want to go up the mountain but back home to dinner at a gallop but fortunately I was saved by my Bedouin who ran down to get him back.  That was fun!  But here are just  slight few of my favorites from an amazing holiday abroad to the Middle East.

San Francisco Engagement Session ~San Francisco Wedding Photographer~

Heather and Jeff are getting married next year on the East Coast but live locally and wanted photos that screamed San Francisco.  So we went to Chrissy Field for the Golden Gate Bridge of course!  Timing is really important when being outside for portraits.  The sun can create harsh and unattractive shadows not to mention major squinting.  When the sun is going down it is typically easier to deal with these issues.  Living in San Francisco you almost never know if you are going to get sun, fog or rain this time of year.  We got really lucky!  Heather and Jeff were fun to work with and we got some lovely and fun shots.  All the best on the big day….I do travel guys!

Wedding Details ~San Francisco Wedding Photographer~

The details of a wedding really set the day.   The littlest of elements are indicative of you as a couple and set a tone of the day.  This wedding was in Big Sur and the elements blended like nature themselves!  It was elegant but casual and comfortable.  Enjoy and think of what “says” you!  The place card holders were cut by the groom himself.  The bouquet consisted of many natural plants like heather and rosemary and blended perfectly into the Big Sur settings.  The cowboy boots worn by the bride were THE perfect choice!!!

From the archives…

I shot a few portraits last year for some sisters for their mom’s birthday present.  We did them at Ocean Beach because that is one of the first places she took them after immigrating from Russia.  So for kicks I brought the Holga along.  I can almost feel like what Ocean Beach could have been photographed like in 1882 or something!

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!

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.

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.