Tag Archives: Instagram

Capturing Hanauma Bay

I just learned that Hanauma Bay was created only about 32,000 years ago.  A mere blink of the eye in geologic time scale.  Compare that short period to the creation of Oahu by the explosion of the Wai’anae and Ko’olau Volcanos between three and four million years ago. Then the Honolulu volcanic series saw the birth of Hanauma Bay.  Unlike the relatively gentle lava flows that continue to build the island of Hawaii, the volcanic activity that created Oahu was violent and dramatic.  Explosions built cones of ash and vaporized the sea floor.  Hanauma was once such cinder cone.  Eventually the south eastern wall was breached by wave action and Hanauma became the sanctuary you see today.

Capturing Hanauma Bay

I first saw Hanauma Bay from the perspective you’ve seen in my photos in September 2012.  I love climbing the rim trail in the twilight before sunrise to capture the seascape as sunshine saturates the reef and landscape.  Unfortunately back then,  I didn’t own a “real” camera (aka, SLR) at the time and I couldn’t capture the breadth of the bay.  It wasn’t until October that I finally took the plunge and decided that I would be a photographer and ponnyied up the dinero on a Canon 5D Mark 1 and lenses.

On this first capture, I climbed the rim trail where I met a fellow photog, George Chan of ChanKane Photography, Having barely slept the night before that trip, I realized too late that I left my tripod in my trunk!  Crap.  Its a long hill to run down to get back to my car.  Its a longer hill to run up to get the shot.  I was facing my first tough decision of the day.  Either I go get my tripod and suffer the pain for the next few days or, I just sit and watch the sunrise and enjoy the  moment.  Well, I felt that NOT capturing a moment takes me out of the moment forever.  I did not want to lose that intimate connection with Hanauma Bay.  SO, I ran for my tripod anyway.  And it was worth the pain the next day.  Hope you like the result.

Hanauma bay sunrise

The Hanauma Bay Rim Trail is a favorite sunrise hike of mine. I always bring my camera, naturally.
This sunrise was captured on October 29, 2012
on an especially beautiful morning.

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Rainy Days come with Waterfalls

Its hard to complain about rainy season the way people do here (except for the way people drive) when the trade off is dozens and dozens of beautiful waterfalls.

Kathryn met me at the Pali Lookout.  Her path home from work crossed my path to school from work here.  She got a visit from some lonely chicklets upon getting out of her car.  Probably because no one had come by the lookout today since it was POURING.  Which, oddly enough, is why I was there.  I wanted to see if I could take some descent shots on a what most would refer to as a nasty day.


Mission Accomplished.  Check out the photos below.  (all shot with the iPhone.  BIG things will happen when I get a nice camera)





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“That looks like the doorbell to Hell.”

  “That looks like the doorbell to Hell.”  (Ironically, it was)

This quick post is for @Bhir and @ Butterfly109_af…What’s the “af” stand for?

These two ladies humored me with a game of 20 questions trying to figure out what heck this photo is.


Bonnie finally hit the nail on the head JUST before I was about to give in and tell her.  Its the door bell to the house in Vegas.  The first time I saw it I said, “That looks like the doorbell to Hell.”  (Ironically, it was). It was months later that I finally figured out how I wanted to make this doorbell and my imagination mesh into colorful pixels.

Sometimes photography is hard work.  I fear that the millions on IG forget or don’t realize that this is true.  These two photos are unedited.  I didn’t add clouds or bright lights.  I didn’t increase saturation or make the blacks darker… I spent three hours capturing what my imagination already saw.

I decided to take the picture from underneath.  Since I didn’t own a real tripod at the time (now I have a real tripod and no camera) I had build one, jenga style.

I grabbed a small desk that a roommate had left.

Some books.

A cutting board to make it level.

And I needed the towel to keep it from sliding.

The most challenging part of taking this picture was controlling the light.  There is a street lamp directly behind me and light leakage from around the front.  I cut and taped boxes to the stucco (not an easy task) and stood on a chair with a towel to block the light street lamp.  I had to use two towels to make it dark enough.

Figuring out the right combination of light and camera settings took about three hours and a lot of exercise.  Exposure time: 15 seconds. Fstop 3.2  Did I mention that in Vegas, at night, it is still about 100 degrees?


The only way you’d be able to figure out what these next three macros are would be to become psychic…..


And if you’re psychic, we have a lot to talk about….

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