Catching the light

For this week’s Lens-Artists photo challenge, It’s All About the Light, I immediately thought about Reykjavik and its two main landmarks: the Hallgrimskirkja church and the Harpa Concert Hall. I love the way those buildings capture light.

Hallgrimskirkja Icelandic church

Hallgrimskirkja church – at eight in the morning…on a November day.

harpa concert hall early morning ceiling

Harpa Concert Hall early in the morning.

harpa concert hall daytime ceiling

Harpa Concert Hall later in the day when the sun was high. Looking at the above photo, there’s this cool transition where on the right side, it almost looks like a pencil drawing. Quite a cool effect. There’s no filter needed.

See you next time, Iceland.

Finding blues and greens in the city

The most underrated feature of LA would have to be the nature and finding it is a lot closer than you think. I enjoy going to any green space to clear my mind after a long hard week at work. I know my husband fantasizes about living in the countryside, but to be honest I think he’d be tired of it very fast. If we lived in the countryside, would we seek solace (or fun) in the city if country life got monotonous? For me, I like to think finding a piece of nature in the city is a treat.

Some hiking trail in Chatsworth
Encino Resevoir
Somewhere in Griffith Park. This is one of my favorite photo where you get the downtown LA Skyline and the Griffith Observatory.

Lens-Artist Photo Challenge: Cool Colors – Blue and Green (host: Tina)

Some green and blues I came across the blogosphere:

John’s Space – featuring the most gorgeous lilacs!

Slow Shutter Speed – A beautiful ocean drive from San Jose to Pacific Grove.

Leya – A beautiful collection of greens and blues.

My Camera and I – Another beautiful collection featuring this lake.

Bulldog travels – shares photos from the Golden Gate Park Botanical Gardens. I haven’t been to that place in years. I loved how that city is so bikeable and walkable — although incredibly expensive!

P.A. Moed – Check out that mural! It’s stunning! Very Narnia like!

The Showers of Blessings – A very interesting history of peacocks in the San Gabriel area. Since I live in LA it explains some of the street names.

Bend Branches – beautiful sky shots!

Spots and dots

“A line is a dot that went for a walk.”

Paul Klee

Ann-Christine brought up a fun theme this week and it’s Spots and Dots! Well I certainly have fun with this theme — there’s just something pleasing about looking at a circle. Here are some of mine:

Chinese lanterns 🏮 in Chinatown Milan
Lamps in Descanso Gardens
The largest macaron I’ve ever had. Plus a smaller one in the background. This is from Bouchon Bakery in Beverly Hills (no longer there).
A flight of beers at some Portland bar
Don’t forget–scoops of ice cream!

Here are some Spots and Dots that caught my eye in the blogosphere:

  • Ramya Tantry – that umbrella garden looks dreamy :-).
  • Brenda – a very unique photo. The double exposure effect makes the leaves look like little dots.
  • Amy – stunning macro shots of the rain drops resting on the leaves and the window.
  • Suzy – another beautiful macroshot raindrops on leaves.
  • GERIATRI’X’ FOTOGALLERY – featuring dots in artwork, rooftops, and ceilings.
  • John – captured shots of water in motion.
  • Chris Mosseau – more water shots. I love how the drops rest on the blades of the leaf.
  • Aletta – a great collection of dots on a guineafowl, a mosaic, and a wooden horse.

Pick a pastry

Sugar brings happiness. Eating it once or twice a week in a dessert, that’s what life is about. There is nothing wrong with it.

Adriano Zumbo

One of my favorite things about travelling is eating pastries and desserts — it’s always on my travel itinerary. This is from a pastry shop in Rome. Feel free to pick one — or pick them all!

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #142 – You Pick It!

Harpa Concert Hall

The unusual shapes and the way the walls and ceilings capture light makes the Harpa Concert Hall in Reykjavik a fun building to take photos. One of my biggest regrets was not watching a show at the Harpa — I don’t care what show. It could have been a concert, a comedy act, play, or a ballet — I wanted to watch something at this concert hall. We went to Reykjavik in November of 2017. I told my husband I would like to return here in the spring or summer when is greener. Maybe we’ll even watch a show at the Harpa.

Harpa on a sunny day. Around 11 am.

Elongated hexagons
Hexagon on hexagons
Rectangles, parallelogram
Cubes

The Harpa when it’s dark at eight in the morning. Yes, we made a second visit to the Harpa the following morning. See how it transforms in the dark. It looks like the building transformed from clear crystals and silver to smoke and rose gold.

Rectangles

November in Iceland is short. The mornings are dark and the sun stays up for a few hours before setting around 4 PM. That is why I wanted to avoid saying morning and night.

Do you prefer the Harpa in the light hours or the dark hours? Comment below!

Lens-Artist Challenge: Geometry

CMMC – Bright Rectangles

Natural Light

I don’t remember the last time I’ve used a filter on social media. Maybe when I first got my dog, Teddy? I thought, “why would I filter my dog? He’s great just the way he is.” That was about six years ago.. Since then I have not bothered with filters and presets and it’s been incredibly liberating.

Teddy does not require a filter.
Neither does Koda

Anyways, here are some photos with no filters. I enjoy playing with light when I use my camera whether it is an SLR or my phone. I like to let nature be the painter.

Hiking trail in Hollywood
Iceland
Somewhere in the Pacific Northwest
Chau Doc, Vietnam
Amalfi Coast, Italy
Joshua Tree, California
Salton Sea, California
Lake Tahoe, California
A road trip from many years ago. Somewhere in the USA.
Downtown Los Angeles from my work place

One year ago today…

Saumur, France

Last February, we went on a multi-city trip around Europe. Who knew this was going to be the last time we’d travel like this for a while. Nowadays, we don’t even travel outside of the county to visit my in-laws. I tell myself we will travel again.

Oh yeah…I was pregnant and did not even know it at the time.

The weather in LA today looks and feels like the weather when we visited Saumur last year. Just as cold, just as gray.

Life according to my first digital camera

The first digital camera I ever bought with money I earn from my first job was a Canon point-and-shoot camera. Before that I would buy a series of cheap point-and-shoot 35 mm cameras and one-time-use cameras with money I earned through meager allowances and babysitting gigs. The Canon camera was my first big purchase in my life — it was the first items I bought in my life that was more than $50 — actually I remembered it was around the ballpark of $250+ in the early 2000s. At the time, my Canon point-and-shoot was the most expensive thing I owned and I was devoted to taking care of it, hoping it would last me a long time. From my senior year in high school at 17 years to 23 years old, it had a pretty good lifespan. Here is where it took me according to my Canon:

Lens Artists #133– My Photography Journey

Striped and Checked

This week’s photo challenge was a little tough and then I found this little gem. This was from my Zion trip back in 2016. I went to Zion many years ago before, but I did not recall this unusual checker-pattern rock formation.

Striped and Checked

Found Paddington Bear in Peru

Location: Lima, Peru

Paddington is a Spectacled Bear native in Andean jungle and the only bear species in South America. You’ll find this statue is one of the many landmarks you’ll find along the Miraflores boardwalk.

The hummingbirds and the bees

Selvatura Park, Monteverde, Costa Rica – September 2016

We went to Costa Rica during Labor Day weekend about four years ago. Selvatura Park was one of my favorite experiences in Costa Rica. You walk across many hanging bridges bridges to explore the cloud forest, a butterfly garden, and a hummingbird garden. The hummingbird garden was my attempt in capturing hummingbirds at mid-flight. Also, I have to say, it was one of the few times I was not scared of bees — they were harmless.

Lens-Artists Challenge #130: It’s a Small World

I have many travel photos I’ve been meaning to share on my blog and SmugMug album. Hopefully I make Travel Tuesday a consistent series on my blog.

Tuesday Photo Challenge: Salvaged

I went to the September 11 Memorial and Museum in the summer of 2012. I came across this sculpture of the old New York sky line. The medium was a salvaged piece of the World Trade Center. Definitely not junk.

Theme: Junk