October 31, 2011

Happy Birthday to Me =)

Today is my birthday! Hurray! Thanks to everybody who made today (and the entire month) so special. Officially two...dozen =)

October 30, 2011

San Francisco 49ers defeat the Cleveland Browns 20-10

Headed over to Candlestick Park for 49ers vs the Browns.

Ever since I first started shooting sports seriously, my goal was to shoot NFL, and considering my dad is a 49er faithful and used to sell hot dogs at Candlestick, I grew up a niner fan. So the ultimate would be to shoot a niner game.

I had assisted Peter Read Miller and Jed Jacobsohn before, and photographed 49ers practice, but this was my first 49er game that I've photographed.

I am helping team photographer Michael Zagaris (one of my photo idols...and the first time I met him I fell down his stairs) with uploading some of his photos for niners use. This means I also get to hang out with him on Monday mornings after the game which is also awesome. Such a cool guy!

Poor Colt McCoy of the Browns struggled holding onto the ball. And was under pressure all game.

While Frank Gore became 49ers 2nd all time leading rusher with 7,089 yards.

But his try for a touchdown was called down at the two yard line.

But niners still put points on the board with the help of Michael Crabtree who was able to score thanks to a nice pass from Alex Smith.

And of course kicker David Akers with the hold by Andy Lee

Joe Staley even stepped in as a receiver and celebrated after making the catch with a little dance. Not every day a 6'5" 315 lb guy is used as a receiver!

I know XFL was sponsored by WWE, but I think NFL has enough WWE action!

The cheerleaders were in Halloween spirit in costume, though hopefully this one didn't confuse any of the players!

At the end, with a 20-10 win over the Browns and 6-1 on the season, Head Coach Jim Harbaugh came out to shake hands with Pat Shurmur, in much less dramatic fashion than niners previous game against the Lions.

All in all, a great game, a beautiful day and perfect lead up to my birthday tomorrow!!

October 27, 2011

Eastern Sierras

For a quick pre-birthday mini-vacation headed to the Eastern Sierras with my parents.

In my memory (which is very poor) I've never been here before, but wow, I definitely want to go back! It was so beautiful!

There's a surprising number of small lakes

Including the interesting, but kind of depressing Mono Lake.

Also caught Devil's Postpile

And the earthquake fault line.

I'm convinced I'm going going to die in an earthquake, but I imagine it in the unlikely situation of me falling into a divide down to the earth's core. Plate tectonics don't really work that way so guess I'll just never die! But this is pretty close to my theory where you can really see the divide in the earth, but too many rocks, not the free fall into the rabbit hole.

And thanks to the tip from photographer buddy, Nathan Yan (who captured great images of it, here) we  ventured to Hot Creek geothermal area.

Ended the evening heading through South Lake Tahoe. Spending a large part of my childhood in my mom's hometown of Truckee, I'm very familiar with the north side of Lake Tahoe but rarely find myself on the south side. Such a fun trip!

October 26, 2011

Bodie Ghost Town Photos

On my trip to the Eastern Sierras, stopped through Bodie, the best preserved ghost town in California.

According to history Bodie was a thriving boomtown in the 1800s after the discovery of gold led to a thriving mine supporting a population near 10,000 with 65 saloons in a community of "miners, storeowners, gunfighters, prostitutes, and people from every country of the world."

As the town declined, people just up and left, and in 1962 the California State Historic Park was able to preserve by far the coolest ghost town I've seen. And thanks to my mom's bizarre travels, that's actually quite a number of ghost towns.

It's so cool to see the different layers of wall paper peeling off the wall!

I think there's still some ghosts lingering around too, because right after this shot, the auto focus on my 16-35mm quit working at random... eerie!

October 23, 2011

Kansas City Chiefs defeat Oakland Raiders 28-0

Headed over to O.co Coliseum for Chiefs at the Raiders. The story was all about Carson Palmer.

I was instructed to shoot every possible shot of Raiders newest trade, quarterback Carson Palmer. So we started with warm up shots.

Which were interesting until he came out in uniform, then everything was about the uniform shot. Which would only be interesting until he actually played.

Palmer was listed first on the depth chart, but I took a warm up photo of back up quarterback Kyle Boller just in case.

And Boller ended taking the first snap. And every snap of the first half.

Much to the dismay of Raider fans as he threw three interceptions.

Second half starts, and I assumed Palmer would take over. But he was still on the bench. And fans booed as Boller came onto the field and Palmer remained on the bench.

Then as he put on his helmet, and Boller came out of play, the fans erupted in cheers.

Palmer took his first snap, faked a hand off, dropped back and threw his first pass completion with the Raiders.

But it didn't get any better than that as Palmer also threw three interceptions and Chiefs defeated the Raiders 28-0.

But there were some flashes of promise. And I am calling Palmer and Darius Heyward-Bey being the passing pair.

Raiders put up a strong fight, but it's tough to win a game when so many drives result in turnovers.

That the Chiefs were able to capitalize on.

When the game isn't much to watch, at least fans can watch the raiderettes ;-)