Josh's Photo Blog

July 22, 2009

Night shooting @ LA

Filed under: travel — Tags: — joshuaps @ 5:33 am

While hanging out with a friend some time ago, I found a bridge with a great overlook over the 101 freeway and took a couple of shots with my iPhone.I figured I might not get around to coming back… good thing I figured wrong!

Last weekend, I went back to the same place with another friend, but at sunset and armed with my big camera, a wideangle and a tripod. Panorama and twilight fun ensued. The above image is something like 20-30 megapixels, or 4 full-resolution photographs stitched together into one.

I don’t normally shoot landscapes, but I felt like it was worth going out to try something different. Who knows, this might be the start of a cool series or something.

I’d love to go out and find more locations like these around LA – anyone got any ideas?

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July 14, 2009

Pocket-Camera Fun

Filed under: Uncategorized — joshuaps @ 4:51 am

I’ve been playing around with the iPhone’s little camera quite a bit lately, for when I see something cool and I haven’t got my big camera with me, or even when I’m just too lazy to pull the thing out of my bag. I’m really starting to like the idea that I can get a good photo pretty much anywhere I can see daylight, if I know where to look.

I didn’t think too highly of the camera on the iPhone at first because it was so slow and the colors always came out funny, but then I heard about an app called Camerabag which applies filters to the photos to simulate certain kinds of retro cameras. You shoot a photo through the app or through the normal camera app, then feed it into the app and choose a look based on a series of previews you get. My favorite is the Helga filter, which simulates a Holga toy camera by putting a vignette and desaturating the colors a little.

Those of you familiar with artsy-type photography will probably know about the Holga, the camera that’s so cheap and crappy, it’s good in an artsy kind of way. I have one, but don’t use it too much because film’s a pain to develop and digitize, and because it doesn’t do low-light well (the thing has an f/11 lens, which pretty much limits it to shooting at high noon unless you use grainy films or a tripod). Camerabag changes this – for the price of a roll of film for a Holga (let alone the cost of the camera), I’ve got a Holga in my pocket.

It’s not all good, though. The iPhone’s camera is ridiculously laggy – there’s about a 2-second delay between when you press the button to shoot and when the photo gets taken. Timing’s a little tricky. I get around this by anticipating, shooting things that don’t move, or just shooting a lot. The Camerabag app tends to crash a lot (on the first-gen iPhone) if you use it to take the photo – I always shoot with the “real” camera app to make sure that this doesn’t happen.

That said, for $3 more, can you REALLY complain?

July 2, 2009

Updates/Cool Things to Check Out

Filed under: updates — joshuaps @ 3:54 am

Some quick bites about what’s going on with me photographically:

1. In case you haven’t heard, I’m starting a Photo Q&A section for the blog. E-mail your photography-related questions to joshuaps (at) usc.edu, Facebook me or leave a comment on this post. The deadline is Sunday, July 5 for the first round, and the question will get answered by the next Sunday of the week.

2. I’ve broken ground on a documentary multimedia slideshow project (photos+audio) about an up-and-coming musician in LA. I’ll post updates as they come, but I’m pretty excited about the direction this is going in.

3. Some amazing videos:
http://www.mediathatmattersfest.org/watch/9/looking_back – amazing video documentary of a homeless veteran who brings his community together through photography

A man’s life in 42 seconds:

Last Day Dream [HD] from Chris Milk on Vimeo.

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