May 7, 2012

Super Moon

On May 5th, my son, and I went out to photograph the moon.

The moon's rotation brought it 14% closer to Earth than usual, and 30% brighter.

May 6th, we went out again to see the Super Moon, this time we drove up into the mountains.

The Super Moon in all its glory before the clouds rolled in.

Brightened up the whole sky.

Driving through Garden of the Gods before heading home. 

I hope everyone got to enjoy this years Flower Moon as much as we did. It was truly a stunning sight to behold. 

Don't forget to enter my giveaway posted below to win a 23 page, 6x6 book of New Zealand. 

May 1, 2012


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April 21, 2012

The Geisha of Kyoto

Currently, Kyoto is considered, by many, to be where the geisha tradition is strongest. The geisha in these districts are known as Geiko. (The Tokyo hanamachi of Shimbashi, Asakusa and Kagurazaka are also well known.) 

Geisha are often hired to attend parties and gatherings, traditionally at ochaya (お茶屋, "tea houses") or at traditional Japanese restaurants (ryōtei).

Being a Geisha was widely practiced throughout Japan's history. In the 1920's, there were around 80,000, beginning from when a child was around the age of 4. Nowadays, it is a rarity to see one, and most choose the lifestyle as adults. 

You will most likely need to be in the specific areas where it is still practiced in order to see them, their numbers ranging from around 1,000-2,000 total. 

Modern geishas still live in traditional geisha houses called "okiya" in areas called Hanamachi (花街 "flower towns"), particularly during their apprenticeship. Those studying to become full geishas are called Maiko. Many experienced geisha are successful enough to choose to live independently. The elegant, high-culture world that geisha are a part of is called karyūkai (花柳界 "the flower and willow world").

Geisha still study traditional instruments: the shamisenshakuhachi, and drums, as well as learning games, traditional songs, calligraphy, Japanese traditional dances, tea ceremony, literature, and poetry.

Opportunities for tourists to dress up as Geisha in traditional kimonos with painted faces is widely available and enjoyed for a small fee. 

March 22, 2012

The Growing Islands of Hawaii

The Hawaiian islands were formed from volcanic activity sourced at an undersea collection of magma called a hotspot. As the tectonic plate beneath the Pacific Ocean moves northwest, the hot spot remains where it is, slowly creating new volcanoes. Due to the land currently over the hotspot's location, the active volcanoes are located around the southern half of the Big Island.

Exposed Fault Lines:

 Scorched Land:

Volcanic rock formed from magma erupted from the nearby volcanos.


Steam erupting through the surface: 

 Lava in a crater:

 Adding to the coast line:

The island of Hawaii has grown at an average rate of about 0.02 km2/yr for the past 600 years.

March 18, 2012

Random Moments

One of the many perks with being a photographer... you get to capture other people's awkward moments. 

For instance... that awkward moment when you get attacked by a sea lion...

He even waved "goodbye" to the surfers about 30 mins later when he was done playing in the area.