The Thomas Fire of 2017 in Southern California was the worst fire the state had experienced in modern history. I was hired by the National Guard to document their efforts in fighting this blaze. These brave firefighters risked their lives to protect the people of LA.
It’s the biggest moment in your life. It’s the grandest event of the century! Weddings bring together friends and family from far corners of the country. I like the excitement of the day, range of emotions, and party atmosphere. As a photographer, it’s a an honor to be part of something bigger than yourself.
I’ve been to a ton of weddings in my lifetime. Here are a few tips I learned along the way:
First and foremost, make an effort to make everyone feel comfortable. If the couple or guests feel uncomfortable, it will reflect in the photos. Maintain distance, but remain part of the group.
It's important to get casual, relaxed shots, as well as posed and group shots. I usually start 2 hours before the ceremony. I meet with the bride and take photos of her getting ready. It's a good time to take pictures of the dress, shoes, and flowers. An hour before the ceremony, I meet with the groom and see what he's up to and who he's hanging out with.
Don't be afraid to get creative. Experiment, explore and have fun!
Machu Picchu is a magical place. And it’s quite expensive as well. From the town of Cusco it’s a $70 train ride to the mountain of Machu Picchu. I opted to forgo the train and try to find the legendary site myself. The word on the street was that it took 3 hours to hike into Picchu.
The street could not have been more wrong...
I started out on the train tracks near the outskirts of Ollantaytumbo. Dodging the local police, I made a run for the tracks and after a few minutes I found myself amidst a roaring river, misty mountains and an endless train track. With me I had my tripod, 3 cameras, snacks and some agua. The first few hours were quite peaceful. I couldn’t complain about the scenery and the weather was perfect. A few clouds lingered up high in the mountains and the sun popped out to say hey once in a while. Occasionally I’d come across a farm complete with crops and llamas.
After an hour of walking in the dark I came upon a burning light in the void. Upon closer inspection, I found a man shuffling about. The light illuminated a small snack shop selling soda, water and energy bars. I asked the man, ¨Cuantos mas kilometros para Machu Picchu?” He furrowed his brow and told me it was another 10-hour walk to get there. I was floored! After walking for 6 hours, the prospect of hiking through the cold, wet night was crazy.
The next 10 hours of hiking was scenic and exhausting. I thought I would never make it there. My boots that I had repaired back in Ica began to fall apart again.