Napa Valley Fields

    Photographing the Napa Valley Wineries

    Back on my trip to California I rented a Tesla Model S (from GetAround) for one of my best friends and we headed up to Napa Valley. I was surprised how fast the Tesla was along with us not needing to charge during the whole drive. My only complaint is that the car doesn’t have built in turn-by-turn directions (even though it has a massive 17 inch screen).

    By far the most beautiful winery I’ve been to was Opus One. With such a unique building and premium free glasses of wine it was hard to hate. Read More

    Places I Love in San Francisco: Eating, Drinking, Hiking & More

    After several trips to San Francisco I’ve gained a sense of the city and have accumulated some favorite spots. Often friends ask me what deserves their attention and what experiences make the trip worth taking. Here is a list of what I tell them, which are my personal favorites.

    Places to Eat in San Francisco

    Millionaire's bacon at sweet maple

    Millionaire’s bacon at sweet maple

    Sweet Maple (yelp) – This place has the best brunch I’ve ever eaten. Try the millionaire’s bacon and unlimited mimosas. Read More

    Sunrise at Slacker Hill Shop This Print

    Golden Gate Bridge Sunrise at Slacker Hill

    andy-taking-photos-at-slacker-hillTo achieve this shot we had to wake up at 4am and walk a mile uphill, but the results were worth it. Being on top of Slacker Hill as the sunrose was simply stunning. I was shocked how quickly the fog formed and changed. When we initially got to this spot we couldn’t even see the Golden Gate Bridge but after waiting 10 minutes it revealed itself. Read More

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    Beautiful Trip to Yosemite National Park [Photos]

    Our four hour drive to Yosemite National Park started out in San Francisco in a rented Kia from Enterprise (luckily my friend got us a discount). I was surprised to find that much of California’s inland was reminiscent of Maryland. The Grand Hill views and wind generators caught my eye along the way. Yosemite is about 1,000 square miles which surprised me since I thought it was just a small park.

    Yosemite Waterfall Viewing

    It was only $20 to enter with a car into Yosemite and you get free range over the entire park. Cruising down the roads leads to tons of areas to stop off which gave me plenty of photo opportunities. It was stunning to look around and see that you’re surrounded by mountains, many with waterfalls flowing off them. Read More

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    Sunset over California Farms

    While driving back from Yosemite in our rented Kia I witnessed an amazing sunset over huge fields in California. I’m not sure where exactly this was taken, but I knew we had to stop the car for this shot. The colors of the sky really popped and it was a fantastic way to finish off our last day in California.

    We ended up getting back in San Francisco around midnight so this was the last sunset we could see in this great state. The four hour drive to Yosemite from San Francisco is by all means worth it, so if you’re in the area rent a car and make the trip.

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    Long Exposure Sunset at Sutro Baths

    Foggy Tunnel at Sutro BathsOn the west side of San Francisco lies the Sutro Bath ruins, where this sunset was taken. This 80 second exposure captured the mist of the water traveling over the mossy rocks which looked kickass to me. Right next to this area was an interesting cave which I photographed my friend walking through on the right. There were a few holes in the cave so I could hear the echo of the waves throughout.

    We walked here from Lands End Trail which I highly recommend walking if you get the time. It took about an hour, but had fantastic views of cliffs and the Golden Gate Bridge.

    Golden Gate Bridge at Sunrise Shop This Print

    Golden Gate Bridge at Sunrise

    Starting my last day in San Francisco at 4am was a bit tiresome, but nabbed me some excellent shots. This was taken at Battery Spencer which we stopped at after traveling down from Slacker Hill. Immediately after taking this we headed to Yosemite which was a four hour drive away. My only regret is not walking down to the edge which can be seen in the bottom left of the photo. It’s amazing to see how much the environment changes with the fog constantly moving around.

    Golden Gate Bridge Tilt Shift

    Golden Gate Bridge Arch

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    Long Exposure at San Francisco’s Bay Bridge

    I took a similar photo to this one on my last trip to San Francisco but I wanted to capture the pillars rising out of the water for this one. My original long exposure shot from this location was black & white because I couldn’t get the colors right but now that I’ve figured out white balance this shot is in color.

    This was captured from my first day in the city where I walked ~27,000 steps all over the city. After walking up to higher pier numbers (This shot was taken around pier 14) I realized they are mostly tourist areas and got the hell out of there.

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    Huntington Beach Sunset

    I had a great time shooting the sunset at Huntington Beach, which is the homeland of surfing in the US. I happened to be in California on the only cloudy week, but the weather was still a nice change from the cold DC area. I’m actually heading back to California in May (2014), so I hope to capture more awesome sunsets like this one.

    Here’s a few more shots from my Instagram I took around Huntington Beach:

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    Cemetery Sunset in San Diego

    From my latest trip to California we headed down to San Diego for a day. We headed down to the New Point Loma Lighthouse for sunset which closes at 5pm, so we had to view the sunset at the Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery right next door. I’m surprised they close the lookout point before sunset, but the cemetery started filling up with cars and people as we watched the sun go down. There were some awesome view up here. Since it was so close to a military base I could see destroyers and submarines all over the place.

    While in San Diego I had some awesome BBQ from Bubba’s Smokehouse BBQ. If you’re ever in the area it’s worth stopping in for a bite.