Archive for October, 2010

Stairway to Heaven – Midnight Run

by on Oct.24, 2010, under Photography

Last night a group of us decided to hike the Stairway to Heaven by the moonlight.   It was a new moon so there was plenty of light.  At the top we setup our headlamps and played around for a bit… Here are some of those pictures.

stairway to heaven

stairway to heaven

stairway to heaven

stairway to heaven

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Got some new clothes for Miu

by on Oct.16, 2010, under Dollfie, Photography

Back at the start of the month I ordered some new outfits for Miu.  I’m so used to things shipping and arriving quickly that I forgot these were even in the post.  After finishing a volunteer shift at the Special Olympics fund raiser “Over the Edge”, I stopped by the post office to pick them up.

I’m looking at the possibility of taking Miu out this weekend for another shoot… We will just have to see what sort of free time I end up having.

Miu's new clothes.

Neko Mimi AKA cat ears are totally awesome... they add such a high level of "moe" to any outfit.

Miu's new clothes.

This top looks great on Miu, I liked how it helped cover the shoulder joints. She is also wearing shorts... no pictures of those though. 😛

Miu's new clothes.

This outfit is almost complete! She just doesn't have any shoes that match it...

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First couples shoot

by on Oct.09, 2010, under Photography

Today I was given the chance to do a couples shoot with two people from my place of work.  Being my first time doing a shoot like this I was quite a bit nervous… I wasn’t sure how to direct them or how to convey what I wanted them to do.  I started the shoot using my 70-200mm lens because I want to let them act more naturally around each other while I stayed far away… but the sun was high and creating harsh shadows on their faces.  I had brought along a reflector but without an assistant I couldn’t properly wield it and the camera… I need to bring someone along next time for sure!

I switched over to the 50mm prime to force myself to move around more to and to think more about what I was framing… While I was using this lens I think I got most of the shots I liked from this shoot.  This was also when I got them doing the most fun stuff, playing with each other or going down near the water.

I finished it off using the 24-70mm at the second location.  I really wanted to try a third location but after getting them in the water their clothes were soaked and I didn’t want to drag them around in sopping wet clothing… Besides it would have just looked bad.

All in all it was a great shoot.  I had some doubts beforehand that I could even do it at all but I think it turned out great.  I have a long ways to go and I really must cut down the number of pictures taken.  Spay n’ Pray is not an efficient method by any means.  I hope I’m given more opportunities to shoot like this in the future.  Until then though… I’ll keep on practicing!

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So what is the purpose of this blog and who are you?

by on Oct.07, 2010, under Random thoughts

You may be asking yourself why I’ve gone and setup a blog.  I’ve already got accounts on multiple websites where I can pretty much post whatever I want.  Those other sites already get plenty of traffic, I’m not intending to advertise this blog nor do I really care if other people see it.  I’m not looking to have a bunch of people read what I have to say, I don’t have anything important to say either.

What I want to get out of this is to have a place to talk more freely  about whatever I feel like. I’m planning to post pretty much whatever I like.  Obviously there will be posts about the figures I collect (like the large one to the left), random photo shoots that I will do, video blogs playing with my video cameras, and then just random thoughts.

I guess maybe I should share a little about myself then for anyone that does stumble upon this blog?  My name is Joshua, at the time of this post I live in Hawaii on the island of Oahu.  My two biggest hobbies right now are photography and collecting figures.

I’m a Canon shooter, the two bodies I own now are a Canon EOS 50D and a Canon EOS 7D.  Both very lovely cameras.  I shoot mostly with either the Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM or the Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L USM.  I’ve been a casual shooter for years but it wasn’t until after a deployment in 2008 that I decided I should get serious and bought the big guns.  I wouldn’t say that I have any talent for it.  Anyone can take great pictures, but it takes a pro to consistently take them.  Maybe with practice I’ll reach that level?

I’m a huge nerd for Japanese figures. In Japan I would be called an Otaku.  I collect figures from my favorite anime series, I have a large collection of manga (Japanese comic books), and I have pictures of anime girls hanging on my walls.  In the past I had wall-scrolls adorning my walls and even one on the ceiling.  They are still hanging out in my closet and some day I may put them back up.

Back to the figures, I’ve been collecting figures for almost six years.  I only collect female figures, I have no interest in mecha or male figures.  I usually only collect one figure of the girls I like from shows I’ve seen.  There are a few exceptions.  I have two Mugi and Azusa (Both beach girls and Alter edition) from K-On!, Asuka from Neon Genesis Evangelion.  When I saw a new version of her wearing the plug suit from Evangelion 2.22 I just had to get it.  There really isn’t any resale value in any of these figures, I don’t view them as a “beanie baby investment.”  They are just something I feel like buying on a whim, and since I’m single… I do just that.

But really my biggest weakness as of late has to be something called a Dollfie Dream, made by Volks inc.  Pictured left is my own Dollfie named Amaha Miu, she is an image series character based off of a girl from the eroge Mashiro iro Symphony.  She is done in 1/3 scale so that makes her a whopping 22″ tall!  Considering most of my other figures are a mere 8″ that makes her a giant.  She is also a ball jointed doll. It means she is completely poseable.  Outside of just being fun to own, and yes even dress up, she is a great test subject.

By test subject I mean I use her to practice what I would do for photographing people, without having to hire a real person.  I have literally spent hours with her just trying different lighting setups or posing her different ways just to see what works.  She is not a perfect model, her body has an unrealistic figure.  Although her joints are articulated she still has a limited range of motion.  But when you are socially awkward like I am this is the next best thing to hiring a model.  In a few years after I’ve had lots of practice I take the leap to using real human models.

I’m not just 100% geek I also get outdoors, I love riding my motorcycle.  I’ve been riding for a few years now.  There is nothing quite like riding at high speeds without the protection that a car offers you.

A few years ago I decided to really start living life, the motorcycle was part of that.  I also took on some other challenges… I went sky diving for my birthday, started hiking a lot more, and while it is a slow work in progress… I’ve begun rock climbing again.  Both at a gym and on a real rock face.  I’m working on getting my physical location to being somewhere that has four seasons and real mountains.  Until that day comes I’ll just keep doing what I can with what is around me.

I’m not a professional videographer, I never plan on being one either.  I am just a gear-heard so when I see new electronics there is a good chance I’ll grab whatever I happen upon.  The above video is from GoProHD, just a spur of the moment purchase to kill time with.

It’s late now and I still have other work to get done tonight.  More posts to come…

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Greetings and salutations!

by on Oct.07, 2010, under Random thoughts

This is my first blog post, I wont have time till this weekend to post some real content though.

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