Mr. and Mrs. Harvey – more in love than ever

Several years ago I had the opportunity to photograph a high profile wedding at the Four Seasons in Wailea. The client was Steve Harvey a well known comedian.  It was a small intimate wedding and very tasteful.  While this was the first time I met Mr. and Mrs, it was clear that they were very much in love, and it was a pleasure creating portraits of this couple.

Recently the producers of Steve’s popular talk show requested rights to use a few wedding images for an upcoming show.   It is so nice to have clients that are still very much in love and that also respect their photographer. I am truly blessed.

Looking back over my wedding years, it  is interesting that within two years of the Harvey wedding  two other comedians hired me.  First, was Carlos Mencia,  then Rich Little.  Lots of fun memories!

For all those that are in love  –  celebrate what you have!   For those still single know there is a special person waiting for you.

With Love!


love is what we've got

love is what we’ve got

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Sept 4-14th, 2015 the adventure of a lifetime

Whale in Paradise

I have just secured Wildlife a 53 foot sailing cat for a 10 day liveaboard adventure in Ha’apai Tonga for Sept 4-14, 2015.   I have two people going already, and am looking for 2 more people to join us.  we will sail amongst a myriad of tropical islands looking for whales that exhibit behavior conducive to extended mutual interaction.  In addition were looking for heat runs, teenage whales playing, and logging.   The boat is a great platform for topside shooting, and the boat has easy access in and out of the water.   All meals are provided and are of a wholesome nature featuring organic fruits and vegetables, local fish and homemade desserts.  The fun starts early in the morning and continues until the sunsets.

This will be the 11th season I have organized tours to Tonga. Take advantage of my experience as I have learned who the best captains, whale swim guides, and boats are, when the best time to go is, and where to go.  I have gained insight into how whales react to people and how best to be with them as to not make them nervous but rather comfortable with our presence. The captain and crew have decades of experience working with whales and are not only professional but also a lot of fun.

I will provide help in setting up cameras, exposures, putting people in the right location at the right moment, and am happy to critique images on a daily basis.


The cost is $6,995 per person based on double occupancy.  These adventures tend to sell out fast, especially when on liveaboards.  What makes this extra special is that there will be only four guests.  When it comes to whales the fewer the people the more fun there is for everyone including the whales.

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Facing Forward

Fish facing the current to feed

Fish facing the current to feed

Color is what I love about diving in Fiji.  Especially in an area called the Bligh Water, named after the famous Captain himself.   When the current is pumping the Anthias fish come out and posture in the current to feed. If you want to dive the bligh water you can do it from two the famous Naia or the 5 -star Fiji Siren.  If you prefer a land based resort style adventure check the Volivoli resort in Rakiraki.


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Top of the Reef

top of the                                                                                    Top of the Reef

This photograph was created at Sugar Beach in Maui, earlier this year. I wanted to capture the top of an exposed reef at low tide.   So, I got as low as I could go and used a 85 mm portrait lens on a Nikon D300 body which has a 1.5 crop factor making the lens really 120 mm. I focused on the top of the reef and used a very long shutter to allow the tiny bit of water to smooth out and become a bit misty.

I love photography and enjoy trying new things, getting out of my comfort zone, and reinventing myself. While getting all sandy was not fun, exercising my creativity was.

Happy imaging everyone!





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Tonga Calling

Hard to believe I have organized trips to Tonga each year since 2006.  My next adventure starts tomorrow.  This year I’ve organized two back to back trips  that will take place on Wildlife a 53 foot sailing catamaran in the Ha’apai island group of Tonga.

I used to go to the Vavau’ island group and sadly I will miss all the friends I have made their over the years.  I have great memories of spending weeks on the boat with Captain Ongo, the queen of the sea Captain Aunofo,  and talking story with Darren Jew and Scott Petroli.  There are so many really good people in Vavau. HOwever a few years back I decided to go to TOnga middle island group, known as Ha’apai.

The reason is simple, there are less people. It’s not that I am anti-social, but rather when it comes to observing and interacting with whales, the fewer the people, the better the chances are of having of extended interactions with the whales.

The last several seasons I have worked with Dave and Tristin Sheen.  These two have a lot of experience, know what photography groups expect, have a great understanding of whale behavior and have great local knowledge.

whale 5

My good friend Mark Strickland is joining the charter starting Sept 12th.  This will be his 4th whale trip with me and good things happen whenever he is on the boat.   For those that might not know, Mark is considered to be among the top marine photographers in the world. Even more impressive he is a great guy and a friend for over 20 years.

Flying Whale

Even though I have 3 weeks on the water, I know the time will pass quickly and I will have to wait another year to swim with these magnificent gentle giants.  The good news is that I am returning in 2015 for two more back to back adventures.


The first is full.  The second has space open so if interested send me an email and I will forward the details.   The dates are Sept 4-14th, 2015.

See you there!





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Photography Workshop dedicated to using Neutral Denisty Filters

Yesterday I had the pleasure of coaching Carol and Sigal.  We began working in a stream using rocks as compositional elements and neutral density filters so we could manage the light coming in to the camera as to slow the shutter.  By doing this we could make at exposures at F-22 and 2-3 seconds.

Using motion in a composition

Using motion in a composition

As you can see the water is swirling and their is a milky appearance on the surface. This ads interest, emotion, and animation. The repetition of the rocks as well as their forms create  lines that draw the viewers eye through the scene.

Happy imaging everyone!


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Thinking of Fiji

Great diving, wonderful people, incredible food.

Great diving, wonderful people, incredible food.

Fiji is the place for great diving.  I recently had the pleasure of diving with RA Divers part of the Volivoli resort and had a great time. As I am packing for an upcoming trip to Tonga, I cant help but remember how wonderful the diving in Fiji is.  I came to the conclusion that I have to go back.  Not sure when, but am considering adding a week in Fiji to complement next years Tonga whale trip.  How awesome would that be a week of great diving, then 20 days of whale swimming.

In a way thinking about the next adventure is a way to enjoy it now.

Take care everyone!




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Maui Sunset on the South Shore

Using slow shutter speeds enables the power of the oceans motion to enhance composition and overall emotion. This was created with a Nikon D300 12-24  mm lens. ISO 200 F22 1/8 second.

This image is all about the place where water meets the shore, so I did not include a lot of sky. I used the rocks as foreground subject and love how the seaweed has a muted purple hue.   The slow shutter speed enabled the waves to smooth out and become a bit misty.

The great thing about photography is that it gives each person a chance to express what they see and feel. This creativity is unique to each individual.   I venture to say I could line up 30 photographers right next to me and each photograph made would be different.

Some would have used a fast shutter to catch the droplets of water created by the waves hitting the rocks.  Others would have gone with a wider angle and included more sky or used a tighter focal length focused on just one area of rocks.

Indeed – there is no right way. There is only you.   I love photography!



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Last minute cancelation on whale trip Sept 2-12th, 2014. Huge savings!

incredible encounter with baby Humpback Whale

incredible encounter with baby Humpback Whale

Aloha everyone!

One of my clients just let me know he has a really bad ear infection and most likely wont be able to go on the whale trip.  We are both bummed but realize it is what it is and taking a chance on ones health is not a good idea.   So, it looks like there is one space open.  With only a few weeks to go, the space is discounted. This is a great chance for someone that has wanted to go but cant afford the $6,995 price.  The adjusted price is $4,750 that’s a savings of $2,245.00

The accommodations are at the Sandy Beach Hotel in Ha’apai Tonga.  The boat is a 53 foot sailing cat. It includes 9 days on the water, and accommodations.   Breakfast and dinner are not included.  Lunch on the boat is.

If interested please contact me ASAP.  If your not interested but know someone who might be please share this post.


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Incoming Storm

Waves crashing along the shore

Waves crashing along the shore

Last week Maui, was threatened by two hurricanes.  As it turned out we had rain, wind, and turbulent seas but never experienced the full wrath of the storms.

The day we we were supposed to get hit by the first storm, I had a workshop with Simon Tucker.  We had hoped the sunrise along the eastern side of the island would have some color and lots of swirling clouds.  Well, we did not have that kind of sunrise but we did have a great time creating photographs of waves crashing along the rocky coast of Kaenea.

We did experience periods of rain but we used that time to drive to a variety of locations and were quite lucky to be able to spend some time creating images in Kaenea, the bamboo forest, a waterfall, tropical forest, and scenic beach.

Simon had passion, motiviation, and a desire to improve.  At each location I was able to watch him work, view his images, and help him tweak his exposures and compositions.  I suggested making some small changes in camera position in order to make more powerful compositions.  The look on his face in addition to his smile let me know that he forgive the phrase “saw the light”.

By the end of our 7 hour day together he had fun, learned a few things, and best of all had a lot of really nice images to go home with and make a picture book of his trip.

Providing some objective critique to Simons work enabled him to see things in a new way.   It’s workshops like this that make what I do so worthwhile.  It makes me think of the old saying you can give a man a fish, or teach him how to fish…….

Happy imaging everyone!

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