Posts in Category: Personal

Maldives: A Honeymoon in Heaven – Along with Mrs. Photographer =)

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As you might have noticed. I’ve been MIA from the blog for over a month. The reason is that I’ve been busy getting married and enjoying my honeymoon =) I normally dont usually post personal pictures here or on my Flickr but I think this event calls for an exception because it will likely change my future and maybe even my photography.

So after a fun filled, but tiring 4 day long Indian wedding, we wanted to go to a relaxing place. After much research, we decided to go to the Coco Palm resort in Maldives and boy did we make the right choice. I had heard that Maldives is popularly known as ‘Heaven on Earth’ but honestly I hadnt expected anything like this. Never have I ever seen a place so clean, water so clear and calm, so many stars in the sky, nature at its finest. If I had one word to describe the place, it would be “Spectacular”.

Starting from the flight itself, we had saw a gorgeous rainbow and dolphins swimming in the ocean.

We had decided to stay in a over water villa. There are only a few places in the world that have these. Ours had an infinity pool overlooking the Indian ocean with thousands of fish and coral reefs underneath. The icing on the cake was that the villa had an outdoor bed and an outdoor shower!

 

 

Of course it being me, I forgot one of the most important things on the trip – A Tripod. So I spent half the time looking for a place to put the camera and the other half trying to get a decent composition. To make matters worse, the batteries in my remote went dead so focus became even more difficult while shooting wide apertures.
Because resorts are on a secluded island, they usually have programs like music, handicrafts and movies to keep the guests entertained – Not that they need it!
Did I mention how clear the water was?? I probably did but here are some pictures to prove it!
Our villa wasnt directly facing the sunset but we got a beautiful view by the stairs leading to the ocean. The picture below is exposure blended (Not HDR).
Coco Palm was nice enough to upgrade us to a honeymoon package even though we didnt mention it at the time of booking. Along with the package came a 5 course candle light dinner. Once again, I was missing my tripod so to compensate I had to crank up the ISO to 12,000! Nope, there is no way I’m using a flash at a candle light dinner! Fortunately, I had a 5D Mark II so the pictures below and some above are still usable.
Below is a close up of Mrs. Photographer and the first official picture of me taken by her. I guess she doesnt need much training to be a real ‘Mrs. Photographer’!

The Maldives is just a series of little island on the world map: around 1,200 islands, about 90 of which are occupied by resorts. The country’s main occupation is tourism. Maldives ranks among the greenest countries in the world and justifiably so because no other country faces a threat of extinction like Maldives. The highest point of land in the entire country is just over two metres! Every inch of rise in ocean water level brings the country closer to extinction. Being there, I learned the importance of saving the environment even more.

Ultimately, I’d strongly urge everyone to visit Maldives at least once in their lifetime. Its truly ‘Heaven on Earth’

A Tribute in Light – Dedicated to the heroes and victims of 9/11

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Higher then ever, the twin towers stood in the dark cloudy night. So bright, they can be seen from miles away.

For the past 10 years, the tribute in light has light up the manhattan skyline in remembrance of the almost 3000 people who died in 2001. I still remember the day. I was in India at that time, watching some soap opera with my parents and suddenly the programming was interrupted by a news broadcast just after the first plane hit the tower. I’ve seen footage of terrorists attacks before but never have I ever seen one happening live. The second plane collided on live TV and the towers fell, all while we were watching. I was speechless. I have tremendous respect for all the emergency responders that helped out that day.

The tribute in light was born 6 months after the attacks by the Municipal Art Society and been an annual event thus far. Many people take it for granted like the 4th of July fireworks that happen every year. However, the future of the Tribute is in question due to lack of funding.

The reason why it costs so much money is because this event is MUCH more difficult than it looks. First off, these “Two” lights are actually  comprised of over 85 lights. Each one of those bulbs is 7000 watts. To put it into perspective, most household bulbs are just 60 watts. Lighting this, then takes up tremendous amount of power! To add to that, getting the beams straight can be an extremely challenging task. Just 1 degree tilt in any one of those 85+ lights will mess up the entire look. For your contributions to keep this spectacular event going, please see the end of this post.

 

On the photography end, none of these pictures are HDRs. I was prepared for HDRs but I kinda liked them as is. I’m not entirely happy with the pictures because mother nature decided to play her cards again and covered the entire sky with thick coulds. As such, the lights couldn’t penetrate the sky like they normally do.

Contrary to popular belief, the lights arent exactly at the WTC location. They are a block away. The WTC site is currently being remodeled and when finished, it will have 3 buildings including the freedom tower which will be the tallest building in Manhattan and the memorial which is set in the footprints of the original twin towers. It features two 50ft-deep pools, each containing fountains, along with a museum with exhibitions and artefacts to teach visitors about the events of September 11. The pools have the victims’ names etched around its perimeter.

Below are some pictures of the freedom tower and another tower at the WTC location

 

Of course, this being this is BIG event for photographers, I went to a park in Brooklyn to take some pictures and unsurprisingly, there already was a big line of photographers there. But everyone was accommodating to each other.

 

 

Help everyone “never forget” the heroes and victims of 9/11 by keeping this event alive. Please visit http://mas.org/programs/tributeinlight/ for information on how to contribute.

Source for some information: http://www.dailymail.co.uk

The Colors Of Summer! – Nature Photography

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And just like that, Labor day is over. Summer has ended and like all good things in life, it feels too short.

Like most people, summer is my favorite season in America. After months of gloomy winter, summer brings a breath of fresh air. Its also the peak time for my photography! Be it portraits/fashion or just personal stuff like what you see below. If fashion/portraits are my business, nature/abstract are purely experimental for myself. Its what I do to entertain and de-stress myself.

Every summer, I try to take some pictures of flowers in hopes of perfecting macro photography but somehow, I’m still not there yet. Below are a few from this year.

Please note that most of the pictures below are available for licensing and prints. Please contact me for rates.

My cousin has some peacock feathers at her place. She wanted some pictures of it to frame in her house. Of course I went crazy and took like 30 pictures lol. Few things in life are as colorful as a peacock feather. Its nature’s artistry at its finest

 

 

One evening, I was doing my usual browsing of facebook when I came across Amy Krause’s pictures from a sunflower farm. Now, I’ve been looking for flower fields in general in NJ but I’ve had little luck with it. Amy was kind enough to tell me the location of the farms so I decided to go check them out the following weekend! (Its brodhecker farms, in case you were wondering)

I contacted a friend of mine, Maria to see if she would like to accompany me. She did. So we met up at a place and set off on the hunt for the flowers. It was a LONG two hour drive and to our disappointment, when we actually got there, it was cloudy and gloomy. But the field was absolutely gorgeous!

Here is Maria, hard at work!

And here is her looking beautiful :-)

I think it was around this picture that I got stung by a bee. I think it was totally worth it for the pics!

Soon after we got there, it started raining but no rain was gonna stop our photography session! We didnt drive 2 hours only to turn and go back so we continued with an umbrella! You can see rain drops in the picture below.

Below is me testing a $15 ebay video LED light I just purchased. I might do a review on it in the upcoming months.

A Jungle within a Jungle

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What comes to your mind when you think of New York City? Tall buildings, crowded streets, the subway maybe? Its amazing that places like the central park and bronx zoo can still exist in the city given the demand for property. I’ve been in the states for about 7 years now and I still havent seen many parts of NYC so for the next couple of years, I’m on a mission to explore NYC. If you know any cool spots for pictures, please do let me know.

Memorial day weekend, I was visting my cousins and I suggested we go to the bronx since my niece and nephew (Both under 10) had never been to bronx zoo either. Visting the zoo has a different meaning to me. I dont have the patience and gear for real wild-life photography so the zoo gives me a chance to shoot wild animals in a quick and a safe way! 😉

Bronx zoo however is HUGE! I spent good 4-5 hours there and was still only able to see about half of the zoo. Below are some of the exhibits I was able to see. If you know the names of these first few birds and animals, please let me know in the comments below because I forgot to note the names :-)

Your comments keep me motivated. Please do leave me your feedback. Which one is your favorite? Which one did you like least?

All these pictures are available for licensing. Please contact me if you’re interested. I know there are huge copyright marks on the pics but please do not use these pictures without permission :-)

 

 

I got pretty lucky with these cubs sitting so close to the fence. I love Tigers. They are such amazing animals. Its sad that there only about 5000 of them left in the wild. I’ve been fortunate enough to not only see them but even touch them. The next generation may not be that lucky. I could have spent hours taking pictures of these cubs but unfortunately it was extremely crowded and I had to move on….

 

Overall, I think it was definitely worth the drive and the time. Bronx zoo definitely calls for a second trip next summer to see the leopards, owls and the rest of the animals I missed.

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