Newport Beach, CA – Sunset

Balboa Sunset SW+Talke
We have been enjoying Friday nights at Balboa (Newport Beach)…we head down and rent bikes to ride along the beach paths and last nite we took the 1 mile ride to the Wedge to watch the surfers. We wanted to get back to the pier for sunset….as we were peddling back I saw the sun fading fast and pulled my bike over to grab this photo near the pier. SoCal at its best!!

Newport Beach, CA – Balboa Pier (HDR)

balboa pier_talke
Life is a beach! Balboa Island is a great place to relax and forget the hustle and bustle of the world…sit on the cool sand, listen to the waves crashing the shoreline and catch a beautiful sunset! I’ll be here Friday nite…a nice way to start a weekend!

Newport Beach, CA – Balboa Fun Zone (HDR)


This past Saturday was the Scott Kelby Worldwide Photowalk. I attended the walk in Newport Beach, CA at the Balboa Fun Zone. We had a great turnout. About 25 people…roughly. I wanted to HDR..and broke off from the group to see what I could find. I met Frank standing next to me during the beginning speech and he joined me for some HDR’ing. We wanted to see what HDR’s we could find at the Fun Zone. We walked up and down the streets…unfortunately, not a Fun Zone for HDR. I wanted to try an arcade in HDR. We walked into one and thought…Skee Ball in HDR…why not?? Might be cool?

Afterwards we hit the beach to take pics of the pier. Look for a shot from here soon! I enjoyed my night and snagged a couple nice shots. Frank, nice to meet you and hope you got a few shots as well! I might lead a walk next year. I have plan and if I can get it together…let ya know next late summer! How was your photo walk..if you attended?? Where did you shoot? Hope you had a great time!

Peter Talke Photography Settings:
Camera: Nikon D300
Lens: Nikon 12-24 f/4
Setting: Aperture Mode
Focal Length: 16.0 mm
ISO: 200
Exposure: HDR 7 Exposures (+3 to -3)
Aperture: f/10
Gear: Tripod
Post Process: Adobe CS6, HDR Efex Pro 2, OnOne Software Photo Tools 2.6

Newport Beach, CA – Pier (HDR)


We are planning to move from Austin soon. Our destination….Orange County, CA. I had lived there for a few years and it will be great to be back! Places like Newport Beach will be in my backyard. I’m excited about my future photographs. I will plan to master long exposure at the beaches. Portraits at the beaches. Texas will be missed. Bring on the In-N-Out burgers!!

Talke Photography Settings

Lens: Nikon 12-24 f/4.0
Setting: Aperture Mode
Focal Length: 19.0 mm
ISO: 200
Exposure: HDR 5 Exposures (+2 to -2)
Aperture: f/4
Gear: Tripod
Post Process: Adobe CS5, HDR Efex Pro, Color Efex Pro, OnOne Software Photo Tools 2.6

Newport Beach, CA – Pier

Newport Pier HDR

NIKON D300, Nikon 12-24, HDR in Photomatix

Here is version two of the Newport Beach Pier in HDR.  This version is looking back at the beach away from the ocean.

Here is some info from the web: Newport Pier is one of several prominent piers in Newport Beach. From this wooden structure you can look south to see the Balboa Pier, the second major pier in the OC city. Newport Pier, historically known as McFadden’s Wharf, is where the Dory Fishermen dock their dory boats and bring in their catch of the day, selling them to the public.

The Newport Pier is ideal for strolling and features a lifeguard station at its base, several rows of shops and restaurants, several hotels, lots of beach rental houses, a bicycle path, public restrooms, a ready teller machine, and a huge parking lot where you put coins in the individual pay meters and pay to park. The pier overlooks a beautiful sand beach and series of jetties  where tourists like to climb the rocks, and surfers head out to catch waves. On the pier is a sushi and fish restaurant with two floors for dining. The upper deck views offer splendid ocean dining.

When visiting Newport Beach’s peninsula that travels along Newport Boulevard, make this pier your first stop. You can grab a bit at Charlie’s Chili, Sharkeez, Il Gelato, Il Farnio other options. Then go for a relaxing stroll on the Newport Pier where dolphins and occasionally whales are observed.

This shot was taken on a tripod, cable release with 5 exposures post processed in Photomatix.  Enjoy!

Newport Beach, Cailfornia – Lifeguard Station (HDR)

Newport Beach, CA - Lifeguard (HDR)

NIKON D300, Nikon 18-200 VR, HDR in Photomatix

Here is one of the most interesting HDR’s I have ever done.  I was not sure how the outcome would look…and it came out pretty cool??  When I was taking shots of the Newport Beach Pier this one morning, I looked over my left side and in the distance I could see these Lifeguard Stations sitting in the sand and the surrounding air was very hazy.  It was a eye catching scene…I did  a double take.  I took a break and walked close to this station.  I am not sure what to call this early morning haze…was it haze, smog, marine layer?  Not sure?  Maybe CA beach goers have a name for it? 

So to the photo…this is an HDR shot in the beach haze.  The shot above after tone mapping in Photomatix, has basically no post processing in Photoshop.  I touched up the levels a bit, thats all!  It looks like a black and white…but you can tell some of the garbage on the beach is in color.  The sky with the rays of sun in the haze are quite interesting!  You can get a feel of the haze in the background by the Palm Trees.  Not sure what to make of this picture…different indeed!   Hope your day is not as hazy!!

Newport Beach, California – Pier (HDR)

Newport Pier HDR

NIKON D300, Nikon 12-24, HDR in Photomatix

We used to live in Orange County, CA a few years back.  This was before I became serious about my photography.  Now when we travel back to visit family…it makes me think how we took this area for granted.  Truthfully, any area you live, you probably take for granted.  Look around and I bet there are tons of photo opportunities!!!   But back to SoCal (Southern California)…I do miss this place…it was my favorite place to live and we are trying to get back in a few years.  I moved for job reasons and hope to do the same this time around!

Now when we get back once or twice a year, I always make sure to get a few photographs.  I plan ahead and target the shots I want.  Kinda what I do for every trip.  As I noted in previous posts, I make a list of shots and try to get to all of them….of course my lists are realistic as I dont have tons of time and try to at least get to my top 3!  …and shoot the heck out of each location!  Ya never know if a better angle will give a nicer feel to the picture?  So always experiment.

I really love the beaches of SoCal!   The water is cold, but the scenery is amazing!   I’ll post more details on Newport later this week with another photo.  But this Saturday morning I woke up early and hit the beach around 6:45 AM.  Even at this hour this one market was crowded and as I walked onto the beach next to this pier…I’d say at least 3o surfers were already out trying to catch a wave!   Amazing!!!   As soon I saw all the surfers I had wished for that new Nikon 70-200 VRII lens to arrive!  I’d really enjoy a day shooting surfers!   Look for it next year…hopefully!!

So my main target this day was the pier.  I parked near and walked up to it.  It is quite beautiful when the sunrise was hitting the wood!  You can tell by the picture above!  I tried shooting many angles.  But since my first pier shot a few months ago in Myrtle Beach…the best shots are from in the water.  My poor tripod again was about a foot deep in the Pacific Ocean and was key to this HDR!  I know the time is limited on my tripod joints as the seawater will take its toll soon.   I should for the next pier shots wrap each tripod leg in a garbage bag and rubberband it tight.  It will save me form getting a new tripod again soon.  That is my tip of the day!

I really like the HDR effect on these “under” the pier shots.   I will keep looking for piers anytime I am near a beach!  So this shot was on a tripod, cable release and 5 exposures…post processed in Photomatix with some touchup in Photshop.   I basically always us a cable release even during the day…keeps the photos sharp!   Enjoy!  Life is a Beach!