More amazing sunsets

The colors weren't as spectacular, but still some amazing eye candy

Last we met, I was telling you about the incredible November sunsets, a unique phenomenon that finds richer, consistent colors this time of the year, thanks to the position of the winter sun.

And once you create magic, you want to rush out and create some more, right? Well, sadly, this week wasn’t as incredible. I got some great color, but missed the extra sauce that makes for a killer sunset—lots of clouds.

However, I did find some winners. And it’s not like I want my money back. Watching a great sunset is one of life’s best, free pastimes. Face it—how many things could compare to the great light show in the sky?

Take a look at this week’s offerings and let me know what you think. Every one of my shots (except for one) was taken on the new iPhone, the 12 Pro Max (more on that below.)

Let’s start with the Pierhenge. That’s the twice a year phenomenon in Manhattan Beach when the sun sets directly in-between the pillars of the stately Pier. That’s what you see above. And here’s another take as well.

The Pierhenge attracts quite the crowd. Above is a great shot of the action, by Ruth Stroud.

Next we move to Redondo Beach, for a traditional sunset off her Pier. I needed to take it in this specific direction to pick up some of the clouds over Palos Verdes.

To pull even more of the clouds, I went for an iPhone panoramic shot, post sunset, about 10 minutes after. That’s when the colors really start to shine.

And now we’re in Hermosa Beach, where I went under the Pier for a different kind of experience than we get in Manhattan Beach, as there is a giant pole dead center. Luckily, I picked up some cool color to accentuate it.

Still in Hermosa, we can thank the flying seagull for adding a lot to this image. Would it strike you in the same way without the in flight bird?

And finally, Hermosa also has a very special pier, immortalized by Hollywood in “La La Land,” when Ryan Gosling sang “City of Stars,” one starry night and did a little dance too.

So I love the Hermosa Pier on its own. But when someone is in the water paddling (or flying over) it really brings your eye to the subject and makes the shot come alive.

Could you imagine this same shot, 15 minutes earlier, before sunset, without the paddler as a silhouette? It just wouldn’t have been the same.

We have about two weeks worth of November sunsets left and I can’t wait to get out there and see what other colors are awaiting us. Will you join me out there?

The week that was

When not capturing the sunsets, this week I was writing about new Apple products, most specifically, that monster of a new iPhone, the 12 Pro Max.

I’m enthralled with the biggest ever and most expensive iPhone in the roster. The Max has an advanced camera unlike any seen in other iPhones, so naturally, I wanted to take it out of a shootout.

Please click to watch my review (which I did with the great Sean Fujiwara in San Pedro, Hermosa and Manhattan Beach) and you can read my detailed USA TODAY review here:

With 7 iPhones for sale, it can be awfully confusing deciding which one to buy. Hopefully my guide can help.

Lastly, there’s a new grinch for the year, and thy name is Google Photos. The app, which I’ve been recommending for 5 years, is no longer on the list. What was once free, unlimited storage for all ends in June, when Google will start charging a minimum of $1.99 for the service. The reality is, most people will probably have to pay at least $9.99 monthly.

Alternatives you ask? I have a few ideas. Cheat sheet: if you’re a Prime member, Amazon is your go-to, as it has free, unlimited photo storage for Prime members. But for how long? Will Amazon pull the rug out on us too one day? For paying folks, the best deal is SmugMug or Flickr, hands down, which has a great deal for switchers.

Tweets of the week

I love getting up really early, as you all know, and posting photos and videos from the morning Photowalks. Some highlights from this week:

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