Juan Pons knows all about the best spots for photography in Yellowstone National Park. Scott Bourne can tell you about a place in New Mexico with such an incredible showing of birds, “even Stevie Wonder could take amazing bird photos there.” Chris Smith insists on starting a Chicago photowalk at Millennium Park to get the best skyline shot of the Windy City and then some.
This, in a nutshell, is what my new website, http://thebestphotowalk.com is all about. It takes the basic idea of my travel photography series, (Photowalks with Jefferson Graham—free on Tubi!) and expands it to many places where I’ve yet to go, reaching out direct to the experts, locals and enthusiasts who know their area better than anyone.
The suggestion for the site came from my longtime friend Christopher Michel, the great San Francisco photographer, who thought there should be a place we could all go to find the best photo spots before we arrive.
So over the past few weeks, I interviewed photographers in Indianapolis, New York, Chicago, Maine, Florida, Hawaii, Atlanta and other areas as I attempted to map out a national view for the best photowalk in your area.
Getting to all 50 states will take some time! For now, I have 30 posts up, and look to add more over the coming months. Many of the posts have text, maps, photos, video and audio interviews.
In the can, awaiting editing and coming soon: Sacramento with Frederick Van Johnson, Atlanta with Ellis Vener, Santa Fe with Rick Sammon, Morro Bay with Ginger DiNunzio and Acadia National Park with Pons.
The fun of these posts is talking to great photographers about their areas of expertise, and getting so excited about the conversation that one wants to jump in the car as soon as possible, cameras packed, to go out exploring.
Next stop: Santa Fe!
Photographers outside California—I want to interview you! So please get in touch!
If you prefer to just watch or listen to the conversations, you can check out the YouTube playlist I put together of our chats: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLNqFHToBXRfeqwcvriHODvpEYDl0XsiFy
Or you could just listen the podcasts, via Spotify, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen to podcasts:
Live Photowalk 4/3
Next Saturday, 4/3, I’ll be leading a free, socially distant, mask-wearing meetup for a Manhattan Beach Pier Photowalk. All levels are welcome and if you’ve ever had questions about how to up your game, I may know a few folks who could help out.
Overall, the goal is just to have fun, get some great shots, and hopefully go out for some morning breakfast afterwards.
You can sign up here, or just show up. We meet at 6:30, in order to catch the 6:40 a.m. sunrise.
More details in the DigMB calendar listing.
Speaking of Photowalking
The fine folks at KVEC in San Luis Obispo had yours truly and Morro Bay photographer Charlotte “Ginger” DiNunzio on the other morning to chat about the joys of photographing the Central California Coast. It’s a fun listen.
Tech News Recap
Tech CEOs. The heads of Google, Facebook and Twitter testified again to Congress in a mis-information hearing. Guess what? They all said they were doing a great job but could do better.
One Plus: The latest Android rival to the iPhone was released this week with a slew of features the iPhone doesn’t have, most notably a faster refresh rate, which means the video loads faster. Or in other words, nothing the average consumer would be excited about.
Many critics enthused, even though the sticker price is really high. If you’re gonna go off brand, the expectation is that you should be able to pay way less, not $729 for the smaller edition or $969 for the bigger phone. The iPhone 12, after all, starts at $799.
Discord: Speaking of sticker shock, Microsoft is looking at forking over $10 billion to buy the popular Discord chat app, popular with gamers. What’s so great about Discord? Fans like that they can multi-task with chat, video and audio while gaming. But $10 billion?
Bitcoin. Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced this week that you can now buy new Tesla cars with the alternative digital currency Bitcoin. Lots of geewhiz there, but 1 Bitcoin now sells for over $50,000 and a new Tesla starts at $38,000.
So what about the $14,000 difference? How does that get handled? No word on that on Tesla’s FAQ page.
Echo Park Lake
The best photo spot to capture the Los Angeles skyline was discovered by the homeless in Echo Park.
At its peak, some 200 tents had camped out in this glorious, downtown park, causing concern among neighbors and a bungled effort by the city to ship them out. By Thursday, the city moved to evict them all, to put them into temporary hotel housing and close Echo Park for “repairs.”
I don’t know much about how to deal with an ever-growing homeless population, but logic says that overnight stays in public parks is just a no-no that should have been enforced eons ago. Just like signs on streets that say no parking between 2 a.m. to 6 a.m. Had the city nipped the bud in the first place, the situation wouldn’t have gotten out of hand like this.
By the time I tried to visit Thursday, the entire park and blocks were roped off, and police helicopters were flying over the park. I was told by a cop, through a megaphone, that I wasn’t allowed to walk on the sidewalk.
It was a mess. There had to be a better way. And meanwhile, many other LA parks have homeless encampments too. So now what?
Aren’t there giant empty lots somewhere that could be turned into shelters?
Best Bagel ever!
To naysayers, know that there are bagels and then there are bagels. This is in a different, enhanced category, trust me.
Thanks everyone for reading, watching and listening. If you enjoyed today’s edition, please let me know with a reply, and tell all your friends!