Getty Center | Los Angeles

One place that I definitely wanted to see when I was in SoCal last month was the Getty Center in Los Angeles (hopefully next time I can check out the Villa). The vast collection of visual arts housed at the Museum was enough motivation for me to find time to visit the place. There was so much to see, the incredible architecture, the exhibits, the garden.  I remember thinking to myself that I could easily spend countless hours just sitting by the garden reading a book or just relaxing while allowing myself to be surrounded by a huge assortment of priceless masterpieces of famous people with names I can barely pronounce.

Getty Center, Los Angeles

Unfortunately, the visit was short and sweet. Time was just not on our side. After a couple of hours of oohhing and aahhing at the exhibits, enjoying the variety of plants  and listening to the soothing sound of water at the Central Garden, it was time to move on.

Getty garden

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Enjoying a Few Local Scenery: 1000 Islands in Brockville, ON

As promised, these are a few of the photos from my trip to the Thousand Islands. It was a pretty good photo opportunity, since we were there in the afternoon where the lighting wasn’t so harsh. Shooting while the boat was moving was a little tricky though, I’ve had several missed shots, and some blurry and unusable ones. The images you see below are those that I have kept.

I took this photo from the Harbor as we were waiting to board the “Wildcat”. It was such a beautiful place to just sit and watch the boats pass by.

The Harbor

The Harbor

We had to wait for a family of five who were having a hard time deciding if they wanted in on the cruise or not, so we were running a little late. It gave us an opportunity to sit by the grass and bask in the glorious afternoon sun.

The other side of the Harbor

The breeze was a lot cooler on the water, and the view was spectacular.

Singer Island

Singer Castle

This was our last stop before turning around. The Singer Castle. Unfortunately, touring the grounds and inside the castle wasn’t a part of our short itinerary. Perhaps on another day. I suggest to read a brief history of the castle here. It is quite interesting and definitely worth reading.

Singer Castle

The cruise concluded much too quickly. I would have loved to see more, but as I’ve said, this was a very short trip which definitely left me wanting for more…

The Lighthouse

Lighthouse My recent trip to Ottawa yielded some great photo ops. Remember the choo-choo train that I posted for Black & White Friday last week? This Lighthouse was shot at the same location. The park had so many cool features (train, Lighthouse, rocket, oil rig), so I thought I’d take a closer look and snap some photographs. I probably would have stayed longer, had it not been so windy and cold. I was way too under-dressed for that weather, plus it was getting late, and home was still 2 hours away.

The image was processed in Lightroom. I muted the colors a bit, to give it some sort of a vintage feel. I also added the dark vignette, I thought that it will help guide the viewers’ eyes to focus more on the subject instead of wandering off all over the place.

 

Topaz B&W Effects 2 Is Out

As you all know, I am very fond of the Topaz plugin.  Awhile back, I purchased the whole bundle because I knew I will eventually end up using all of the plugin. Part of that bundle was Topaz B&W Effects, a nifty little plugin which I often use to convert my images into monochrome. Today, the new Topaz B&W Effects 2 came out and I was really excited because the upgrade is free to existing owners.

Two major improvements that I’ve noticed right off the bat.

 

  • The user interface has been revamped to give way to a much cleaner and user-friendly workflow.
  • The preset preview area is much bigger now and in my opinion is a much-needed update (the earlier version has a very small square preview window above the preset list).

I did process an image using the new plugin. This is a photo of the Montreal Olympic Stadium. This image is the unaltered version.  Click here to see the transformed version of this image.

Montreal Olympic Stadium

Montreal Olympic Stadium

Weekly Photo Challenge: Love

I was out in the city one night, poking every nook and cranny, trying to find unusual subjects to photograph. What do you know, I stumbled upon LOVE. So it must be true, LOVE may turn up in the most unexpected places…

LOVE

LOVE Sculpture by Robert Indiana | ISO – 500 | 24 mm | 1/10 sec @ f/4

In my case, I found Robert Indiana’s LOVE sculpture, which is a famous installation which has become an important part of the L’Hotel in Montreal. It wasn’t my original intention, but I thought today I would take a direct interpretation of The Daily Post‘s Weekly Photo Challenge which has LOVE as the current theme.