Jonathan Fleming's Blog

A Photography Blog

Posts Tagged ‘beach

The Happy Dog

with 23 comments

Chasing Suki around at the beach with a telephoto lens during the last few minutes of sunset reminded me of what a happy dog she is. No matter how much negativity I encounter in the world, I can always count on her positive energy and her uplifting spirit.

Taken by the wife with her cell phone. Hah!

Dogs are absolute treasures. Never take them for granted.


Written by Jonathan

November 4, 2012 at 6:46 pm

Can’t Predict the Weather

with 25 comments

iPhone 4s | 4.3mm f/2.4 | 1/1400 sec ISO64

Rain was predicted all weekend in San Francisco.  Of course, weather reports for this area are almost never accurate, and Sunday was gorgeous, though very cold. The morning light was clean and beautiful, and the sky was full of clouds.

iPhone 4s | 4.3mm f/2.4 | 1/2500 sec ISO64

These two shots were my favorite images taken yesterday. I took the one up top in the morning with my phone in one hand, cup of Philz in the other. The second image was taken during sunset at Ocean Beach, where it was windy and freezing. Both brought to you by the iPhone 4s, since I forgot to bring a memory card for my Fuji x100.

Out here, it seems you can take a pretty picture, but you can’t predict the weather ūüėČ

Written by Jonathan

November 7, 2011 at 7:17 am


with 41 comments

Fuji X100 | 1/200 sec, f/2.8, ISO 200

Such a historic day for Suki, and as you can see, she’s quite happy about it. Today we granted her the most off-leash freedom she has ever had. There’s no better place in the city to do this than at Fort Funston, an old military outpost located at the south end of San Francisco’s Ocean Beach. The area is full of wide open space, sand dunes, trails, and of course, there’s the beach.

When Suki was younger we let her off leash at this same park, and quickly regretted the decision as she bolted off into the horizon with no regard for her pack (her comparatively slow-moving human parents). Most Shiba owners have at least one Shiba-bolting horror story to tell….I have like…20. In fact, I took my opening photo of my 52 weeks project at this location. Check out the image here. See the leash? Yeah, I totally didn’t trust her back then.

But while I’d still never ever let her off leash on a city street (it’s not legal anyway in SF), I’ve come to trust the bond Suki and I have built over the years. She definitely knows we belong to each other, and while Bridget was feeling a little hesitant today, I knew that Suki wouldn’t ditch us this time.

So, at peace with the entire concept, we stepped out onto the ice plant and set her free:

Fuji X100 | 1/80 sec, f/2.2, ISO 200

The image above represents a very memorable moment for me. She actually bolted ahead of us, turned the corner and disappeared. Before I could even call out to her, she reappeared just as you see her above. That’s right. A Shiba Inu¬†waiting up and making sure her humans are following….for reals?!?!

From that point forward, it was all smooth sailing:

Fuji X100 | 1/280 sec, f/4.5, ISO 800

Fuji X100 | 1/280 sec, f/5, ISO 800

Suki is definitely the recon member of our family, scouting ahead from time to time but never forgetting to pull back and let us catch up, even stopping when we stop:

Fuji X100 | 1/340 sec, f/5, ISO 800

Fuji X100 | 1/850 sec, f/2, ISO 400

Thrilled with the entire situation, we continued onto a trail from the dunes down to the beach. At this point Suki had burned off a significant amount of energy, and now more relaxed, stuck even closer to us:

Fuji X100 | 1/950 sec, f/2, ISO 400

Unlike the puppy Suki of old, today’s Suki won’t chase absolutely anything that runs (above).

Fuji X100 | 1/340 sec, f/5, ISO 400

A simple “let’s go, Suki,” and she snaps away from what ever she’s doing and follows. If I didn’t have these photos I’d swear none of this was real, just an awesome dream.

The following are a few of the images I took at the beach, processed into black and white in post:

When we were done at the beach, it was a long climb back up the cliff. We took the stairs, and Suki…well, eventually got on the stairs, but not before breaking a few rules. In the image below, she’s looking at me as I yell out “hey silly, you do NOT qualify as wild life! Get back on the stairs!”

Fuji X100 | 1/320 sec, f/5, ISO 800 (flash on)

Such a beautiful area to bring the dog, and such an exciting day for Team Suki!

One side note: I’m getting a lot of questions and emails about what picture settings I use when I shoot with my Fuji X100. I’ll go ahead and answer that question here once and for all. I’ve mentioned this before, but for most of my recent blog posts that involve shooting simple snaps and documenting life etc, I find it easier to work with the JPEG files from the camera than to shoot everything in RAW. So when I’m not shooting RAW, I use these picture settings:

Film Sim: Astia
Dynamic Range: Auto
Color: High
Sharpness: Hard
Highlight Tone: M-Hard
Shadow Tone: M-Hard
Noise Reduction: M-Low
White Balance: Auto
WB Shift: +2 Red, -2 Yellow

I make slight curve adjustments in post to my taste, and that’s it. Depending on the situation, I sometimes use the Provia film simulation as well. The other question I get a lot is “does the X100 produce great JPEGs?”


Fuji X100 | 1/420 sec, f/2.8, ISO 200

I’m proud of you Suki. Today you have proven yourself off leash. =)

Ruins of the Sutro Baths

with 6 comments

Nikon D90 + Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8

Nikon D90 + Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 at 11mm f/11, ISO500 1/60 Second, Handheld

Nikon D90 + Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 at 11mm f/11, ISO200 1/80 Second

Nikon D90 + Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 at 11mm f/11, ISO200 1/80 Second

My Dad used to tell me about how great the Sutro Baths were at Ocean Beach in San Francisco. Built in the late 1800’s, the Sutro Baths were a huge complex of pools, situated right on the waters of the Pacific Ocean underneath the famous Cliffhouse in San Francisco.¬† The Baths were closed in the 1960’s, and all that are left are these ruins.

Just a little more about the Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8. Before I bought it I debated back and forth as to whether I should instead buy the Tokina 12-24 f/4, thinking I might miss the 16-24mm range. I think it’s safe to say now that I don’t miss that range one bit in a ultra wide, and will happily make the extra lens changes.

Written by Jonathan

August 14, 2009 at 1:55 am

A Sunset in San Francisco (more shooting with Tokina 11-16)

with 2 comments

Nikon D90 + Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 at 16mm f/11, ISO200 1/250 Second

Nikon D90 + Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 at 16mm f/11, ISO200 1/250 Second

The sky was looking promising last night after work, so my wife and I headed out to Ocean Beach in San Francisco before the sun went down, spending most of our time on the beach in an area of ruins; the remains of the once glorious Sutro Baths.  It was also interesting to sit and people-watch, as couples snuggled together for the sunset, and others ran around on the beach, enjoying the the warm temperature.

Nikon D90 + Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8

Nikon D90 + Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 at 11mm f/4.5, ISO320 1/60 Second, Handheld

The sky was so beautiful, and the weather was perfect. We stayed and hiked around till past dusk, snapping off shots and just relaxing and taking in the beauty of light, held and radiated by sweeping clouds.¬† This area was truly a photographers playground, with so many angles and composition possibilities. We’ll have to return again and again!

Nikon D90 + Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8

Nikon D90 + Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 at 13mm f/16, ISO 200, 30.0 Seconds

My wife and I have been having a blast going on photo outings.¬† Often times she’ll make the suggestion “hey, let’s go shooting!” Which for me, is always beautiful thing to hear.¬† In fact, having her with me makes things a whole lot easier when I’m trying to get shots. She’s become very familiar with all of my gear (probably because before I bought the gear I talked about how much I wanted to buy said gear), and therefore I can, for example, execute lens changes quite fast with her assistance.

Last night was a perfect example. “Honey, I need the 70-300!” She quickly pulls out the long zoom, and at the same exact time as I rotate my lens off my camera mount she removes the cap off the mount of the long zoom lens and sticks it onto the back of the lens I’m holding. She then takes my lens while handing me hers, and I quickly mount the new one. We can usually do this in a pretty fluid motion.

Most importantly though, it’s the time we spend together as a couple that I cherish even more than the photography.