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Category: beach
Newport Beach Reflections

I took my daily sunset walk out to the beach this evening and was pleasantly surprised.  We have a high tide and some swell this evening making for our very own reflecting pool.  I brought out my new 30mm f.14 to get some shots.  The 1.4 aperture wide open makes for some rad bokeh.  I used it this past weekend at the wedding I photographed in Los Angeles and it didn’t come off my camera the entire day.  I’ll be posting those pictures from the Rose Garden at Exposition Park sometime in the next week.  So this evening, I was looking to shoot something different than your ordinary sunset shot.  Instead of looking up, sometimes you have to look down and then you will see the world around you in a whole new way.  Or how about seeing the world upside down? Here my roommate Brett stands in for a nice minimalistic sunset silhouette.

Images post processed in Adobe Lightroom.  I cooled down the blues to a nice teal and also added a little blue tone to the shadows as well as added a bit of red to the highlights.

Enjoy the pics!

macro sunset and silhouettes with blue skybalboa newport beach sunset and silhouettes with blue sky

newport beach sunset and silhouettes with blue sky

artistict beach sunset and silhouettes with blue sky


Most mornings I grab my camera and take a bike ride down to Blackies to check out the surf and to snap a few pics to get the day started with some creativity.  This morning I felt like black and white would be the look of the day.  With the Sony a6000, I have the option to change the settings in camera to black and white and to also adjust the contrast.  I really love this feature, since the viewfinder and back preview screen also go to black and white.  It might seem like a bit of cheating to the film purist who shoot in black and white (I also shoot black and white film, and that requires pre-visualization and a knowledge of how different colors will appear in monotone).  Anyways, I think it’s a great way to train your eye to see in black and white and to skip the whole editing process afterwards.  I’m trying to do more in camera nowadays to save myself time on the computer later.

So here’s a few pics of my surfer friend Isle, Blackies local, and his friends on a nice Spring morning in Newport Beach.  I was shooting with my 90mm f2.8 this morning so I was going for a minimalistic feel with lots of negative space in most of the images since the subjects were quite a bit aways from me.  The waves were super fun this morning, and after about an hour of photographing, I had to jump in myself and catch some waves.

Enjoy the pics!


waves at newport beach surfer at blackies

newport beach surfing at blackies

surfing waves at newport beach surfer at blackies

surfboard at newport beach surfer at blackies

Isle Anderson a local at newport beach surfer at blackies

Isle Anderson a local at newport beach surfer at blackies

palm trees at newport beach surfer at blackies

newport beach surfing at blackies

pigeons and palm trees at newport beach surfer at blackies

newport beach surfer at blackies


I was debating whether to stay in my toasty and cozy room or to bundle up for a very breezy and brisk sunset.  I finally convinced myself to hit up the beach (just walking distance).  I changed it up by bringing my 90mm macro lens.  I usually shoot with my wide-angle 12mm lens for sunsets to show the expanse of the sky and the space around me, but with the 90mm everything is more focused.  I focused on silhouettes tonight with the aloe vera plants and succulents that grow at the edge of the sand.  There were a few clouds on the horizon which making it a perfect sunset since they help to diffuse and scatter the light of the setting sun and to create more intense colors.  I took a few panorama shots with the 90mm and stitched them together in Photoshop too.  Check ’em out!  Super stoked on the images I got.  Now to thaw out…

Newport beach california sunset sky and silhouette

Newport beach california sunset sky and silhouette

Newport beach california sunset sky and silhouette

Newport beach california sunset sky and silhouette


The gorgeous Melanie joined me for some fun on the Newport Beach pier last weekend.  We both had in mind lots of the color blue and also trying to capture the long lines of the pier.   The sun was the classic mid day sun that was harsh and overhead, but since it is late in the Fall, the sun was lower in the sky and a little easier to work with.  We tried some backlit portraits like the one below which gave a really nice rim light to her hair.  I exposed for Melanie’s face which caused the background to blow out in the camera RAW, but I brought back the color and exposure in Adobe Lightroom.  The reflection in her eyes was from the overhead sun’s light reflecting off the white concrete of the surface of the pier and front lighting her.  It also gave a nice catch light, if you will, to her eyes.  Because it was so bright outside I had Melanie close her eyes until I was ready to take the shot.  I think the image below, my favorite, has the perfect amount of squint and beauty.

We also tried some front lit poses facing towards the sun.  I put the lifeguard headquarters behind her to add more depth to the image rather than blue sky or random houses and palm trees. The image would be perfect for an Oakley sunglasses ad.  🙂

I’ve been working on a few things with my photography as of late:  Working with the color blue which is so prevalent in my landscape work and in my wardrobe for some reason.  I guess I just love the color blue.  Melanie also came up with the idea about doing some monochrome photos, so I will be taking that idea and combining it with blue.  Also I have been practicing some Brenzier portrait panoramas.  I took some of Melanie under the pier and they turned out about 75%.  Photoshop had a hard time piecing some of the images together so that’s something I need to work on.

I’ve been reading a lot more about lighting and photography.  Ansel Adam’s 3 book series is incredible.  It’s very technical, but you can learn a lot.  It goes to show how much he knew light and photography and how that kind of detailed knowledge can translate into creating beautiful imagery.  Roberto Valenzuela‘s Picture Perfect books are a wealth of help and insight for anyone, especially one who does wedding photography.  I am currently going through Picture Perfect Practice and all of the mini practice sessions as well as rereading the chapters on posing your subjects.  I also bought Picture Perfect Lighting off of Amazon and have been reading that book voraciously.  The lighting tips are invaluable and have already helped me so much in bringing up my image quality.  As a photographer, we have to be experts on light and be able to notice it and then how to work with it creatively in a way to bring to life the vision of our art.

Well that’s all for now!

Message me if you are interested in doing a photoshoot with me.







June Gloom get’s a makeover

It’s been June Gloom since early May so I haven’t had much motivation to go out and shoot the sunsets recently. Instead, I’ve been catching up on naps. Tonight I was sitting on the couch debating whether to go photograph the lackluster and bland sky or to stay and drift away into dreamland. I think Teddy (the cat) woke me up and signaled that I better go take some pics (he’s actually snuggled up against me watching me type this). Read More

Memorial Day Serenity
2 of my fave images from Memorial Day’s sunset. This was my first time using filters (on camera). So I used 3 filters for this image: 1.
So for these 2 pictures, I used 3 filters: 1.
1. a ND density filter,
2. a pinkish magenta graduated filter for the sky,

Read More

About Me
Wedding & Landscape photographer based in Orange County, California. Lover of Color, Nature, & Carrot Juice
My Location
Newport Beach, CA
Phone: +1.949.531.8405 Email: JosephBarberPhotography@gmail.com
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