Light | Life | Love

Michael Muramoto Photo Essays

Cherry Blossoms

These cherry blossom flowers were found while I was driving through a parking lot. I really don't even know who actually owns these wonderful trees, but there they were just sitting there beside the freeway in an empty lot. I wanted to capture them since they only last a week or so before they plummet to the ground. These were taken last year, but I do know that the historical ones in Washington D.C. are now blooming, so if you are out there, take a few minutes to enjoy their beauty.

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Katy & Jason Wedding on July 7, 2013 at Lake Temescal, Oakland, California

Katy and Jason had a great wedding that was at the Lake Temescal Park in Oakland, California. I was so happy that they decided to use me as their official wedding photographer. They have such a great spirit and are always trying to make sure that they are doing their best in every endeavor. On their wedding day, they were both so relaxed it made getting their photographs easy. Not to mention that they are a good looking couple as well. I want to wish them both all the very best in their days and years ahead. Congratulations!

Where's the old blog?

Have you ever heard of Moldova? I'm pretty sure that I have sometime in the past, but I wasn't sure where it was, or really anything about the geographic location of Moldova. I did find out that my original blog had been malwared by someone from that country. Well, in case you didn't know where it is either, here is a small map.

I was pretty unhappy that I wasn't able to restore the years of entries that I had placed on my old blog. I spoke with my IT support team, and they said that the old database was so corrupt, that it wasn't worth trying to restore it. So sadly, that day meant that I was no longer going to have a blog anymore.

After not having a place to show my current work, I thought about restarting a new blog. I wasn't excited about having to worry about the security of my blog, but I did know I wanted a place to easily show my work. Then the magic of Koken appeared.

Yes, this is a Koken site, and for any photographers out there who want to have an integrated way to use Lightroom as a content manager for a blog, then Koken is a great place to start. It is a free download that you can run on your own servers. The installation is fairly straightforward, and I had completed it within a few minutes.

Going forward, I will be using Koken as my means of sharing photographs with my readers. I hope you enjoy the new site.

Full Blood Moon eclipse over the San Francisco Bay

I have to admit, I am certainly not an astrophotographer. I really had no idea how I was going to be able to capture the lunar eclipse with my current camera and lenses. I did know that I would make an effort to get out there to at least see it for myself. So I gathered up my Nikon DSLR and a 70-200mm lens along with my tripod and headed outdoors. It wasn't cold, so I didn't have to wear gloves, but it was very quiet at that late hour.

Once I had gotten the camera setup on the tripod, I did watch the standard eclipse begin. The Moon looked a little hazy since there was cloud cover making it a bit harder to see. It was bright though, so I setup the camera with an ISO of 400 and f/11, with shutter at 1/125. This seemed to work pretty well, but it was a bit dark, so I opened the lens to f/8 and this seemed much better.

After sitting outside for a good hour or so, the Moon was now in the full blood orange color seen in the photograph. Although there was quite a bit of light pollution around (from the neighborhood lights) I still felt that the image did give a good estimation as to what I remember seeing.

At this point the settings had to be lengthened fairly significantly to capture the lower light from the Moon. I now set the camera at ISO 800, f/5.6, and shutter of 1 second to 3 seconds. I really wanted to get a photo of the Moon in it's orange glow along with the pinprick of Mars in the background, but the clouds were being a bit too annoying to let me get the shot.

In any case, it was a fun little adventure, and now I'm more interested in trying to grab some other astro photography when I next have a chance.