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Last week my wife and I celebrated our anniversary, unfortunately our work schedules didn’t allow us to get away for a vacation this year so I decided to surprise her with a lunch date.  Nothing fancy just a short walk to an awesome nearby sandwich shop that sits in a secluded little alley downtown.

I’ve been trying to bring my camera with me more and more lately,  it has advantages and disadvantages. I can take pictures but it’s a bit cumbersome and I’m still not sure how to carry it? In a bag, or out in the open? This time I took it in a bag to avoid any problems or accidental spills while eating, and we had a great lunch together alone – if you have kids you’ll understand why I included that statement.

I should have taken some pictures in the shop, but I didn’t and I’m not sure why, maybe I felt awkward shooting in such a place without permission. I wanted to shoot the wall we were sitting next to as it reached up 2 stories and was bare brick with great light and metal rafters at the top, and I could’ve taken a great portrait of my wife against it, maybe I didn’t because  I wanted instead to just talk with her and enjoy the time together.

I’ll shoot it next time!

On the way back to her work as we were walking up the alley (it gently slopes up in that direction) I noticed as we began to come out of the alley that some buildings came into view with a nice contrast of architecture so I pulled out the camera and snapped off a few handheld HDRs.

The Walker Center Building

I usually try to shoot different aspects of a scene so I tried this in Portrait mode as well.  I like this version more than the first, even though it was tougher to handhold a 3 shot HDR in this orientation as I’d taken off my battery grip to make the camera less conspicuous.

A vertical view of the Walker Center

Walking farther out of the alley I turned left and saw the Wells Fargo building looming over us, I zoomed in and made an abstract shot of its windows.

I really liked the tones and shapes of the windows and exaggerated that contrast of tones in Photoshop.

I then turned around and looked across the street to see this beat up relic, what a difference the width of one road can make. I snapped a handheld 3 shot HDR and made some pretty aggressive post processing choices as I wanted to really show the grungy nature of these buildings.

I’m glad I took my camera, and I’m glad that I used it! Also it was nice to be reminded that looking high, low, and behind you can often yield another picture that may even be better than the one you first saw.

Happy shooting! and don’t forget to “look everywhere”!