Tuesday, July 31, 2007


Or divergence, whichever way you look at it.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Blackhawk Departure

About 500 yards from my apartment is the Queen's Medical Center helipad. It's where the US Army's 524th Corps Support Battalion (Medevac) Sikorsky UH-60A "Blackhawk" helicopters drop-off extreme emergency medical cases to the Queen's Trauma Center. On call 24-7 to assist Honolulu's Emergency Medical Services, these helicopters fly in patients from outlying areas on O‘ahu. Currently, the 524th is deployed to the Iraqi theatre, and a detachment from an active duty unit from Alaska has stepped in to fill the void, since the Hawai‘i Army National Guard "Blackhawk" unit that was supposed to substitute, was also activated for the Iraqi theatre. Fly safe!

In today's photo, it's a long-exposure night shot of a "Blackhawk" from the 524th departing the Queen's helipad, heading back to Wheeler Army Air Field, in Wahiawa. The chopper came in about 10pm, dropped off the patient, and departed about 20 minutes later. The second streak of light is an Aloha Airlines inter-island cargo flight. I could not have asked for better timing than to get the two take-offs.

While I was moving into my apartment (10 years ago), we would see "Blackhawks" make their medevac flights during the day. In my first night in my new home, I was awakened at 5:30am to the sound of an in-bound "Blackhawk", which acted as my alarm clock. I have heard flights come and go at all hours of the day. Like any other sound, I have become rather immune to it, though I will watch every once-in-a-while. It's a treat to watch these pilots stick the landing on the pad. Occaisonally, pilots will perform touch-and-go landings to train new pilots, or re-qualify current pilots.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Bean Bag Toss

Part of Hope968's Easter Egg Hunt festivities are games for the kids once the hunt is over. A couple of the kids test out the bean bag toss while the rest of the games are being set up.

I was amazed on how the auto-focus picked up on the bean bag, while the boys are out-of-focus.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Christmas In July

With a lot of merchants doing the "Christmas In July" sales, I thought I'd do my take on the theme, with today's photo from last year's Christmas lights decoration at Honolulu Hale, on an evening I shot photos with Kekiinani.

Oh yeah ... only 149 more shopping days until Christmas.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Cold War Relic

The Boeing B-52 "Stratofortress" dates back to the 1950s, as the first B-52A rolled out in 1954. This US Air Force Reserve Command B-52H, 60-0041 (c/n 464406), belongs to the 93rd Bomber Squadron "Indian Outlaws", from Barksdale AFB, LA. This "Stratofortress" was built in 1960, and has been through several modifications. Especially in recent years, as the Cold War between the USA and the USSR ended, its mission role changed from a nuclear bomber, to a conventional weapons bomber. One thing was certain, when this bomber took off, it created a huge roar, and left a dense smoke plume and a smoke trail that seemed to go as far as the eye could see. Why it was in Hawai‘i? Only USAF knows.

It's seen here taxiing to the east end of the "Reef Runway", as the winds were blowing from the southwest, thus reversing the air traffic pattern at HNL. This big bird took its time taxiing from the west end. It moved so slowly ... that a rain shower band came from behind it, and passed it, as the B-52H was half-way down the taxiway. The crewman running alongside the jet was making sure the outboard wheels did not damage the taxiway lights. There was a van guiding this ancient bird, and the crewmen took turns running.

This plane is over 45 years old ... that's older than me! Some of the flight and ground crews are only about half of its age. And the Air Force wants to keep these birds around for another 15 years(!). They sure built these planes tough! Who would have thought that the two of the mainstays of the Air Force (the B-52s and the KC-135s) average 40 years in age.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Aspiring Model

Though not really versed in fashion nor modeling photography, I was asked by a friend of a friend, to photograph her son, Sean, who wants to get into modeling. She wanted to have test shots of him, so they can distribute photos to different agencies. We spent a couple hours getting shots of Sean wearing different types of clothing.

I took this photo at Kaka‘ako Waterfront Park in a shot that could either feature a product or beachwear. In this case, I used a can of XS® Energy Drink as a prop.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007


I came across these pinwheels in a community garden, that's meant to scare away birds. The colored foil, movement, and sunlight seem to keep birds away.

The challenge for today's photo was ... waiting for the sun to peek from behind the clouds, timing the wind with the sun, getting both pinwheels to spin at the same time (though in opposite directions), and keeping the shutter slow enough as not to overexpose the shot, yet get some motion blur in the blades. I wasn't asking for too much, was I? After several tries, I got this one. Patience paid off.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007


Okay, when it comes to dogs, I'm extremely partial to Dachshunds. I grew up with a total of four of these long-bodied hounds. They are a loyal, smart, funny, loving, and persistent breed, that packs the bark of a big dog into their small frame. The last doxie I had, Pepper, died around 20 years ago. Has it been that long??? Yep, you guessed it, I'm a sucker for a doxie ... if I had the opportunity, money (they ain't cheap), and time, I'd own one.

I got this photo of this Dachshund pup at Magic Island on the day I got baptized. After the service was completed, I walked around the park taking photos, and came across this chocolate and tan pup who sat with her master, whon was gracious enough to let get a few photos of her pup.

One of these days ... I'll get another Dachshund ...

Monday, July 23, 2007


Playing with some depth of field with these railings at the Kahala Branch of Bank Of Hawai‘i.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Orchid Buds

When I was composing angles for this photo, I thought it looked like (okay, sorta looked like) "The Attack Of The Pod People". It's really one of two stems about to bear flowers from my orchid plant. This stem of buds is from a shoot that sprouted in the beginning of the year, and it's the first bloom for this stalk.

I already have ideas on getting photos once all the buds on both stems bloom. I'm curious what color these flowers will be. It's always amazing to see God's creations flourish.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Glamour Golfers

The André Kim fashion show at the 2006 SBS Open, at the Turtle Bay Resort, featured four LPGA golfers, who took to the runway as special guest models. From left-to-right: Christina Kim, Paula Creamer (2005 Rookie Of The Year), Natalie Gulbis, and Shi Hyun Ahn, glide down the runway during rehearsals. The four LPGA golfers closed the show with their modeling of these dresses which contains Renaissance-era prints. Miss Creamer made it to reheasals just in time to have her hair and make-up done, after tending to other commitments. With our videocamera blocking rehearsals complete, and I got this shot (among others) before the video crew went on dinner break.

After the show was completed, I managed to get Christina Kim's and Paula Creamer's autograph on the cover of an SBS Open tournament program for my dad (who is the avid golfer in the family), as they mingled with the invited guests of the show.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Bridal Bouquet

A close-up of the bride's bouquet from Josh and Sheri's wedding. This photo was taken shortly after the ceremony ended, while the happy couple signed their marriage license.

Thursday, July 19, 2007


One of the weekend summer events in Hawai‘i are outrigger canoe races. The O'ahu Hawaiian Canoe Racing Association (OHCRA) held its John D. Kaupkio Regatta, this past Sunday at Ke‘ehi Lagoon. Under cloudy skies (and some raindrops), paddlers of all age groups, from around the island participated in this race.

The grey blotch on the canoe, "Kawele‘a", was a raindrop that hit my lens. I wanted to fit as many canoes as I could in this shot.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Wait Your Turn

We're number three in line to depart ahead of the Continental 767-400 going to Nagoya, Japan; and the Japan Airlines 747-200 going to Osaka (Kansai), Japan. I'm aboard a Hawaiian Air 767-300 flight going to Portland, OR, to attend business meeting. If I remember correctly, there was a Northwest Airlines DC-10-30 behind us, that was bound for Seattle; and an Aloha Airlines 737-200 inter-island flight bringing up the rear. All five planes in the queue were designated to take-off from HNL's "Reef Runway".

Before our flight could cross Runway 8L, we had to wait a few minutes for an arriving Hawaiian Air flight from the mainland to land.

I also wrote a review (and included photos) of this flight that was published in the online edition of "Airways" Magazine.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Crescent Moonset

This crescent moon sets behind downtown Honolulu, and the Wai‘anae Mountain Range early one morning. I had to get up early for a video shoot, and caught this shot from my lanai before leaving home. You can also see the rest of the moon in the shadow.

The construction crane in the lower center is for the Capitol Place condo project that's being built over the former municipal parking lot on the corner of Pali Highway and Beretania Street. One of the selling points about the apartment I have was the view of the airport. Capitol Place will now block my view of HNL, which can be seen where the crane stands. I guess that's what they call progress.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Closed For Makeover

The Honolulu Fire Department's Station 29, on the corner of Date Street and University Avenue, will be undergoing a makeover as the original firehouse will be torn down, and replaced with a modern facility. The station closed on Thursday, according to the The Honolulu Advertiser, and will take about 18 months to build the new Station 29.

Growing up in the area, I used to hear either Engine 29 and Ladder 29 (or both) with sirens blaring as they made the corner of Date and Isenberg Streets, as they responded to call outs. Back in the high school days, I used to catch the bus every morning at the bus stop on University, that's right outside the firehouse. After nearly 60 years, Station 29 was due to be updated. Will be curious to see what the new firehouse will look like.

In today's photo, HFD crews are moving out the last pieces of furniture as the crews of Engine 29 and Ladder 29 will be relocated during consruction.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Quiet Spot

This looks like a neat place to spend some quiet time in prayer (or meditation), or with someone special.

You can hear the sounds of the palm fronds swaying with the wind, and the rolling waves, on a bright sunny day ... without any distractions.

Saturday, July 14, 2007


My daughters wanted to do a "Charlie's Angels" type pose, so with the assistance of my Glocks, along with a Photoshopped background of the "explosion", I came up with this rendition of the pose.

Friday, July 13, 2007


Today's photo is of an Aviation Partners Boeing Blended Winglet® on a Boeing 737-700. This particular 737 is the BBJ (Boeing Business Jet) variant, which is basically a $60 million airliner converted into a private jet. These winglets enhance the aircraft's performance in range and fuel consumption.

This 737 was parked next to another 737 that was being delivered to Air China (in a special paint scheme for the 2008 Beijing Olympics). I had to stand under the BBJ winglet to get a full shot of the Air China jet.

Thursday, July 12, 2007


This S-shaped contrail was caused by a US Air Force B-1B "Lancer", doing some high-altitude manuevers above Honolulu. I had first seen the contrails from the third floor of Ala Moana Center. I ventured out to Ala Moana Park to get this photo. I'm not sure what it was doing, but the earlier contrails were circular as well, not a straight line like airliners would leave as they passed over Honolulu (or anywhere else).

Today's photo also happens to be the 200th photo posted on this blog!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Night View

A "fisheye" shot of the downtown Honolulu skyline from my apartment's lanai. The halo effect was caused by the hole from one of those clear CDs on the bottom of the spindle; I was trying to get a spot focus at the same time.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Bride On A Beach

This happy bride Mayu, poses for photographs on a beach after her wedding ceremony. Since it was a two videocamera shoot, I thought I'd capture a few pix in between the video shots I needed to get. With the aid of Photoshop, I added some effects to the water.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Chinatown Kitty

This feline is the guardian cat for one of the shops in Chinatown ... okay, more like the attention getter for people to shop there. I was taking a walk around the district hoping ot get some interesting photos, and this cat was one of them. The owner said the cat hangs out at the entrance of her store, and it desires to receive attention from shoppers.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Plumeria & Palm

A bunch of plumeria flowers with a coconut palm in the background, with a soft focus filter, at Kawai‘ahao Church.

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Seven Seven Seven

What could be more appropriate? A 777 on 07-07-07.

This Boeing 777-268ER, HZ-AKF, from Saudi Arabian Airlines takes a break at HNL, as its passengers enjoy our tropical paradise. According to sources, this 777 was not the one which members of the royal Saudi family uses. They said that the cabin had a normal passenger interior. The one the royal family uses has been converted to a super-sized private jet. Looks like HZ-AKF could use a fresh coat of paint, as the current looks to be somewhat flat due to sand and sun exposure.

In the background, a FedEx McDonnell-Douglas (now Boeing) MD-11F is seconds from touching down on Runway 4R.

Tomorrow is the roll-out of Boeing's newest airliner, the 787 (on 07-08-07!). Wish I could have been there to see it in person.

Friday, July 6, 2007

Southeast O‘ahu From Above

The southeastern tip of O‘ahu as seen from Island Air's Dash8-Q400, N539DS, as it climbs to a cruising altitude of 13,000 feet. This was the preview flight Island Air held for the media, Island Air executives, and partners. "Airliners" magazine ran the articles and photos I put together in their July/August 2006 issue (#100).

Today's photo was taken from seat 5A, and the propeller blades of the left side Pratt & Whitney Canada PW150A turboprop engine frames the land and ocean down below. I tried this shot at 1/1000 sec, hoping to freeze the prop blades, but the shutter speed was not fast enough.

Thursday, July 5, 2007


The Hawai‘i Superferry "Alakai" has arrived from the manufacturer in Mobile, AL via the Panama Canal and Los Angeles, CA. It's seen here moored at Pier 19 in Honolulu Harbor, being prepped to enter service in the fall.

Wonder how much traffic this big boat will take away from inter-island air travel?

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Independence Day

Celebrating our nation's 231st birthday! Freedom, liberty, justice for all! Thank you to our founding fathers, who had the guts to stand up in the face of death for all of us. Thank you to all the patriots for defending our land. God Bless America!

Today's photo was taken last night at the Aloha Tower Independence Day fireworks display.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

What Was I Thinking?

Good question. I asked myself the same question after taking it, but I thought it had an artsy feel to for some strange, unanswerable reason.

I got this shot while waiting for the principal videographer to get his shots of the whole set-up. I was there doing the second angle videography, and thought I'd bring along my still camera for shots of my own.

Monday, July 2, 2007

Field Of Gold

Looks like this field of flowers could go on for miles in some country field ...

Sunday, July 1, 2007


In a twist of irony during an anti-graffiti paint out, these painters from Hope968 decided to leave their own mark. Yes, they did paint it over their "tag" after this photo was taken. Through the magic of Photoshop and some creative license, I manipulated the colors from the original grey paint they were using.

Thus begins the second half of 2007 ... will it go as fast as the first half? We shall see ...