Saturday, August 7, 2010

Vegas Delights

Vegas Delights

I just got back from my trip to Vegas, and despite feeling like I was kicked by a mule, I had a great time. Two conferences, a zillion people, a few really good dates, and some moments where I could feel the good shots in the air around me.

I got this particular picture at a Ratpack-era steakhouse called the Golden Steer. The place is located just off strip, and positively breathes with the life of Vegas, circa 1958. Dim lighting, red leather booths, wood panelling, waiters all in tuxedos, some of the best prime rib I've ever had, and impeccable service.

Mid-way through our meal, I noticed they were bringing out a birthday cake for the family at the next table. I picked up my camera, alert for the possibilities of birthday-candle light (one of my favorites), but instead got Roman candle/sparkler light.

One of my favorite things about photography is that not only does it force you to develop a vocabulary for light, it eventually forces you to be a connoisseur of light. Dappled? Noon sun? Window? Reflected-off-metal-ventian-blinds? Art-festival-translucent tent light? I'm still finding light I've never seen before, so I try to keep this gallery in my head, so when I see something new I know it.

There's something gorgeous about the light from these fireworks in this enclosed space. I suppose each individual spark is specular, but there are so many distinct bits and pieces that the overall effect is to kind of produce this gorgeous light which is still hard, but with a hint of wrapping to it as it falls off. Couple that with the candid moment at dinner, and I got a look I love.

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