Leinani Shak Photography: Blog https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog en-us (C) Leinani Shak Photography (Leinani Shak Photography) Mon, 16 Mar 2020 07:20:00 GMT Mon, 16 Mar 2020 07:20:00 GMT https://www.leinanishak.photography/img/s/v-12/u868349398-o57651201-50.jpg Leinani Shak Photography: Blog https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog 90 120 Practice Round with PGA Tour Professional Joel Dahmen https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2018/8/practice-round-with-pga-tour-professional-joel-dahmen As some of you may know, we have been sponsoring a golfer named Joel Dahmen since 2010. One of our favorite things to do is go to the practice rounds that precede the actual tournament. We started by going to the Gateway tour events in Arizona, then graduated to the Canadian Tour, the Web Tour, and now the PGA Tour. Here we are at a practice round at TPC River Highlands, Cromwell Connecticut. We brought some friends with us,too.

Click on the photo to see the full story. 


(Leinani Shak Photography) Joel Dahmen https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2018/8/practice-round-with-pga-tour-professional-joel-dahmen Thu, 16 Aug 2018 01:26:44 GMT
Local Cuisine - Prep & Pastry, Tucson, AZ https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2018/8/local-cuisine---prep-pastry-tucson-az Here is another one I recently made as an assignment for my summer Travel Documentary class. The assignment was about local cuisine. Objective? To make technically proficient images with an appetizing, enticing appeal. It also had to include the ambience, the people, and the food.

Click on the photo to see the story.

(Leinani Shak Photography) Prep and Pastry Tucson https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2018/8/local-cuisine---prep-pastry-tucson-az Thu, 16 Aug 2018 00:56:16 GMT
Little towns lost between two cities - road trip from Las Vegas to Reno https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2018/7/little-towns-lost-between-two-cities---made-with-adobe-spark Hello and thanks for visiting!

So I'm taking a Travel Documentary class and as a final project, I've decided to put together a group of photographs to tell a more cohesive story using Adobe Spark. 

Click on the photo to see the story.


(Leinani Shak Photography) https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2018/7/little-towns-lost-between-two-cities---made-with-adobe-spark Tue, 24 Jul 2018 22:09:31 GMT
African Safari - Day 2 of 11 days - Kenya (June 17, 2016) https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2016/7/african-safari---day-2-of-11-days---kenya-june-17-2016 I had heard from others that there would be some really early wake-up calls but strangely enough, an exact to-the-minute itinerary was not provided until we were already there.   Our driver guide this morning was Joseph who informed us the night before that we need to be ready to go at 4:00 a.m. in order to make it to the launch point of our hot air balloon ride.  The outside air was cold and the dirt roads were quite muddy - which, by the way - is how most of these roads are.  Few are paved and we were prepared for dust, but in our case, it had rained over the last few nights so we were in for a lot of mud puddles...in the dark...on a busy road...with no traffic signals...no street lights...no lane dividers...  Rather than avoid them, for the next 2 hours, Joseph seemed to enjoy sloshing through the puddles, stopping only once to help another vehicle sunken into the mud.


Our balloon ride was very smooth and quite peaceful.  Directionally, we are drifting in a southerly direction so we can make it to the scene of the famous Mara River crossing.  After all, it's on the cover of most Safari brochures but photographed with thousands of Wildebeests.  As we get closer, our balloon pilot, David, says that the Great Migration crossing is overrated.  Maybe he was trying to make some of us feel better because this is all we saw.  We were too early.  Perhaps we will see them when we get to the Serengeti.

And here we are - photo courtesy of Governer's Balloon Safari.







(Leinani Shak Photography) Governor's Balloon Safaris Hot Air Balloon Ride Maasai Mara https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2016/7/african-safari---day-2-of-11-days---kenya-june-17-2016 Sun, 31 Jul 2016 01:10:49 GMT
African Safari - Day 1 of 11 days - Kenya (June 16, 2016) https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2016/7/african-safari---day-1---kenya-june-16-2016 Hello world!   It's been over a month since we left Africa.  As I gaze through my photos and think about my life changing experience, I can't help but re-start my blog.  And so it begins - we married on June 13th, then took to the air the next day.   After a 22 hour flight with one almost-missed connection and three pieces of lost luggage, we made it to Nairobi in the late evening.  I loved the smell of the air - it reminded me of Hawaii.  We were cordially met by our driver guide, Jeff and taken to the Fairmont Norfolk hotel for a good night's sleep.

The next morning,  we visited two popular tourist attractions; the Giraffe Centre (AFEW) and the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (Elephant orphanage) where I couldn't help but photograph the school children.  Actually, I thought the children were far more interesting than these Rothschild giraffes; one of three species of giraffes found in Africa.  The baby elephants were entertaining as well - especially when it was time to feed.


Our next stop took us on a short flight on a 12 passenger prop plane from Wilson airport to the Ma'asai Mara Game Reserve.  This is when I understood why we were told to only pack in soft cases weighing no more than 33 pounds including camera equipment.  I was not worried since my luggage was still lost although my camera bag must've weighed in at close to 30 pounds.  As we buckled ourselves in, I couldn't help but think that I was Dorothy who wasn't in Kansas anymore.  "Hakuna matata," I sang to myself as the wobbler of plane took off into a little weather with pilots young enough to be my children.

As soon as we arrived, we were met by our next driver guide, Moses.  He took us on our first game drive and awe struck me.  These animals - they look so happy.  We came across several residential wildebeest (the ones too lazy to be part of the great migration) - I named this one Willie the Wildebeest.  By early evening, we saw two female lions getting ready to hunt while their cubs hid in the bushes behind them.   I couldn't wait to go back the next morning.





(Leinani Shak Photography) Africa David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust Giraffe Centre Kenya Maasai mara elephant giraffe lion rothschild giraffe safari wildebeest zebra https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2016/7/african-safari---day-1---kenya-june-16-2016 Sat, 30 Jul 2016 06:34:24 GMT
Dear Latin America: I need more time with Ms. Stone... https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2015/2/i-need-more-time-with-ms-stone Rosetta Stone that is.  I'm in Panama City, Panama.   My initial impression is that of embarrassment - I don't know enough Latin American Spanish to try to communicate verbally but thankfully,  I'm an ignorant American traveling with other Americans who, by the way, are professional golfers here to play in the season opener.   Ordering dinner was the true test of our ability to actually get what we wanted.  Joel, who had recently spent 3 weeks in Latin America and felt the most confident of the three of us, went first.  He pointed, he made eye contact, and I even heard him say, "chorizo".  He was intent on getting an empanada; something like a large dumpling filled with a variety of meats but when our meals came out,  he got a large bowl of chicken thigh soup.

Although much of our time was spent at Club de Golf de Panama trudging through heat and high humidity, we were able to see the Panama Canal courtesy of our taxi cab driver and later on during the week,  I was able to traipse through the streets very close to our hotel to get a sense of the people who lived in/around the city.  I was pleasantly surprised to learn that most folks react favorably when asked if I could take their photo (foto por favor? while pointing to my camera)

As we were headed back to our hotel, I saw a family sitting on the steps next to a McDonald's restaurant on the corner.  Like the streets surrounding them, they were worn but still managed a smile.

Next stop:  Bogota, Colombia




(Leinani Shak Photography) Club de golf de Panama Panama Canal Panama City https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2015/2/i-need-more-time-with-ms-stone Thu, 05 Feb 2015 04:11:55 GMT
"Smiley" - the man residing on Smith Street - Chinatown, Honolulu https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2014/6/the-man-residing-on-smith-street---chinatown-honolulu In my first blog post in April,  some of my photography workshop classmates and I went to Chinatown to practice what we learned on our first day.  One of my subjects was this man we passed as the class made its way to Mauna Kea Marketplace.  I fell back, offered him a breakfast muffin, and then asked if I could take his photograph.  He wasn't very long on words and even though I asked for his name, I was unable to decipher the response.  


Ever since then, I've been wanting to go back to Chinatown.  I promised them I'd come back to give them a copy of their photo.  So this past Saturday, I made it back!  We (and my workshop classmate, John) found all but one of them (the one we didn't find wasn't in the same location)


Here is another photo of this man who sits on the ground near his wheelchair.  Since it was early in the afternoon, I brought a spam musubi with me which he gladly accepted.  I think he said, "thanks" in his own way...and then I began to think that maybe, like the others who are pros at striking poses for the photographer passerby's like me, that he was a pro at playing the stereotypical role of what society thinks a person who lives on the street should sound like.  I was certain that he was responding to my comments which, in hindsight, were not very worthy of an audible response anyway but when I asked him if he liked his photo, he stunned me when he said:  "Yeah, I love it." 

(Leinani Shak Photography) Chinatown Honolulu https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2014/6/the-man-residing-on-smith-street---chinatown-honolulu Fri, 06 Jun 2014 06:52:33 GMT
Frank on the Bellagio Walkway, Part II:Getting Back on the Grid https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2014/5/frank-on-the-bellagio-walkway-part-ii If I were to describe Frank to you,  you would think that I was writing an executive biography.  He was born and raised in Connecticut, father was a dentist (ironic that Frank has no teeth left which is why he eats yogurt) and went to Florida State University on a golf scholarship.  He graduated from the University of Hartford with an accounting degree. In 1986, he got his CPA license while working  as a CFO for New York City based Royal Par Industries.  Soon after the 1987 stock market crash, Frank moved on and went to work for Maher Hartford Inc, a corporate advertising firm based in Connecticut, as their VP of Finance. . .

This year marks the 20th anniversary of his turning point.   I was fascinated as I listened to him recount his story so eloquently - and then imagine my surprise when he asked if he could see my blog post about him  - never did I think that the man I photographed on the Bellagio Bridge would actually be reading my blog!

We are on a mission to help Frank get off the bridge which is the reason why I brought my laptop with me today.  Step one:  get a duplicate birth certificate.  Yesterday, we told Frank to bring whatever he had with him so we could start the ball rolling.  Here is what's left of his current birth certificate.  

It's so far not proving to be as easy as it sounds since the agencies involved with Birth Certificates, State ID's, and Social Security cards all seem to require each other's "government issued" ID's.  It feels like I'm trying to solve the chicken & egg equation but nevertheless, an order for his birth certificate has been submitted.  



(Leinani Shak Photography) Las Vegas Strip Street Portrait https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2014/5/frank-on-the-bellagio-walkway-part-ii Sat, 17 May 2014 08:41:26 GMT
Frank on the Bellagio Walkway to Caesar's Palace https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2014/4/frank-on-the-bellagio-bridge-to-caesar Today Bob wants to take me on his morning walk to meet a man who sits in the shade near the Bellagio walkway.  Intrigued to know what it was about this particular man vs. the many others seen on the walkways sitting above the Las Vegas Strip, I agreed to go.  On our way, Bob tells me that he has seen this man in this same spot for at least a year.  Each time he passes, he is always smiling and says, "Have a good day."

We found him in his usual spot sitting cross-legged on something that looks like an old book bag.  Directly in front of him is a beat-up plastic cup once used to collect coins from the slot machines at MGM and a sign off to the right that reads, "Anything Helps! Thanks & God Bless."  I also notice that the dilapidated sign is propped up with a previously frozen bottle of water.  The last  few details I see before I start to photograph him are two freshly eaten containers of yogurt, a wrapped cookie drizzled with chocolate, and two roses woven out of palm fronds.

It's 7:45 a.m. and Frank has only about 4 feet of shade before he is chased away by the sun.  I had no breakfast muffins to give to him this time, but was glad to see that he had just eaten.   Bob handed him a few dollar bills which he gratefully accepted and his eyes lit up.  

His name is Frank.  He's originally from Connecticut but moved to Las Vegas 11 years ago in order to be closer to his adult children who live in California.  Frank proudly tells us that he sleeps "indoors" with a group of other people who are in a similar situation.  He commutes to this spot using public transportation which he says is the best in the world.   

Frank leans forward and when he does, he tells me about the rainbow he sees on the walkway at about this time everyday.  I tell him I see it as well.

(Leinani Shak Photography) Las Vegas Strip Street Portrait https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2014/4/frank-on-the-bellagio-bridge-to-caesar Sun, 20 Apr 2014 00:53:38 GMT
Harold on Hotel/Fort Street Mall, Honolulu https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2014/4/harold-from-tennessee I first met this man on April 5th while traipsing through Chinatown.  I was set on asking complete strangers if I could photograph them - yet I had nothing to offer.  He was sitting there next to a red brick wall intently examining his feet.  I took a deep breath, knelt down beside him,  and asked him if I could take his photograph.  Surprisingly, he said yes.  I took one shot - here it is:

I thanked him and moved on.  

Yesterday, I was back in Chinatown but this time I had some breakfast muffins with me as well as two classmates in tow.  I went to seek this man out and found him in the same area.  He had on the same shirt, a more colorful bandana wrapped around his head, and a pair of shorts.   This time, I was able to give him a muffin to thank him for last week.  Then, I introduced my classmates, and asked if we could photograph him again.  He was very gracious and let me and my classmates bob & weave around him frantically trying to find the right angle.  Harold was originally from Tennessee.  He was relocated to Hawaii to fuel large C130 cargo planes.   As I listened to him answer John & Richard's questions,  I watched him strike pose after pose holding completely still each time.  It was then that I realized how obvious it was that we were not the first group of people to take his photograph.  Harold is a pro.  

(Leinani Shak Photography) Chinatown Honolulu https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2014/4/harold-from-tennessee Mon, 14 Apr 2014 02:47:41 GMT
My first blog post about Chinatown-Honolulu https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2014/4/my-first-blog-post-about-chinatown-honolulu **Yes, this is a duplicate blog - testing twitterfeed to see if this blog automatically loads onto my social media pages**

Hello and welcome to my blog - a first for me and a way to record my journey!

Today was the second day of a two day photography workshop in Honolulu.  The class decided to go to Chinatown for two hours to practice what we learned on our first day.  In the morning, I packed my camera, a card reader, and a six pack of individually wrapped breakfast muffins.  My intent was to barter away my breakfast muffins in exchange for some photographs so off I went dragging two of my classmates, both doctors whom I met the day before,  with me.  Here is my favorite shot along with a few others. 

(Leinani Shak Photography) Chinatown Honolulu https://www.leinanishak.photography/blog/2014/4/my-first-blog-post-about-chinatown-honolulu Sun, 13 Apr 2014 09:15:33 GMT