Chanukah Comedy Night @ Chabad of Laguna Beach.

I like my iPad. I do. But when it deletes an entire post because my finger brushed against the wrong button I feel like feeding it to the cows hanging out a few feet from my car.Being as most of my writing is completely ad hoc, and follows my thoughts of the moment, I'm going to have a really hard time rewriting all that was written. Rethinking all that was thought. Retracing whatever steps my mind took on its mad journey towards the "post" button (I'm pushing the save button every other word now).

Here goes:

Part of my wonderfully varied professional life is teaching a bunch of Tweens (also known as the Bar Mitzvah Class/Group/Dudes/Peoples-of-the-younger-sort) about our wonderful Jewish Heritage (I think, come to think of it im not exactly sure what I'm supposed to be teaching them (Dear Rebbetzin Goorevitch, that was a joke. I know exactly what im supposed to be teaching). The indoctrination process takes place at the quaint Chabad of Laguna Beach, located smack dab (who made up that one?) the world renown Pacific Coast Highway (and unlike the cheap knockoff in Northern Cali, this one is actually on the coast).

This same forementioned (my iPad refuses to recognize that as a word. Is it right?) Chabad house hosts an annual (?) Chanukah Comedy night (because they both start with a "C", that's why on Purim, many Chabad houses host "Paloozas" (not that anyone actually knows what a palooza is)). And being that in between teaching, cow watching, designing, and flying around with a cape and tights (you didn't know that was me? That's because I combed my hair to the side and removed my glasses) I am also a semi-professional photographer, I was asked to capture the memories on my cheap Chinese flash cards.

I was quite excited. A. There was food. B. I could test out my new ridiculously expensive new lens (Nikkor 85mm AF-S 1.4G for the techinally inclined) in an environment where it could shine. I am happy to say that it exceeded my expectations (which were quite high already). Sharp as a woman in labor's tongue, fast as a nursing woman's mood changes (that's a joke. My wife is awesome.), quick to focus, and — (bet you don't know where to find that dash on your keyboard) here's the awesome part — keeps the focus on moving subjects! Hooray!

I used my flash and fake fong diffuser for most of the shots (until the comedy part started, then they were all available light).

The Pics (a lot):



DSC_6408.jpg Looks good. Eh? I think this was with the 55mm micro.

DSC_6436.jpg That's EJ. A graduate if the Chabad of Laguna's Hebrew School, a past student of mine, and an awesome flutist.

DSC_6474.jpg Deep in discussion. Those are my star indoctrinees.

DSC_6494.jpg I told the guy on the right that we had three kids under four and my wife was expecting (we were since blessed with a beautiful Ephraim Zusha). He though we were absolutely insane. On another note, I must say, I am getting much better at this flash thing.




DSC_6524.jpg I'm not sure why I have so many pics of Dino. Must be his ultra photogenicness (hmmm, my iPad refuses to recognize that as a word also. Weird).

DSC_6536.jpg The Bar Mitzvah class got to introduce each of the candle lighters with a cute personalized poem. 'twas nice. dino here is trying to memorize his part. 'twas nice. dino here is trying to memorize his part.

DSC_6557.jpg One of the honorees with the wonderful Goorevitchs.


DSC_6570.jpg I always forget this couples name. I was the mashgiach at their sons wedding. Bonnie something. Whatever it may be, they are a really neat family.

DSC_6580.jpg The kids doing their introduction/poetry thing.

DSC_6605.jpg Yay!

DSC_6630.jpg Now starts the comedy part. The dude was mighty funny. Comedy is like pickles for me. I never want them, but once I have a bite I think "wow. These are good, I should have them more often".

DSC_6646.jpg I love how this lens locks in the focus in low light. Yummy.




DSC_6717.jpg Demonstrating how one could drive and take off ones sweater at the same time. Every time I look at these pictures I laugh.

DSC_6737.jpg For some reason I loved how the shadows looked.

DSC_6747.jpg The Tomkins. Parents of the famous Jake. Proud owners of a Mammoth Mountain bumper sticker.


DSC_6789.jpg Not sure what I like about this one.

DSC_6814.jpg This was hilarious. He was showing how whenever there is a bench with a table, people sit on the table and put their legs on the bench. So he invented a row above the tables so people could put their food there. But instead of putting their food there, they sat on them and put their feet on the table. And on it went. I guess you had to be there.

DSC_6756.jpg Mushka hates having her picture taken. Ha.

DSC_6819.jpg I love old couples.

DSC_6839.jpg And the Goorevitches.

Overall I was very happy with the shoot. There were no pieces of art, just good captures of a fun night. I feel like there was consistency from shot to shot, there was good use of flash and the best part: hardly any post processing. Just corrected exposure on a few and batch processed them all through Photoshop with a few minor actions.

What I really should use more though is a moderate wide angle. I'm really eying the new Nikon 35mm, however, its very pricey and I've heard it has some focus issues. We'll see. But it would complement the 85mm perfectly. I'd hardly ever need another lens (I'm trying to convince myself. I'm sure if I try hard enough I could do it.).

And for the record, I ended up typing this in the SimpleNote app and copying the whole thing over. You'd think wordpress would get its act together. Nope. I shouldn't complain. It's free (but is anything really free? Sorry. Not going down that path. I need to sleep).

Good Night.