Sequoia National Park and a Full Moon

A couple of weekends ago, I drove up north to Sequoia National Park for an overnight camping trip.  The trip also happened to coincide with the huge full moon that weekend.  As I read it, it was the closest the moon had been to the earth in a while.  I believe it — you could read a book at midnight using only moonlight.  It also led to some pretty cool light for night photography.

A full moon shines on a river in Sequoia National Park at night

Hiking amongst the Sequoia trees in Sequoia National Park

City Council Election Night in Culver City

I will say this– I was in no way excited to go and photograph the local city council election night in Culver City.  The assignment just screamed boring photos to me.  However, cynicism be damned, I actually had a lot of fun shooting it.  I realized that the completely open and unfiltered access I had the candidates is something I would never get with a governor, congressman, or (obviously) the president.  The emotions are all the same– be it winning a city council seat or a Senate seat– and I am happy I got to cover the elections.

Jim Clarke Culver City Council

Andy Weissman Culver City Council

Votes are tallied on election night

Culver City Council election night

Meghan Sahli-Wells

2012 LA Marathon

Last weekend, I was hired to photograph my first marathon and spent most of the day at the finish line of the LA Marathon along Ocean Ave. in Santa Monica.  It was windy as hell but thankfully it didn’t pour down rain as was originally forecast.  With over 20,000 people running the race, there were plenty of chances to capture some personal and sometimes painful moments as well as a few other unique happenings.

Thankfully, photographing a marathon is much easier than running one.  When it comes to marathons, I think I will continue to stay on this side of the camera…

Heavy winds easily ruffle the Mylar blanket of a runner at the finish line of the LA Marathon in Santa Monica, CA.

Local Los Angeles actress Tanna Frederick is offered assistance by medical staff after crossing the finish line of the LA Marathon.

Thousands of runners make their way down Ocean Ave. in Santa Monica on the final push to the finish line.

LA Marathon spectators try to get a better view through barriers and fencing set up at the finish line

Kenny Deroian, left, hugs his new fiance and racer Rhea Bastianon, right, after proposing to her as she crossed the finish line of the LA Marathon.

Sunday Hike in Malibu

I haven’t had much time to take pictures lately with the new job, but I do always carry my iPhone around and have been taking a lot of photos with it recently.  This is one from a hike we did today in Solstice Canyon in Malibu.  Perfect day for a hike.

What Happens to My Photos When They are Stolen

I figured with all my photos posted across the internet on various newspaper websites and my personal blog, some images are going to be stolen every now and then.  It is almost a given.

Today, a friend posted on Facebook a link to a little program called “Src Img”.  It is a search program that is added to your browser’s bookmark toolbar and will perform a reverse image search on any image you click on.

For fun, I went back through my blog and clicked on a few images that I knew were stolen in the past.  A lot of my Mizzou sports photos were stolen and posted on various fan websites such as and even on some guy’s website who sells college athletes’ jerseys, football gloves, shoes, jockstraps, etc.

When I plugged in this boxing photo that I took while working at the Reno Gazette-Journal in 2009, I got the weirdest results.  I got so many weird results that I just had to share some of them here:

The original image I took in 2009 at a boxing match in Reno, Nevada.  Apparently this is a fun image to steal…

And now some screen shots of this picture after it was stolen:

My boxing photo turned into a boxing lizard photo…

I am so honored to have my image used on a poster to sell boys clothing somewhere in Europe…

Perhaps one of my Korean friends can tell me what this says… That is Korean, right?

Not sure what is going on in this one…

So yes, I could send DMCA copyright take down notices to every single little blog and message board that steals my images, but that takes lots and lots of time.  I did send DMCA notices to any website that was using my images to make money (i.e. the guy selling sports memorabilia), but it just isn’t worth it to send it so some personal blogger who gets maybe 5 hits a month on his blog… At some point you have to ask what your time is really worth.

I am sure most of the time, it is innocent enough.  People just think that if it is on the internet, it is free to take.  Some try to use the justification of “I gave you credit,” but guess what?  Credits don’t pay the bills…

For those that do have their images stolen, here are some good links on how to write a DMCA take down notice:

Now, stop stealing my photos and turning them into lizards…

Exploring the Cabrillo Marine Aquarium

Owned by the City of Los Angeles, the Cabrillo Marine Aquarium is a nice (and cheap) alternative to the more expensive Long Beach Aquarium across the harbor.  I didn’t even know it existed until this weekend and had some fun exploring it.  Photographers love aquariums… lots of color and lots of fun ways to photograph.