Griffith Observatory Panorama

This picture is pretty much similar to the previous one and it is not this kind of photographs I usually do. But sometimes you have to look over the fence and try other things. This is a panorama shot taken at the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles. I made 7 pictures with a Tamron 11-18mm lens at 18mm and stitched them afterwards.


You can see the whole Los Angeles Basin from Downtown L.A. on the left till Century City and Santa Monica behind on the right as well as the Pacific Ocean. Also note the Hollywood sign on the far right. A city of an unbelievable size (and I thought Mexico City was big).


I did these photographs a few weeks after Apple has released iOS 6 which brought a panorama function to the iPhone 4S and newer and even it was a few weeks out, you could here this remarkable “beep” of the iPhone’s panorama function everywhere around the observatory. Other phones have a similar function, but when I was there it seemed like everyone was using an iPhone.


So what did I do? I just took the iPhone as well and made panorama photo by using the new function. If you want to see the comparision between a panorama of 7 raw shots where an iMac Core Duo needed several minutes to stitch it and a panorama, taken on a mobile device and ready to use¬†immediately after releasing the shutter – then click here…
(iPhone on top)

City of Angels

Finally I managed to continue my work on the pictures I took in Los Angeles in November last year…
Unfortunately I was at the wrong time at Griffith park. Around noon with bad daylight conditions. Just imagine how this photo would look like if I had done it shortly after sunset. Anyway, one more reason to come back one day.
I really like the field of view from this point: Downtown L.A. on the left hand side and a view to Orange County and Santa Ana mountains on the horizon, Long Beach on the horizon in the middle and the Pacific coastline in the haze on the far right side.

Short final

Again in¬†California and again it was my goal to catch a heavy on short final to LAX. Dream was to get a Quantas A380. But without having ATC or mobile internet the only thing you can do is wait (and I saw the Quantas bird already coming in when I still was on the highway). This time I had plenty of time to visit the famous park at Sepulveda Blvd. to watch the birds coming down on runway 24R. But everything I saw was a big cross on the runway marking it as closed. What a disappointment! So I walked down the road to 24L and got an AA triple seven – unfortunately on the best frame a wingtip is missing. Obviously not my day. So I walked back to the car. On the way back I met another photographer and he gave me the information that the Korean A380 is coming around. So I went back to 24L. Plan was to be at the left wing tip fence position and to catch the beast at 11 mm. Really hard to estimate…
This is what I got and I’m quite happy. Not the 24R position, but still an A380 wide angle picture at LAX. Due to the fact that it was done at 11 mm the plane looks smaller than it is. But have a look on it’s mighty shadow and you will get an impression about the size (front part is only from wing tip to No.1 engine)


I don’t know what you think how I find the spots where I do photographs like this one. Pure luck! Okay, not at all. In most cases I discover the whole area on Google Earth and use Streetview as well. The picture shown here was done on the second last day of my trip and I had a long to-do-list after leaving the office. So I grabbed summer clothing and camera in the morning, changed it on leaving the office and made a big round trip through Orange County and its malls to spend some money. When done with shopping I tried to get to the coast before sunset. On arrival in Newport Beach I took a random road to the beach and what a luck – I directly ended on a place called “Inspiration Point”. I think I have seen why it is called this way. (Inspiration Point on Google Maps)