I have not always loved Vegas. I used to think it was tacky. And my opinion of its tacky-ness has not exactly disappeared. As a photographer, though, I've learned to see it in a new light each time I visit (and I've visited often since a couple years ago when I started shooting weddings in Southern California! It's the halfway point, made my drive much easier.) And now I love it. So much art, music, and people watching! Even nature, believe it or not. The Vegas area has a lot to offer.
So much discovery and adventure - something new every time. My last visit was no exception. The highlight of my trip was definitely Valley of Fire! But I will get to that later.
First, a selfie:
And now, the lights of the Las Vegas Strip.
One of my favorite things walking through all the Casinos is looking up. The light fixtures, the textures, the colors, there's an unbelievable amount of details that most people never even see (like the photo above, at the Encore).
And this next photo has an interesting story behind it. It was one of my... well... less-than-graceful moments.
Here's the boring setup to the story: An amazing night - dancing to a jazz trio at Tuscany Suites, then a peaceful hour walk (yes, I walked alone and accidentally had to cross I-15 on foot. But it was peaceful, I promise!) to see a funk/soul band called Sante Fe and the Fat City Horns (there will be photos tomorrow). I was at the concert with my friend Wyatt and he offered to give me a ride back to my hotel, but I just wanted to jump out at the corner on the strip so I could do more photography that night. The city never sleeps, right?
Well, here's where it gets interesting: There is a railing in between the sidewalk and the street. For good reason. Way too many drunk tourists would be happy to take their stilettos right into the road without thinking twice about the cars or, you know, potential death. So, dozens of cars on the road, hundred of people on the sidewalk... I hop out of the car at a red light and say goodbye, then climb through the railing to get to the sidewalk. Yes, you can probably see where this is going. Sigh... I forgot about my photography backpacking backpack ON MY BACK (it's a fantastic backpack, by the way. Every photographer should have one) as I try to climb through the railing. Yeah, that was an oops. After a few seconds, there's a semi circle of drunk pedestrians on the sidewalk staring at me and wondering how to help get me out of the railing. That was my assumption, at least, I have no clue what they were really thinking! Maybe they were seeing three cherries in a row... And I'm wondering which side would be the least embarrassing to roll towards - back to the cars still waiting at the red light or forward to the sidewalk of people? Eventually, I shimmied my way through and did a little summersault onto the sidewalk. It was the strangest thing, though, they were all standing there, still staring like deer in the headlights. It was as if they were waiting for me to say something before they had permission to move on. So I said "Well, that was graceful!" and apparently it was sufficient direction for the masses to move forward.
To hide my embarrassment and to redeem myself and the camera gear on my back, I pulled out a tripod, tried to look as official as possible, and started working. This (below) is the photo that came from it:
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Well, I got a story AND a photo out of that one!
Check back tomorrow for photos of the concert with Santa Fe and the Fat City Horns.