April was an incredibly busy month. And a very good one as well.
I haven’t taken these many pictures since the ole’ paparazzi days. And only one cover picture…
That was on April 2nd. Where I also took some other pictures for the magazine, but the cover was something else.
I also took pics the day before. We had a family picnic and I took my camera. Tons of pics. Posted this one.
That’s my niece in the sky.
I probably took a full cycle of clicks on my Canon. Yes, I’m talking about over 10,000 clicks for the month.
I’m going to need another body soon and a new lens. My 28-70 is eating shit. Seriously eating shit. And it’s embarrassing.
The 85mm/1.8f is great but limited and on the crop sensor… it’s a bit too much zoom.
The 24mm/2.8f that I borrow is a life saver for a little pancake, but I rather have a better/nicer lens.
The 70-210mm/3.5-4.5f is also a lifesaver since I used it yesterday for a rugby match. It’s a piece of shit lens (and that’s why Andy gave it to me for free), but a lifesaver for what I needed.
Oh! do I yearn for a 70-200mm/2.8f and much more equipment…
And… also… a car.
Busy month = I made good money month. Better than a long time. I feel like I say this each month and that’s good.
And it can still be better.
This month I got lucky though. I did a friend’s wedding photography and I also did a giant bachelor tour. Both paid me more than I thought.
Before that… I met a surfer dude named Scott, the editor of Surfer’s Journal. He might have some gigs for me. Photography and perhaps writing, but more photography. I don’t know little about surfing and I’m horrible in the water.
Scott hit me up to talk TJ and what not. He was in the hunt for Javier Plascencia, so I met him at Caesar’s where he bought me some beers and oysters.
Plascencia didn’t show up.
The following morning, we went to Valle de Guadalupe to meet Plascencia over there.
We ate incredibly delicious food at Finca Altozano.
This tuetano was the big winner. We also had tacos de lengua that weren’t that great, ceviche tostaditas that were citrusy and minty (excellent), and fantastic calabazitas rellenas with pork belly bites.
To view more pics, follow my Instagram.
Oh yeah. And then we met with Javier Plascencia.
I took shit tons of pictures again. This one was my favorite because you can see me reflected on his sunglasses.
After being in his presence twice before… this time I actually got to meet the legend. Scott was the main guy that talked to him… I barely said a couple sentences to him, but Javier seemed to be really down to earth. Great guy, just overworked, but at the same time living the dream life.
I also got published in the Reader twice.
Here’s one about a Hollywoodesque sign in Tijuana.
And the other… I actually wrote it back in February and got published now. Landslide in Lomas del Rubí. More pictures of that, here.
I didn’t do much writing in the month… except for my book. That’s about to be done!
But I’ve been getting busy (and sometimes lazy) that I couldn’t finish it by my own deadline of March.
3 or so chapters to go and done.
It’s… pretty stupid. To get you an idea… it’s just like this. Just like what you are reading just now.
After the Plascencia in Valle, I was just dropped back off home. Not sure what I did for the following days… all I know is that weekend it was Justin’s wedding.
And that… well, that was something else.
I didn’t even need to be there for two days. But I was. And Justin got me an Airbnb. A nice house I shared with his brother the first night and with more guys the second night.
The house happened to be next to the first house I stayed in Ensenada four years ago (I wrote this).
I took 2,700 pictures. Or something like that.
I filled up two 32 gig cards and I was halfway to filling the 8 gig card when my flash had enough and I said done for the night.
I hate group shots. That was a pain in the ass. But I learned a lot and I know I can still do better.
Here’s a weird one.
I just love this one because of the kids’ faces… So great.
Not that many people liked this one… I thought was great :(
And the bridesmaids…!
I realize I didn’t pick the best photos… I was going to post 9 but got tired after 3… so that’s all you get.
I delivered over 1,000 pictures. Justin and Kimberly were happy with the result. It’s shit tons of pictures, but it gives them what to choose. And several have been chosen (for their profile pics and whatnot).
There are a lot of great pictures there. Trust me (and I can always do better… and I need better gear).
More photo work for the Reader.
Shit that hasn’t been printed, so can’t post now (wait until next month).
A LOT OF TACOS.
Taco porn. The most taco porn you can imagine.
I posted a preview on Reddit because I couldn’t resist and one of the comments asked for a print. This is the thread.
“This is straight pornographic. I want it poster sized so I can hang it on my wall.” Is the comment. Exactly what I was going for… but can’t believe he wants to have a poster-sized for his wall… and I’m going to deliver it for him. I should do that soon. I wonder how the photo will look blown up.
I discovered the best tacos I have had so far… I’m not kidding…
Better than El Rey… which I feel like I’m betraying them when I say this.
You’ll have to wait to see what I’m talking about.
I’ll be taking more pictures of tacos this week, but this time in San Diego.
Doing more Reader photo work, I met with an awesome photographer on 4/21. An upcoming story about the guy, his garden, and his neighborhood garden.
That’s also upcoming. I got great pics and can’t wait to see the cover.
Before those garden pictures… I went on a 4/20 tour with Tony Tee and his San Diego Cannabis Tours, his new venture.
He hired me to take pictures. And he hired me again for another tour in May.
That’s the most weed I have ever smoked in my life. By far.
He took us to Urbn Leaf, but it was 4/20 so the place was a mess and we were already really high that we barely ordered. At least they had free pizza and donut bites.
After that, we just got back on the bus and smoke shit tons more. Went to a bong factory to see how bongs are made (pretty awesome, great pictures).
We got to smoke out of this giant bong:
That’s Ale Molina follow her here.
After that another store and for tacos.
It only shows one pic of the bong making… But there are more pics on their Instagram.
That same day, I found a hole on the gate by the border highway.
Some other photographer probably cut the hole. This would make for excellent long exposure at night… I’m going to try it soon. My brother’s other apartment is nearby as well.
Then more tacos and more tacos and more tacos for the upcoming taco edition. I’m almost done with my text. Didn’t realize that I already wrote it a few days ago, it just needs some fixing here and there.
And April ended with a weekend of WAY TOO MANY PICTURES.
Friday I had a sexy photoshoot for a friend’s fashion brand @VitchKraft
She got alt models @purrformew and @corinne_darkcat
I only posted one picture so far… I plan to post three.
… How many pictures did I take… ?
More than 1,400… edited down to a whopping 282…
Then I saved the ones I thought were best in my cellphone… they ended up being 50+
And I’m still undecided on which ones to post (I’m narrowing it down though).
I suck at choosing pictures. And I take way too many.
@VitchKraft posted these three so far.
Corinne posted these two:
@purrformew also posted one picture, but I can’t link it cuz her Instagram is private despite having 44k followers!
She also edited the first shot and did her own edit to give it a darker tone.
And after shooting over 1,000 pictures… I had a gig in San Diego that Chad got me.
I had to dress like a penguin for it.
Two days in the month of April I wore a tuxedo. The wedding. And Chad’s Food Bank event.
Chad said, “it’s going to be easy, there’s an open bar, there will be food, just take a few pics.”
Or something like that.
It wasn’t that… :(
It was a red carpet like shoot… I was not prepared mentally for it and it took me a while to arrange myself for it. 500 guests. Took pictures of around 300+ people. The exact same picture on the same wall.
I fucking hate doing red carpet like events.
I did Twilight (it was horrible), Kung Fu Panda (from afar), and one in Ojai that I forgot what it was about. Reese Witherspoon was there. She didn’t have a spoon.
Anyway. I stood in the same spot for 2+ hours saying hi to rich folk and telling them to pose. BAM BAM. One more over here sir, mam. BAM! Next!
Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.
Then took some candid shots. Did some light painting ones for fun. Another photographer with way better gear was there already taking care of other great pics. I was done. Took a six pack of cider in my bag (I didn’t even get to eat there) and went home.
Stopped at 7-eleven for more beer (No Güey Mango IPA) and some beef jerky. Drove to Balboa Park to get my lost SENTRI back. And then drove back home.
Over 1,000 pictures.
To wake up on Sunday and cross the border and take even more pictures!
This time I hung out with Ian, one of the most prolific writers for the Reader. He has another story coming up and we needed more pics.
It wasn’t 1,000 pics… but still… 500+
Just finished that edit and sent it. I’m excited to see what May brings (a lot of pictures will be used).
Also. My birthday. And I’m thinking about escaping to Mexicali for that…
BECAUSE I STILL WANT TO FUCKING GO OVER THERE.
May looks like it’s going to be busy as fucking hell as well, but it might not be. You never know in the freelance life.
I’m looking to buy a car. I saw one that convinced me on Craigslist… it disappeared after two days. I hesitated.
I don’t feel ready to have a car… but I need one soon.
My budget is not that much either… but I’m tired of borrowing my brother’s car. Especially the busier I get and the more I need a car.
Oh yeah. I also worked out a bunch. And for the first time in years… played some tennis. My body was destroyed for the following two days. Especially my right hand. The grip on my old-ass tennis racquet is falling apart. It was painful to hold.
The matches were against my buddy Bryan.
He thought he was going to beat me. Fucker played tennis in varsity high school in California…
It was even… but I won 7-5 both sets.
Here we go May! I already have a handful of gigs lined-up. And it’s Tacotopia… and much more.
Let’s see what happens.
I thought I was finished… and I didn’t even mention the bachelor tour.
It was 15 people. Half Hindu-American guys and the other half white kids.
The bachelor was wasted by the time I met them at around 5:30 pm. His brother at least seemed to be in control.
They wanted Hong Kong to Mision 19 to Hong Kong.
Impossible and I wasn’t doing that. They were already drunk, we were definitely going to get kicked out or something. So I had a better plan.
Norte Brewing. They loved it.
Then dinner at La Cevicheria Nais. Total check was of $700+. They loved it.
Then Hong Kong…
For over three fucking hours.
Some tacos Coahuila. Some guys wanted to stay. Bachelor and brother said the group has to go back together.
It was tough… but managed to keep 15 drunk guys in order and walked them back to the border.
Made good money through Venmo.
Bachelor tipped me drunkenly as he dropped dollars on the floor.
Then I went on my own adventure. That I wrote about in my book.
So that’s that.
I’m hungry. So I’m done.
Till next month kiddos!