Oct 7, 2012

Home For Thanksgiving

These are actually shots I took of my parents place in October 2005 when I came home from film school for Thanksgiving.  What I like most about them is that despite this house not changing all that much over the years, it's rare that we ever think to take pictures of places that are familiar to us like this.  The yard, the stacked wood and deck chairs, the swinging bench on the veranda, the basketball hoop over the garage, the lighthouse bird feeder that my dad built, etc. all paint a picture of home for me.

As this place continues to change without me noticing, I'm sure I'll come to appreciate shots like this even more.  Of course, shots of the family are just as important, but there's something equally special about locations.  This will always be home.  

Oct 6, 2012

Auto Collection at Imperial Palace: Part 1

Located on the top floor of the parking garage at the Imperial Palace in Las Vegas, the auto collection on display is absolutely incredible.  It's no secret what an avid car fan I am, especially when it comes to my Jaguar, and the 125,000 square ft. showroom full of classic cars was pure eye candy.  It's part museum, part dealership, and if you're wealthy enough or hit the jackpot in the casino you can actually purchase a lot of these cars.  

Among the collection were three Jaguars that I really wanted to see up close, including an E-Type, an XK-120, and the extremely rare XJ220 of which less than 300 were ever made between 1992-1994.  In addition to this, I was just excited to see so many beautiful cars that spanned so many different decades, styles, and manufacturers all under one roof.  

Specifically speaking, I have never seen so many Rolls Royces from so many different periods in one place.  It almost made them seem common place because there were so many - almost.  As you'd expect, I killed a few hours here and shot tons of pictures. The cherry on top of it all was that with this printed voucher, admission was free.  Look forward to a lot more incredible classic cars in the coming weeks as I share more highlights in this 4 part photo set from the Imperial Palace auto collection.

The famed Jaguar XJ220 on display.  It cost over $650,000 brand new.

Oct 5, 2012

Bodies & Titanic Exhibits at Luxor

As Mike, Erin, and I headed south along the strip last week, we decided it would be cool to check out the exhibits inside of the famed Vegas pyramid, Luxor.  The downside was that pictures weren't allowed, which was kind of disappointing as other locations and museums were cool with it.  We still paid the double admission (sans the overpriced audio tour add-on) and checked out Bodies & Titanic.

We did Titanic first, which was a somewhat surreal experience.  It's kind of crazy to wrap your head around the fact that these artifacts were collected from the bottom of the ocean and were used by the passengers of that ship.  Things like notes or jewelry or shoes always get me, because it wakes you up to the reality of the tragedy and those who perished.  Shoes especially freak me out, because the only way you'd find a pair of shoes next to each other at the bottom of the ocean after all of that time is if someone had been wearing them all the way down.

It was a cool exhibit, and the real gem of the entire collection was the Big Piece.  It's a 26 foot long, 15 ton piece of the Titanic's hull that they brought up from the ocean floor and have hanging on display.  It had already broken off of the ship, and they raised it back in 1998 after a previous attempt in 1996.  As someone who has a great appreciation of history, I can't begin to explain just how cool that was to see.

We all got a boarding pass when we entered the exhibit that had a passenger's name listed on it. You were supposed to wait until the end of the tour to check the manifest list to see if your person lived or died. Mike and I were both first class men and we assumed the worst. Turned out we were right.

The Bodies exhibit was completely different, but an equally cool display. Featuring real bodies and organs, the experience is like an anatomy lesson that had us talking a lot about how our own bodies work. I immediately started talking about cannibalism and how stringy humans would be to eat, whereas Mike tried to make his knees crack after we had seen a cross section of what kneecaps looked like. 

Frankly, I had the same morbid curiosity with this exhibit as I had with Titanic, and wondered who these people were and what they might think of having all of their 'business' on display. I doubt they care at this point, but they probably didn't expect to be part of a tour. It was a cool show, but it's not really something I can describe.  You just have to see it to really appreciate how complex, fascinating, and bizarre, parts of the human body really are.