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[photography + life] getting out

I was actually able to pull off being out after dark two nights this last week. The first night was “date night” at Kid’s Day Out and I had already made plans to go out with my good friends Aggelige and Yvette. We all met at seven4one in Laguna Beach. This boutique hotel is a true hidden gem. It just opened in August last year and is the FIRST (yes, read 1st) green hotel in Orange County. How sad. Can you believe? Well, at least there is one in wonderful, so “caring about anything but yourself” OC (I’m so jaded).

I can go on and on about this place-the absolutely adorable and friendly staff; the gorgeous, modern suites; the fabulous food that you can eat at any of the relaxing courtyards around the hotel-but you must check it out for yourself.

The other night I went out to the first Orange County SmugMug User (I like Unity) Group (SMUG). It was great. I am not a big fan of these meet and greet socials but I enjoyed finding out that I have made some wise decisions over the last year. I used to utilize an online photo sharing and lab service for professional quality printing through Pictage but have since switched to Smugmug after it was mentioned to me by Bonnie Berry.

What I liked most about the meeting was getting to know the company better. They are a family owned business and really care about creating a service that does what their members want. They are doing their research and are on top of things technically. Plus, they are aligning themselves with some of the best in the business.

I am hoping that the next meeting is a little less overwhelming (there were over 250 people there) so I can actually take the time to get to know some of my professional peers. Unfortunately I sat next to an old skool blowhard that just wanted to talk about the next big long expensive lens he wanted to buy and how he has never charged for any images he’s ever made and can’t believe he has to pay a license fee to put music on his website. Someday I hope these guys go the way of the dinosaur.