Dining in Naples

About a year ago

Here’s a video I made about a year ago here in Naples of when I took my family on a trip here.

Daily Photo – Dining in Naples

This is a photo of one of the restaurants in Naples at the Ritz-Carlton. I really enjoy taking photos of cool interiors like this. None of these photos are “required” or anything as part of my relationship with the hotel. But I often end up finding cool interiors here and there. Sometimes the team there sees me setting up with a tripod, going slow, taking my time, etc, and they assume I'm on some kind of a commercial shoot. I end up explaining that I am not on a commercial shoot; I just think it looks awesome.

Dining in Naples

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2017-01-02 11:10:22
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time6
  • Aperture10
  • ISO64
  • Focal Length15.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-2

Sunset in Naples

Highlight video from Naples

This next new year, we are repeating our family trip across Florida and the Caribbean to all new places. Where will we end up? Only the shadow knows… meanwhile, here’s the highlight reel from our time in Naples!

Daily Photo – Sunset in Naples

This was the view from our room every sunset while in Naples, Florida. It was a family trip, and I always try to balance that with taking photos. I'm always stuck with two decisions: 1) Where do I take the photo? 2) Do I make the family wait till like 8:30 PM to eat after I'm done taking photos?

There are no bad answers for number 1 and all bad answers for number 2.

Sunset in Naples

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2017-01-02 06:36:27
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/1250
  • Aperture4.5
  • ISO200
  • Focal Length24.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-1.3

More Katie-Ann Action

New Photo of KA

Here’s a photo I put on the blog a while ago of Katie-Ann getting into the hot tub you see below…

Katie-Ann and the Hot Tub

Daily Photo – More Katie-Ann Action

I have a funny story for you.

So, I was staying in Fort Lauderdale, and I was in an elevator with my camera. This couple got on with me and they excitedly said, “Are you a photographer?!?”

I said I was.

Then they said, “Will you take photos of our baby? Our baby is so amazing! We just got married and we're Jews! And this baby is the best thing ever!”

I said, “No, I don't really take photos of babies or people or anything.”

Then they started begging, telling me how amazing their baby was and it got super-awkward really quickly.

Let me back up a second… So, the female half of the couple is Definitely not the girl in this photo. I'll get to that in a moment. They were both very short and dressed in these all-black robe-things. The girl was particularly tiny, but she had a giant head and face like a full-grown woman. They were probably about 20 years old, but something about them totally freaked me out. When this large-plate-faced woman would stare at me, she would never blink. She was kind of like a living doll in the horror-movie style of doll.

Okay, fast forward to the next day. There's a huge ruckus out in the hallway. I go outside, and hotel security is trying to force open the door. A manager is there, and then I realize I hear a baby crying. It's just wailing away inside. Total chaos. They can't get the door open all the way because of that hotel-chain thing…

The manager yells, “Ma'am you must let us inside! This baby is crying and is obviously in distress!” No one comes to the door and things are getting dicey. I go back into my room, which is right across the hall, and look out the balcony. I'm right above the pool, and I look down, and see the mom and dad laying out at the pool, still wearing these giant black smocks. I think, WTF? Did the baby chain itself into the room? Is there someone else in there?

So I go back to the hallway to talk to the manager and security, and everyone is gone. I'm still thinking WTF. I still hear the baby crying.

Fast forward to next day. I leave the room and this strange tiny couple is outside my door, waiting on me.

They say, “Oh the photographer! Will you please take photos of our baby! I'll pay you anything you want! How much do you charge?”

I'm super-creeped out now and say, “Listen, I really don't take photos of people or babies or anything. I do mostly landscape and travel photography.”

They keep insisting, so I just go back into my room to hide.

Fast-forward to later in the day. I leave the room, and I see another young woman come out of their room. She's maybe 19. We walk down the hallway together and get on the elevator.

“Are you with those people in that room?” I ask her.

“Oh no, they found me on the internet,” she says, then happily pushes the lobby button.

“What do you mean, they found you on the internet?” I ask, obviously.

“I was babysitting,” she offered.

“Aha,” I said. “I've heard that baby is absolutely amazing.”

She gave me a quizzical look then ran off the elevator at the bottom.

Fast-forward to the next day. I'm trying to get some photos of Fort Lauderdale that are interesting. I know this girl Katie-Ann and her boyfriend Pascha through a charity event. She's kind of a model, and I asked if she wanted to spend a few hours to get fun photos on the beach and at the pool. They say sure, and come out to meet me at the pool.

I start posing Katie-Ann, tell her to go this way and that… we're having lots of fun and taking photos for quite a while. Then, all of the sudden, that tiny girlwoman with the black smock and the giant head walks over to me very seriously.

She stares me down and says, “I thought you didn't take photos of people!!!”

“Well,” I cowered, “she's just a friend and I'm taking photos for fun.”

“Why won't you take photos of our baby? Our baby is very beautiful.”

And at this point, I'm starting to think they kidnapped this baby and they're on the run or something. I just could not figure it out. Finally, I had enough.

“Listen, lady. I'm sure your baby is amazing. It sounds like you gave birth to Jesus or something even though you don't believe in him. For now, I'm going to take photos of my friend – why don't you go have a pina colada and relax a bit.”

And that was the last I heard from them.

More Katie-Ann Action

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2017-01-11 02:58:15
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/5000
  • Aperture
  • ISO50
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

Bal Harbour, Florida

Online Travel Tip

Since you can book most anywhere online now, be sure to fill in that “Special Instructions” box when you reserve the room. Request a very high room and tell them you are a professional photographer (even if it’s not true) and you’re looking to get excellent photos of the sunrise/sunset (be sure to look at the hotel first to see the best views are East or West)!

Daily Photo – Bal Harbour, Florida

This was my view out the window looking north along the coast in Bal Harbour. It was my first time here, and I thought, for some reason, that this was just another part of Miami. I suppose it is, geographically, but the culture is completely different here. It's mega quiet and a much older area. No beach parties, not a ton of restaurants or clubs… maybe even ZERO clubs. I was here for maybe two or three nights after a cruise to re-group and relax. I did a few jogs, some workouts, and a squeezed in a few photos while here too.

Bal Harbour, Florida

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-11-14 07:05:04
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time2
  • Aperture6.3
  • ISO500
  • Focal Length73.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-0.7

Huge Gingerbread House in Naples

Another Video Like This?

While in Europe I’m gathering a lot more video footage with quads… thinking about making another video like this one. I’ve got a few Alan Watts lectures I’ve been enjoying… another mix may be coming on! 🙂

Daily Photo – Huge Gingerbread House in Naples

This was the very first thing I saw as I walked into the Ritz-Carlton here in Naples. And the whole thing was edible! Well, except for the lights. I suppose you COULD eat the lights. Anyway, I waited for it to get dark and then I moved over a small cocktail table in front of it with a glass surface to get the reflection… kind of a nice little trick that adds to the effect, I think!

Huge Gingerbread House in Naples

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2017-01-02 11:07:23
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time4
  • Aperture10
  • ISO64
  • Focal Length11.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

Magic Kingdom

World of Avatar!

I know the Animal Kingdom is soon (maybe already?) opening the new World of Avatar section of the park. I really want to go see it… the Disney team there invited me to come and check it out, but I’m too busy with this Europe Tour! Oh well! I’ll try to get there with the family before the year is done and dusted! 🙂

Daily Photo – Magic Kingdom

Wow was it ever crowded here on New Year's Eve Eve! Actually here's a hot Disney tip if you go for New Years. Well, first tip would be to NOT go for New Years because it's soooo crowded. But, if you do go, then you should go to the Magic Kingdom park on December 30, because they have the same fireworks show as they do on New Year's at midnight… then, you can go to Epcot for the actual New Year's at midnight… there's a lot more room to find good places to shoot at Epcot because it's so huge.

Magic Kingdom

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-12-31 07:40:57
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time0.5
  • Aperture4
  • ISO200
  • Focal Length24.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-1

Fun in the Sun in Fort Lauderdale

More Florida Fun

I think next January we’re going to take the family back on another grand vacation to Florida and the Caribbean! We’re already talking about it quite a bit… this time we’ll hit different places, but I know a few on the list: Miami, Grand Cayman Island, and Cancun!

Daily Photo – Fun in the Sun in Fort Lauderdale

Here is my friend Kerry Ann who came down to spend the afternoon with me on a fun photo shoot. She came down with her boyfriend Pascha who was running our big charity event for us. Thanks again for everyone that took part in that. I think we had the fifth-highest charity event on the platform, so that is great. Also glad to report that 100% of the money goes to the HEALING.NET Foundation! Thanks again everyone.

Fun in the Sun in Fort Lauderdale

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2017-01-11 02:10:57
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/4000
  • Aperture6.3
  • ISO800
  • Focal Length106.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias-0.7

Party Boat for Intellectuals!

Summit Series

They’re not doing this cruise any more, but Summit has other events and goodies going on. You can see more at their website in that linky!

Daily Photo – Party Boat for Intellectuals!

This was a weird scene for sure! This was the Summit at Sea, where we took a cruise with all these “TED Speaker” kinda people. For some reason, on this cruise, they would not serve ANY alcohol until 6 PM. I've never heard of such a thing… and we were in international waters. Quentin Tarantino was on the boat too, and he said something funny about this bar on the boat called “Margaritaville” where you can't get any drinks during the day, and not even any margaritas for 24 hours a day! And, also, this was days after the election, so there was a lot of pent-up-TED-angst, so when the bars were open, people finally went nuts, like caged animals set free.

Party Boat for Intellectuals!

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-11-12 06:35:50
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/50
  • Aperture
  • ISO250
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

A Magical Sunset in Naples

#80Stays!

Be sure to check out the latest on our European Tour! We’re right in the middle of it now and having a blast! I hope you can join us! 🙂

Daily Photo – A Magical Sunset in Naples

Every night I went out on the beach here in front of the Ritz-Carlton to get a good sunset. I was rewarded 40% of the time over my 5 nights… Usually, I get better stats than 2/5 on Florida sunsets… but there were some strange storms, which make the sunsets both unpredictable but also quite amazing when they actually do happen. It reminds me once again that it's most important just to show up with your camera and hope it all works out!

A Magical Sunset in Naples

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2017-01-04 06:55:51
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/30
  • Aperture6.3
  • ISO200
  • Focal Length24.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-1.3

Monks taking Mobile photos on a cruise

Wanna come?

Join me for an all-expenses paid trip here to New Zealand to take photos for a week and join my photo adventure workshop! Yes, flights and all. This contest is available all around the world and anyone can win. I’ll give you three steps here and tell you how it works. And if you don’t win that one, maybe you’ll win a chance to come see Hans Zimmer in concert with me in the best seats in the house amidst 40,000 fans in Frankfurt, Germany’s Commerzbank-Arena. Two great prizes there, both celebrating these 10 Photo Walks I’m doing across Europe in 10 great cities. Join me for these free events!

What do you do to enter?
First, if you think any of this sounds cool, tell your friends! We have more about the photo contest at 80stays.treyratcliff.com

Second, on that site, you can see links to all the contests and more along the top! I said two great prizes… not quite accurate as there are actually more!

Third, and this is not a requirement, but a fun thing – if you’re in the area, RSVP to one of our free photo walks coming up in Europe. You’ll also see links to all 10 events at the site above.

Good luck, and I hope you win! You’ll be on a shiny new Air New Zealand bird, heading here to Queenstown for a week of some of the most insanely beautiful scenery in the world. I’ll show you all my secret spots and you’ll have a great time at our workshop… stay in a beautiful hotel, have great food and wine, take photo walks all through the southern alps, and meet my dog Blueberry (a real highlight hehe!). Anyway, I’m packing my bags now to come to Europe for 40 days for these photo walks (spending 4 days in each city as our bus of merry traveling artists weave our way from Lisbon to Barcelona to Milan to Paris to London to Amsterdam to Berlin to Vienna to Budapest, then jumping on a plane to end the tour in Moscow) – sound exhausting eh? Okay gonna take a nap now while my camera batteries charge.

See you all soon, and best of luck again on the contest. We thought it would be a fun way to get the whole world involved even if you can join me in Europe.

Oculus Rift Recommendation

Also, completely unrelated but if you have a Rift, be sure to get the game Robo Recall. It’s incredible! I need to make a list of my favorite VR games and get them up on the site… keep reminding me! 🙂

Daily Photo – Monks taking Mobile photos on a cruise

I feel like I don't even need a description for this photo, as I can't say anything more than the title. Well, maybe some background. I was on this TED-like cruise called Summit at Sea. I kept running into these monks over and over again, mostly on the elevator. We would always have very deep conversations that would only last 3 minutes. Then, one evening as the sun was setting, I saw my two friends taking photos of one another like a couple of schoolgirls – I thought it was great!

Monks taking Mobile photos on a cruise

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-11-11 06:29:05
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/500
  • Aperture
  • ISO800
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias-0.3

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