Technomania Circus Blacklight Theater

June 11, 2011 by · 4 Comments 

Technomania Circus Blacklight Show Golfing

Golfing Under Blacklight

        Technomania Circus held a blacklight theater at their usual in Barrio Logan venue, The Center for Performing Arts last night and I was there, right in the front row, which I think are the best seats in the house. For those of you that don’t know, San Diego has a regularly performing circus troupe that happen to be an amazing group of people we all know as Technomania Circus. Dr. Techno is the lead Technomaniac as well as the man that keeps the bacon sizzling. Yes, bacon was served during the show, cotton candy was available and there is a fine art gallery in the foyer of the bathroom. Awesome!

Technomania Circus Art Gallery

Technomania Circus Art Gallery

        This month’s theme was, “Blaaack Liiiight,” always spoken in a deep, menacing voice. Blacklight theater is a lot of fun because it’s like a real life special effect; you don’t get to see everything and that’s what makes it special. The show started at 8pm but thanks to our perfect San Diego weather and long summer days it wasn’t dark yet so we were treated to some music, comedy, juggling and balancing as the sun slowly drifted away.

Technomania Circus

Balancing On Ladders

        This summer will make it two years that I’ve been going to shows at Technomania Circus. It was way back in July of 2009 that I first went to, photographed and wrote about their show and I haven’t looked back since. The address of the circus is 2438 Commercial St. San Diego, CA 92102, right next to the 25th & Commercial St. trolley station. You are certainly welcome to bring food, drinks and cameras into the show and the venue is in an area heavy with taco shops and corner stores so you can get everything you need for the show when you arrive.

Willy Bologna At Technomania Circus

Willy Bologna About To Play The Harp

Technomania Circus Blacklight Show

Technomania Circus Center For Amusing Arts

        Once we got past twilight it was time for, “Blaaack Liiiight!” This is what we’d all been waiting for and it did not disappoint. They took us all over the place, as you’ll see in the photos and in the video at the bottom of the post. For you photographers out there, the sharp photos were taken at 1/45th, f/3.5, ISO 3200 while the photos that show a lot of motion blur were exposed for 1 second, f/3.5, ISO 800. Ya done good Technomaniacs, ya done real good. See you next time.

Technomania Circus Blacklight Skeletons

Technomania Circus Blacklight Skeletons

Technomania Circus Blacklight Show Dr. Techno Robofriend

Technomania Circus Blacklight Show Dr. Techno Robofriend

Technomania Circus Blacklight

1 Second Of Time At Technomania Circus

Technomania Circus Blacklight

A Blacklight Creature

Technomania Circus Blacklight Show

Pleasing The Blacklight Gods

Technomania Circus Blacklight Theater

A Little San Diego Night Photography

February 27, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Imperial Beach And San Diego South Bay At Night

San Diego’s South Bay At Night

        It seems to me that I’ve been ignoring the night lately, so I’m going to change that, slowly but surely. For my fellow photographers, both photos in this post are 30 second exposures at f/8, ISO 200.

Imperial Beach And San Diego Southbay At Night

Front Porch With A View Of Downtown & San Diego Bay

        Both photos above are from the front porch of a lucky person that lives, literally at the very edge of San Diego bay. The view is looking north, with downtown San Diego glowing in the background.

Technomania Circus: Zombie Show!!

October 24, 2010 by · 3 Comments 

Technomania Circus The Zombie Show

Zombies At Technomania Circus

        Technomania Circus entertained us last night with a performance of the 2nd annual ZOMBIE SHOW!! This show is perfectly timed for Halloween with fire and an entire cast of zombies. For those of you that have never been, Technomania Circus lives right next to the west-bound orange line trolley station at 25th & Commercial.

Technomania Circus The Zombie Show

Technomania Circus The Zombie Show

        This was my first Zombie Show, so I wondered what the Technomaniacs would have in store, beyond a zombified theme. It turned out the entire cast performed the entire show as zombies… Brilliant. We got to see zombies dance, match wits on a game show, play musical instruments, juggle and play with fire.

Newlydead Game Technomania Circus The Zombie Show

(Above) The Newlydead Game

Dr. Techno Performs Technomania Circus The Zombie Show

Dr. Techno Performs

Dr. Techno Technomania Circus The Zombie Show

Dr. Techno Technomania Circus The Zombie Show

        Dr. Techno is the guy and the guy behind the guy at the home of Technomania Circus. He is the magnetic force that attracts and holds the circus together, working tirelessly and guess what? Today, (October 24, 2010) is Dr. Techno’s 65th birthday! Happy Birthday Dr. Techno! The world thanks you for all the laughter & joy you’ve brought us.

Willy Bologna Plays The Harp Technomania Circus The Zombie Show

Anton Juggles Technomania Circus The Zombie Show

        Not to be out-done, Willy Bologna played the harp, rocking us out to a zombified version of The Cranberries song, “Zombie.” Anton the zombie juggled for us, which was amazing considering that he was after all, a zombie.

A Zombie At Technomania Circus The Zombie Show

Technomania Circus Welderman At The Zombie Show

        There was a smattering of fire and blacklight at Technomania Circus during the Zombie Show, as well as an appearance by The Welderman. The zombie above sang to us while slowly ripping off pieces of his own flesh and throwing them into the audience. Halloween is a great time of year!

Blacklight Technomania Circus The Zombie Show

Blacklight Theater At Technomania Circus

Technomania Circus Welderman At The Zombie Show

The Welderman At Technomania Circus

        And that’s a wrap! Once again I had a great Saturday night adventure at Technomania Circus, and this show took place under a full moon, which helped to make the night night extra scary and extra lively. Check the Technomania website for future shows and special events. There’s at least one show per month, and sometimes even more so you are never too far away if you happen to be in need of a fix from the circus. Above is a video that shows a minute or so of intros and Dr’ Techno’s famous balancing act and wraps up with zombies rocking out to the L7 song, “Pretend That We’re Dead.”

San Diego Trolley Renewal Closures For 2010

October 18, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

la mesa blvd trolley station

15 Seconds Near La Mesa Blvd Trolley Station

        We have our first update for trolley closures that will accommodate construction for the trolley renewal project. In a nutshell, blue line southbound service will terminate at Palm Ave. on the weekends between now and the end of 2010. Shuttles will run in lieu of the trolleys between Palm Ave. and the border. There will also be an express shuttle running directly from San Ysidro to Palomar station. During the holiday weekends of Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years there will be no construction so the blue line trolley will be running regular weekend service all the way to the border. This seems very straightforward to me: From now until the end of the year, there will be trolley service disruptions on non-holiday weekends between the Palm Avenue station and the San Ysidro/International Border station.

San Diego blue line trolley service disruptions for 2010

Technomania Circus Presents The Beer Show

September 26, 2010 by · 3 Comments 

Technomania Circus Beer Show

The Beer Show Begins

        I have inexcusably missed a show or two, presented by Technomania Circus this summer, but I did attend the BEER SHOW last night and the Technomaniacs did not disappoint. This particular show was about all things that, in one way or another, having to do with beer. It started out with a clutch of the cast walking in a zombified manner to the stage, affirming their allegiance to beer.

Technomania Circus Beer Show

Dr. Techno Introduces The Musicians

        One (or two) of the unsung heroes of Technomania Circus are those that provide the music for the shows, playing everything from a tubas to accordions to pianos.

Technomania Circus Beer Show

Evil Lucy Plays With Fire

        There were a few guests from out of town performing at this show and one of them was Evil Lucy, from New York. She is one of those irrational people that plays with and flings fire around like a yo-yo.

Technomania Circus Beer Show

Technomania Circus Beer Show

        John and Anton are two of the mainstays at Technomania Circus. They like to balance things on their faces, juggle and heckle the crowd, more or less in that order. We all know that I am an anti-flash advocate. Flash photography is just about the worst thing in the world. This show, and Jon in particular helped to drive that point home… When some one is balancing on a ladder, 10 feet in the air while juggling bowling pins, turn your flash off! Crank up the ISO on your camera and slow your shutter down. The photo below is a great example of this. The slow shutter and lack of flash create a great sense of movement.

Technomania Circus Beer Show

Ezmeralda Volunteers

        There was a goodly amount of audience participation for this show, and that is something that never fails to entertain. Even though I have only two series of live theater performances under my belt, I have a vast reservoir of public speaking and debating to draw from, so performing, as a volunteer or not is something I personally find easy to do. That being said, it is very comical to watch people being dragged up on stage that would rather remain as members of the audience. The joy of Technomania Circus is that audience participation transcends phobias like this, and brings everyone up (or down) to a level that consists of laughter, happiness, joy and comedy.

Technomania Circus Beer Show

All Hail The Beer!

Technomania Circus Beer Show

Cows Filming A Commercial

        We all remember that late 1990’s and a series of Budweiser commercials with three frogs, each responsible for a syllable of the word, Bud-wise-er. For the photo above, a big shot Hollywood director tried to re-create this commercial with cows, but all cows can say is, “Moo.” Or so we thought.

Technomania Circus Beer Show

Technomania Circus Beer Show

        So, ultimately and for the umpteenth time in a row, Technomania Circus entertained, amazed and perhaps even enlightened me… Great show guys, the world of beer drinking will never be the same!

Technomania Circus Beer Show

Technomania Circus Presents The Beer Show

UFO Flying Over San Diego

April 3, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Unidentified Flying Object (UFO) in San Diego, CA

UFO Shines A Light On La Mesa, CA

        This is my third close encounter I’ve experienced during my 36 years of life. The first was in 1994, just North of the Straits of Malacca, in the Indian Ocean. I didn’t get any photos of that encounter so you’ll just have to believe me when I say that it was an amazing experience for a 19 year old sailor, 8800 miles from home. The second encounter was during June of 2009. I have a photo and blog post of that encounter that you should read. This time, I have 2 images, both taken with my Nikon D5000 at 3200 ISO.

Unidentified Flying Object (UFO) in San Diego, CA

Why Do Aliens Come To America?

        Just a little camera info for you readers about these images: They were both shot with my Nikon D5000 at 1/4 of a second, f/1.8, 3200 ISO. They were also shot hand-held (no tripod), through the glass of my bedroom window, which explains the noise and general low quality of the images.

Night Time With My D5000

March 27, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Beards In The Chinese Buffet

Men With Beards Have To Eat Too

        This particular location, where these men are, is a restaurant, and they were somewhere in the middle of their meal when I took this photo. This stats of this shot are: 1/50th, f/1.8, 1400 ISO.

D5000, 1/50th, f/1.8, 2500 ISO

D5000, 1/50th, f/1.8, 2500 ISO

        Here we have a self portrait of my Nikon D5000. A friend of mine recently rented a wide angle lens, so after playing with it for a little while, I want one of my own. I have no idea when or where I would actually use it, but that doesn’t matter… If you use it, the photos will come.

d5000 5 second exposure at 200 ISO

D5000, 5 Seconds, f/8, 200 ISO

        This was an accidental shot. I have no idea how or why I tried to take a hand-held photo with a five second exposure, but apparently I did. There is nothing redeeming about this photo, but I thought it looked cool, so it made it into the post.

Technomania Circus Presents The Parody Show

January 10, 2010 by · 4 Comments 

Burning Man At Technomania Circus Parody Night

Burning Man at Technomania Circus

DJ At Technomania Circus During The Parody Show

The DJ Spins @ Technomania Circus

Burning Man At Technomania Circus Parody Night

Burning Man Parody Up Close

        Before the show even began, the DJ entertained the crowd with music from the late 20th century, warming us up and setting the mood for “The Parody Show” at Technomania Circus. This was the first show for 2010, and The Technomaniacs pulled out all the stops, including fire, burlesque, juggling, Elvis Presley, blacklight theater and Lady Gaga even made an appearance, as did Martha Stewart. For The Parody Show, the cast of Technomania Circus made fun of just about everyone, including the audience, themselves and Tiger Woods. This was three hours of fun and satire and it closed with a fast moving awards ceremony honoring many of the most talented performers in San Diego. The show is so easy to get to, especially on the orange line trolley. Technomania Circus is located at 2438 Commercial St. San Diego, in Logan Heights, right across from the 25th & Commercial Orange Line trolley stop. Trolleys come by every half hour, and the schedule can be seen here. I was fortunate enough to be using a borrowed Canon T1i for the evening, so I shot every frame at 3200 ISO and a shutter speed of 1/15th for almost every frame as well.

Dr. Techno From Technomania Circus During The Parody Show

Dr. Techno

Cooking With Martha Stewart & Lady Gaga At Technomania Circus During The Parody Show

Martha Stewart & Lady Gaga

        Dr. Techno started things off with his guitar playing balancing act and was also our host for the awards show that followed the performance. The cast were all presented with trophies that varied from a small statue of a three headed dog to a diorama that contained a hula dancer and shrunken skull. You just never know what will happen at a Technomania Circus show.

Sarah Palin Booksigning AT Technomania Circus During The Parody Show

Sarah Palin Going Rogue

        Lady Gaga took cooking instruction from Martha Stewart, and one of the rhyming orders by Martha was something like: “Lady Gaga take this please and bake that bitch at three fifty degrees.”

Technomania Circus Cast & Crew On Parody Night

The Cast Of Technomania Circus

        The entire cast was all smiles for this show, and rightly so because most of what they did was very funny, with several moments of outright hilarity. Their awards ceremony, which wrapped up the evening was just as funny as the show itself and even a lucky audience member won an award.

Fire At Technomania Circus During The Parody Show

Fire At Technomania Circus

Juggler At Technomania Circus During The Parody Show

        Fire is my favorite part of these shows, and the cast always makes sure to add extra elements of danger. You’ll want to take note of a few things in the photo on the left, including the spaceship in the background, the fact that the left performer is balancing on a two point ladder, the juggling pins on the stage and the woman in the center wearing a bathrobe with possibly nothing else underneath. Saturday nights that hold a performance from Technomania Circus are just so easy to attend and are so much fun to watch. They are full of energy and engaging for the audience so the more you cheer the better and funnier the show is. Next time I will bring a tasty beverage because after three hours of cheering, I was feeling a little parched. Their next shows will be on February 13th & 23rd, with the doors opening at 7pm, pre-show at 7:30pm and the show starting at eight. The show is entitled “A Mob Show: Happiness Is A Warm Tommy Gun.” See pics from previous shows: The Fire & Blacklight Show, and The Wild Wild West Show .

Technomania Circus Cast & Crew On Parody Night

San Diego’s Technomania Circus Cast & Crew, January 9, 2010

San Diego Bay Parade Of Lights 2009

December 21, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

San Diego Convention Center Steps

Steps Of The San Diego Convention Center

        I was at the San Diego Bay Parade Of Lights on Sunday, and since the parade started over an hour late, I had time to get some shots of non-boat things. As it turns out, they would be the gems of the evening. I didn’t get a single decent shot of any of the boats.

San Diego Bulidings, Christmas 2009

Shaky Monopod & Too Short Of A Shutter

        I have a Benro MA-91 aluminum monopod with fold out stabilizer legs that just don’t cut it for long exposure shots. The monopod stands up on it’s own, but it is never rock solid like a tripod, whether you are holding it or not. It was no help at all for taking shots of moving boats at night, all lit up as if Clark W. Griswald was at the helm of each one. For good shots of these boats I needed a lot of shutter time AND a firmly planted camera. The Benro just doesn’t provide it. High ISO on my camera is so noisy that it hurts me and makes me sad, so it was not considered as an option. Even with me bracing the monopod, 1/10 shutter was all I could count on to be clear with this tripoded monopod. I then placed my bag on the ground and my camera on the bag and took another shot. Since it was rock steady, I was able to use more shutter time and get a better photo. So… The pic above was 1/10, hovering over 5 feet above the ground on top of a Benro monopod posing as a tripod. The shot below was taken with the camera on firm ground with 1 second of shutter time. That’s what I got instead of boats on the night I went to a parade of Christmas-lit boats: Buildings and steps.

San Diego Skyline, Christmas 2009

San Diego Skyline With One Second Exposure

        There are a few lessons here, the first being that fold out legs on a monopod are no substitute for a tripod when doing night photography. Another lesson would be a willingness to find something else to shoot if your original subject, your equipment or even your own mad, photographic skills fail you. The boats were out of my reach so I turned around and shot the Christmas city skyline instead.

South Bay Power Plant

December 3, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

South Bay Power Plant, San Diego

South Bay Power Plant On A Colorful Night

South Bay Power Plant

South Bay Power Plant

        The southeast area of San Diego Bay is the home of South Bay Power Plant. It is not a desalination plant. Somehow, back in October I got it in my head that this facility removed salt from seawater. I took a night picture of it and wrote a blog post about it, titled, Night & Day With Salt & Dinosaurs, but it turns out it was factually incorrect. Oh well. This new and better information called for a new and better photo. The shot on the left is the image from the post I just mentioned.

        I like the colors and the composition of the newer shot are much better than the first. I was still over a mile away, from the power plant , so you have to give it up for the super-zoom! This was a 10 second exposure, with my camera sitting on a thick fencepost made of brick.

        Some slow shutter speed photography tips are: Turn off any anti-shake features on your camera, use a tripod and use the 2 second shutter release delay. If you don’t have your tripod, then set the camera on a firm surface. Multi-second exposures can not be hand held!

Technomania Circus & The Wild Wild West Show

November 18, 2009 by · 1 Comment 

Technomania Circus Fire Bunny

Beautiful Indian Being Played With Behind Fire

        Once again, I found myself at Technomania Circus, for some live theater entertainment. On this particular Saturday night, Technomania Circus put on a Wild, Wild West Show, complete with gunfire, indians, cowboys, trapeze, fire and blacklight. I arrived just as the show was starting, and was actually led into the theater by the cowboys, as they made their theatrical entrance. While this made for some initial excitement for me, it also meant I did not get my usual spot at the top of the stadium seating. Not a big deal for watching the show, but terrible for taking pictures. The two keepers I shot are presented to you in this post.

Tehcnomania Circus Indians

Technomania Circus Presents The Wild Wild West Show!

        This was a great show. For those of you that are not Technomania Circus Virgins, your will recognize the Indians of this show are also the fire performers from the Fire & Blacklight show back in July. It was so much fun, and the crowd cheered and encouraged the performers the entire time. Technomania Circus is simply the best, cheapest, funniest, most retro night you can spend in San Diego!

        You can see my post and photos from their Fire & Blacklight Show, which was presented back in July 2009 by clicking right here. I love Technomania Circus!

Night & Day With Salt & Dinosaurs

October 26, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

Desalination Plant In San Diego, California

20 Seconds Of Open Shutter & A Desalination Plant (I Think)

        If you stand at the the Southern tip of San Diego Bay and face North, you will see a factory at your 10 o’clock. As far as I know, and judging by the piles of salt around the factory, this factory is involved in the removal of salt from ocean water. I suppose the salt is then exported to the salt deprived countries of the work, and the water deprived people of San Diego. I was 6000 feet away from the factory when I snapped this pic. Super-zoom cameras are the shit, right?

Salt Factory During Golden Hour

Golden Hour In San Diego

        Same factory, seen while the sun is casting it’s final rays for the day upon it. Ever since my tripod got smashed to Hell by a pack of rabid wolves over the summer, I have had to hand hold all my shots. Easy during the day but less than optimal during the night.

Dinosaur Cage At Night

30 Second Exposure Of San Diego’s Silver Strand Dinosaur Cage

        I set my camera on a bench, near the bike path, pressed the shutter and let the magic happen.

Imperial Beach Trail & Dinosaur Cage

Imperial Beach’s Dinosaur Cage

        I’m still hoping for my money shot of the Dinosaur Cage, located on the Southern end of San Diego Bay. I like what I’ve done but I think something better is in store.

Slow Shutter Sunset Photography From A Moving Car

August 16, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

Afghanistan Sunset

Agfa Optima 400 Film Grain

When you have an inferno sunset boiling the Pacific Ocean before your very eyes, metal, plastic and glass are pointed, a shutter is released and photons from the sun strike your film.

Photography At Night

August 9, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

Lights On South Bay

Simple Bold Colors

        Near the dinosaur cage, is the Southern end of San Diego’s Bay, the proverbial end of the line. The water goes no further than this point here. In the photo above, you are looking due South, seeing light reflected from the Southern most bit of water contained by the land of the bay. To your right is the relentless Pacific Ocean and to your left is Imperial Beach.

Reflected Lights