Apr 14 2011

San Francisco and Taxes

Update: Nobody likes to pay taxes, but preparing can be more fun. How you make the chore more fun?

For historical reasons our tax guy is located in San Francisco and this often involves taking a trip up to my favorite US city to meet with David Zuckerman in person.

The weather was glorious yesterday and is even warmer today. I always say that when Global Warming comes I want to move to San Francisco. The city is a smaller, cleaner more friendly version of New York City. They normally have the disadvantage of being too cold much of the year, and if you don’t count an increase in sea level, warmer versions of both cities would be grand.

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Our sunrise view over the San Francisco Bay from the Hotel Griffin room

After flying up and having a wonderful dinner at Boulevard we got down to the business of finishing our taxes.

The number crunching continued in the morning after viewing a beautiful sunrise over the San Francisco Bay in our Hotel Griffin room.

There was even some time to enjoy the waterfront and have an oyster lunch at Hog Island Oyster bar in the Ferry Building before heading over to David’s Embarcadero office to crunch numbers, and even more numbers.

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David's adding machine tape collection

David enjoys allowing the collection of his adding machine tape to simply pile up on the floor to form a three dimensional sculpture.

By creating art from our paper trail and writing this blog post, does this make the trip tax deductible? That’s a question for David.

Mark Harmel

harmelphoto.com

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Mar 29 2009

forgot my camera – shot with my iPhone instead

Benjamin Franklin taught us that: “In this world nothing is certain than death and taxes.” In the photography world the other certainty is the need to do marketing. With that in mind I just returned from my annual “Marketing and Taxes” visit to San Francisco. (My tax attorney is in SF.)

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Checkerboard building in Oakland

In my rush to gather up all of my tax info and marketing materials I left my camera back at home. This made me a bad student of Jay Maisel who advises photographers to always carry a camera(there is a great video of him talking by following the link with his name) – until I realized that I had my little used iPhone camera with me.

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Emerging from the BART station on Market Street

I have been a fan of plastic Diana cameras in the past and know that its better to have a good eye behind a simple camera than a have an untrained eye behind a professional camera, and I enjoyed the freedom of simply playing and recording some the new sights I was experiencing.

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Water delivery truck

There best part about the camera on the iPhone is that it is always with me and it will make a photo in just about any quantity of light.

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After an appointment in Foster City

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Shooting through a dust barrier at a construction site

And unlike the Diana where the viewfinder was more of a guess, the iPhones displays a video preview. It is still hard to be precise with the framing since the shutter release button in on the front of the camera and not the top of the frame.

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Stoplight shadow

It has an amazing ability to shoot in very low levels of light. The photos have digital noise in them, but I find it amazing that it is possible to hand hold the camera and still record anything.

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Couple walking past the Old Federal Reserve building

And it still has good color.

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The red cover of the pool table is still vibrant

After doing my iPhone exercise I read that there is a new camera/phone called a Pixon that is more of a camera with a phone added than the iPhone. Samsung sent a photographer around the world to take picture with this devise. Hey – my passport is current. I’m ready to take my close-ups.

Mark Harmel
harmelphoto.com

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