Santa Cruz and underwater photography with the Frogeye!

Devon and I spent the weekend in Santa Cruz at my (best in the whole wide world) mother in law’s “chill pad” by the beach, while she’s out of town. Thank you, Toni! We have the most amazing times there. I got stressed driving down on Friday afternoon, and it took a little longer than normal, but by Saturday evening, after pigging out on all the delicious vegetarian, organic food we could handle, I couldn’t wipe the big, relaxed grin off my face as we walked down the beach at sunset. Sigh.

We get to sleep under a starry skylight on a super comfy bed in a redwood house; we can hear the waves crashing from a distance; there’s a hot tub ensconced in a little thickety thing of jasmine, honeysuckle, roses and nasturtiums; a 5 minute walk to an uncrowded, warm and safe beach… I mean, it’s really hard to beat this place!

We even swam in the ocean! Last year Devon got me awesome wetsuit booties for my birthday, and this was FINALLY my first chance to use ’em. We got wetsuits of our own at the O’Neill factory sale in Santa Cruz in the summer of 2005 (and they were having it again this weekend, but we were too lazy to go).

This was also my first chance to use the underwater toy “Frogeye” camera I had bought in December for our trip to Hawaii – it didn’t arrive in time (I ordered it much too close to the trip). I was so excited!

Lomo is a company that makes a bunch of really fun toy cameras. I could play with all of their offerings but have been able to narrow it down to just two for the time being.

I just took some photos of the surf, and Devon swimming and so forth, because I was a little nervous to go all in, and by the time I was ready, the film was out. Oh, well. I put the camera back on the beach and swam out with Devon. It was so lovely to just bob and float about… sure, I got a little bit (or a lot!) of water up the nose on the way back, but it was definitely worth it. I just need to keep practicing to get over my hesitation…

Anyway, lots of fun with this camera (which promptly broke upon returning home – but today I took it to my handy friend Jeremiah at Photo Supply, totally skeptical that he could do anything, and he fixed it in like 10 minutes! This is the same man who once repaired the window crank of my old Volvo by using the lid to an old stew can to fashion some kind of gear… it was insane. But it worked!). It’s nothing fancy, as you can see, but it is giving me LOTS of shoot ideas – swimming, floating, Trash the Dress sessions, and, above all, a return to Hawaii or elsewhere for sweet snorkeling snaps!