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  1. #31

    • He Gets The Job Done
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    Re: Coast-to-Coast Disney 2011 Trip Report: The Zany Adventures of The Brickers

    I hate you, but you are so awesome at the same time! I wish I had your photography skills... or settings. Haha.

    Amazing TR!


  2. #32

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    Re: Coast-to-Coast Disney 2011 Trip Report: The Zany Adventures of The Brickers

    Great photos! What a stroke of luck you were able to get your tickets and get into the park on your first night practically out of the airport. Pirates is definitely a great attraction to start out your visit to Disneyland.

  3. #33

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    Re: Coast-to-Coast Disney 2011 Trip Report: The Zany Adventures of The Brickers

    I love reading all the details in your trip reports Tom! Thank you for posting! :-)

  4. #34

    • Tom Bricker
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    Re: Coast-to-Coast Disney 2011 Trip Report: The Zany Adventures of The Brickers

    My apologies. I didn't get the email notifications, or something, and I didn't see all of these responses. I just thought people stopped responding!

    Quote Originally Posted by anndreeuhh View Post
    ^ what he said. I searched one day for photos from Disneyland and I came across your Flickr page and that was all it took to get me started with my own photography. I don't come close to any of your amazing photos but both you and Annie Leibovitz are my two main influences.



    Thank you!! GREAT advice! I think that's what makes your trip report (and your flickr stream -like all of your Yossarian and Walter E. Dogsney) so popular to read and see, because you're right its not just all about the parks. Static photos are great but its nice to see the 'human element' in photos.

    Wonderful trip report Tom, great work!
    Wow. To be called someone's main influence, that's something. Thank you very much. You do very great work, yourself.

    Yossarian the Cat and Walter E. Dogsney are my main (actually, pretty much only) means of practicing. They do make it challenging, too. Little guys move all over the place!

    Quote Originally Posted by Director_Guy View Post
    Great TR! I'm glad you are enjoying our park. Can't wait to read more.
    Well, there is more coming very soon!

    Quote Originally Posted by DMagic View Post
    VERY impressive photo work my man! Excellent!

    Denny Magic
    c/o Denny Magic Studios .com
    Thanks for the kind words!

    Quote Originally Posted by dlandjimmy View Post
    I've been looking forward to this TR. I've read all of your past reports and I have enjoyed them all. They get me excited about getting to WDW someday and I even enjoy your perspectives on Disneyland even though I take my family there about twice a month.

    Sounds like you guys landed your dream jobs? Or at least my dream jobs. Congratulations! Any openings? Hah.
    Hold off on some of those twice monthly trips (yeah right, right?!) and take a trip to Walt Disney World. The people here who constantly bash it have clearly never actually been there (the best critics have always never experienced what they're criticizing) because it's truly a great experience.

    We have hardly landed our dream jobs. Just jobs that allow us some autonomy in our schedules. Believe me, we're still pinching our pennies, we just want to travel as much as possible before we have kids. So we do.

    Quote Originally Posted by airick75 View Post
    I've seen your trip reports and photos a few times and likewise, I'm quite impressed. Great work! I hate to get all paparazzi on you, but how do you afford these trips (both time and money wise)? What's your day job? How did the two of you meet? You seem to have an idyllic life. Well, all the best, and I look forward to more photos.
    Ha, we're far from living the dream life. We both have pretty decent jobs that allow us to travel, and we make it happen. We are incredibly frugal, so when we're not traveling, we make sure to cut unnecessary expenses out of our lives.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nancy Carey View Post
    No need to be sorry.... thanks for sharing your photos with us!
    Quote Originally Posted by BlAcKoUt510 View Post
    I'm loving the photos!!! They're gorgeous.

    Your TR is exciting to read as well looking forward to seeing more.
    Thanks, glad you like them!

    Quote Originally Posted by Kritter View Post
    I hate you, but you are so awesome at the same time! I wish I had your photography skills... or settings. Haha.

    Amazing TR!
    For $5, I will give you a list of my settings. Steal of a lifetime!

    I have got to say, you're signature is captivating. That's some crazy dancing, dude!

    Quote Originally Posted by Koutesu View Post
    Great photos! What a stroke of luck you were able to get your tickets and get into the park on your first night practically out of the airport. Pirates is definitely a great attraction to start out your visit to Disneyland.
    What trip report doesn't start with a little suspense?! I was definitely worried that something would go wrong (my biggest fears were a flight delay and the ticket booths being closed), but am very glad it all worked out!

    Quote Originally Posted by DisneySuiteFreak View Post
    I love reading all the details in your trip reports Tom! Thank you for posting! :-)
    You're welcome!

  5. #35

    • Tom Bricker
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    Re: Coast-to-Coast Disney 2011 Trip Report: The Zany Adventures of The Brickers

    Five hours later, my body was so gracious to wake me up. It was only 6:30 on the west coast. My internal clock, however, probably thought it had hit the snooze a button a few too many times, and was over 3 hours late in waking me up. I laid there, trying to outwit my body and force myself back to sleep, but it was too cunning. Regardless of its inability to discern time zones, it did know we were minutes away from Disneyland, and it would not stand for me sleeping when there were parks to explore.

    I took way too much time getting ready, finally making it to Main Street shortly before rope drop. This is one thing I regret. I planned on taking photos of the Disney hotels during this trip, but upon waking up early that morning, I told myself I’d do it later in the trip. For whatever reason, this always happens. I am up early or late one of the first days of the trip (and not tired), and in contemplation of whether I should photograph something (usually the resort at which we’re staying), I elect not to because I can do it later. I never do it later. As the trip wears on, I become progressively more tired, until I’m running on fumes by the time we get back to our resort (and not waking up early at all, let alone early enough to go out and take photos).



    Not having experienced rope drop before, I didn’t realize I’d be so far back in the crowd by only arriving 10 minutes early to the park, another mistake. I thought Disneyland was the antithesis of Walt Disney World in that regard: a “locals only” park where the lax attitude of the SoCal crowd means no one shows up until 11 a.m. Well, maybe that’s an exaggeration, but I certainly didn’t think the crowds would be that heavy (the ‘locals only’ part is the exaggeration--obviously I know tourists visit DLR, too--if it really were locals only, it would be dead until after 11 am. Lazy Californians!).



    We knew by the time we arrived in Fantasyland, Peter Pan’s Flight would already have a long line, so Sarah headed over to Space Mountain to get FastPasses while I took some photos around the hub with my new toy: my infrared camera.



    Before each trip, I invariably make one photo purchase. This time, it was a Nikon D70 that had been converted to an infrared camera. I was really excited to use it at Disneyland, especially after seeing all of the great greenery and flowers in Disneyland Spring photos. As you can see in the shots here, infrared photos give plant life a very unique white look.





    I'm not much on the science behind this, but essentially, the camera I used to take this sees only the near infrared spectrum of light (light beyond that which humans see). Some cameras can see this light by either having their IR blocking filter removed or by adding a filter to the lens.

    Besides the conversion to black and white and some added contrast, these photos are basically straight out of camera. (Near infrared photos--at least the good ones--are achieved as a result of the camera, not because of wacky Photoshop filters.)



    Since infrared photos are very divisive--people either love them or hate them (I happen to love them whereas my wife hates them)--I tried to avoid taking too many photos with the infrared camera. I took a total of around 450, and all of these were bracketed (the exposure is difficult to get right, so I bracket for speed when shooting them, and just use the best of the three files once I get home), which means that I only took around 133 unique shots with the camera. Not much considering the cost of the thing! I told Sarah that I would sell the camera after this coast-to-coast trip, but I think between Disneyland and Walt Disney World, I only took 200 photos with the camera. So I definitely need to take it on at least one more trip to get my money’s worth. Right?!

    First stop after all of this was the Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Forbidden Eye. The standby queue was really short, although I was disappointed we didn’t get to go through any of the outdoor switchbacks. Although I’m sure I wouldn’t have been too happy if the wait times necessitated this, it would have been fun to at least walk them!


  6. #36

    • Tom Bricker
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    Re: Coast-to-Coast Disney 2011 Trip Report: The Zany Adventures of The Brickers

    I’ve often commented in my Walt Disney World trip reports that Jungle Cruise survives as an attraction that we still do if only because it has classic status. Neither of us are really all that wild about it, and that seems like it’s because our skipper always phones it in. However, this wasn’t the case at Disneyland last summer, nor was it the case at Disneyland this trip. I am reluctant to say Disneyland skippers care more, as my experience is anecdotal, but in my anecdotal experience, we’ve had better skippers at Disneyland. Plus, I think the attraction is better at Disneyland. The piranhas, for whatever reason, really impress me (I am easily impressed, I suppose) and the attraction seems like it’s in better shape, overall. That’s the story of Disneyland v. Walt Disney World, overall, though.












  7. #37

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    Re: Coast-to-Coast Disney 2011 Trip Report: The Zany Adventures of The Brickers

    Following this, we did Haunted Mansion, which really needs no further explanation. I suppose I could add that we saw more of the grounds during the daytime, and I think the exterior of the Mansion is really impressive. It reminds me a bit, unsurprisingly, of Port Orleans French Quarter at Walt Disney World. If the Haunted Mansion had a dancing alligator band and a big serpentine in its pool, I probably couldn’t distinguish the two. I’m not suggesting the Haunted Mansion should have those things, as they might be a bit awkward thematically.













    Pirates of the Caribbean was next on the agenda, but only because we determined that Hungry Bear wouldn’t be open quite yet (our timing was a little off), and rather than wait, we backtracked to Pirates.



    Most people who have been to Walt Disney World and Disneyland think that Walt Disney World’s Pirates is better in two regards: its queue and its show building. The first one of these is a no-brainer. Disneyland’s queue is very uninteresting, with the exception of the interior portion where ships pass, and even that is nothing to write home about. The pirate and the treasure sitting there seem almost like an awkward afterthought. Something about it just rubs me the wrong way.





    However, on the second point, that concerning the show building facade, I think there might be some room for disagreeing. While Disneyland’s facade fits the architecture of New Orleans Square perfectly, WDW’s just looks awesome. With its large pirate ship mast out front, it does completely sync with the architectural style of the land. Then again, the architectural style could be described as a mishmash, so maybe it fits perfectly. In any case, I prefer WDW’s building just because I think it’s interesting and has more character than its bland DLR counterpart, but I see how the argument could be made that DLR’s is better.

  8. #38

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    Re: Coast-to-Coast Disney 2011 Trip Report: The Zany Adventures of The Brickers

    Great Trip Report!

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE your fish-eye work. I am usually not a fan, but yours are great!

    Looks like you two had a great time! cant wait to see more!


    The Few, The Proud, The Fans Fan of Light Magic!

  9. #39

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    Re: Coast-to-Coast Disney 2011 Trip Report: The Zany Adventures of The Brickers

    Great pics. Is there a part 3 coming?

  10. #40

    • Tom Bricker
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    Re: Coast-to-Coast Disney 2011 Trip Report: The Zany Adventures of The Brickers

    Quote Originally Posted by DubiousEndeavors View Post
    Great Trip Report!

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE your fish-eye work. I am usually not a fan, but yours are great!

    Looks like you two had a great time! cant wait to see more!
    Thanks! I've found a lot of people who say they hate fisheye shots actually like mine. I think that's because fisheye shots can frequently look gimmicky, and I just try to embrace the curvature to produce a pleasing image. (I might be giving myself too much credit there, but that's my goal!)

    Quote Originally Posted by sbk1234 View Post
    Great pics. Is there a part 3 coming?
    Well, this is about 1/5th of the way through day 2, and there are 5 days at Disneyland plus 5 more at Walt Disney World, so you're definitely in store for a lot more updates!

  11. #41

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    Re: Coast-to-Coast Disney 2011 Trip Report: The Zany Adventures of The Brickers

    Quote Originally Posted by WDWFigment View Post
    Hold off on some of those twice monthly trips (yeah right, right?!) and take a trip to Walt Disney World. The people here who constantly bash it have clearly never actually been there (the best critics have always never experienced what they're criticizing) because it's truly a great experience.

    We have hardly landed our dream jobs. Just jobs that allow us some autonomy in our schedules. Believe me, we're still pinching our pennies, we just want to travel as much as possible before we have kids. So we do.
    Don't worry, we'll definitely get to WDW someday in the not too near future. We're just saving to make it a great trip. By then we'll most likely have a family of 4 and we've got to plan and save a bit more than when it was just me and the wife.

    Traveling and having a good time before kids is definitely a must. The wife and I had one last adventure to Europe before (trying) to start a family. 9 months after our Eurotrip, James came along. Imagine that. Haha.

    Ok, so maybe it's not your 'dream jobs', but a wise man once told me that there are two types of 'dream jobs'. 1: the job that pays you enough or works with your schedule enough to give you the time and/or money to do what you truly love to do. 2: the job that makes you happy to go to "the office" when you get up in the morning.

    At least your job allows you to do what you like. That's definitely a good thing.

  12. #42

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    Re: Coast-to-Coast Disney 2011 Trip Report: The Zany Adventures of The Brickers

    Great trip report so far. Looking forward to more
    -Jennelle AKA Blue AKA Dory




    Quote Originally Posted by drphibes View Post
    SBF's lasso of truth makes grown men want to go pee pee.
    Quote Originally Posted by ReverendGonzo View Post
    Have you considered buying a bed?...as far as I can tell you live in an apartment with a computer, a coupon for hungry howies, and there may or may not be a llama there...
    DLR trips in 2011: Jan 12,29,30, Feb 10, March 29, April 3, 22, May 14, 18, 25, June 9, August 8, 21...hopefully soooooooooon


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  13. #43

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    Re: Coast-to-Coast Disney 2011 Trip Report: The Zany Adventures of The Brickers

    This has to be one of the best trip reports I've ever ready!! I LOVE the pictures, I havta admit- I'm pretty jealous!
    ...After a YEAR I finally was able to figure out my password again! I'm baaack! Woohoo!(:
    Disney is my life <3
    Thank Walt for all he did! <3
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    Keep Disney the way Walt intended it!!


  14. #44

    • Tom Bricker
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    Re: Coast-to-Coast Disney 2011 Trip Report: The Zany Adventures of The Brickers

    Quote Originally Posted by dlandjimmy View Post
    Don't worry, we'll definitely get to WDW someday in the not too near future. We're just saving to make it a great trip. By then we'll most likely have a family of 4 and we've got to plan and save a bit more than when it was just me and the wife.

    Traveling and having a good time before kids is definitely a must. The wife and I had one last adventure to Europe before (trying) to start a family. 9 months after our Eurotrip, James came along. Imagine that. Haha.

    Ok, so maybe it's not your 'dream jobs', but a wise man once told me that there are two types of 'dream jobs'. 1: the job that pays you enough or works with your schedule enough to give you the time and/or money to do what you truly love to do. 2: the job that makes you happy to go to "the office" when you get up in the morning.

    At least your job allows you to do what you like. That's definitely a good thing.
    Our goal for next year is to get to Tokyo. We are aiming for the Spring, but nothing is definite. I imagine if we go on that trip, we will be going on fewer trips, but we both really want to travel there, although we would like to learn some Japanese first.

    It is nice that work gives us the latitude to travel, I agree.

    Quote Originally Posted by skybluefusion View Post
    Great trip report so far. Looking forward to more
    Quote Originally Posted by LittleImagineer View Post
    This has to be one of the best trip reports I've ever ready!! I LOVE the pictures, I havta admit- I'm pretty jealous!
    Thank you both for reading - hope you enjoy what's to come!

  15. #45

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    Re: Coast-to-Coast Disney 2011 Trip Report: The Zany Adventures of The Brickers

    Quote Originally Posted by WDWFigment View Post
    Our goal for next year is to get to Tokyo. We are aiming for the Spring, but nothing is definite. I imagine if we go on that trip, we will be going on fewer trips, but we both really want to travel there, although we would like to learn some Japanese first.
    I recommend checking with your local community college and seeing if they offer JPN101 or JPN115. JPN115 and 116 (I think the 2nd semester is JPN116) is conversational Japanese and you learn hiragana while JPN101, 102, 201, and 202 are more like a full language class. JPN is usually 3 hours while JPN101 is 5. It's easier to take a class than do self study just speaking from experience. It's also a fun class to take and if the sensei is a native speaker, even better since they can give you insight into the culture. These classes also teach you the basics relating to subjects such as travel, school, animals, and the home while teaching you grammar, vocabulary, and kanji. I took these classes from 2004 to 2006 and loved each and every one. I wish I could turn back the clock. You want to check with your community college because the tuition is cheaper than a university.

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