NYC

I went to NYC to attend a portfolio review with some highly esteemed magazine editors and photography agencies this week.  But before that, I hung out with my friend and fashion blogger extraordinaire Dathias Hoang of modernmanjournal.com who introduced me to Alicia Mara who runs Levitate Style with her boyfriend Leo Chan.  Both great fashion blogs based in NYC that I will read regularly now.  I did a quick photoshoot with Dat in the morning and at night, he invited me to the Remy Martin One Life campaign event.  It was really cool to see some celebrities such as Lavern Cox and Jeremy Renner who is actually fronting the Remy Martin campaign.

Thank you Dat for showing me a great time on my first trip to NYC!  

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Dathias Hoang and Alicia Mara

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Looking dapper as hell

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Jeremy Renner…what…I’ve seen more celebrities in NYC in one night than I have all 4 years I was in Southern California.

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Awesome live show by one of Jeremy Renner’s old pals.

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Our little shoot in Soho.  I swear Soho is the place for people photography because it has the perfect lighting no matter what time of day, sunny or cloudy.

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And of course, there’s me, trying to look dapper with the rest of the NYC fashion blogger royalty.

NC Hot Air Balloon Festival

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Had a chance to check out the hot air balloon festival in Statesville, NC this weekend.  It was a cool event, except we didn’t know the balloons don’t launch after sunset, they just sit pretty at night like lanterns.  Would have been nice to see them go up, but oh well!

The Wonders of Tritium Gas Tube Lume

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I wish more watches would incorporate this type of lume in their dials and bezels.  I love the soft warm glow of the gas tube that can do this without the need for charging.  I was shooting an opera performance in a very dark venue and while moving up and down behind the stage and along the pitch black peripheral hallways on the side of the theatre, it really helped to be able to tell time and the remaining time of the piece by using the watch.  This allowed me to time different angles during different parts of the performance.  Tritium gas tubes make a truly functional time piece.  Although they don’t glow as brightly as a fully charged Super-Luminova dial marker, they glow much longer a lower intensity which allows the eyes to adjust much quicker to them at night versus being blinded by Super-Luminova (which only lasts a couple hours anyways when charged).

At this stage, gas tube lume technology is still not advanced enough for them to create non-linear tubes so from a design perspective, using this as lume is very limiting as there cannot be curved or rounded markers which is requisite for many different styles of dial markers.

I would love to see this technology used in the Speedmaster’s though as it has a linear dial markers anyways.  Maybe in the future Omega?

Omega Speedmaster Professional

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I finally got my hands on one and upon arrival, I had mixed feelings of excitement and disappointment.  I was excited because this is the moonwatch, a vital piece of history in the United States, a beautiful piece of equipment made from steel and plastic that survived multiple trips into space and onto the Moon.

I was disappointed because upon picking it up, I thought to myself…this is it??  I think I over hyped the watch far too much over the years that I was lusting for it.  It’s very light, tall and although it photographs so beautifully, the dial is actually quite cluttered in person.  i just didn’t realize how small this watch was.  All the hash marks and subdials that looked so good in photos, seemed to detract from its beauty in real life.  I realized that I prefer watches with simple, strong and bold dials.  I realized that my love was for dive watches.  For me, there is just too much going on in the dial of the Speedmaster.  It’s also a bit hard to read because the subdials are quite small.

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But my God, it is a beautiful watch when looked at up close.  The aged tritium gives a nice even yellow patina without the overly worn dial look of older vintage Speedmasters.  I love the chunky pieces of steel that make up the crown protector, the twisted and curved lugs are just so beautiful, and the chronograph subdials are sunken in ever so slightly to give the dial a bit of depth and texture.

The 1861 movement is a workhorse that stores 2 full days worth of energy on a full manual wind.  You’ll have to wind this watch up regularly if you want it to stay running because there is no self winding rotor in it to find the coil spring.  It takes about 40 turns of the crown in the 0 position to wind it fully.  You’ll know that you’ve wound it fully when feel resistance while turning the crown.  Also let’s please dispense with the rumor that self winding watches don’t work on the moon.  Self winding watches do work on the moon, in space etc and that was not the reason why the Speedmaster, a manual winding watch, was chosen by NASA.  I’ll save that for a separate post.

Overall, it’s a wonderful watch.  One that I may not always reach for if I have a dive watch handy, but one that I will want in my collection because hey! it’s a Speedmaster Professional.

Seamaster Pro on Leather

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Bit of an oxymoron to put a leather strap on a dive watch…but since I’m land locked and swimming season is over, this is purely a desk diver at the moment. I tried out a brown Bas & Lokes on it and was surprised by how well it worked out seeing that Seamaster Professional is notorious for not being a very versatile watch when it comes to aftermarket straps.