Welcome to the M Palma Photo Blog

Hi, my name is Mike, a professional wedding and portrait photographer born, raised, and based here in beautiful, Silverlake, Los Angeles, California.

On this blog, you'll find the daily inspirations, images and musings of my life.

I love photographing people, places, and anything else that catches my eye. I describe my style of photography as modern, fun, and energetic. So stay a while, check out my work, and get to know me better through my images and entries.

If you'd like to visit my main wedding and portrait site, click on this link, or click on the "connect" button up top to drop me a line via e-mail.

Like I said, stay awhile, and enjoy the entries. And please, do leave a comment. You can also follow me on Facebook and Twitter (via the icons above this paragraph) for even more up-to-date happenings (don't worry, I won't put up meager posts like "I'm standing in line at Starbucks" (my favorite coffee spot!). Only the really cool and important stuff!)

Thanks for stopping by!

Archive for 'Business'

Happy first week of June everyone! We’re half way through 2015, and I hope you are all doing well :)

I wanted to share with you a recent experience I had with a rather EXPENSIVE piece of camera gear, a medium format, $30,000.00 Phase One,  50+ Megapixel (MP)camera! Yes, $30,000.00, the price of a decent car, like a Honda Accord or Toyota Camry. $30,000.00!!!

In my ongoing effort to better my lighting and photography skills, I signed up for a day long fashion photography class with Jodi Jones, a renowned fashion photographer based out of New York.  Jodi is such a cool person and her work rocks as well! Definitely check out her website. During the workshop, we went over various lighting examples, and her approach to fashion photography which made for a fun day of learning. But the piece de resistance, was the opportunity to work with the Phase One camera with two models hired for the workshop.

Now, for those of you who know me, I am totally against Gear Acquisition Syndrome (G.A.S.), but the chance to work with a true high end, uber-pro level camera is something that I didn’t want to pass up.

The difference between a medium format camera and a full frame camera is essentially the sensor size. “Full frame” DSLRs have sensors that are the exact dimensions of a single 35mm roll film photo (36mm x 24mm), whereas a medium-format sensor (or equivalent film size) is 6 x 4.5 cm, which is roughly DOUBLE the size of 35mm/full frame cameras. Along with that extra sensor real estate, you can get so much more pixel depth and information, thus, are able to crop in super tight, and/or enlarge to billboard size without any problems. In short, you get GORGEOUS files – well, gorgeous if properly made that is.


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Sure, a 50+ MP will also take up a lot of hard drive space, but if you need the quality and depth, and are shooting huge campaigns (and already have a nice car), then hey,  buy the Phase One. (Disclaimer – I’m not sponsored by them, but I WISH!)

So, couple a great camera system, an awesome fashion photographer instructor (with an equally cool assistant by the name of Adam), throw in two gorgeous models, and voila, you can’t take a bad photo! Okay, you CAN take a bad photo, but why?!!!

Here are some behind the scenes looks of the day, including a photo I took with the Phase One. Enjoy!


2015, M Palma Photography, Jodi Jones Studio, fashion photography, BTS, phase one, quixote studios, iphone5


Jodi (with camera) and assistant Adam with one of the models we worked with that day.






2015, M Palma Photography, Jodi Jones Studio, fashion photography, BTS, phase one, quixote studios, iphone5


Jodi again with another model and additional lighting set-up





2015, M Palma Photography, Jodi Jones Studio, fashion photography, BTS, phase one, quixote studios, iphone5


One of our lighting set-ups. It looks more complicated than it really is.





2015, M Palma Photography, Jodi Jones Studio, fashion photography, BTS, phase one, quixote studios, iphone5


Here it is, the photo I was able to take using the Phase One. I downscaled it just so you can see it without having to wait too long for it to download (50 MP can take a LONG time to download. If you’re truly interested, I can share it with you via FTP)

This is straight out of the camera, using just one beauty dish, and a profoto light. BTS up above.

There you have it. My day with a $30K camera. Did I mention that it was a THIRTY THOUSAND dollar camera?! Needless to say, I don’t need a Phase One, nor will I ever consider buying it, but as with a lot of things in life, there are some jobs that require special “tools” and the Phase One is one awesome tool to play with.

Thanks to Jodi Jones, Adam, Quixote Studios, and the two models for a great day!

Thanks for stopping by!










Happy Thursday everyone! I was absent from my blog last week cause I made the annual pilgrimage to Las Vegas to attend the yearly Wedding and Portrait Photographers Int’l conference. It’s where pros and enthusiasts alike get our leaning on, see new equipment, have a great time, and just do everything photography for nearly 24 hours a day! (Like we don’t do that already!). It’s such a great conference, and is open to anyone interested in the business, art and retail of photography. Like I said, you don’t have to be a pro, just an enthusiast! Although you WILL meet the top of the tops of the industry when you do attend. It’s so inspiring, so check it out! WPPI.

After all the partying was done, I was back in L.A. to get back to work with a new friend’s website/lifestyle photos. She’s a reiki practitioner/master, by the name of Jaclyn, and is an awesome person! We originally started working on her images about a month ago, and we’re still not entirely done! It’s great when you get to work with cool people. It doesn’t feel like work ;p

We photographed around the arts district last Friday here in L.A., using available light. When I first started out, I used to be be “afraid” of “harsh” light (contrasty, mid-day type), but now, I embrace it, as light is just light. It comes in so many forms that you use it the way you want your images to look. So, for all your photographers out there, don’t be afraid of mid-day light!

Here are a few of the photos we made last week.

http://www.reikiwithjaclyn.com/,   2015, m palma photography, lifestyle, vsco, alien skin exposure 7, nikon d810, downtown l.a., reiki, jacklyn Kalkhurst, los angeles photographer



I’m still catching up on stuff from last week, so check back next week for more from this shoot and other new stuff coming up, like a fun engagement session coming up this weekend, at a historic building in downtown L.A.

Thanks for clicking by everyone! See you soon,


Check out Jaclyn’s website here.

Happy 3rd week of the new year everyone! How are those resolutions keeping up?! Great I’m sure, so no worries.

The third week of 2015 had me attend the Wedding and Portrait Photographers Int’l (WPPI) photowalk at Samy’s Camera in L.A. this past week, led by rockstar instructors Roberto Venezuela and Dave Doeppel. As a working pro, it’s always essential to go back to school or to a workshop to try and sharpen your skills and learn new things, and this FREE, yes, I said FREE photo-walk event was a great way to start the new year and learn some new stuff! Plus, it’s always cool to meet other like minded photographers.

The afternoon started off in front of Samy’s Camera on Fairfax, where JasonGroupp, the educational director for WPPI introduced us to Roberto and Dave. I had me them before, and if you ever get the chance, they are really cool guys to meet. Down to earth, and fun! As they should be!

From there, we were off and running, all 25 of us, in search of light, and places to photograph, accompanied by three models, two of which were sisters.

The thing about workshops is that you’re surrounded by a lot of people, with a whole array of skill levels, and personalities. You sometimes even get people who go just to pump up their portfolios, which to me, is the wrong place to do it. That’s cause you literally have 24 other people standing next to you trying to get the SAME shot. Yikes. For me, a workshop should be a place to learn and take away stuff that you can apply to your everyday shooting. The experience is still great regardless, but it’s definitely not too conducive to really get superb portfolio photos. Besides, you only get a few moments with the models anyway, not enough time to really get things cooking.

Needless to say, I think everyone should try a workshop or class in whatever field you’re interested in. Take away some cool techniques and ideas, and make yourself a better person overall! That’s what each new year is about anyway, isn’t it? Sho’ you right! LOL!!!

Here are some behind the scenes photos from the workshop as well as some photos I was able to capture when it was my turn to work with the model. Oh, and if you love photography and are really into it, check out WPPI for some great events, including the yearly expo and conference. Great times indeed!



2015, M Palma Photography, vsco, wppi, wppi photowalk, los angeles, Roberto Venezuela, Dave Doeppel, Jason Groupp, Samy's camera, Einstein 640, workshops, models, female
















MP shooting by GM


That’s me on the right photographing our awesome model Jin N Tonic!

(Photo courtesy of G. Mora. Vox Photography)



































Thanks again for stopping by! Have a great week everyone :)




Happy April everyone!

I’ve been MIA the past two weeks. I know, shame on me :( But, I  got inundated with work, and have finally been able to catch up! Woo hoo! Over the past two weeks, I’ve had the distinct honor of photographing young thespians over at the historic and renovated Coconut Grove theater, which is now located at the Robert F. Kennedy High School campus in Los Angeles. Talk about historic places! In addition to that, I had the chance to photography legendary Hall of Fame Baseball manager, Tommy Lasorda, and his old boss, Peter O’Malley. What a terrific couple of weeks!

Speaking of thespians, one of my recent photo sessions involved hanging out with a good friend of mine from my acting days, DC Wolfe. An all around cool guy, talented actor, and now, pursuing his own personal training business, Wolfe Fitness. DC has been a personal trainer for some time now, and has just recently ventured off on his own and needed some photos for promotional purposes. I was more than happy to oblige.

Our shoot took place at the gym where he trains his clients, a large, warehouse type of facility with state of the art equipment and a cool, “workman” type of vibe to it. Before our shoot started, there were Crossfit members grunting and sweating away the pounds! You go to this gym to work out, not show off! Thankfully, we were there to work! At least I was. DC was just standing around looking cool. The personal trainers always have the most fun. Helping us on this shoot was a fitness model friend of DC’s, Debbie, who, as you will see, takes great care of herself, and obviously works out. Inspiring indeed! (Did I mention I ran 8 miles that morning, in addition to the 2 miles swimming before that? Had to, working with these two.)

Below are the fruits of our labor. A huge thanks to DC and to Debbie for being such great models. And if you’re in the market for a great, fit, and personable personal trainer in the L.A. area (Pasadena to be exact), check out Wolfe Fitness. You’ll look great, trust me!


2014, m palma photography, wolfe fitness, personal training, einstein lighting, strobe, los angeles photographer, portrait, editorial, fitness model, personal trainer, silverlake photographer, lifestyle photography, sports




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Hi Everyone! I know, I’ve been M.I.A. the past few weeks. March has been fun and busy for me, and I have so much to share with you!

The first week of the month started off in Las Vegas, for the annual Wedding and Portrait Photographers Int’l (WPPI) convention that took place at the MGM. Every year, it’s an opportunity to take platform classes and learn from the best in the industry, as well as see all the new goodies from all the leading camera manufacturers. But the best thing about WPPI is meeting and making new friends, of which I made a lot this year. It’s inspiring being around like-minded individuals who share the same passion, triumphs and struggles that all of us go through. I spent five full days in Vegas (which is quite long actually), classes each day, expo as well, and hang-outs at night. Kinda felt like summer camp in a way, but everyone had nice (camera) toys!

Once I got back, I had three back to back photo sessions, which started off at the Japanese American Nat’l Museum. They opened up their “Perseverance” exhibit, all about tattoos! I had the opportunity to photograph over 40 models, with full body tattoos amidst a sea of tattoo fans and aficionados. Plus, they even had a live tattoo demonstration, the old fashioned way! No “buzzing” tattoo guns there!

After that, I had the most wonderful opportunity to photograph two amazing families. Both of which had some terrific and fun members, or all ages! Age ranged from 7 to 92 years! Oh what fun. Plus, it was such an honor to be asked to create something like that for them. That, truly makes this “job” so worth it :)

Add to all this, I also had a great first time opportunity to photograph a good friend of ours with a horse she’s been taking care of. It has only been recently that I’ve grown accustomed to  how majestic and beautiful horses are, so this too was a treat. I’d totally do it again :)

Okay, enough talk. Here are some of the images of March 2014 so far! Thanks for stopping by and enjoy!



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2014, march, m palma photography, wppi, las vegas, family photography, hermosa beach, los angeles photographer, horse photography, equine photography, palos verdes, vsco




 Thanks again for stopping by. See you next week!