Late Nights & Neon Lights

Like a lot of introverts, I am 100% a night owl. The benefit of being self-employed is that I can make my own schedule. I sleep in until the sun wakes me up (usually around noon), but as soon as the sun sets, I get my bursts of creative energy. In the dark of the night, I feel social, and productive, and inspired. I get insatiable urges to create. To draw, to paint, to photograph, to blog. To make something beautiful, using my hands.

In recent weeks, I’ve been teaching my dear friend, Brittany, the basics of photography. A fellow creature of the night, she suggested that we find a couple of alternative models and hit the streets of our favorite San Diego neighborhoods. And that’s exactly what we did. We waited until it was late enough to avoid the crowds of people loitering outside of bars, and then met up with our models, Becky and Allyssa.

I usually shoot solo, so it was fun to share this photo adventure with Brittany.  Allyssa and becky were the best models I could have asked for. They were so natural in front of the camera, and had such great chemistry with each other. Oh, and they’re both gorgeous.

As my fellow night owls probably know, there are two kinds of people who go out this late into the night: creatives, and drunks.

We encountered plenty of both.

We made some new friends…

… And ran into some old ones.

Oh, and Becky taught everyone her signature move: the shoe phone.

Ready to improve your photography?

Enter your information below to receive access to my free resource library!

Then things started to get weird. In a good way.

I can honestly say that this was the first time I had models hop up on top of a trashcan, but it just felt right. Who am I to stand in the way of two friends bonding atop a can full of garbage? It was beautiful, really.

When we had finished our stroll through Normal Heights, we headed over to Kensington. The friends we made back in Normal Heights gave us some matches to play with. It’s good that they ended up in our hands, rather than in the hands of some pyro punk.

Lifestyle photography in San Diego by Nena Sterner
You’re welcome, Kensington, for the artistic tribute to 90’s kids.

When the matches ran out, we finished up our shoot, said goodbye to Becky and Allyssa, and then Brittany and I headed home (and by “home”, I actually mean “to the liquor store to get some beer”). We stayed up until 6 a.m. watching The Great Dictator and talking about love, art, and our dreams. And drag queens. These are the nights I live for.

Get the look

Close Menu