The First Night
What really set all of this into motion was a night in April 2010. The three of us had been making trips down to Disneyland together for several months. There were no cameras accompanying us prior to this. We enjoyed the park in typical fashion, running from ride to ride, stopping for the occasional popcorn or churro break. Early that Spring, we searched for computer desktop backgrounds – something we did a lot back then. Amidst our search, we stumbled across HDR photos for the first time. They were unlike anything we'd seen and we were really taken by them. They had a presence, a sort of secret ingredient that had been lacking in other photos we'd seen. Though we had all had creative interests prior to this, the photography bug hadn't yet bitten. We were moved and inspired to try HDR and Disneyland seemed like the perfect subject.
On the evening of April 22—Matthew and Michaela's anniversary—we headed to Disneyland with a hodgepodge of cameras in hand and hearts set on capturing our impressions of the park. We stayed until 2 o'clock in the morning, shooting hundreds of pictures. We were drawn to things we'd hardly noticed before looking at them through a lens. It was a special night that created a treasured bond, experiencing Disneyland in a new way. It was as if someone turned the light on for us and a passion that had lain dormant was woken.
Have an idea? Start a blog!
Within a few weeks we wondered if people would want to see what we were doing. Having been roller coaster fans as teens, Kevin and Matthew would scour the internet for pictures of their favorite rides and get excited for upcoming trips. We thought—What if there was a place like that for Disneyland? What if we could create a place that people could come to when they're not at the park to relive memories, to get inspired or to get excited for a trip? The idea fell upon us with a sense or purpose.
On May 4, 2010 we started Disneyland Resort in HDR through Blogger. At the time, there really weren't any sites like this. There were and are a number of great photographers out there who take pictures of Disneyland, but there wasn't a central experience dedicated to it. We were headed into uncharted territory. There wasn't a template to go off of or instructions for how to do it. Posting was sporadic, images took a long time to edit and let's just say – we were learning.
In Search of a Name
The arrival of Tours Departing Daily as our new identity took less than a month from the time we started. We sat in the backyard one day, brainstorming ideas to replace DLR in HDR. We threw ideas out for all kinds of names; some were cheesy; most of them were terrible. One that we thought was pretty great early in our idea session was "Capture the Magic". We did what any expert analyst would do and Googled it. What we found was a strange service offering to photoshop Santa Claus into pictures of you and your family. We moved along…
Kevin had recently done a picture of the Jungle Cruise and suggested the words adorning the sign that hangs at the entrance, "Tours Departing Daily". Something clicked. It felt right. The whole idea of a blog is sort of that you take people on a journey with you, whether you're sharing a story, journaling, sharing ideas, products or pictures. So this idea of inviting people along for the ride, sharing your perspective, inspiration and insight, that was the idea with Tours Departing Daily.
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