Dec 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

Made this with my dad and wife in Garden of the Gods this afternoon. It's best viewed big--so click on it to view it larger.

Nikon D7000, 24-70mm f/2.8 lens @ 24mm, f/8, 10 exposure HDR, Nik HDR Efex Pro, Nik Silver Efex Pro2.

Dec 21, 2011

Flower Friday

Nikon D7000, 70-200mm f/2.8 VR II lens @ 200mm, f/5.6, 1/200s, ISO 200.
So, she's not our usual Flower Friday.

I had a blast this afternoon working with Laura Pennock, Summer Stott,  and Kayley King. They did paint, hair and makeup, respectively, for a bunch of gals we had over to make some fun pictures. I highly recommend them and their services. D. is our model here, and she was incredibly patient and talented. She is a lovely violinist and a talented model, I can tell you, and I'm glad she came over after school--what better way to kick off Christmas break? 

Dec 20, 2011

Frosty Mornings

No place has mornings like Cache Valley in the winter. Seriously. I've never seen such fog and frost and mist and mountains. It's pretty incredible. Roosevelt has some terrific fogs, but lacks the mountains as backdrop. This place is really unique.

I made this image leaving the airport in Logan the other day after making some really fun pictures for a private jet pilot there. We worked early so we had the hangar to ourselves before the rest of the office arrived, and I had a good time making pictures--when you're limited by space (inside a small jet) and light inlets (windshields on very fast planes are disturbingly tiny) it makes for creative pictures. I had a speedlight in one window and an Alien Bee in another. What fun!

And to top it off, the sun was just rising and the mists were just getting started, too, as I left the airfield. I debated for half a second (it's cold, you understand?) then said, You only live once! and jumped out, grabbed the tripod form the trunk and started looking for the right arrangement. I shot several dozen frames, almost got run over by the garbage truck, and came away with this as a favorite.

It's good to shoot this stuff. It keeps me creative in my portraiture. Anyone want to go wading one of these mornings? The picture will be worth it...

Nikon D7000, 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VR lens @ 250mm, f/9, 1/160s, ISO 100.
I think what stuck out to me in this image is not only the mist on the water, but the total depth. I love the circle of the culvert amidst all the straight lines. I love the telephone poles leading deeper and across the image. I love the fence drawing me inward (and wondering if I'm outside a prison). I love the selective sharpness, focussing on the reeds not far in. I love the trees and rooflines in the distance showing just how hazy it is. I love the little orange cone by the fence. I love the circle of the bridge bringing me back in. I love that I didn't get hit by the garbage truck after all!

Coming and Going

N. found me on Google. That never happens to me. Almost all of my clients are friends of my other clients. I'm not complaining, mind you, I'm just surprised and pleased. Very pleased, actually. N. is one of the funnest people to work with, and her family follows suit. Not only where they all looking great for pictures, but they were naturals in front of my lens. I gave directions and chatted with them and made pictures. 

See, many folks stop talking and freeze a smile on their face when I lift the camera to my eye. Or, even better, they talk through their teeth without moving their face. I also love it when people are quiet in the studio--like a library!--as if talking ruins the pictures. I'm not picking on people who do these things: I sincerely appreciate their efforts to make the best pictures of themselves. And we always end up with terrific images...once I convince them it's okay to keep on talking with me as I shoot.

Anyway, 'Coming and Going'. Little A. is only a week old--just came. Big T. on the end is heading to Europe to be a missionary. Going. I'd be happy if they came a little more often, actually.

Nikon D7000, 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VR lens @82mm, f/10, 1/200s, ISO 200.

Dec 17, 2011


Folks like these are just plain fun to work with. O. and S. are getting married, and making pictures for their engagement was wonderful--they're in love, and they're cute, and I just couldn't make a bad picture. 

I love working with couples, young and old. One of my favorite things about family pictures is making individual and couple shots of the parents--I get to see that old sparkle return and we have fun while they remember their first times together.

Anyway, best wishes for O. and S. as they get started...

Nikon D7000, 85mm f/1.8 lens, f/3.2, 1/250s, ISO 400.

Dec 16, 2011

Freezing Flower Friday

Here's a little something I made with a student the other day. We were walking to another spot where I have been noticing great light lately, and I looked down and saw the pristine frost on the soft gradients of colors in the leaves and the little camera in my brain started winding, and the computer in there started processing how the image would be finished with Lightroom and Nik softwares and I was thinking how great it would look.

Then I realized, "I'm with a student, who I'm teaching photography...I have a camera in my hand!" I love when I remember that there is a camera in my hand. Not like the other day when I was walking to work and saw a great picture, wished I had a camera, pulled out my iPhone and made a few frames then kept walking, then adjusted the camera strap on my shoulder cause the lens was bumping me in the hip...duh.

Nikon D7000, 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VR lens @135mm, f/5.6, 1/400s, ISO 400.

Dec 13, 2011


Nikon D7000, 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VR lens @ 135mm, f/10, 1/200s, ISO 200.
So, this guy calls me up and asks what kind of photography I do. That translates to instant alert status for a photographer: I perked up and put on my best 'I'm the guy who can do your job well' voice. "I'm a photographer, and I study all kinds of photography, but people are my speciality," I say.

Turns out he got my name from a manager at Icon Health and Fitness who recommended me from the work I've done for them. Sweet. Also turns out he's a model himself, and is looking to build his portfolio. Double sweet. Kade came over and we discussed ideas and where he's going (look for his clothing line coming out soon) and what his plans are. Then we decided to just try something--just get together and make some pictures. That way we know if we like working with each other, and we know how we work, and we can recommend one another at the appropriate times when work comes along. Triple sweet.

Here's how I know Kade is going to go far. We had an appointment today to make pictures. However, he's feeling ill today. Nevertheless, he planned to keep his appointment and tarry on through. Then the lugnuts on his car sheered off, leaving a wheel lying someplace. His text to me: had a little trouble, be there soon. 

Tenacity gets things done. Tenacity engenders powerful and enduring relationships and systems. Kade's got it. Plus, he makes nerdy look good.

Nikon D7000, 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VR lens @ 70mm, f/10, 1/200s, ISO 200.
 For more on Kade, see his Model Mayhem page (Model Mayhem as a whole is a PG-13 site).

Dec 12, 2011

Bad Day, Good Pictures

Sometimes things just don't work out the way we hope. Sometimes there's traffic that makes you late, or frost on the windshield that takes too long to scrape off, or extra work that takes longer than expected. Or little boys with the flu on the day of their photo shoot. Things happen. Fortunately, it doesn't mean that the pictures will suffer because of it. Mom loves this image, and I think it's nice, too...

Dec 9, 2011

Best Family Portrait Ever

That's what the R. family said, anyway. Mom called me up yesterday and asked if we could make this happen super quick--she gave me the idea of what she wanted, and we made it happen super quick! It was fun, too.

The thing everyone enjoyed most was not having to do hair and buy new shirts and practice smiling. I still had to jump around and catch the attention of the little one, but every one else just stood in their spot and made a picture! What a fun idea.

Nikon D7000, 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VR lens @ 40mm, f/11, 1/80s, ISO 200.