Friday, December 28, 2007

My Favorite Subject

Over the years I’ve photographed a LOT of people. Every once in a while a client comes along that truly inspires you and your work. Earlier this year I photographed Jessica Corette’s wedding and was amazed at how natural she was in front of the camera and how much excitement she generated with each shot. Since then I’ve asked her to model for me on three other occasions, and she keeps getting better with each session. What I like the most about Jessica is that she never complains about the projects I volunteer her for and she’s always ready to show up on time. So, I want everyone else to see what a great model you are, Jess. Thanks for helping me stay on top of my game.

We actually borrowed the scooter off the sidewalk.

I absolutely love this favorite.

Looking forward to our next shoot, Jess. Who’s your favorite photographer?

Friday, December 7, 2007

Texas via Florida

Whaddya do when you’re standing at your booth during a bridal show and you see a beautiful “prospective bride” checking out your wedding album? First, you say “wow”! Then, you give her a free engagement session and hope she takes you up on the offer. Well, that happened many months ago and when Ana DeOliveira called the studio to schedule her session, I honestly didn’t remember her. It didn’t matter because I love showing “brides-to-be” what an awesome job we do making them look good even if they haven't booked our services. Although Ana and her fiancĂ© (Steve) are from Florida they're getting married in Texas, so she wanted a beach setting. Check out the fun shots we created just after a rainstorm.

Ana & Steve I had a blast. Hope to see ya in Texas!!!!!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Sweet, Sweet, Love

They say love is sweeter the second time around and Cristina and Jay renewed that love in a wonderful home wedding ceremony that included family and friends. The outdoor ceremony was blessed with great weather and an ambiance that made the event warm and sincere. Cristina’s dress was stunning and Jay looked so handsome. You’re an awesome looking couple!

Sisters got it all!

This ain’t no Oscar, but….

While there are several significant events I look forward to attending each year, one of the most anticipated events is the Annual Awards/Officers Banquet for the Professional Photographers Guild of Florida (PPGF). It is at this banquet that the Top Ten Photographers for the year are recognized and honored from among all the professional photographers in South Florida.

The results are in and I want to share with all my readers and clients that I came in Second Place (Pappy Hinman Award) among the Top Ten Photographers, recipient of the Jim Swallow Service Award, recipient of the President’s Plaque, and recipient of numerous other certificates for 2007. Last year I received First Place and was striving for a repeat year, but competition was fierce this year with a lot of good photographers in the running. Anyway, I want to thank all of my clients who images were used in print competition that allow me to win the Pappy Hinman Award. My two years tenure as President of PPGF also ended and I will be serving as Vice-President for 2008.

Receiving the "Jim Swallow Service Award

2008 PPGF Executive Board Members

Monday, November 26, 2007

The Woman In the Back of The Church

I love photographing weddings, but sometimes it can be quite boring, especially when everyone is grossly late and you have NOTHING to do. I mean you're just sitting around with all of this expensive equipment at your disposal and there isn't a "cotton picking" thing to take a picture of. That's when I play one of my favorite waiting games...find SOMETHING I can turn into creativity.

On this particular wedding I noticed a woman sitting in the back of the church playing with her Blackberry. What captured my attention was the subtle colors of the scene and the simplistic from of her body against the natural light coming through a large window. After creating the first image that initially caught my attention, I introduced myself to Camilia Harvey and asked her if she would step outside for a quick portrait session. Below are images from a bored photographer and a willing subject.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

It's A Family Affair

What more could a dad ask for then to have two out of his three daughters become a part of the "business". Well, this month it happened after thinking it would NEVER happen in my lifetime.

In January of this year Dana came aboard and has not only taken over the daily operation of the studio, but she has proven to be a premier photographer. Then, this week Christy decided she wanted to join the team after working in child care for many years. I can't tell you what a treat it is to be flanked by "my girls" as as we go out on jobs, attend seminars, debate where we're eating lunch, and working the studio together. Each of my girls bring a special personality to the studio's operation and it can only mean a win-win for our clients and our business.

Welcome aboard, Girls. Dad's proud of you and I think this upcoming year should be a lot of fun!

Julie Clanton - The Re-Mix

After photographing Julie a couple of weeks ago and loving the way she works in front of the camera, I couldn't resist photographing her again. (She makes it so easy to create great images, so why not?) This time I took my daughter Dana along so that she could get in some shooting time with Juile and also to try out a new lighting system we just purchased. Although we had difficulty working with the new lighting, Julie came through like a champ.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Thanksgiving Vows

How do you not forget your wedding anniversary date? Get married on Thanksgiving Day! That's exactly what Janet Rickettes & Orville Facey did this Thanksgiving Day, November 22, 2007. Congratulations Janet & was a lot of fun and I still got home in time to eat turkey and be with my family and friends.

Janet at home before the Ceremony

Newlyweds in the church

Circles of Love

Love is in the air

Monday, November 19, 2007

Commissioner With Flair

Rose Tydus is not only an accomplished vocalist, but she is also a City Commissioner with the City of Opa Locka, and a great activist. I've created portraits of Rose over the years for numerous of her projects and she gets more elegant and attractive with each project. This recent fashion session gave me a chance to work with her again and to see what she's been up to since our last portrait session.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

What's In Your Camera?

Over the years I've had clients contact me about which camera I would recommend for them to buy. However, there is one component of a camera system that I've never been asked advice on. What type or brand of batteries should be used in a camera? Whether you're using a film or digital camera, each will require a battery or batteries to operate. So, from my experience I thought it might be a good topic to share what I've discovered about batteries.

The first thing I want to tell you is that not ALL batteries are created equal. I've been a professional photographer for 32 years and I've tried numerous brands on the market. The clear winner (for me) is Duracell. When it comes to staying power and output I haven't found an equal. Now, if you look in my camera bag you will find both Energizer and Duracell batteries, but only because the Duracells are not always available. Here's the second biggest tip I will give you CVS Pharmacy has the BEST price on AA/AAA batteries with up to a 50% discount sometimes.

Alkaline Vs Nickel Metal Hydride . Don't waste your money on alkaline batteries. First of all, nickel metal hydride (NiMH) batteries have a higher output. Currently, the Duracell NiMH batteries are rated over 2600 (that's an important number to look for). Second, NiMH batteries are rechargeable. And, third, with numerous recharges available to you in the long run their initial cost of $10-$14 dollars will prove to be cheaper.

Next, buy the right charger. Unfortunately, the right charger is like buying the right digital camera. It's great for today, but it's obsolete tomorrow. Here's my best advice. When you purchase your first set of NiMH batteries purchase the charger that comes with it. The charger is designed to charged the batteries at the proper output rate. To get a handle on this issue, take a magnifying glass and read the label on your battery (See photo). It will tell you what the standard charge rate should be and for how long. Now, take the same magnifying glass and check out the back of the charger to see what its charge output rate is (see photo). If it's below what the battery requires, not only will it take your batteries a longer time to charge, but they may NEVER charge to full capacity.

Finally, from time to time take a pencil and use the eraser end to scrub the +/- posts on the batteries to assure a good contact. And, don't throw away worn down NiMH batteries...they're great for clocks and other items that run off small batteries.

Well, I hope this article helps you to understand batteries a little better.