Archive: April 2010   |   View all recent posts

Texas Safari
WHAT: Random   |   WHEN: April 24, 2010
Kylie and I took a day and headed out to Fossil Rim Wildife Center in Glen Rose, TX on Thursday.  If you can't get to Africa, this is the next best stop for seeing herds of animals - some which are on the endangered species list - roaming free.  You can even feed the animals from your car, although per park rules only the giraffes are allowed to poke their heads in your car and eat from your hand... all the other animals are more proned to biting or eating your hand.

It's a pretty cool gig, and would be a great thing to do with kiddos, animal lovers, or occasionally immature adults like me.  As evidenced by some of the images below, you get an up close and personal look at animals you'd likely never otherwise see.  So close, in fact, that you'll quickly notice that some could use some mouthwash. 

On the way home we stopped in at Hammonds BBQ for dinner, and lemme tell ya, this place had the. best. homemade. cobbler. everrrrr.  I love hometown places like this, and this one deserves to be on Drive-Ins, Diners and Dives.  Between the cobbler, the BBQ brisket, BBQ turkey, the potato salad, the delish green beans, the Texas Toast and the bucket of lemonade I had, I was in a food-induced blissful coma by the time I rolled out the door.  If I had to guess, I'm pretty sure I surpassed my 1800 calories/day goal by the 6th bite.

Here's a few images from our new animal friends from Fossil Rim.



I asked where Bambi was.  No response.



Of all the animals we saw that day, the ostriches and the emu's freaked me out the most.  Something about them just looks a little untrustworthy... like they were going to peck my eye out at the first available opportunity.



Would you trust this bird?  Me thinks not.



Waiting for us to throw him some tasty magic food pellets.




This place was HUGE.  Here's a small section from an overlook as we were driving through.




The only animals contained by fences we the rhonos and the cheetahs... for obvious reasons.  Without the fences, the cheetahs might eradicate the rest of the animal population, and the rhinos might change your SUV to a compact convertible by the time you leave.



The actor Abe Vigoda (from the 70's TV sitcom Barney Miller) and the Emu below... related?  You be the judge.



Oh give me a home
where the wildebeest roam...
(your welcome for the little jingle in your head)




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Call for Model(s) - Shoot this Weekend
WHAT: News   |   WHEN: April 22, 2010
Since I was planning on being out of town through next weekend on vacation before that whole trip got volcano-ized, I've got a relatively open weekend and thought it would be a fun time to do a just-for-fun shoot if I can pull it together. I'm looking to do a vintage couple/engagement shoot with the guy and girl wearing - what else - vintage clothing, circa the 40's or 50's.

What I Need:
An outgoing guy and girl couple (could be dating, engaged, married or even just good friends) who are willing to have some fun and dress up a bit for some cool images. Must be available this Saturday or Sunday from 6-8pm in downtown Dallas.

What You'll Need:
Models will need to get/wear appropriate clothes, do their own make-up, and bring a gigantic sense of humor mixed with a side of saucy-ness.

What You'll Get:
A free session and a selection of digital images chosen by me. Prints can also be purchased, but not required.

If this sounds fun for you or would be a good fit for someone you know, email me for more details at info@mattnicolosi.com asap. Hope to hear from you!


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Roshawn + Calvin [Dallas Engagement Photographer]
WHAT: Engagements   |   WHEN: April 20, 2010
I don't photograph very many weddings by choice, but I could do engagement sessions all. day. long.  For me, these are my favorite sessions to do because - let's face it - everybody's in a good mood and, as much as I love to photograph kiddos, it's nice every once in a while to do a session where I don't have to chase after my mini-subjects for 90 minutes and eat grass to make them laugh.  Although, occasionally eating grass makes couples laugh, too.  One suggestion, though, for photographers that want to try this... scan the grass for bugs before putting it in your mouth.

I've known Roshawn since way back in her days at Texas Instruments, and I was honored that she and Calvin asked me to photograph their wedding in late June in Dallas.  After a couple rainouts, we went out a couple weekends ago to create some engagement images of them, and it was so relaxing... everyone was so laid back and the Texas spring weather couldn't have been more perfect.  Can't wait to photograph their big day this summer.

















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Paris ~ Part Quatre
WHAT: Cityscapes & Landscapes, Travel   |   WHEN: April 13, 2010
This is the last post of images from the recent trip to Paris; after this, it's back to regularly scheduled programming.

The Eiffel Tower is likely the most-famous of all the Paris icons - arguably the most recognizabe landmark in the world - and yet for as much as we see it in movies, photos, etc., it's still even more impressive when you experience it in person.  It's massive in size and still mind-boggling how it was even designed, let alone built. 

Unfortunately, like the Arc de Triomphe, the tower had some renovation work going on with some netting and scaffolding around part of the base, so it was difficult to photograph the tower up close without getting some of that in the image.  The have to repaint the tower every 7 years, and it looked like they were starting that process again as well as updating the lifts in a couple of the legs while we were there.

And as a bonus from our trip, here's a quick iPhone video showing the sparkling lights on the tower at night:



And here's a few of my favorite images of the tower.



I think what I like about this next image is that it begins to show the massive scale of the tower.



Kylie chillin' (literally) in the gardens in front of the tower.









This is from the 2nd deck of the Eiffel Tower.  It was windy and in the lower 40's by this time, and i didn't have a jacket, so we didn't last long before heading back down. 




A merry-go-round out in front of the tower.  While I was taking this, Kylie was ordering up some delish crepes.



A few random images before heading to the graveyard.






And here we are now at Père Lachaise, one of the more famous graveyards in Paris and home of the final resting place of - among other notable people - Jim Morrison.  It's a little morbid, but the graveyard was one of my favorite stops because of the amazing architecture and textures found there. 

This first image below shows a row of typical monuments of families each with a set of decorative doors that opens to a small interior with a memorial/shrine including family member names, often flowers, and some type of small opening or stained glass window on the back wall.  Kinda creepy, but very cool.






There was a large crematorium near the center of the graveyard (right side of the image).



More cool doors... very typical of many of the memorials.




Below is the grave for French journalist Victor Noir, reportedly portraying his body as it fell after he was shot in 1870 by Prince Pierre Bonaparte.  Myth says that placing a flower in the upturned top hat after kissing the statue on the lips and rubbing its, um, genital area will bring fertility, a blissful sex life, or, in some versions, a husband within the year. As a result of the legend, those particular components of the oxidized bronze statue are rather, ahem, well-worn. 

And no, Kylie did not perform the bizarre ritual with Victor's monument.  I know someone would ask if I didn't mention it.



There were several people crowded around Jim Morrison's gravesite, so I couldn't get a very good image of it... although ironically enough there's not much to photograph as it's one of the most non-descript memorials in the whole cemetery even though it's stil the most visited.  There used to be a cement bust if him here, but it was stolen years ago and repalced with a more simple head stone marker.



You could do a whole series on defferent cross styles you'll find in the graveyard, and I did.  You'll see just a couple of them in some of the following images.





Boo!  Freaky, right?








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Paris ~ Part Trois
WHAT: Cityscapes & Landscapes, Personal, Travel   |   WHEN: April 12, 2010
We made it back from Paris late this afternoon, and I've been holding out on going to be too early to fight off the jet lag tomorrow, but I'm... running.... out.....of..........gas.......

So, not much penmanship tonight.  Instead I'll get right to the images.  More to come tomorrow, but here's another mini batch from the trip.

Here's the spiral emergency staircase outside the hotel window.  Not exactly a tourist hotspot, but I liked the composition and geometry of this image.



Barbie called... she wants her car back.



These shoes were made for walkin'.  As Kylie and I were sittin' on a bridge in Paris, I was thinking back on all the places these shoes have traversed... China, Sweden, Germany, Canada, France, Italy, and of course the US... I think it's finally time to retire these puppies before we head to London and Ireland next week.




Near Monmartre at the top of the city.  LOTS of steps on the way up.





The next couple are from Notre Dame.







Quasimodo had the day off.  This bell was humongo, though.  Can you imagine this thing ringin' while you're standing right underneath it.  It's 13 tons!  It was kinda crazy how you had to duck through small door openings and up a narrow set of wooden steps to see this bell.  One interesting factoid is that the bell tower was constructed of wood to absorb the vibration of the bell when it rang.  It's no longer used except on major holidays, but still interesting stuff.



One of the hundreds of gargoyles that adorn the top of the church.This guy kinda looks like he's sighing as he overlooks the city.  Cheer up, buddy... could have a worse view.



A view of Monmartre and Sacre Coeur (the white church at the top of the hill in the distance) from the top of Notre Dame.



This guy's job all day was to sit up top of Notre Dame and make sure traffic through some of the narrow passage ways was moving in the right direction.



A few of the 400 steps the lead up to the top.  It was cool that you could see and feel the depressions in the steps where so many people had climbed to the top.  It wasn't cool that there was no escalator or elevator. 



Tell me this French guy's not checking out the girl to the right in the image below. 





I'm not a big fan of the cliché image of all the tourist attractions, so I like this image of the Arc de Triomphe.  Just our luck the thing was undergoing renovations with some scaffolding up around parts of the base, but at least I was able to get a couple images without seeing too much of scaffolding. 



This one was actually a drive-by taken from the top of a double-decker tour bus.



Next up tomorrow... Eiffel Tower and graveyard images... my two favorite stops of the trip.


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