Archive: January 2011   |   View all recent posts

New Orleans! (Part Deaux)
WHAT: Families, Kids, Portraits   |   WHEN: January 31, 2011   |   WHERE: New Orleans
Part Deaux.... hahaha, so lame.  That's about the extent of my French, though, and for some reason people in New Orleans insist on using "eaux" to spell every word that has a long "O" sound.  What can I say.  Paris has the Eiffel Tower and amazing art, Venice has charming architecture & beautiful canals, New York has Broadway & glamour galore, and New Orleans has "eaux".  Oh, and beignets, which I would argue is just a tad seaux much more impressive.

Here are my workshop images from last week in New Orleans.  In some cases we had some models for the hands-on shooting sessions, and in other cases we just photographed each other.  About the first two thirds of these were photographed using just available light and reflectors, and towards the end of this post are some off-camera flash images using a simple one or two flash setup.

Lindey, one of the photogs in New Orleans, brought her two adorable kiddos out for a mock children's shoot.  Both Ben and Pailyn were fantastic!

Haley photographing Kelly.

All direct sunlight in the middle of the afternoon with a silver reflector to the right of Ben to provide some fill light.

What's up, G.Q.?

Loved this light on Haley.  Very simple setup with the sun lighting her from behind and a silver reflector off to her right to provide some directional light.

Isn't Pailyn ridiculously cute?

We serendipitously stumbled upon this little spot between two houses with sunlight coming through to light up this spot on the wall.  Thanks to Tim for adding a little more light with a reflector to Karen's right. 

Loved this setup.  Karen dresses it up pretty well, too.

Lindey and her kiddos!

The rest of the images in this post were photographed with off-camera flash providing the light to separate the model from the background.

BTW, we totally scored a fantastic model in Simi.  She was the MC the night before at the Cat's Meow and graciously didn't kick Tim and I off the stage during our hideous karaoke butchering of Friends in Low Places.  Tim asked her if she would model for us the next day, and she was fantastic.  So natural and fun in front of the camera.

Love this series on the we side walk and street.  This was lit with a flash in from of Simi with a 22 " soft box modifier attached to it and then another flash on the ground behind her to provide a little light to separate her from the background.  In fact, if you look above her right boot, you can see a cable peeking out that connected the 2nd flash to a Pocket Wizard wireless transceiver.  Oops.  Photochop musta missed that.

Really dig the vintage b&w feel of this one.

Again a two flash set up.  One in front and to Simi's right with a 22" soft box and a second flash behind and to her left to help separate her from the scene behind her.

A single flash laying on the ground abour 10 ft in front of Simi and pointed up right at her.

Probably my favorite image of Simi.


New Orleans! (Part 1)
WHAT: Cityscapes & Landscapes, Portraits   |   WHEN: January 30, 2011   |   WHERE: New Orleans
Wow.  Major dust has settled on the blog.  It's been nearly 2 weeks since I've posted anything here, and I'm not gonna lie... it's been great.  I a little break from the blog and client work has been exactly what the photography doctor ordered.  Oh... and there was this little trip to New Orleans that was pretty fantastic, too.

One of the on-line photography forums I'm a member of decided several months ago that it'd be great to get together for a few days and talk about/demo/share topics and ideas around any and all things photography, and an idea was born.  Last week was the culmination of this plan as the first edition of the workshop took place in New Orleans.  And one of the best parts about this whole gig was that other than hotel conference rooms (cost split by 17 people) and travel accommodations, there was no workshop fee.  Everyone checked their egos at the door and came with an open mind, an eagerness to learn, and a willingness to share.  Prior to arriving, we voted on a few topics to cover and had people volunteer to teach/demo on those topics with plenty of time built in for hands-on shooting to practice what was shared. 

Another thing that totally rocked was how well everyone got along.  It was kinda cool to show up and feel like I already knew everyone even though I'd only met just a couple of the people in person prior to that.  The group really meshed incredibly well, and I'm excited about some of the the new things I learned and, more importantly, the new friendships that were formed.  I mean, the other 16 photogs even threw me a surprise baby shower with killer gifts one day at lunch.  Totally unexpected, and ridiculously awesome!

Here's a few non-workshop images from the first day when my friends Karen & Michele and I were walking around the French Quarter.  All images were created with available light.  I'll share images from some of the hands-on workshop shoots in part 2 post.

Here's Michele. I went to an Austin workshop a couple years ago and have become good friends with a couple people from that workshop, and Michele is one of them.

And here's Karen.  I met her in Austin as well.  BTW, Karen makes some of the most creative, fun lunches for her kiddos that I've ever seen.  She even brought me a couple animal shaped sandwich cutters so I can try out making some cool lunches for baby Nicolosi one day.  My favorite was the unicorn.

We spent a fair amount of the day being models for each other while doing some available-light shooting.  Obviously both Karen and Michele were easy to work with. (Sorry, ladies, I couldn't return the favor).

This dude was awe. some.  The guy holdin' the strings was pretty talented, too.

A few steps across the street from the big church a couple images up.

This reminds me of an image I took on our honeymoon in Italy.

Meet Giovanni.  This guy was a sweet/scary/talkative local artist we met down near the church.  He had a ton of character, and a TON of things to say.  Here he was framing up my mug.

Love this black and white of him.

That evening we were walking down near Pat O'briens, and thre was this really cool old wall right next door.  There were a couple groups doing a haunted New Orleans walking tour, and I grabbed this image as a few members from one of the groups were walking by.  I thought it kinda had an appropriately spooky feel to it.

More images tomorrow.


The Fruit of Our Loins ~ Sneak Peek
WHAT: Personal, Random   |   WHEN: January 16, 2011
This week Kylie begins her third trimester, and the countdown is on.  As we enter into the final 3 months of having a tidy house, lazy Saturday mornings, adult dinner conversations and, well, free time, our feelings of excitement, anticipation and all-around general terror are on the rise. Amid all the important things we've been thinking about recently (e.g. do we have the right car seat & stroller, what insurance plan will be best for us, what's our strategy for discipline, etc.), obviously the most important unanswered question - besides what her name will be - is what will our baby girl look like? 

Fortunately this mystery can be solved pretty easily these days with 20 minutes, a camera and a little Photochop.  So, without further delay, I'd like to share with you 3 image possibilities of what I'm pretty sure our daughter will one day grow up to look like.  First up, though, an image of the parental units showing the available gene pool assets our little girl has available to choose from.

And now the fun scary part. 

Here's option A.  Not bad, but she kinda looks like a police artist's sketch of a money-laundering suspect.

Option B.  For the love of God, Kylie and I pray our daughter doesn't end up with my Italian eye brows.

Option C.  I see a future beauty pageant crown in this next one.  Great googily-moogily!  Actually, I'm frightened & confused by this last option Photochop spit out.  I can't tell if (s)he looks more like a man or woman here.

And just for fun, if we are fortunate enough to be blessed with a son one day, here's one option I hope he never looks like.


Things I Think Rock ~ Vintage Camera Bookends
WHAT: Things That Rock   |   WHEN: January 12, 2011
It's been a while since I've done one of these Things I Think Rock posts, and tonight's is just a quickie, but hese beauties just showed up in the mail today much to my excitement, and I felt compelled to tell the internet about them.  Unless you're into photography, cameras, vintagy stuff, bookends, or just plain cool stuff, these may not be of interest to you, but if you fit into one or more of those categories (and hopefully at least that last one), lay your eyes on these babies.

Christmas. Keeps. Coming. A big shout out to Kylie's parents for getting these for me for Christmas.  They ordered them well before the holidays, but they were on back order, so I'd kinda forgotten about them (the bookends, not Kylie's parents), which made today kinda like the 13th day of Christmas.

And for bonus points, one of the bookends has a secret compartment!  Can't wait to hide something in there and completely forget about it.

If you wanna pick up your own set of these bad Johnnies, you can find them at several places for ~$60-70 give or take a few bucks.


The Zemkoskis & Stillwells - Fort Worth Family Photographer
WHAT: Families   |   WHEN: January 9, 2011
Just before the holidays, I met up with the Zemkoski's & Stillwells for my last photography session of the year, and now that Beth and mom Dorothy came in yesterday to view their images, I can share some of my favorites here on the blog.  We got together in between Dallas and Fort Worth in historic downtown  Grapevine and started near the old train station. Given that it was late December and just before Christmas, it's only natural the temperature warmed up to a brisk 82 that day. It's an odd thing to see a town completely decked out in Christmas lights and decorations and people walking around in shorts.  Something's just not right about that. 

We all suffered through blue skies and harsh December weather, though, and ended up with some great images.

Here's everyone hangin' out with (ironically) the Polar Express on the tracks behind them. From left to right: Alex & Beth (the Zemkoskis), Christa, and Dorothy & Frank (the Stillwells).

I really like this image of Alex & Beth.

Sisters Christa & Beth

I convinced the gang to follow me over to an old abandoned house lot in a bit of a sketchy neighborhood, and I'm sure at least a couple of them were scratchin' there head when they got outta the car, but I love backdrops like this wil weeds and old rickety fences, 

One of my favorite images of mom Dorothy and her girls.

Loved this light right after the sun went down at the end of the day.


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