Friday, August 24, 2007

short & sweet

Bridget and I are going to take some pictures for her cousin that's a senior in high school. To practice (and to give my model some good pictures), I asked my buddy Kyla to go on a little photo shoot with me. So, here are Kyla's glamor shots. Enjoy! Feel free to leave comments.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007


Back in June, Dave decided it was time to pack up and move out west. He decided that things would be pretty boring alone, so he invited me to come along. We drove from Indy to Seattle in 4 days, and got some amazing pictures on the way.

I should also mention that this was my first trip out west, so everything was new and exciting for me. If you live or have lived out there, you're probably like, "eh, no big deal." I also really enjoy landscape photography. Anyway, I'll give you the highlights of the trip.

The first day we made it to the middle of Kansas. Since we knew we were doing spectacularly well with time, we decided to make a pit stop for pictures at a deserted farm exit. It was a little cloudy and also about time for the sun to set, making this one look like something out of the movie "Twister." Even though I'm from Indiana, I still found this shot interesting. It was cool to see the shadows and light coming through the clouds the way it did. Once we hit Colorado, we went through to Roosevelt National Forest. I didn't edit any of these pictures; it's just that beautiful. I took pictures of everything, the sky, lakes on the side of the road, a random chapel, wildflowers with the incredible zoom lens, and a lot of road pictures that really aren't so great.

As we were continuing on, we were close to the mountains but in a flat, farming area. Some of my favorite pictures are from this area with the unobstructed views of the rays of sunshine, the grazing cows, and just the beauty of Colorado. We entered Medicine Bow National Forest, where we discovered some snow (yes, snow!). Libby Flats observation point was absolutely incredible. It offers 360 degree views of not only the flats, but the mountains too. The next morning, we kept driving and found Glacier Lake. It was pretty crazy to know that everything you're standing on is ice and that in the summer, you wouldn't be standing, you'd be swimming if you're in the same spot. After we hit the road and got out of the park, we stopped at Bear Lake (I'm pretty sure that's the name of it) where I was captivated by these "frost" covered plants. Not something I was expecting to find.

Sunset on the road.

A pull off in the middle of Oregon offered some pretty cool landscapes. It was similar to Indiana in that it had a lot of farmland, but differed in that we had a high vantage point to observe it. They also have some funky plants that are probably weeds, but interesting nonetheless. That afternoon, we made it to Bellevue, woo hoo! The next day, we headed into Seattle for the Saturday Pike Place Market. They had flowers everywhere, and I loved it. Fresh flowers are on my list of favorite things in the entire world. They had some vegetables too, but we didn't need any. I like their sense of humor. They have crabs, and lots of them. I found this gutter/plant system to be quite creative. We stopped at The Crumpet Shop for a little snack, and discovered the incredible food that they offer. As we continued to explore Seattle, we found many creative pigs. They're everywhere. If you ever go there, see how many you can find.

I'm pretty excited for my next trip out west in January. That's when I'm going to experience all of the cheesy tourist attractions and check out the nightlife. We're also going to Davis/Sacramento, so I'm sure many fantastic pictures will result from that trip.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

being dramatic

I love taking dramatic pictures. The best ones occur when I get a shot of something simple, then play with the shadows when I get it back on my computer. Black and white has always been my favorite; it's both simple yet dramatic. Ansel Adams captured some of the most beautiful landscapes in the western United States on film in black and white. It truly blows my mind that such stunning photographs could be taken without editing or enhancement. This photo is one I am always trying to replicate in my own way. I love how the tree stands out against the dark forest so vividly. Maybe I'll have the opportunity someday to spend a few weeks out west just doing landscape photography. I wouldn't mind it at all.

Some of my favorite black and white shots that I have captured over the years have been in common places, at home or at school. It doesn't take a trip to a new and/or exotic place to inspire creativity, it can happen in everyday surroundings.

Not all black and white shots have to be within a nature setting. Switching over a group or couple shot instantly adds interest and elegance to the shot. Instead of being distracted by colors and backgrounds, you switch your focus to the body language, facial expressions, and emotions being expressed. I love black, white, and all the shades of gray in between.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

"yo, yo, yo!"

I was hanging out with the triplets last night (they're 2 years old), and it just cracks me up when they talk. It's so cute. I love spending time with my cousins, they're just so adorable. Elizabeth likes to say things like "hi, hi, hi" or "no, no, no" so I figured I would try "yo." It worked; she sounded like a lil rapper. When Pam & John came home, we were cracking up. They're so polite too, always saying things like, "more applesauce, please." I want my kids to be that good. It's always fun to be a little goofy.

Another one of my cousins, Cece, is the youngest of 6. I have aptly named her "Animal." She's crazy, but I love her.

My favorite part of spending time with my crazy cousins is that not only to I get to watch them grow up from each set of pictures I take, but I get to have "models" that require absolutely NO direction. They just play and they're great at it.

I'm always looking for inspiration from other photographers. A woman named Nina Larsen took this one (I think it's her daughter), and it's so adorable.

Monday, August 13, 2007

waiting for the bus...

I saw all of the kiddies on my street waiting outside for the school bus this morning. It was the first day of first grade for some of them, so mom and/or dad was out waiting with them. They were so darn cute. It reminded me of how nervous I used to get at the beginning of each year. Taking pictures always makes me feel better, and helps me to concentrate on something else. In my senior year, I was really glad to have a clear, sunny day to go out and shoot the fall foliage. It's absolutely beautiful in Bloomington, and maybe by checking out these pictures, you too will be persuaded to check it out for yourself. It's worth the trip, I promise you that.

I'm trying to shoot one area four times a year to see it as the seasons change. I've got fall and spring for Bloomington, with a little bit of winter, but I need to work on summer more.

Check out my ever-evolving portfolio if you haven't already. It's pretty much the best of the best + some random fun ones.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

I decided it was time to start keeping track of my photographic adventures. I'm doing this not only for myself, but for the handful of friends out there that like to check out my work. I'll post links to albums as big days come and go so you can see what I've been up to.

Becca & Lance's wedding last weekend was pretty awesome. I had a great time shooting their big day, especially since we're all great friends. Always a pleasure spending time with my best friends. Even better when they're looking beautiful/handsome and helping to build my portfolio. Enjoy! Please feel free to leave comments. :o)

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