The new year is upon us and it is time to look forward, set new goals, and get ready to kick some butt. Before I get started on that, I should probably post a quick blog about 2012.
This past year was another crazy year filled with travel and new experiences. I went on tour for 40 days, taught workshops all over the country, spoke at some conventions, did some trade shows for Life. Camera. Actions, made new friends, and survived the end of the world. I also started to transform the look, feel, and concept of my studio. Phase one was the brand and what it really means. The realization is that my photography is somewhere in between high fashion and a rockstar vibe so I am bringing that style into the full experience and treating my clients like rockstars (I did this before… but now it is on steroids.) Phase two was the physical transformation of the studio space, which is still in progress. I painted the entire inside and outside of my building by myself (6,000+ sq ft), built some custom furniture, and I’m working on some more surprises. When people walk in, I want them to think they just crossed the threshold from our small town to big city style.
So looking forward, 2013 is about stepping up my photography business. I’m also working on a new project that I think will really make in impact in the photography workshop industry. That’s top secret though so you’ll hear about it when the time is right
Here are my 21 favorite shots from 2012 in no particular order. I’ve included backstories for some of them.
This image was a recreation of a shot I took years and year ago. You can see the then and now HERE. This one if definitely my favorite shot of the year.
I’ve had the idea to do an Andy Warhol inspired wedding photo with a modern twist for a long time.
My wife and I took an anniversary trip down to Cancun and I snagged this shot of us before going out to dinner!
We had to go pretty far out of the way to shoot in this barn. Unfortunately it will probably be torn down this year
For awhile I barely showed off any natural light images on Facebook. I usually just posted my one favorite picture and it was almost always taken with flash. When I posted the image on the left I got a massive response and it made me realize that I didn’t show off that type of photography nearly enough. This is a pretty basic type of shot for me from a session or wedding but since I didn’t show them often, people didn’t realize I even took pretty pictures like this anymore! So thank you guys for your comments! As an artist, I live in a bubble and forget that people only see a small fraction of what I create!
I love this shot because right when we were going to go take the pictures of the bride and groom, it started POURING down rain. Luckily I had picked out a dry spot to shoot in case that happened. Towards the end it was only sprinkling and I mentioned that there was a field I really wanted to take pictures in. I told the bride, Kim, that if she was up for it we could go and I promised some epic shots. I warned her that her dress might get wet and muddy but that it would be worth it. Without hesitation she said yes and we got a series of really awesome shots. Her dress really didn’t get very dirty either! If you look really close above and to the right of the couple you can spot some raindrops.
I took this photo at a conference I spoke at in the Lake of the Ozarks called FotoChaos. I demonstrated this technique, live, in one of the most random places on the property.
I’ve shot at The Arch plenty of times and I’m always trying to make it unique. Side note, I can’t wait for Matt and Jen’s wedding! Matt was actually a groomsmen in my wedding!
This image was taken on my workshop tour in Dallas. We stumbled across all these lit up trees and I wanted to go outside the box and show what you could do in a location like this. It took a bit longer than expected because the lights were so dim and so spaced out, but the end result is pretty cool!
Another shot from the Flashfire Workshops Tour. This one was taken in San Francisco. The weather had been calling for rain all week leading up to the workshop and miraculously, the weather was absolutely perfect. This image was to demonstrate something I call “cheating the curtain” which lets a photographer shoot past the maximum sync speed of their camera without the use of high speed sync. If you aren’t a photographer, that probably makes no sense. If you are a photographer, there is a 50/50 chance it makes sense.
This image was a fun little challenge for me. The couple wanted to recreate this old photo of their grandparents so we put a modern twist on it. We all forgot until the end of the session so we ended up taking this picture at a grain elevator. It worked out pretty well though!
This location was my favorite of 2012. A storage unit was being built in our town and for a couple months it was just open and I could shoot in there.
Now it is finished and the images I got will be the only ones like it!
I love taking pictures of people in places that they think are stupid. Nadine was pretty apprehensive to have her picture taken next to a grain bin… now she is not
A lot of people wondered how I got the ball up there… several people thought it was photoshopped… (long pause) I just had her toss it.
Another image from the San Fran workshop. Alcatraz was actually just off to the right in the background but a barge blocked it from the shot.
When I teach workshops, I always try to show how you can make something from seemingly nothing. This image was taken at the hotel and there were just a few strip lights that colored the building blue and green. When I slowed down the shutter speed and twisted the camera, it streaked those lights across the shot. I put a blue gel on the background and a flash on the model so after the flash fired, they went black and only the bright lights showed up which is why the model is not blurred.