A glimpse of the season

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I’ve been kinda quiet on here lately. Me being quiet means one of two things…

A. I’m hopelessly depressed
B. I’m super crazy busy.

I’m pretty incredibly glad it’s not A… B has been kickin’ my butt, but that’s B-ok.

All that to say, I’ve taken 1,0000,0000 pictures in the past few months that I haven’t had a chance to take the time to show. A lot of those pictures were for awesome commercial projects, and a good portion of them were for lifestyle shoots for 9art family & senior clients.

Before the next year is completely up on us… which is oh-so-near… I thought I’d share a few of my favorite shots from the past couple of months from those portrait sessions (specifically, those sessions that took advantage of the beautiful fall colors). More commercial work coming soon!

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CIY [arches their collective eyebrow at you]

Once again, I get the privilege of working with CIY [Christ in Youth], an organization that has nearly singlehandedly changed my perception of the dreaded word, ‘headshot’.

I used to dread doing these terrible things, these HEADSHOTS- something boring you associate with, you know, lots of hair lights & soft focus or something. But then I learned that they could be, well, fun. And they could look modern, and crisp, and awesome.

And the outtakes when I work with CIY… oh man. Shooting a large group of people whose job is to organize and create large stage events for thousands of highschoolers across the nation- well, they’ve got a goofy bone or two amongst the group.

We started with, of course, the shots that I was there to get- some really sharp, simple images of each employee, like this:

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Usually I’d opt to either go for white seamless (pure white) background, or a solid color; but in this case, we (‘we’ being Austin & I, the graphic designer on board with CIY, pictured above left) decided to leave the setup with one light on the background only, so that there would be a fun fade-into-white and then back-out-again at the bottom. I really dig it.

some group shots, the first of which features the president of the company, Andy Hansen:

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Always some great faces between takes.

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And some fun profile shots for them to use in a unique way in one of the books they put out.

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And, as usual, some folks brought their own ‘props’.

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But now, my favorite part. It’s always fun to have a ‘theme’ on these kind of shoots to loosen everyone up. This time, I told each person to arch their eyebrow in one of the pictures.

Some people couldn’t do it, some people did it almost too well, but regardless, the collection of faces from the shoot is priceless when you put them all together. So enjoy…

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Kaitlyn + Dak :: married, oh yeah!

    What a dream wedding this was for me to shoot. Super laid back people, great conversation between (and during) shooting, unseasonably gorgeous weather, an intense passion between the couple so beautiful to capture, plenty of time allowed on my part to get everything I needed to get, and just a general sense of fun and people refusing to take themselves too seriously… even if it IS their day.

    That’s a pretty common vibe to all the dandy brides and grooms I have the pleasure of working with. I am lucky, lucky, lucky… or, to phrase it more accurately, very very blessed, to have the clients I have. 

    Enough jibba jabba (as Mr. T would put it). On with the show!

kinda want this to be a magazine cover. Sooooo… which one of you magazines is going to do that? 🙂

Kaitlyn apologized for downing a hamburger during portrait time. I said ‘don’t apologize… go AT IT!’ 

(PS… whatever fast food chain that was… we can’t even SEE your patties. For real. That’s a pathetic burger).

anticipation.

beautiful St Peters’ church, here in downtown Joplin.

Yay!

we switch to drama pretty quick.

this old school spiral staircase at St Peters’ is one of my absolute favorite spots. The light is so beautiful in there…. perfect for catching the intimacy I wanted to convey for this VERY-in-love and passionate couple.

these next two were some of the couples’ favorite shots from the day… the ones I was thinking ‘this will probably be a little too far out’… goes to show, you should never argue with your gut. 🙂

lots more pictures after the break… click on to keep going!

the reception was so nicely done. Love the colors and the attention to detail. Love Springhouse gardens, the venue where this took place. And cupcakes. I really love cupcakes.

one of the simplest shots of the day, but also one of my favorites. The red really ‘pops’ (yep, that’s the token art class 101 word you were looking for).

some guys need a little coaching on how to give that GQ look. (No amount of coaching would ever work on me if the lens were flipped, actually). But not this guy… no sir.

oh, we got normal bridesmaid pictures too. But I prefer these…

EPIC HIGH FIVE!! I may start demanding one of these for every shoot from here on out.

the flower girl requested she and the bride go for a spin. The sweet bride obliged. 

1st dance

HOLD ON!

let the wild rumpus start!

MAN he got into it. Just glad I was there with a camera.

final shot of the night. Last shot doesn’t usually turn out this epic. It was a beautiful night!

photobooth marriage proposal!

    Aaron called me a few weeks back and set something in motion that is, without a doubt, the coolest thing to happen yet at the photo booth. 

    The plan was, he’d sneakily take his girlfriend Emily to the art walk. Then he’d sneakily walk past the 9art photo booth. ‘Let’s check this out!’ he’d say. (And she ended up thinking that going in was HER idea).

They’d stand in line just like everyone else, take a regular pic or two (in our film-noir theme we had going for third thursday, in celebration of our ‘cold brewed’ series)…

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then, Aaron would ask me, ‘do you  mind if we snap a quick picture without the costumes?’

I’d say ‘sure’, and then… 

BAM!

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ENGAGED!!!!

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congratulations, Aaron & Emily… and thanks so much to Aaron for letting me be a part of the experience!

Tony + Kayla :: the big day

     Tony & Kayla’s big day took place at the one and only Springhouse Gardens, Joplins’ premiere outdoor wedding venue. I’m no stranger to the venue, but I certainly don’t get tired of it…. it is simply beautiful.

   And so are this couple… very, very sweet (and funny) people.

   I first met Tony a few years ago, when he was a groomsman for a wedding I shot for Malachi & Angie. Always a groomsman, never a… 

well, not anymore!

I LOVE my 105mm lens…lets me get some nifty close ups like this one…

trying on the veil for the first time!

a very serious man. Nothing helps a man look suave like a good cigar.

there’s malachi, over there on the left…

beautiful bride!

this is when we gave the LADIES the cigars…and told the men to act like ladies. I think Tony won.

Kayla is pretty much the coolest bride ever, in my books, for doing this…

the ceremony. perfect time of day. We’d had rain all week but were blessed with such a nice, perfect temperature, sunny day!

we DID it!

reception details…

Yokley twins (#4)

Isabella & Addelyn; the final session from their baby’s 1st year plan. As often happens (and this is ok), it’s past a year now… but we’re fine with that. 🙂

This one of those sessions where I laid in the grass/weeds at least 5 times, and endangered my camera by holding it inches from the water down in the creek… and am not sorry for any of it.

You have to be willing to get a little crazy if you want pictures of toddlers that give any essence of who they are. That’s what we’re all about!

this tractor was played with by Doug (the twins’ dad) when HE was a kid. This was the first time the twins had played with it… so fun!

we ended the session down by the creek. They loved the water, and had certainly earned the right to get a little wet/dirty. 

Couldn’t end this post without a little tribute to Doug… thanks for matching my goofiness, Doug. I know. it’s not fair. No-one ever points the camera at me when I’M being that goofy. But you also know what you’re getting yourself into when you do these things around a photographer… heh heh…

 

Kids are the REAL rock stars (Hunter, session 3)

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    Sometimes, I look at the style that has evolved out of my work, and it feels odd that I take pictures of…babies. I mean, I also take pictures of a lot of other very different things. Weddings, food, downtown scenery, bands & 1940s detectives…but it seems like babies would be the last subject on my list when it comes simply to analyzing the sometimes over-the-top epic shooting style that I tend to take on. 

     But why not? Babies & other children in general are much cooler than we are. They’re as honest as honest gets, pure, funny, and of course adorable… so why can’t I take pictures of them in the same way I’d take pictures of a band or a superhero or some other more seemingly ‘epic’ subject?

That being said, I start with the simple shots… the ones that focus on the expressions & chubby cheeks, quiet moments that are captured in a more classic and timeless way. Sometimes, if you add too much ‘style’ to a picture, it takes away from the subject. 

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But after that… I like to break out the off-camera-flash, the wide angle lens, and lay on the ground or climb a tree for dramatic angles, to capture kids in a stylized and quirky way. It’s fun feeling to see my work take on a unique look. And even more fun plugging that into a genre of family photography that isn’t always approached in a very fresh light. 

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If that came across as egotistical… shoot me.

(And not with a camera).

Enough rambling. Here’s more of the real stars of the show… baby Hunter & big brother Parker. these are some ridiculously cute children. And my camera has NOTHING to do with that fact.

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the Spierings

    Zach, Megan, and their kids Levi, Ellie, & Annie are very good friends of mine. After sharing many a cup of coffee & meal together, it was an honor to be able to capture their family!

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Sometimes I joke about how I shoot everyone as if they were a band. It shows on some shoots more than others…

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The zombie portion of the session.

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PHOTOBOOTH:: best of 2012

   As many of you know, I run a photo booth each month at downtown Joplin’s ‘third thursday’ events. Last year, after running the booth for 2 years previously, we got to see the event grown in a huge way. Attendance increased exponentially, to the point that our modest little upstairs studio could no longer handle the traffic.

   We moved the photo booth to a borrowed space on the main strip and watched lines reach out the doors. Tomorrow evening, we begin a new season of photoboothing with our ‘rock stars’ theme. To celebrate, here’s some of our favorite images from last year…

and I’ve including the reasons we love doing this.

because our regulars are never lacking enthusiasm.

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because it’s a full family affair for many of you.

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BC you were inventive in your ideas.

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Because I came away with images I never could have expected. 

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Because I got to interact with my clients from my “other” areas of my work in a new context. (pictured are Beth & Nick, whose wedding I shot this January, & Caleb, who is the star of the new series ‘Cold Brewed’).

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Because some people really got into it.

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Because folks didn’t even have to be born yet to get the picture.

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Because you all learned to be caricatures of yourselves.

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Because you people are just so damn classy.

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Because this picture is real weird.

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Because I got to see this family have the honor of officially adopting Mr. Truman. Before last year, we could not legally show Truman’s face. It was a huge victory to be able to include him in the galleries… a reminder of this family becoming complete.

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Because things got epic.

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Because some folks just really looked the part.

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And some people happily participated, even when they really didn’t look the part.

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Because of the great zombie war.

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Because ms. Ashley Carter always led the pack when it came to fantastic expressions.


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Because good friends of mine made a point to come.

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Because the running of the bulls came to the studio.

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Because an entire high school show choir led the crowd standing in line, in a rousing chorus of ‘We Are Young’.

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Because sometimes, the only prop needed was just a table.

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Because sometimes, my clients referenced themselves….
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Because we took photos that looked like weird album covers.

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Because I got to get my old boss from starbucks wear this ridiculous outfit.

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Because the cool kids came.

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Because so many of you were such faithful attenders. Weird, faithful attenders.

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Because w/out the help of the DJA (downtown Joplin Alliance), this thing wouldn’t exist.

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Because there was so much flippin’ cuteness.

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Because great acting was had.

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Because, the photo booth became something epic. Thank you all. Here’s to another round in 2013!

 

Caegan: SESSION 3

    Another baby turned toddler; I’ve seen mr. Caegan go from newborn to very expressive, bouncy little man. take in the CUTENESS!

   This is actually the note we started on. Caegan had just woken up and I was a little too close a little too fast…

he warmed up fast.

this is the expression of an unimpressed toddler. take that, perfect family picture. (he had many such expressions).

 

sometimes I have to turn around to snap a picture of what the parent is doing to get the kiddo to smile… 

It’s a good thing nobody is there to turn the camera on ME, bc I’m generally doing some pretty ridiculous things when I’m taking pictures of toddlers.