Wednesday, September 30, 2009


It's always nice when two people click. It makes working together so much more productive and enjoyable. After my shoot with Tanya in downtown Denver, I think the photos definitely support this idea.

It started off on a good note. "Do you want some coffee?" "I don't care, do you?" "I don't care." "Uh oh, are you one of those people who has a hard time making decisions?" "Yes, are you?" "Yes." "Should be a fun shoot." It's nice to start off with a little humor and common ground.

We had been planning on doing a "summer" shoot while it was still warm outside and the grass was still green. We had originally planned on last Tuesday, but with a high of about 50° and rain, that's not great weather for a summer dress. This Tuesday, the weather cooperated perfectly (although it was a little chilly first thing in the morning). We got our summer shots, she didn't get blinded by the sun too much, and didn't even get very wet from laying in the grass (the park had watered the night before).

Once we were done with the summer portion of the shoot, she changed into business dress for some "professional" shots in LoDo. We shot in quite a few different locations, a few construction workers enjoyed watching Tanya do her thing and I almost got a guy's phone number ("potential model" giving us a hard time). We were done by noon. She had a hair appointment (she's a stylist), I had to go scout a new location, and it was getting hot.

Fortunately, I think the photos turned out great and so does Tanya. She even says I'm her new favorite photographer! All I have to say is that if she were to call me up right now and want to go shoot somewhere, I'd only have two words to say to her: When and Where?

You can see more photos from Tanya's photo shoot here.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Scott, Marla, Amanda, Vanessa, Jared and Marisa

After a long week of cold, rainy weather, the sun decided to make an appearance and warm Denver up a bit. The timing couldn't have been better for Sunday's photo shoot with Scott and Marla's family. It was a warm, sunny day that made spending a few hours outside wonderful. What made it even better was spending the time with this fun group of people!

When they first arrived, Jared was the person who I noticed first. He was so full of energy! He was running around, but was still well-behaved. He had so much energy during the entire shoot, I figured he'd burn out at some point, but he never did. It made for some great photo opportunities, like when he started climbing a brick wall.

Vanessa was a little shy, but was still a good sport about getting her picture taken. After a while, she decided not to smile much, so I worked with what I had and got some great serious photos of her. One of my favorite photos of the day came when she was off doing gymnastics in the grass while I was taking photos of someone else.

Want to know who's going to be America's Next Top Model? Marisa! Well, maybe not next, but give her a few years and she'll be right there. This girl knows how to work a camera. By the end of the day, she was coaching her entire family on how to pose.

Amanda is the oldest sibling and was a lot of fun to work with. She has a great smile, but the camera was totally loving her hair! The wind would come up just enough to blow it away from her head, giving her that supermodel look. I couldn't have done it better in a studio.

Finally, as the adults, Scott and Marla had their hands full with the four kids (with help from Amanda), but still managed to look great in their photos. They were very open to my suggestions and freely gave their input as well. I couldn't ask for a nicer couple to spend a few hours with.

After the shoot, the family was heading over to see Cirque du Soliel, so towards the end photos started to become a little less important to the kids. Fortunately, they finished strong and didn't get burned out. As we were walking back to our cars, I had my highlight of the day: Jared asked me if I would come to the circus with him.

You can find more photos from the shoot here.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Ashliia in Fort Collins

Yesterday I had the pleasure of doing a photo shoot with Ashliia Jhanei on the campus of Colorado State University (CSU). CSU's campus has a huge variety of different architectural styles, providing many different choices of shape, color and texture to include in photographs. I attended CSU, so I was already familiar with the campus and had a few locations in mind before arriving to scout. After an hour of walking around campus, I had plenty of locations ready for the shoot so we wouldn't waste daylight wandering around looking for good locations.

Ashliia arrived dressed in jeans, heels, a black top and an awesome turquoise necklace that she made herself! After some discussion about our goals for the shoot, we headed out and got to work.

At the end of the day, after the sunlight had all but vanished, we were both very happy with how everything had worked out. As you can see, we got some excellent photographs. I hope to work with her again very soon. Thanks Ashliia!

You can see more photos from my photo shoot with Ashliia here.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

The Importance Of Asking Permission

When I was lining up the photo shoot with Pet (see previous post), there were a few places in Cherry Creek she wanted to shoot. The biggest part of the shoot was supposed to take place inside of Cherry Creek Mall. Another part she wanted to include was some shots at a restaurant.

While it can be easier to play dumb and beg forgiveness rather than ask permission, it's usually a good idea to ask permission first. These days photographers are under more scrutiny than ever, so I would much rather play it safe and not get interrupted in the middle of a photo shoot by security or the police.

First, I paid a visit to the management at Cherry Creek Mall. They were very friendly and open to photographers in the mall, but they explained that there were contracts to sign and a legal department to deal with. They said the process would take at least two weeks and probably more if there were any changes to the contract. I had less than a week, so the mall was out. The woman I spoke to did say that she was glad that I asked, as they treat photographers as trespassers and will usually call the police if they catch anyone taking photos without permission!

The second location I visited was North, an Italian restaurant in the middle of Cherry Creek. The woman I spoke to there gave me a business card, wrote down a name and email address and told me to contact this person in their corporate offices. She said that it shouldn't be a problem to get permission to shoot, but we still had to go through corporate.

I contacted the woman, Debbie Porter, and almost immediately received a response saying that it would be fine to shoot at the restaurant. Not only that, but she asked how many people would be in the crew and what we needed from them! She even recommended we use the restaurant before it opened to make it easier for us (and probably for them as well). When we arrived at the restaurant, they were expecting us (yay for good communication!). Everyone was very nice and helpful and offered to get us anything we needed. Once we were set up, they left us alone until we were done. They prepared a great salad for us and set the table, even though they weren't even going to use the table that day.

It only took about 5 minutes total on my part, but the payoff for asking permission was huge! Did it seem like a little extra trouble at the time? Sure it did. But, when I think about how easy it made everything when it came time to shoot, I'll be asking permission every time from now on.

Thank you to North - Modern Italian Cuisine in Cherry Creek.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Photo Shoot - Pet Sasso

On Wednesday, I had the opportunity to work with a model out of Minneapolis. Her name is Pet Sasso. She contacted me a little over a week ago because she liked my work. Luckily, we were able to set something up in the short time she was out here.

We decided to shoot in Cherry Creek, as she wanted to add some shopping photos to her portfolio. I thought it would be best if we headed down there early before the shops opened and there were a bunch of people around, so we decided to meet at 9am. All that was left to do was wait for the day to arrive.

When the day arrived, it was cool and overcast. Contrary to what you'd think, an overcast day is actually perfect for taking photos. It gets rid of harsh shadows and gives a nice, soft light on everything. The sun finally decided to make an appearance around noon, but we were able to find some shady spots to take photos for the next few hours.

The shoot went great. We hit at least 10 different locations in three different outfits and we got some great images out of all of them. The highlight of the day came when we came across a fountain and Pet decided she wanted to get in. There were a bunch of construction workers around who were just watching and cracking jokes about getting in with her. Of course, when she got out, it was time for an outfit change!

At the end of the day, it occurred to me how amazing it is for two people to come together from across the country, meet each other in the morning and have some wonderful photos and memories by the afternoon. Thank you Pet!

You can see more photos here.

First Post

The first post is always the hardest, right? I'm glad that's out of the way.