Woods in transition…Part 1

The woods are in the beginning of transition. Went for a Sunday drive and ended up out at Oxley Nature Center, as I have often, but today there was some drizzle with a high chance of it turning to rain, and it did.


The woods were so still during the rain, it made me stop and just be. If it wasn’t for the sounds of the rain in the woods you would almost think the video was a photo. Just a moment in time in the woods.


I had already decided to head home because of the rain. I packed up my camera and headed towards to the parking lot when I stopped to watch the field and the rain for a second. I decided to get my phone out to grab a snapshot of the field and maybe a video, not wanting to get my camera out of it’s bag. That is when this little guy walked across the trail, I snapped a photo of him then thought I should video him, so this is what I got. After I continued on my way wishing I hadn’t put my main camera up, the moment reminded me of something Jim Richardson said about “not being done until your are done.” In other words, don’t put your gear away until your completely “DONE!


For the clients – something different

Creating something a little different to fit what your clients want can be great. I was tasked with creating some head-shots for a client that fit the overall look and feel of their branding. The portraits that I create usually are on the more dramatic side, darker backgrounds with a more classical feel. With this project I was having to switch things up a bit. Not only because I wanted to do something different but also to fit my client’s look and established brand.

I worked out a lighting set up and editing style to create the look desired. Here is what we came up.

A lighter, lower saturated, higher contrast images with a white background shot with a single light. One strobe with a 36″ octo softbox on stand, Nikon D800, 24-70mm, F2.8, edited in LR. Here are a couple diagrams showing a basic layout of the light and subject positioning.

Nothing really complicated or extravagant just a simple setup with some basic post work. But the final look that we got is what we wanted. This is a reminder of the KISS method, keep it simple stupid.



Angel in Black and White

I’ve been wanting to change up my shooting style, if I really have one, to try something new. Wanting to do more black and white portraiture. I was working with a friend the other day and I asked “may I do your portrait?” and of course she said yes, well she chirped back “sure,” so that’s what we did.

The only light I had with me was a SB-600, yes I still have and use it and yes it still kicks out some good light, I have a small 6X9 Impact soft-box for the light modifier, it attaches with Velcro, works great in a pinch just like this one. The stand for the SB-600 I used a tripod, I attached the mount for the speed light to the head’s plate. Positioned the tripod on the table and used the swing-arm on the tripod to position the light right above me and the camera.

I wanted to go with a white back ground so I used a piece of white expanded PVC that we had behind a wall cutter cleaned it and placed it on a cart against the wall.

After getting everything setup and the flash’s power set, it was time to go to work sorta speak. I like to talk and have a conversation with the people that I photograph, it helps to relax and keep a calm setting, even joking around can get you a nice candid shot, a moment out of the norm, or other words the images that people don’t like to show. These are a few of them. I do want to go back and get some with a larger studio light but I still like the way they turned out.

Angel Adams is a creative in the Tulsa, Oklahoma area. You can learn about her here on her site here or @angeladams

Portraits of Nicolette

My friend Nicolette came over for some portraits, here are a couple.


The first image is my usual tribute to Martin Schoeller, two light setup with one on either side of my camera. On the soft box I block out half of the light in order to create two vertical catchlights in the eye straddling the pupil.

The second image is a single main light just off to the left with a second light adding just a hint of fill on the right, while still allowing for the Rembrandt lighting style.

Editing, effects layers allowing for the pushing of levels, brightness & contrast, saturation along with a warming filter. Finally using clone & healing brushes for light retouching and removal of blemishes.



Portraits of Destiny.

My friend Destiny came over from some portraits, here are a few.

I had a pretty basic light setup. Created the Rembrandt lighting on two of them with a dual lighting on the either side of the camera for the third, to cut down on shadows and to also create the catch lights on both sides of the pupils. This image is of course my obligatory tribute to Martin Schoeller. 

The editing was pretty basic as well. I used editing layers to push the levels, contrast & brightness as well as saturation then finished with a warming filter. Used the clone and healing brushes to do a little touch up but not much. 


Portraits of a friend.

A friend and local paramedic here in Tulsa, OK Mitchell Sharp was kind enough to pose for a few portraits to help me work through some lighting setups, and this is what we came up with.

A few different arrangements, two light setup with softboxes then with reflectors and then of course my obligatory tribute to Martin Schoeller. Not quite exact but getting there. With that being said its not an attempt to just being exact to what Martin Scholler does and is famous for but to use it as more of a springboard to something of my own. To disect and then kind of reverse engineer then learn and create something of my own from there. Because we all learn from from what we see and experience in the world around us.

We have a winner!

Well we have a winner to the signed print giveaway. I have sent a message to the winner and as soon as that person contacts me back I will announce them. In the meantime I want to present the print that they have won.

Update 2013/7/3: Unfortunately I have yet to hear from the winner of the Signed Print Giveaway. I do want to give the winner ample time to get in contact with me. So I have decided to announce the winner now, in hopes they will see there name and contact me directly.

The winner of the Signed Print Giveaway was Toni Slate of Laugh Talk Radio. I have made attempts to contact you through the contact section on your blog, so if you see this please contact me as soon as possible to receive your Signed Print of “Moonbow over Yosemite.”

I want to thank everybody for their support and encouragement of my photography.

“Moonbow over Yosemite”

This is "Moonbow over Yosemite" I captured this image the night of the full moon in May, 2013.

This is “Moonbow over Yosemite” 11X14 I captured this image the night of the full moon in May, 2013.

I captured this image of the moonbow, on the night of the full moon in May. The alignment of Yosemite Valley east to west and the placement of Yosemite Falls being along the north side of Yosemite Valley, is a near perfect arrangement of elements. The best time to witness moonbows are in the springtime, since the flow of water over the falls is great enough to produce enough mist to catch and then create a moonbow.

There were probably about 100 or so people there trying to get a look at and a good photo of the bow. It brought the experience a bit more into focus for me. Not just the experience of seeing a moonbow but that of Yosemite as a whole. Just saying there are a lot of people there, even in the slow seasons. However without these people we wouldn’t have the national parks at all. We need the participation of everyone but we need to remember to be respectful of nature all that it has and represents. Because without nature we wouldn’t be here either. Well enough of the soap box, if I really got on it at all. So with no further delay the settings and gear I used to capture the image.



  • 32mm Focal Length
  • 40sec Shutter Speed
  • 16 F-Stop
  • 3200 ISO