Personal Wedding

The Other Side of the Alter: A New Experience for a Long Time Wedding Vendor

A few weeks ago my wife and I received a phone call from my step-daughter. She called to tell us she was going to marry her long time boyfriend, and was coming to North Carolina to do it. During the phone call she made an unexpected request. She wanted to know if I’d be willing to go through the necessary steps to be able to perform the ceremony. To be honest I’d never really considered being an officiant at a wedding, but how could I turn down a request like that. To be frank I found the request to be quite touching. It made me feel like I was something more than a man that had been forced into her life because her mother decided to get remarried.

The wedding was a few days ago, in her aunt’s backyard. While it was only a small gathering of family members I certainly hope it was a special event for her and my new son-in-law. It was an interesting experience trying to put together a ceremony that would be meaningful and memorable for her. It also provided me a nice look into another important part of a wedding… the honor, stress and responsibility of being the officiant. I suspect it might even help make me a better wedding photographer!

Personal Uncategorized

Wat Carolina Buddhist Temple: Wilmington, North Carolina

I had the opportunity to visit the Wat Carolina Buddhajakra Vanaram, Boliva, NC (between Wilmington & Southport, North Carolina). It was an interesting opportunity for some photography and not something one would normally expect in North Carolina. I’d like to visit again for additional photography in conjunction with one of their holidays/celebrations.

The shrine in the main temple building. Detail of two of the Buddha statues in the main temple near Wilmington, NC

The architecture is more what one would expect to see in Thailand or India rather than southern North Carolina. Another view of the Wat Carolina temple, about 2 hours north of Myrtle Beach, SC

The different roof levels are interesting: Buddhist Association of North Carolina Several statues of the Buddha featured on the shrine in the teaching area in the monk's quarters.

A candle burns in front of the shrine.

GOYA Personal Uncategorized

Unscripted: Raleigh North Carolina Model Photo Shoot

Olena strikes a pose in a wedding gown early in the shoot along the streets near the Hi 5 Sports Bar, Raleigh North Carolina. Near the end of the shoot we catch Olena in some beautiful natrual light streaming into a Raleigh, NC parking garage.

The Wedding Photographic Society, a networkiing group of wedding photographers based out of Raleigh, North Carolina, recently hosted a model shoot in conjunction with their May “unscripted” meeting. I had the pleasure of attending and taking part in the shoot, along with 20 other photographers. Five models participated and we broke out into separate groups, each with one model. You can check out a slideshow of more of my images from the event by clicking here.

GOYA Personal

Giving Photojournalism a Try: The Morehead City “Tea Party”

As a boy, when the other kids were playing “cowboys and indians” I was frequently playing “newspaper reporter.” I was always fascinated by the idea of reporting news. Though I never pursued that side of photography I couldn’t resist giving it a try at a local “Tea Party.” Please note I’m not posting this as a political statement. This was simply my attempt at documenting a current event.

These peaceful examples of “civil disobedience” took place all over the country April 15. It struck me as a newsworthy and unusual occurence. These photos were taken at the “Tea Party” in Morehead City, North Carolina. The event was held in the parking lot of the Kmart Plaza and was attended by about 1000 people. I’d love to hear comments about whether you think I did a good job covering this event.

April 15 An unusual event, people turn out to express their feelings about high taxes and government spending.

Civil disobedience, the Morehead City

My attempt at photojournalism

Approximately 500 people attended this Eastern Carolina

Citizens excercise their right to freedom of speech.

As a boy I wanted to be a newspaper photographer.  This was an interesting excercise as a photographer.

Eastern North Carolina citizins gather in a peaceful demonstration on April 15, 2009 Documetary photography is not a lot different than wedding photography.

The event lasted for about two hours.

People of all ages gathered to express their disapproval of government spending.

GOYA Personal

Red Leaf: A Symbol of Fall

I had the honor of being asked to capture an “autunm/harvest” image for the November cover for the “Newport Voice.” While we eventually settled on a shot of the fall harvest display located at the Neport Mini-park, I was really taken by the simplicity of this image of a red leaf floating in the Newport river. I hope you enjoy.

A sign of Fall, a red leaf floats in the Newport river.

Personal Portraits

A Little Self Portrait Fun!

I had a little time to kill following a consultation with one of next year’s wedding couples. So I set-up a lighting scheme in front of my white seamless background, set my camera on self-timer mode and hammed it up in front of the camera a bit.

Business Education Personal

A Very Inspirational, Very Alt-F Workshop!

I spent Thrusday evening at the Very Alt-F workshop in Atlanta, Georgia. Hosted by Zack Arias at the Used Film studios, the workshop was presented by John Michael Cooper and his wife Dalisa. John and Dalisa’s altf studios is known for making inovative, artistic wedding images and anti-bridal portraits. In 2007 American Photographer magazine named John one of the “World’s Top Ten Wedding Photographers.” John shared a great deal of information on where he finds inspiration for his unique images, his approach to the business of wedding photography and how he works the images after they’ve been captured digitally. I know I came away with some useful information that I’ll apply to my work.

Business Personal Tips, Tricks, Hints Uncategorized

New Toy!

I’ve always been fascinated by near-infrared digital photography. It can produce some very gorgeous wedding images and landscapes. I recently acquired a Canon Powershot G2 camera that has been converted to IR only capture. It’s going to take some time and practice to get using it down, but I like the possibilities. Here’s a little landscape example… taken behind the North Carolina Visitors Center on Hwy. 17, near the Virginia border… Big Dismal Swamp Canal:

Big Dismal Swamp Canal in Infrared

Business Personal

NC Crystal Coast Wedding Article Posted is dedicated to providing answers and clearing the “fog” about selection of a photographer for your wedding. In addition to FAQ’s and a very good photographer data base, they publish articles of interest to brides. An article I prepared about planning a wedding along North Carolina’s Crystal Coast was published on the site today. If you’d like to read it you can find it here.

Bridal Personal Portraits Wedding

Fashion Bridal Session

I had a fun shoot with Michelle Wednesday afternoon. I wanted to expand my fashion bridals portfolio a bit and she was interested in having some photos done. To make it a bit more challenging we chose to start the shoot at mid-afternoon, i.e. harsh, strong sunlight. There are a few of the edgier, “rock star” photographers that never shy away from harsh lighting conditions. I wanted to give it a go myself. Here are a few images from the shoot.

Window light combined with video light

In the bright afternoon sun

Bride in a doorway at Fort Macon State Park

Fun with a 9 foot wedding veil.

Doorway duotone.