Two beautiful girls…and Dr. Doug

I had a great time shooting with Dr. Doug and his awesome family (and pets) on Thursday. We set up a backdrop and rocked the white seamless for this one. We laughed at Jane the entire time. It’s always fun shooting such expressive babies.

Falke Family
Falke Family
Falke Family
Falke Family
Falke Family
Falke Family
Falke Family
Falke Family
Falke Family
Falke Family

And this outtake just makes me laugh. Somehow it seems very fitting. :)

Falke Family

blog_footer

Scheduling for the future

Conner

As we’ve started looking to the future of our business, I’ve been thinking a lot about my schedule. Right now I’m working about seven days a week and usually just getting done what is in front of me that must immediately be done. This doesn’t leave a lot of time to work on growing the business and planning for the future.

For 2010, we’ve set some very ambitious goals. To hit those, I’m going to have to spend a lot more time working on the business instead of in it.

Colton

I thought I’d share what I hope my weeks will look like soon.

Sunday :: Rest
I’m terrible at taking time off. Sunday isn’t really ideal for rest because we work at church for half the day but usually it’s the only day of the week we don’t have anything else scheduled. Any week I can have another day off, I’ll take it, but for now this will probably have to do.

Monday :: Marketing/Learning
Eight straight hours of working on nothing but my business and learning new skills is the goal for Mondays. Everything from designing promotional pieces for us to reaching out to other people in the business. If I spend a solid eight hours a week promoting us, I think it will make a massive difference. I’m planning to spend about half the day working on marketing and half the day reading, watching and learning everything I can to become a better photographer.

Tuesday – Saturday :: Planning/Scouting/Shooting/Postproduction
Pretty self-explanatory. Tuesday through Saturday are when the real work will happen. Everything that goes into running a photography business will happen on these five days. Having Sunday and Monday marked off means I’ll have to focus even harder these five days to get everything accomplished.

Conner

I’m under no delusion that this schedule will work every single week. If a client needs to shoot on Monday, we’ll probably shoot on Monday. However, if I can stick to this schedule the majority of the time I think we’ll go a long way toward hitting our goals.

So what does your average week look like?

Conner

I took these new shots of the boys today to test out a new 50″ soft box. Unfortunately, Conner wasn’t big enough to hold it in the wind so I only got a few shots of Colton.

blog_footer

Jennifer + John Wedding Day

Here’s a quick preview of last Saturday’s wedding with Jennifer and John. The ceremony and reception were both at Texas Old Town which was an amazing venue to shoot at. The day turned out perfect, between a UT win (which everyone at the wedding was paying attention to) and great weather.

Jennifer + John Wedding Day
Jennifer + John Wedding Day
Jennifer + John Wedding Day
Jennifer + John Wedding Day
Jennifer + John Wedding Day
Jennifer + John Wedding Day
Jennifer + John Wedding Day
Jennifer + John Wedding Day
Jennifer + John Wedding Day

blog_footer

The camera in my head won’t turn off

As I’ve made the switch to doing photography for a living, I find I can’t seem to turn it off. No matter where I go or what I’m doing, I catch myself sizing up locations and looking for places to shoot. Every day when sunset rolls around if I’m not shooting, I wish I was. While probably being mildly unhealthy, I think it’s also made me a much better photographer. It’s much easier to go into a location and find great angles to shoot from if I’m used to doing that everywhere I go anyway.

Leon Clift

I took these shots today at my in-laws’ land. We’re planning a shoot with Leon next week to promote his music ministry. These are just test shots, but I had already taken both these frames in my head before I ever set up any gear. The more often I practice taking pictures with my mind, the easier it becomes to find the shot I want quickly.

Leon Clift

blog_footer

Norman Family Shoot

Yesterday I did a shoot with David Norman and his awesome family. We shot in a couple of locations around downtown Austin. They are moving to Kansas in a few days to take a position pastoring a church. It was now or never to do a shoot and get a little flavor of Austin to send them on their way with. ATX will miss you guys.

Norman Family Shoot
Norman Family Shoot
Norman Family Shoot
Norman Family Shoot
Norman Family Shoot
Norman Family Shoot

blog_footer

Jessi + Lane Wedding Day

Last Saturday, we had the honor of shooting Jessi and Lane’s wedding at The Oasis in Austin. They were amazing to work with. There are some couple you can instantly tell are deeply in love. That’s Jessi and Lane. Between their awesome family and the great staff at The Oasis, we couldn’t have asked for a better wedding. Here are a few favorites from the day.

Jessie + Lane Wedding Day
Jessie + Lane Wedding Day
Jessie + Lane Wedding Day
Jessie + Lane Wedding Day
Jessie + Lane Wedding Day
Jessie + Lane Wedding Day
Jessie + Lane Wedding Day
Jessie + Lane Wedding Day
Jessie + Lane Wedding Day

A few from the One Light

Here are a few shots I grabbed from last night’s One Light Workshop here in Austin. After a couple years of talking with Zack, it was great to finally meet him. I’d highly recommend his workshops.

Ironically it was a lighting workshop and I think one of my favorites from the day is the third one down, which isn’t lit at all. I think I’ve been shooting with lights for so long now that I forget the beauty of a really well done available light shot. Other than the side of the building coming out of the top of his head I really dig that one.

One Light Workshop
One Light Workshop
One Light Workshop
One Light Workshop
One Light Workshop
One Light Workshop
One Light Workshop
One Light Workshop
One Light Workshop

blog_footer

Dianne’s Bridal Session

Here are a few selects from Dianne’s bridal session. We shot at the Austin Women’s Club in downtown and it was one of my favorite shoots this year. Dianne and her family were amazing to work with. We were almost rained out, but we rolled with it and had a blast. She was even brave enough to climb up a lot of very large rocks in her dress. Most brides aren’t that brave.

I think this is one of my favorites of the year.
Dianne's Bridal Session
Dianne's Bridal Session
Dianne's Bridal Session
Dianne's Bridal Session
Dianne's Bridal Session
Dianne's Bridal Session
Dianne's Bridal Session

blog_footer

10/8/09 iPhone photo

10-8-09 iPhone photo

Today, you get the two for one special. Colton and I went to pick up pizza for dinner. I had to stop on the side of the road and climb into a ditch for these. I know the people driving by think I’m weird. Do my kids? Probably.

Taken with the iPhone using Best Camera.

10-8-09 iPhone photo

blog_footer

Bean dip, bb guns, and a great woman

Below is a post I wrote over two years ago. Yesterday we laid Granny to rest in Gorman, Texas. It’s funny because when I think about the fact that she’s gone, I don’t get very sad. I think because Alzheimer’s took her mind so long ago. What makes me cry though, is when I think of her in Heaven sitting at the table with our great King. She is now free of a mind and body that failed her. She is back to being the amazing woman who loved us all. If, in my life, I can help and love half the people she did, I’ll be doing very well.

I’m always amazed at the power of our senses to transport us to a different time and place.

On a recent grocery run, I grabbed a bag of Ruffles Sour Cream & Onion chips. It was just a normal afternoon. There was nothing remarkable about it, and that’s usually when something extraordinary happens. A few chips sounded like a great mid-day snack. As that first chip hit my tongue, I was gone.

Suddenly, I was six years old, sitting at a light brown card table in my Grandma’s living room. I was munching on a few chips while Granny, as I call her, was in the kitchen making a bowl of bean dip. The Rangers were playing a Saturday afternoon game on the TV. A game of Yahtzee was spread out on the table in front of me.

Granny walks in with the bowl of bean dip and a small plate with sliced cheese. She always spoiled me. My favorite meal at her house was chips, bean dip and cheese. Real healthy.

That one little taste of a chip brought back memories I hadn’t experienced in years. Even as I write this, I marvel at the wonderful memories, while still being sad they will never happen again.

My brother and I would rotate spending the night with her on Fridays. She lived in a small mobile home just outside Snyder, in West Texas.

I am reminded of how much fun we used to have, but especially the little details. I remember the sound of the heater in the winter. Being a mobile home, the heat came through vents in the floor. I used to love laying by those vents, soaking up the heat. I remember watching ball games with her while she introduced me to games like Wahoo and dominoes. Always on the rickety little card table.

The porch outside was surrounded by black metal railing that seemed a little too wobbly to actually stop someone from falling off. Down the cold concrete stairs was the large circular driveway with small dips in it. When it rained, the dips would fill up and become vast oceans for my G.I. Joes to fight around.

Then, there was my first bb gun. Granny would take me to shoot cans out near the woods. I became the first grandson to shoot her when one rogue bb ricocheted off a can and hit her in the shin. She never let me forget that.

I remember her small blue car, I think it was a Chevrolet, and the trips to town we would go on. On one of those trips to the local K-Mart, she bought me a small Hot Wheels car. It was an army vehicle with moving missles and everything. I felt so special because she spent all her “silver money” on it. I think it was a grand total of seventy five cents, but I felt like royalty because she had given everything she had in her coin purse.

In the grand scheme of things, a very small part of my life was spent at Granny’s, but it continues to influence me even today.

Today Granny lives in an assisted living center in Weatherford. Her health seems to get worse week by week, and we’re not sure how long she will remain with us. When I see her now, she often mistakes me for my Dad. She doesn’t remember much, but one thing she always tells me is about the fact that Cody and I always stayed with her and “never forgot who’s turn it was to spend the night.”

They say within three generations no one will remember you. As I think of my Granny, that makes me very sad that if I don’t do something, my kids and their kids after them will know nothing of this great woman and the influence she had on my life. It’s our job to make sure no one forgets the great ones. And Granny truly is one of the great ones.

All that from a stupid little chip.

blog_footer

10-1-09 iPhone photo

10-1-09 iPhone photo

I find a lot of comfort on my parents’ back porch. They’ve spent so much time working on their back yard and turning it into a very peaceful place. I’m here for a day or two as we get ready for Granny’s funeral on Sunday. I find myself gravitating towards the porch a lot. This shot is of the ceiling fan and the amazing ceiling my Mom built using old rusty tin.

Taken with the iPhone using the Best Camera app.