Photo shoot at JDJ

Photo shoot at JDJ. I photographed the partners and staff for their website and marketing materials. But most importantly we are building the company’s brand personality by showcasing the talented and dedicated team members in a way that is friendly, approachable, and emotional. Growing a business is all about forming relationships and connecting with people so it makes sense to build human and emotional capitol. They were a very pleasant group of people to work with. And we had fun too!

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Kelly and Ross

Congratulations to Kelly and Ross on their wedding day! You couldn’t ask for a nicer location and better weather. Ok, it did get a little hot but we all got through it. I love shooting weddings and seeing families coming together with laughter, smiles, and tears. These are the moments that I get to capture and the pictures that get passed down from generation to generation.

The wedding was held at Quonquont Farms in Central, Mass. The farm was once a milk producing dairy operation, then an orchard, and now a wedding venue that hosts about 40 events per year. They have a newly converted barn and the atmosphere is a nice mix of rustic and elegance.

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Making an image

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I’ve noticed many judges use the wording “the maker of this image…” when talking about the photographer and it really makes sense. We assume the photographer made┬ádecisions and had reasons for what was included and how the subject is portrayed. We assume there is intent and therefore it becomes more than a picture that was taken at the click of a shutter, but rather an image that was made to communicate something. Photographers are visual story tellers and their challenge lies in the ability to deliver in a compelling and interesting way. Not unlike a poet or novelist.

The concept I was challenged with was to create an image about edges for the Newton Camera Club competition. I started thinking about the edges between man and nature. The edges where cities end and nature begin. I also wanted to have a contemplative mood that suggests human kinds place in the universe and our impact on the planet. The main subjects have been placed to the margins to emphasize a sense of scale and tension.

Once the image was sketched out, I went out to shoot each element: The city skyline with dramatic sky, brick urban looking rooftop, and myself as the human element. The technical challenges was matching the perspectives, the color of light, and the direction of light to make it seamless.

When using photography as a medium for communicating ideas you move from taking pictures to making images with thought and intention. The next part is sharing your images with the outside world and testing to see if your intentions are received by your audience as you intended. Do people get it? How long does it take for them to figure it out? Are they challenged? How long do they spend with it? If you get the reaction you expected then you are successful. If your viewers get side tracked, confused, bored, or misled, then it’s back to the drawing board.

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Water balloons

In the spirit of Photographic Adventures, it’s lots of fun to try new things and see what happens. In this case I wanted to see if I could freeze a moment in time of an exploding water balloon. I have seen images like this before and decided to give it a go. If you have a DSLR and a flash you can fire off camera remotely or with a cord that’s all you really need. And a tripod. I used black water balloons hanging from the shower curtain rod against a black background (garbage bag). Wearing black gloves and using a pin on a stick, I popped the balloon and fired the flash in complete darkness with the shutter open (set to bulb). For the color I found colored plastic acetate at a party store. The kind you typically use for wrapping flowers or gifts. I just cut a piece and taped it to the flash head. It takes awhile to set up but once you get going it’s a blast. I am looking forward to trying this again with multiple colored lights and popping several balloons together. It also helps to have a helper. Thanks to my wife for her assistance and loads of patience!

Red bursting water balloon

Green bursting water balloon