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Early Sneak Peek of Rebecca’s Wedding at the Salt Lake Temple & JSMB

Rebecca’s wedding was beautiful! These two are great together and the weather worked out wonderfully.

While I’m working on and designing her album, I wanted to share some of my early favorites as a sneak peek for you all to see. Here framed in the nook, we have her veil blowing in the wind. She had a beautiful, long veil, and it caught the wind many times throughout the day, adding a lot of fun to the photographs.

I love this portrait of the two of them – a nice, mid-length portrait of them leaning together, newly married.

We had a beautiful, sunny day. So with the right lighting, I was able to make them look beautiful while at the same time capturing this gorgeous and deep blue sky with clouds glowing from the sun. I love how the light of the sun comes through the clouds, down on them, creating a directional lens flare, all framed by the temple.

Here Rebecca is holding her veil for this wonderful kiss.

And some dancing in the wind to the delight of a full paparazzi crowd of Chinese tourists behind me. They cheered and clapped, and snapped a ton of photos during this dancing sequence.

I love these long tall lines mixed with the diagonals of her veil and dress.

Then just before the reception, these dark clouds started rolling in. I got low to look up to show these deep storm clouds. Then during the reception while we were all inside the JSMB, we got a rain storm for a bit.

And to end the night, we came back outside to capture this amazing sunset to end the day. I love warm colors surrounding them, all while being framed by the temple.

If you’re getting married, give me a call at 801-728-3317. Let’s talk more about your wedding and what you’d like. I’d love to create something awesome like this for you.

And until next time, America.

Ryan Shupe Live Concert at Sandy Amphitheater, June 2018

Ryan Shupe just had his big outdoor summer concert here in Utah at the Sandy Amphitheater, and I was there again to photograph the event for him. His band, ‘Ryan Shupe & the RubberBand‘ puts on a great live show. The mix of great music, the cool night breeze, friends, laughter, and smell of popcorn and hotdogs from the concessions all come together for a wonderful night.

These images I shoot get used for his promotional materials, website, and even for album designs. The images I shot last year for him have been used entirely for his brand new album design, Live Volume II.

I hope you can feel the energy from the live show, just by viewing these images.

For one song, Ryan had me shoot some iPhone video for his Facebook live which included a wedding proposal at the end of the song. But during the song he has tons of children from the crowd come up and sing on stage with him.

Here’s the video. It starts with a few seconds of my face resetting the app, because the Facebook app crashed as soon as the song started.

And as the night gets later, the stage lights grow and you can see the energy on stage grow as they start rockin’ even more.

If you have a band or business or need some great commercial images to showcase what you do, give me a call at 801-728-3317. I’d love to create some great images for you as well.

And until next time, America.

He Is Risen, Sun over Death Valley in Color Infrared for Easter 2016

Being Easter, I wanted to post something and it hit me today what to share. I have been working on this image and many others as part of a big commercial project I did in Death Valley. This image was shot in color infrared, a light spectrum invisible to the human eye. The bright colors are real, they are just not the colors or type of light we see.

So aside from the candy Easter colors, I like this for Easter because the sun is dramatically shining over Death Valley from the horizon as if rising. It says symbolically, “The Son brings light and life to Death.”

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And for a little more Easter spirit, I want to share a video with my little 4-year old nephew narrating it. He was an early reader and last year when my family showed him an Easter video he started reading the captions. My sister and brother-in-law stopped and recorded him and combined his voice with a new version of the video. They did it again this year, and this is it.

And here is last year’s video. More backstory on this in last year’s post.

Plus, here are some photos I did of him in my Utah studio to go with his cute voice.

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Happy Easter, everyone. And until next time, America.

David Archuleta, Kendra Lowe, & Lexi Walker for the American Diabetes Gala at the Grand America

I had the pleasure of photographing the American Diabetes Gala at the Grand America in Salt Lake City, Utah for my friend Kendra Lowe. She was the director of the event and lined up musical performances with her friends, David Archuleta, Lexi Walker, some of her Lowe sisters, and other local favorites like Nate Keller.

Here are some of my images from the event, both behind the scenes as well as during the musical numbers. I love shooting concerts and live events. It’s always a creative challenge to get great images because I need to move stealthy to avoid drawing attention from the audience, and I also have to make the most of stage lighting and the movement of the subjects. Everything is constantly changing, and I have to think fast.

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If you have a corporate event and need to make sure that you get great images, give me a call. 801-728-3317

And until next time, America.

Shirley’s Portrait of Her Growing Family

Family portraits are incredibly fulfilling for me to create. A well-made family wall portrait brings joy to people for years if not decades. And Shirley’s family had grown quite a bit since I’d last photographed them. It was neat to see everyone, to hear about their lives as I photographed them, and I always find it especially fun to get little children to not just relax, but to smile and laugh for a portrait.

We had talked earlier about doing a large canvas panorama of her family above her couch, and this is the final image.

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It’s a little hard to see all the great faces online, so I made this 15 second video to show the big group.

Because Shirley and her husband were leaving on a religious mission for a while out of the country, the large canvas pano would have been hard to take with them. So I used the individual family groups to create this square wall collage.

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And here are some of the individual families. They were each shot individually for the panorama so that they could each get their own portrait, but it also made it easier on the family’s time constraints, as well as making the most of my custom style of lighting. I have a lot of space and options here in my Utah studio, but even a family this large makes for a very tight fit if I were to try and shoot everyone at once all in the studio. But shooting each family separately, we were able to create something much more unique and artistically pleasing, plus it helped the family because there were some members that couldn’t be there all at the same time. Everyone was coming and going throughout the shoot, and we never had everyone in the studio all at the same time. And it all worked perfectly.

As you view these families, notice how comfortably everyone is grouped together in each portrait, and how great each kid looks.
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Family portraits are one of the most important images we can create. I believe strongly in a great family portrait, and now is a great time to get your family in the studio for a portrait.

Give me a call at 801-728-3317, and until next time, America.

My “Company Party” Christmas Card

Merry Christmas, everyone! This year I re-used my previous card because it took so much work to create it originally. It’s a group portrait of me, taken at my company Christmas party.

Cox-Christmas-2013-Card-Design-2-finalChildren especially have told me that they like my cards and can’t figure out how I can be in so many places at once. To see how it was made, check out my original post that explains all of the time-consuming details.

I love that this holiday is about people taking the time to go out and specifically shop for others. It’s a great time for selflessness, and a time to remember the reason for the Savior. I hope all of you have a joyous season with family and loved ones. Merry Christmas!!

And until next time, America.

Jessica’s Cold Wind Photo Shoot

I recently spoke for Adobe at the two big national photographic conventions, PPA in Nashville and WPPI in Vegas. The week leading up to the second convention I photographed Jessica, and used her shoot as my demo for the crowd in Vegas to teach workflow and retouching. It worked great because it was a fun photoshoot that involved some problem solving.

We had a batch of warm weather and planned something outside, but it turned out to be a very cold day in Utah instead. And because of time constraints, our first choice for a location shoot fell through and we instead met at a parking lot between us where there was no “traditionally great” place to shoot. But we set out to find something that would hide the brown, dead, winter look of Utah, and also possibly block some of the heavy and cold winter wind of the day. And with some creativity and lighting skills, I know that any background can work.

Jessica spotted this awesome bright red double-decker bus and we set up. The wind was cold and pretty heavy, I believe hitting 20 mph that day. But the wind was blocked on this far side and the sky was on a great angle from the sun to really go blue when mixed with some lighting techniques that would also knock down the harshness of the sun.

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Jessica is great in front of the camera. She’s relaxed, she moves well, and she responds perfectly to direction. I love the emotion and action between these images in this trio above. The deep colors, her hair blowing, her laugh – it all really makes this set incredibly interesting.

We also did some work on the side of the bus to put the sun behind us, but the wind was a lot stronger here so we didn’t last long. But here is one of my favorites with her hair blowing in the wind. And with the warm beautiful colors, you’d never know it was freezing cold. However, between setups, she was bundled up in coats. She was a good sport.

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We didn’t have much time left, so I thought of finishing up inside somewhere warmer. There was a nearby hotel where a friend used to be night manager, and so we walked over and asked to use their lobby for a few minutes. This is Jessica as we were walking in, wearing my down parka backwards on top of her own layers.

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We took about 20 minutes or so in the hotel’s lobby, and got a great variety of amazing images. There is a lot of expression and changes of mood in these images, and notice too how the lighting changes from shot to shot to constantly highlight her cheekbones as she moves. There were so many fun images and every one shows a different side of Jessica and I couldn’t cut any out. In fact I thought they worked great as a series so I used them all and created this square collage.

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Though my program for Adobe was on retouching techniques, the big secret is to of course do everything with lighting so that no retouching or adjustments are required. And then when you retouch, it should be subtle so that everything looks natural. That’s what really makes women look great.

But as a side note, none of the images in these collages have had any retouching or adjustments. And yet her eyes pop, her skin glows (and isn’t gray or muddy), the angles of light and the color balance are all right on so she looks great and the background colors pop – and add to that Jessica’s graceful movements and her fun personality and we have one killer shoot.

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This colors of the couch and wall worked great with her outfit so I made a trio (above) and felt this one long shot below was really interesting and captivating, so I used it as the basis for a painting.

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And here is the final painting.
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And on the way out of the lobby was a big leaf mural. I shot a few closing images by it and did some texture work to the background.BryCox_Jessica_05

Well there you go, one great shoot created on a very cold and windy day while finding new and unique places to shoot.

If you were a photographer who attended my speaking event then you can see how the collages and and other ideas all came together. If you’re a model or a high school senior and want fantastic images, now is the time to book. And if you’re a bride and want to look great no matter where your wedding is located or what the weather is like, give me a call. 801-728-3317. I know just how to make women look great, so call me and let’s talk about your dream portrait.

And until next time, America.

My “Isle of Light” Lighthouse Image Featured in Professional Photographer Magazine, April 2014 Issue

My lighthouse image Isle of Light, is featured in this month’s Professional Photographer Magazine. The magazine features a few images that did well at national competition, and shares the story of how those images were made.

Here is how it looks in the magazine.

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I created this image while speaking on the East Coast after getting bumped from a flight. It was also selected to be in the PPA Loan Collection Book after scoring well at nationals.

This image is available on my art site in various sizes and finishes, if you’d like it for your home or business entry.

Professional Photographer Magazine is a publication that goes out to all professional photographers throughout the US as well as other parts of the world. If you’re photographer, you’ll find this on page 20. Here is the double-page spread.

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It’s always an honor to be asked to be in this magazine, and this image is one of my top favorite lighthouse images I’ve created too. I’m glad they love and appreciate it and wanted to showcase it.

Until next time, America.

Marisa’s Engagement and Bridals

I recently photographed Marisa’s wedding and thought about posting her engagements and bridals here to celebrate her wedding day, but I didn’t want her fiancé Ben to accidentaly see the bridals before the ceremony. So I am now sharing these images and am excited for you all to see them. I’m starting with some of her bridal images. Because it was a cold fall day, we started inside in the warm studio to create these.

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Marisa looks so elegant and beautiful in these images. There were so many great images, it was hard to pick some favorites, but these were some of them.Cox_Marisa02 Cox_Marisa03

At one point, the rain seemed to stop so we hurried outside and shot a bit in the leaves. This dancing trio is a collection of some of our favorite images outside before the rain started up again.

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And here are some of Marisa and Ben’s engagements. We did a mix session with multiple studio backgrounds and lighting setups as well as some outdoor images as well in the studio gardens.Cox_Marisa05 Cox_Marisa06 Cox_Marisa07

These two were so fun to photograph and are such a great couple. We were laughing most of the time when we weren’t shooting. I think they look great together and I am excited that they found each other.

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I really love how these images turned out. They had a great variety of images and the display of images at the wedding reception looked amazing. Cox_Marisa10

And to close, here is a sneak peek of the wedding day. Though the album will take some time to design, this is one of my favorites from the day. I will for sure share their entire wedding album once it is ready.

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If you are getting married now is the time to give me a call and reserve your day as it is that time of year when brides are booking dates. Or feel free to just call me and ask any questions you may have. 801-728-3317

And until next time, America.

How I Created My New Christmas Card, A Self Group Portrait

My Christmas Card is out and in the mail. If you haven’t seen my past Christmas cards, for the last few years they’ve all been group portraits of me, but in the studio. My idea is that it’s a funny company group photo from my own Christmas party. My clients know that because of the custom work that I do, I personally see each job through from beginning to end, which also means that I wear a few different hats. The card is a growing joke, and each time I’ve done it a little better. But this time I really wanted to out-do myself!

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Clients, especially children that come in are always asking me how I shoot my group photos of myself, so I decided to share with you my process.

First I mapped out the entire shot, and decided on which images I’d need, where the various people would be positioned throughout the image. I needed depth, but didn’t want anyone in front of anyone else. I even have three people tied together with garland, all handing each other the same strand. It all has to look real and work. Each person had to be working together naturally, and that meant thinking about how the angles and lighting should be.

Once it was mapped out, I began photographing the pieces. I started with my studio/home. I needed to use open area of the front and didn’t want it covered with the cedar fence and line of trees in front. So I used a wide angle up close to get the entire home in the shot without the fence and trees you’d see from the street. This gives me the best angle on the place but causes bending on the vertical lines, that I will fix later.

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Next I photographed my folks’s tree in their home. My mom always puts together the best tree.Cox_Christmas2013-114

Then back at the studio I photographed each remaining part on my fashion gray background so that they could be extracted off the background easier. Extractions are not easy nor fast, but a solid gray background makes it easier at least.

To fit a large ladder in the studio on gray, I chose my smallest ladder, and doubled the size of the legs digitally, adjusting too for the perspective of the steps. I then photographed each version of myself, imagining where each would be positioned in the final image, but used the same step on the ladder to stand so that I’d fit in the studio shot.Cox_Christmas2013-groupEach photograph was fired with a remote that I am holding with one of my hands. For instance, in the shovel image, I’m holding the remote up against the shovel’s handle. Once I’m in position, I fire the shot. After each shot, I change clothes, set up the next image, and shoot again.

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After all the camera work, the digital work begins. I started with the individual versions of me, each extracted off the gray background and placed in the shot where they were mapped out. The ladder was also extended taller, being key to making sure all the other people were in the right spots and in proper perspective.

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Slowly the group began to grow, and the star was added in the hand on top.Cox-Christmas-2013-Card-Design-1c

Then I extracted the tree off the living room background and prepped it.

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The tree was brought in and more details were brought together.Cox-Christmas-2013-Card-Design-1d

 

Then to the background. I corrected the vertical lines, and the image was cropped to fit the final piece.Cox-Christmas-2013-Card-Design-1e

I then created snow from scratch and added it throughout, fading out the home as well for a misty look and to keep the background from being too busy and competing visually with the foreground.Cox-Christmas-2013-Card-Design-1f

The background was added to the crowd, and more details were added like sparkles on the Christmas tree’s lights.Cox-Christmas-2013-Card-Design-1g

Once the background was in, people needed to be moved slightly on the right side to work better with the background. Once they were in place, shadows were drawn in so that each person and object cast a shadow that matched the lighting from the sun behind. Each point of contact with the snow was then painted up close so as to “drop” everyone into the snow so they didn’t look like they were on top. That, along with the shadows, help give the final piece a more 3D look and not a flat, fake look. There’s much more I could do to make it look real, but a little of that fake look will help with the comedy effect.

The star was also given a nice sparkle. More snow was added around the edges to create a natural white vignette to keep the focus inside the image, and the tree’s trunk was finished as well.

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Finally, I used one of my custom edges to finish the piece, added the text, and the legend of who everyone is at the bottom. And the finishing touch as always, is adding my signature, in this case in the bottom left.

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So what’s your guess on how long it took to complete this project? All in all, it took about 23 hours including both the camera and digital designing time, and that doesn’t count working with the printer and mailing company to get it all out to each of you. Hopefully when it comes, it brings a smile to your face. If your address has changed, let me know so that I can update it for the next mailing I send out.

I hope all of you have a joyous season with family and loved ones. Merry Christmas!!

And until next time, America.

Rachelle’s Bridals and First View Portraits

I am so glad to have been the photographer for Rachelle’s wedding events. She is so beautiful and full of life that her images just glow. This is her bridal shoot which also included some portraits with her groom, and so we started off the shoot as a first view – where the groom sees her in her gown for the first time. His reaction is golden!

I took the entire shoot and created this slideshow for their wedding reception, and thought it’d be fun to share it on my blog too.

And here are some of the images from the shoot.

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Bridal portraits are taken before the wedding so that images can be created for display at the wedding reception, and to create the type of images that you normally don’t have time for on a wedding day. Cox_RSnow_B-813-bwI love the lines framing the bride and the lighting shaping her and drawing you into where she is standing.

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And here is one from outside, using the blue sky and shadows to frame and create interest around the couple.Cox_RSnow_B-755

Rachelle is a dancer, so you’ll notice the dancing images of her in the video above. The entire shoot was a blast despite the sweltering heat that day. But it made for some beautiful blue skies and directional lighting.

If you are a new bride, give me a call. I’d love to work with you and create some fantastic photographs for you. 801-728-3317

And until next time, America.

Doug & Anna’s Family Portraits

Years ago I had the pleasure of photographing the wedding for one of my good friends. Just recently I was able to photograph his family and see how much his cute kids had grown. We shot everything here at the studio, outdoor in the studio gardens.

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These little girls were so fun and adorable. We took some time during the session to create individual portraits of each girl and some groupings of them together as well. One of those groupings I used to created this painting.

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While the painting may portray more of a feeling of being young together, this next grouping shows all their smiling faces.

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I also really liked this trio of all three girls.

Cox_DBassett-F-8x20AnnaMarie_oooAnd here are of the favorites of each girl, printed as individual images so that they can be either hung together in a grouping, or later spread out around the house.

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It was so fun to see these guys again and to create these family heirlooms. I really love to photograph families and kids and would love to photograph YOUR family. Now is a great time to get in. Give me a call at 801-728-3317.

And until next time, America.