winter

Windy Winter Mountain Shoot with Nicholette in Utah

The wind was bitter cold as we hiked up through the snow to a small overlook in our nearby Utah canyon. The climb was slippery and full of tall new powder that went well past my knees and nearly to my waist at one point. Once at the top, the wind was stronger and even more frigid so we worked fast, also because we needed to beat the setting sun. The entire shoot was maybe 20 minutes long before we headed back down the mountain, yet in that short amount of time we got some great photographs. Here are some of my favorites.

Utilizing some specialized lighting techniques, I punched up background with more blue tones to enhance the cold feeling, while simultaneously adding warm light to the model. It makes her stand out dramatically, while also creating a visual separation between her and the background. And with her beautifully dramatic features, I used a more sharp, commercial/fashion style of lighting too to really enhance her cheekbones and eye shape. I love how these all turned out.

For this one, I also created an animation with slow motion snow that falls around her. Notice that the snow falls around her, some in front, most in back.


I love the changing direction, the wind, and how great these all look. This time of night worked beautifully for this deep-blue look. And the final images are captivating.

If you’re in need of a great set of images, either for work or commercial use, or for your own personal needs – give me a call. 801-728-3317. I’d love to create something amazing for you, outdoors in the Utah snow or here in the studio. It’s a great time to create some wonderful photographs.

And until next time, America.

Ben & Marisa’s Wedding

One of my favorite things about photographing a wedding is delivering the final album to the couple. A wedding requires a lot of prep time, a jam-packed day and night of shooting the event artistically, and then quite a bit of time afterwards to design and produce one of my award-winning albums. During this entire process, I am thinking about how the end product will look, I’m designing it all, and when I finally see it finished, I can’t wait for the wedding couple to see it and enjoy it. Delivering it personally is part of my pay artistically. I love delivering albums!

Ben and Marisa’s album was gorgeous and looked extra beautiful with its custom metal cover. It’s hard to describe how pretty it is online, but here are some of their images. It was a cold day but the images look warm, romantic, and beautiful.

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And here some of my favorite pages from their book to share. Keep in mind that these are double page spreads, folded down the middle, with each half measuring about 10×13 inches. That makes for an impressive and large spread when laid open.

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This couple has been so great to work with and they are a great couple together. You can really see their love and excitement in these images, and it made photographing their wedding a joy.

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I’m one of the few Master/Craftsman photographers based in Utah, and do a lot of weddings of all faiths. However some years most of my weddings I photograph are Mormon weddings at the LDS temple in Salt Lake City, like this one. It’s a gorgeous place to shoot and I love it when there’s drama in the sky and bad weather. It makes for some memorable images. In fact the first wedding I photographed almost 20 years ago, I shot here at the Salt Lake temple on a very snowy day.

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If you follow my blog, you may remember this couple’s engagement and bridal portraits, which you can see here. They too are gorgeous and fun.

And if you haven’t seen my awesome wedding albums, then check them out in this short video…

Well if you’re getting married, give me a call. I can do your wedding, or just bridals or engagements or even everything together. No matter what you hire me to do, you’ll know you’ll get the best portraits possible. 801-728-3317.

Until next time, America.

Prete Family Portraits

This week I finished and delivered this beautiful canvas wall print to the Prete family. It’s always hard to get families together, and in this case their youngest son had just returned from serving a Mormon mission. It was the perfect chance to get everyone together.

We did these in the studio, and created a few options. This first image was the favorite for the wall canvas.

Cox_Prete-F-115---36in-CanvasIt’s always nice to have some options when it comes to family groupings, and this one below was perfect for smaller table sized prints.

Cox_Prete-F-108---8x10During the shoot I like to do smaller groups, and in this case created a trio collage of their married children and single son. I really like the colors and the natural triangle shape or arc created by the faces.

Cox_Prete-8x20-ooo-AnnaMarieAnd of course a beautiful couple portrait of the parents. I really liked this cut square and printed in a bright and warm black & white.

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Photographing this family was a real honor for me as I’d known them for many years. It’s always fun for me to create family portraits for people, and this particular project was really fulfilling.

I’m sure your family is constantly changing, and perhaps because of that you’re putting off getting a family portrait. But remember that’s exactly why right now is the perfect time to come in and get a new and updated family portrait. If you are at all unsure, then please see my guarantee.

Give me a call at 801-728-3317 and let’s talk about current promotions, clothing and locations, and let’s set up a time to create something amazing for your home and for future generations to enjoy.

Until next time, America.

 

 

Scenics in Banff, Canada (part 2)

While in Canada and Banff, I took a number of images on my point-and-shoot camera and iPhone. Part of being creative I think, is just taking photographs everywhere, and using any and all tools, including small cameras.

Many times I’ve looked back on my life and have found that I have beautiful images of the places I’ve been, but no images of myself. As we get older, we wish we had images of ourselves at certain times, so I’ve made it a goal to try and include myself in more photos, even if I don’t like them at the time. It’s always good to have photos to look back on.

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I particularly love my point-and-shoot, because it is a professional version with full manual controls, dials instead of menus, and it captures in RAW so I can edit it or convert images to black and white with more clarity. I have it rigged with an extendable stick so that I can get photographs of myself when I go places, without having to rely on strangers for focus and composition.

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Below is a panorama created with the new iPhone 5. It does a fast job of panos, and in this image you can see my main camera around my neck and my point-and-shoot camera on an extendable stick in my hand.

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The rest are some iPhone images of my trip. I like shooting for fun with the iPhone, because it’s a challenge. There are no controls, so you have to think differently when using it — you have to think around the fact that you can’t control some things, yet you still have to make the image artistic and work.

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These first two images (above and below) are me flying out of the inversion and bad weather of Utah and seeing some blue sky again.

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This is me flying into Calgary. I dragged the exposure for motion blur.

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While shooting scenics in Banff, I shot some on my iPhone as well. I really like this image in black and white.

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Here is some close-up details of frost on some grass coming out of the frozen lake.

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My friend Cam took me to see the Banff Springs Hotel, and inside was this old ad.

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Here it is from the outside.

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And finally, as I was leaving Calgary very early in the morning, I found myself alone in the airport. I really liked the lines in this image, along with the 70’s looking multi-colored chairs.

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Once on board, the flight was delayed due to a storm. I took this looking out the window of my airplane, waiting for takeoff.

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Well, that’s it. I hope you enjoyed seeing these images. Make sure you check out the previous post (part 1) to see the scenics I took while there.

Until next time, America.

 

Scenics in Banff, Canada (part 1)

After speaking at the Alberta Professional Photographer’s Convention this month in Calgary, I took a free day to go to Banff. Here are some of the images I created that day.

I was taken there by a long-time photographer friend of mine, named Cam Colclough, that I met over 10 years ago in Oregon when we were both speaking at the same convention. We’ve stayed friends ever since, and he was kind enough to take me on a tour of some of his favorite places in Banff.

And here are some of the images I created in this area. I really loved the slanted mountains and awesome clouds in the background. It helped give me some contrast and directional light on the mountains, so I worked to create a variety of images by changing the foreground. A good foreground helps create depth, especially when there’s great depth created naturally by the lighting.

I was lucky to shoot these when I did, because right soon after, the weather changed dramatically, everything became foggy and overcast, and shooting scenics was no longer an option.

I really like all four of these scenics for different reasons, but I am having a hard time deciding which one is really the best. Which are your favorites? I’m curious as to what others are drawn to and why.

As part of my Banff Part 2 post coming up, I’ll show a completely different set of images — fun images I created solely on my iPhone and point-and-shoot camera.

Until next time, America.

Temple in a Snow Storm During Bridal Show

This last week I was one of the main vendors at the bridal show held at the Joseph Smith Memorial Building in Salt Lake.  It is always a great show.  I look forward to it every year.  Here is a look at my booth if you didn’t make it.

During the show, there was a beautiful snowstorm and I created some wonderful storm images of the Salt Lake Temple looking out the window.  I created a few variations and I’m still deciding which one I like the best.  Which ones do you like?

I’m also excited that all of these were processed out using my new duo-tone black & white effects that I recently created, and are finished with my new line of  custom edges that I’ve been working on.  I create and sell these effects and edges to photographers around the country when I speak to save them time and money.  These are a part of my new line of effects.  I really love how they look, especially with these images.  I’ve also tried them with portraits and absolutely love it!  I will post them on my blog soon.

After looking out the window, I had to step out for a couple images outside.  Again, I shot two variations and can’t decide which one I like better.  One is shot faster to catch the flakes in the air and the other is slower which creates some really cool diagonal lines.  Both work for so many reasons.

Before running back in, I got a passing tourist to take a photo of me with my camera.  I love the snow in the air, but hate that I’m out of focus.  DANG!

Anyway, soon I’ll have those temple images ready to purchase in my art site.  But until then, let me know which ones are your favorites.