July 4th, 2017 | Artistic Approaches

I have often been bored with traditional images of firework celebrations. This year I challenged myself with an approach toward firework photos that would make me want to print and frame them myself. As I worked image by image, the idea struck me that I wanted to see the fireworks as even more dynamic than they already appear.

Depth can be created by pulling focus in between explosions. Almost as though one image is a multiple-exposure.

Depth can be created by pulling focus in between explosions. Almost as though one image is a multiple-exposure.

The idea for movement entered my mind. My tripod wiggled loose when I exposed an image and the head swiveled a little bit. I liked the resulting image so I began implementing the swivel for more photos.

A Bob Ross-style "happy accident". The tripod head came loose as I was exposing this image.

A Bob Ross-style "happy accident". The tripod head came loose as I was exposing this image.

The only option from there was to keep experimenting. I combined both techniques as I keep shooting. 

OSP Studio | Self Portraits

A sudden inspiration in my chair prompted me to capture a bearded, puffy self portrait. A friend mentioned these felt like Deadliest Catch promos. 

Taking Selfies Seriously Since 1988

Straight Out Of Camera (SOOC) and Edit

Straight Out Of Camera (SOOC) and Edit

Dillon Chase @ Joseph Harp Correctional Center

I have a very close friend in prison. Visiting him over the past few years has opened the door to a whole new world rarely seen and so often buried by others. 

Dillon Chase has been serving and ministering to men in the Oklahoma Dept of Corrections for seven years and I had the privilege of photographing his Gospel-saturated moments among the men of the yard at Joseph Harp Correctional Center and can share these images with permission from the DOC.

Check out Dillon Chase's site and get some free music! http://www.dillonchasemusic.com

Kurt & Anna | Married (Video)

It is less-known that my photography career was birthed from a love for video creation. I was in college learning how to get my feet wet in the movie industry when I bought my first DSLR—originally just to learn the mechanics. I fell in love with capturing photos and the rest is history.

My long-time friends Kurt and Anna were getting married and I couldn't pass up the opportunity to work alongside more great friends and video artists, Jon and Spenser, so I hopped on board and here we are.

Though they do not typically invest in wedding video work, please check out:

Spenser's portfolio here: www.spensersakurai.com

Jon's portfolio here: www.jonathanburkhart.com

It's the small things | Thought

Many things sorta don't work out well for me today. To spare you the details but get to the heart of the matter: I'm a planner. I *may* not be the most diligent planner, but I work best with a well-planned schedule, like many of you reading this. 

So, not everything worked out the way I had hoped today, but no big deal... I'm having doctored-up green tea while culling photos. God's got this; I'm good. 

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Leasle Crawford | Concept

Leasle is an incredible model. The caliber of her work speaks for itself. We had been planning to work together for months and months and finally the day arrives and it is a bitter ~32 degrees on top of the windiest place in Oklahoma. She captured the mood I was creating in these photos so well. Be sure to see more of her work on Facebook! Wanna book her now? Email her

Bonus gallery: We stopped in Medicine Park as evening turned dark. The abundant lampposts created a very strong effect for the shots. All handheld. 1/30~1/50 sec.

Quick Trip: Las Vegas | Travel

My niece was born just over a month ago. I wanted to meet her and see my family so I flew into Las Vegas where my sister and brother-in-law are living. This post documents my trip, stay, and shenanigans.

Day ONE

Leaving home. Reaching for the skies. 

Leaving home. Reaching for the skies. 

Arrived in DFW Airport for a happy little three-hour layover. I rode the Skylink tram for an entire circuit and a half. I think it takes about 18 minutes for the tram to circle around once with all the stops.

DFW airport Skylink tram. 

DFW airport Skylink tram. 

The above image was a compilation of two images in a very unique edit. I snapped quite a few and decided I really liked having the man with the beanie on one side and the business man on the other. The edit was difficult and required three separate stints with SplitPicPro to seamlessly cut and meld the images together. Final colorization in VSCO. 

How I feel during a three-hour layover.

How I feel during a three-hour layover.


Day TWO

We cruised through Wednesday as a day-at-home for flight recovery as well as a much needed home stint for Melody and Abigail. 

Being the name-smith I regale myself to be, I have appropriated the following monikers for the little one in the house. Henceforth and forevermore, Abigail will be referred to as:

  • Abby
  • Abbey
  • Abblibally
  • Absidaisy
  • Abibagel
  • Bagaggle

Day THREE

Thursday morning rolled around as Mom, Mel, and I decided to make a trip to the Hoover Dam and Boulder City, NV. This would be the first time Abigail would cross into another state. Barely one month old and already a national traveler!

I found the bridge I was standing on to take this photo nearly as impressive as the dam itself. Super gnarly!

I found the bridge I was standing on to take this photo nearly as impressive as the dam itself. Super gnarly!

As mumsy Mel tended to the needs of Absibaby, Mom and I opted for leisurely trek across the dam for sightseeing.

Hoover Dam came and went. As our hungry stomachs guided our next move, we chose to stop in Boulder City for some late lunch spot browsing. Neat place. Boulder City exploded in the 1930's as a boom town for the workers who built the Hoover Dam. Now, it simply exists to proudly resonate its history.

The evening came to a delightful close with shenanigans as my brother-in-law Jeremy and I gabbed over our beers while he sizzled some steaks for dinner. Our weird rears its awkward head when we stay under the same roof.

First and only drinks of the evening. Seriously, normal weirdness.

First and only drinks of the evening. Seriously, normal weirdness.


Day FOUR

A lovely, relaxing morning calmly filled with the aroma of caramelized apples, pears and peaches. We had an idea to make some German pancakes and top them off with the various fruits. Mum Mel tirelessly working at the ingredients as I put my chops to use in trying to dice the fruit evenly. 

Have you ever been to a snow-covered mountain next door to a sandy wilderness? Just a short drive north of Las Vegas you will happen upon Mt. Charleston and find yourself in such a place. It's really a lovely getaway for those tired of the hot climate of the strip. The girls and I ditched Jeremy at work again so we could go for a leisurely drive in the seinic Spring Mountains. 

Upon our return Jeremy and I then ditched the girls for a guy's night out packed to the gills with yummy sushi and American Sniper. Good day of mutually ditching others.


Day FIVE

For the final day of my trip I promptly woke up and packed for the return flight. The plane wasn't leaving till 4:40pm but we had a full schedule ahead. Mel dressed Abigabi up in a frilly-yet-cuter-than-puppies outfit for a mini-shoot which seemed to last about as long as a green light in rush hour traffic. The morning light was weird to work with and I was a little bummed the shoot didn't have the outcome I was hoping for. 

Soon after I put the camera away we were joined for breakfast by two friends of Mel and Jay from their life back in Oklahoma.  We had a genuine Winters Waffle Meal made by the two waffle champions of the Winters Waffle Meal historical tradition. It. Was. Glorious. No photos though. 😉

Our day moved right along into a rapidly paced tour of the Caesar's Palace Forum Shops to find both the Apple Store and Peter Lik's gallery. 

TopTip: If you want to be blown away by some amazing photography by Australia's premier landscape photographer, go to a Peter Lik gallery. Fuh realz. 

Mel and Mom dropped me off at the airport in plenty of time to catch my flight home. And the rest is history. 

Abibagel and I got along famously.

Abibagel and I got along famously.

 

Best app of the week: touchRetouch

I am constantly blown away by the developers at ADVA Soft bringing desktop-level editing power for your images to your phone! Check out the proof below in the before and after photos below removing reflections from a shop display window. I love this app.

--------> Get for iOS <--------

--------> Get for Mac <--------

--------> Get for Android <--------

Sunrise Shoot | People

There's something special about the sunrise. Photos at sunrise have a cool, calming demeanor about them. As usual, the impromptu and insatiable desire to go shoot something using our plastic and glass image recorders led my friend Jordan (@jomobes) and I to take pictures on a cold morning of delightfully willing friends. And then we got bagels.

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Jeremy & Brooke | Married

So happy to meet a couple, hear their story, take wonderful engagement photos and see the relationship blossom all the way through the wedding day! Jeremy and Brooke have been a perfect picture of this. Be sure not to miss their adorable engagement photos yourself!

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Click through Jeremy & Brooke's gallery below!

Austin, TX | Roadtrip

A quick post with a few pics of my trip to Austin to visit some friends. Jonathan Burkhart traveled with me.

Vertical pano over Austin's 360 Bridge

Vertical pano over Austin's 360 Bridge

Brenizer panorama over Austin's 360 Bridge

Brenizer panorama over Austin's 360 Bridge

Pano across Austin's 360 Bridge

Pano across Austin's 360 Bridge

Brenizer pano of Anna under a tree.

Brenizer pano of Anna under a tree.

Creatives taking a creative groupie. Camera precariously set up on a backpack.

Creatives taking a creative groupie. Camera precariously set up on a backpack.

Brenizer pano.

Brenizer pano.

Ben & MaKayla | Married

The smiles on the faces of both Ben and MaKayla were so enormous I had such a hard time choosing the best of the best for this blog! Both bride and groom shone so brilliantly that I was hard-pressed through out the whole wedding day not to get caught up in the mirth and just set my camera down and hop into the fun myself. Seriously. I have known Ben since my middle school days and was deeply honored to be asked to shoot his wedding. The only person that could match Ben is MaKayla and I'm so glad I was a piece of this incredible day, food truck, old barn and all!

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Click through Ben & MaKayla's gallery below!

Cooper MS | Class Presentation

I had the privilege of sharing some photo techniques with the accelerated learning 8th grade classes of Cooper Middle School in the Putnam City district. Mrs. Meek's classes were fun to share with! 

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Showcasing the Olloclip's fisheye abilities on my iPhone. 

 

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More fisheye fun with students!

 

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A few shoes were used to demonstrate the macro lens ability on the Olloclip.