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Thursday, May 26, 2011

GIVING BACK AS A PHOTOGRAPHER


Yesterday, I attended the 30th anniversary luncheon for the Children's Dream Fund, a local Tampa Bay non-profit that grants a wish to children facing serious illness. The organization grew out of the Sunshine City Jaycees and their work back in 1981 to grant the dream of eight year old Fransie Geringer who was fighting the aging disease progeria.

I have donated my time behind the lens to various non-profit organizations but my primary involvement has been with Flashes of Hope, a national non-profit committed to providing families dealing with illness with free photographic portrait sessions. A session from last year with a courageous young girl named Ella led to a powerful portrait that the Dream Fund saw and asked to use as the cover for the invitation and luncheon program. As part of my agreement to license the image, my work was featured as a Dream Team sponsorship.

The highlight of the experience was visiting with Ella (now with a full head of hair) and having her mother tell me how important those pictures are to her family. Photography is always about taking and capturing but working with non-profits like Flashes of Hope and the Children's Dream Fund affords one the gift of being able to give back. St. Francis once said, "For it is in giving that we receive."



Friday, May 20, 2011

SHOOTING FOR THE BOOK


In finalizing the layout for my new portrait portfolio, I decided to lean on a few of the characters that I occasionally chum around to sit for environmental portraits. Monday night, on the eve of the May full moon, my avuncular cycle guru Nick Nichols agreed to take out his Paul Smart Limited Edition Ducati and don his Alpine Star race leathers.

Prior to heading out as we were waiting for the light to ease, Nick polished up the chrome and I set to work experimenting for the first time with a lens baby and a macro attachment. After a few blurry attempts, I finally got the hang of it and made a few nice detail images of the silver steed.

Assistant and friend Travis Turner and I worked a lighting setup that bridged a Ranger unit, several Nikon speedlights set to slave and the setting sun. The contrast of the silver Ducati, the blue race leathers and the warm, and later cool, dusk light made for a striking image and a worthy addition to the new book.











 
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