Great Scott! The 2012 Christmas Card!

Some of you know that each year I do fun Christmas cards for clients over at AustinChristmasCards.com. While working on those client’s cards, I have to squeeze in a shoot for our family too. This year there was much deliberation over what to do. We usually have some sort of a running list of ideas that we keep from year to year. I have misplaced said list. In the end, we decided on doing a Back To The Future themed card. It’s a pretty good movie. Ok I’m kidding – it’s the GREATEST of ALL TIME. You will not find a bigger fan than me.

We knew instantly that Trevor had to be Biff. It just fits his personality. He probably could take Biff right now in a MMA cage fight. That meant Brandon had to be Marty, so we scored him a Coast Guard Youth Auxiliary life preserver. The car is an interesting story. Originally I tried to track down one of those fan cars that are all decked out to look like the film. When that didn’t work out, I went to my backup – an 8-inch long toy DeLorean.

There’s a power line running from the car to the tree. We’ll leave it up to you whether the car is powering the tree or vice versa. The mall is Barton Creek Mall here in Austin – always a pleasure to shoot at late at night while wearing a dark hoodie.

Here’s the front and back. Click the first image for a larger version:

Back To The Future Card #1
Back To The Future Card #2

By |December 22nd, 2012|Photography|1 Comment

A Pirate Birthday

Earlier I posted some pictures of the incredible Black Pearl/Queen Anne’s Revenge from the Pirates of the Caribbean movies. Coincidentally enough, my 4-year-old is about to turn 5, and he wants a pirate theme for his party. So I took the opportunity to use the images for a ‘party poster’ (I have a habit of doing this. Check out my other kid’s Star Wars poster).

Here’s a cropped version of the image. To see the full uncropped version in all of its pixel glory (1MB), click here.

The pirate thing has been with Trevor for a while. Here’s his 1-year-old birthday image I designed back in 2007:

It’s Playoff Time

It’s playoff time in the NBA, and our family is heavy into the OKC Thunder. What’s not to love about them? Great players in a great community.

During the playoffs, everyone plays a little bit harder. There are a few more elbows, and a lot more passion and determination. Sometimes, players get hurt. If by chance any of the OKC starting lineup get injured, I’ve got two world class athletes ready to go. Send them in Scott Brooks, send them in.

And when they execute a perfect alley-oop in the 4th quarter to win the game, we’ll know that we’ve just seen what it takes to become a champion.

Thunder Up.

Blogs In The Sky Keep On Changin’

I decided recently that it was time to shake things up a little bit in blog land. I now have a snazzy new design thanks to the folks at StudioPress. I’ve also added some additional content at the top. There’s a page for Photog.TV, as well as my luminosity mask set. At the bottom, you’ll see some of my recent Instagram images (yes, I know, I need to use it more often).

And since a post can always benefit with a picture, here are a few shots of the boys taken while we were visiting some family in Oklahoma. They look so happy to be standing in a field.

2011 Christmas Card

I have a deep affection for fun holiday cards. In fact, I’m usually pretty busy this time of year creating holiday images for my clients. I love the whole process – discussing ideas, doing the shoot, and the post work. My goal every year is to create something that will stay on the refrigerator past New Year’s day.

This year, we went with a CSI theme. Specifically, CSI: Miami. That show is so over-the-top. Extra credit goes to Horatio Caine (played by David Caruso), as he somehow manages to open each show with a ridiculous one-liner. This video on YouTube, showing over 7 minutes of his poetic dialogue, will probably have you in stitches. It inspired us this year. Here’s the front of the card:

Some people might not get the CSI reference right away, so we included an image/tag line on the back:

We had a great time producing this year’s card, and are already thinking of ideas for next year. In the meantime, I’ve posted new work that I’ve done for my holiday clients at austinchristmascards.com.

I hope you have a wonderful holiday season and an incredible New Year!

 

Italy, Part One: Places

I’m back!

We recently returned from an incredible trip to Italy, and this is the first post (of at least 3) about it. Both my wife and I have relatives there (mine are in Sicily, and hers are in a small town a few hours from Rome). I think we started planning this trip last year, and for the most part everything went very smoothly! Besides our family, my wife’s sister-in-law and her 2 daughters came along. And, before I go any further, a big thanks to my wife and sister-in-law for all of the hard work they did planning! My oldest son turned 6 during the trip which was way cool. My 3 year old was fun too, considering that we had several long days of sightseeing.

We flew into Rome and stayed for a night, and then headed to Sicily, followed by Pompeii, Sorrento, Capri, Venice, Fabriano, Assisi, Orvieto, and finally Rome again for one night before we flew home. I also drove in Sicily and from Venice through the end of the trip, which was insane! In parts of Italy, things like traffic lights and stop signs are more recommendations than requirements.

I travelled with a very minimal kit – just a camera body, a 580 ex flash, a 50mm lens, and a 16-35mm lens (which I hardly ever used, especially once something startled to rattle on the inside of it). I ended up shooting about 2,000 images, which worked out to about 35 GB (I was shooting plenty of images at 21 MP for a project I want to do later). I probably could have shot more, but it’s the classic tradeoff between shooting and seeing things with the family. I had a couple ‘I am going to shoot for an hour’ opportunities though, so it worked out well. I didn’t have a laptop, so I backed up everything to an Epson portable drive.

Let’s start off with a few Rome shots:

In Sicily, we visited my relatives plus got a chance to drive halfway up Mt. Etna. It’s a cool volcano – still having eruptions every now and then. Here you can see some older lava flows:

After Sicily, we took an overnight ferry to Sorrento. Here’s a shot from the hotel:

You can see Mt. Vesuvius here:

Capri is an incredible island off the coast of Italy. Besides having a lot of cool stores and restaurants on the island itself, you can have a lot of fun around the island, checking out the rock formations, the fabulous colored grottos, and more:

They have a cable car that goes to the very top which is awesome! The view is incredible and peaceful:

Here is the famous Blue Grotto, which is a cave on the outside of the island. To get in, you literally have to lay down in a boat while the boat driver maneuvers into a little hole. Once inside, the water glows blue because light is coming underneath the entrance:

After Capri/Sorrento, we headed up to Venice:

I got lost quite a few times walking around there. Thankfully, a cool navigation app saved me (more on that in a later post).

Leaving Venice, we drove down to the Fabriano region (where my wife’s relatives are). We came across this cool castle museum that had an incredible view out the front door:

Who wouldn’t want to walk out to that everyday?

Our last stop was in Orvieto, which has an absolutely incredible church. It’s also massive. Here’s a shot looking at the entrance:

So there you go – the first post on the big trip. Next up, I’ll show you some of the fun times we had (including an incredible birthday party for Brandon), and later on I’ll post some iPhone pictures.