austin

A New Video Show!

One of my goals for 2017 is to build out my YouTube channel a little bit, and I started the process about 5 weeks ago with a new video show. In it I plan to talk about tips, tricks, reviews and more, all related to photography and painting. I've posted a quick little synopsis of each episode over on the fine art website blog here. But if you'd like to go to a particular episode, here's a graphic/link below for each one of the first 6 shows. If you like the content, I'd really appreciate a share, like and/or a subscribe to the channel. I hope the information is helpful - thank you!

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New Christmas Card Site Launches

Some of you may know that every year I create custom Christmas cards for clients over at AustinChristmasCards.com. I sort of 'fell-into' doing this after we created a fun diner card several years ago. So far I've created cards in Austin, Dallas, and a few cities in Oklahoma. After some hard redesign work, I'm excited to share the brand-new website now at AustinChristmasCards.com! There are now 40 card samples posted. I've included a fun description/anecdote from each of the shoots. There's also a new blog section as well as an online store (where I'll be selling some custom products down the road).

Check out everything, and if you're interested there's a 20% discount to go along with the relaunch that ends on Tuesday, August 19th.

Here are some sample images of my work. Check out more on the site.

 

How To Shoot For A Local Magazine

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How To Shoot For A Local Magazine E-Book Ever been interested in how you can get started photographing covers for local magazines? Well, as part of the blog re-launch, I've put together a nice PDF for you with some great tips. I've been shooting magazines in Austin since 2007, and this guide will help you move towards your first magazine shoot!

Some of the things I cover are how to find/define your style, how to find matching publications, and how to track down email addresses and reach out to them. I also cover some tips for making your shoot day go great.

Best part - it's free.

Yep - all free. Along with 5 of my favorite images that you can use as a wallpaper for your computer, phone, tablet, or, a wall. To get all these goodies, just click here and enter your email address. I promise not to spam you or try to pimp some candy drive going on at my kids' school.

How to Shoot for a Magazine E-Book

 

Ambassador Lewis Lucke

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Recently I photographed Ambassador Lewis Lucke for the University of North Carolina. He lives here in Austin, and what I love about shoots like this is getting to learn about someone's life, career and experiences all at once.

Lewis has an incredible story (in fact he shared several of them with me during our time together). Working for the government, he managed the 4-billion-dollar reconstruction effort in Iraq in 2002. Around 2004, he found himself as the U.S. Ambassador to Swaziland (I had to go look that one up on a map.)  He also was the U.S. Response Coordinator for the Haiti earthquake.

He has 30 years of foreign service for our country under multiple administrations, and we had several discussions about his experiences, cultural differences, and the success of our various aid programs.

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Selfie Fun With Capital Metro

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Did you know that one of the earliest references to the word ‘selfie’ was in 2005? I was surprised it was that early; I would have guessed around 2009 or 2010.  Although I’ll do my fair-share of self portraits with DSLRs, I hardly ever take them with my phone. I would guess this is because my wife doesn’t like the face I make when I take one (which borders somewhere between confusion and extreme indifference). Needless to say, the selfie culture is now a huge. part. of society. 

Earlier this year I had the opportunity to jump into the selfie pool with Capital Metro. They were launching a brand new mobile app and wanted to show that you could now use your phone for more than just selfies. Door Number 3 was the agency tasked with developing hilarious selfie scenarios which would be used in both print ads and video commercials.

We narrowed down our scenarios and did the whole shoot in one day, spread over three different locations. Once we were done taking stills, Aaron and his video team from Onion Creek Productions filmed a short video segment. The video would become the story leading up to the creating of the selfie, and all of our selfie models did a great job playing the part. Later in post, we made an extra effort to make these look like phone images by adding a lot of noise, strong contrast, color casts, etc. 

I love how all of these came out. We could have easily shot another 10 scenarios as we had a ton of great ideas! Thanks to everyone involved for helping make 2014 start off with a bunch of laughs.

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Here's the fun commercial that Onion Creek Productions put together: http://www.vimeo.com/86152745 And here are some BTS shots:

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Cat Selfie

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Client: Capital Metro Agency: Door Number 3 Video: Onion Creek Productions

Rob Thomas for REAL Magazine

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I've been waiting to talk about this shoot all year. When REAL Magazine asked me sometime in March if I'd be interested in shooting Rob Thomas, I jumped at the chance. Now, I know exactly what you are thinking. No, not that Rob Thomas (although he's on my list too). This Rob Thomas is the creator of the show Veronica Mars. You probably heard about him in the news earlier this year, as he and Kristen Bell led a Kickstarter campaign which raised over 5.7 million dollars for the production of a Veronica Mars movie. Since then, other high-profile film projects have gone the Kickstarter route (most notably Zach Braff's "Wish I Was Here"), but no crowd funding campaigns so far have been as successful as Rob's.

Talking with the creative people at REAL Magazine, we decided on something fun to match Rob's personality. I sketched up several ideas, one of which involved him at a lemonade stand selling props from episodes of the tv show to help fund his film. Rob liked the idea, so we scouted locations around town that could serve as our neighborhood house.

Right before the shoot, I thought it would be funny if we added in a Ferris Bueller reference and played off the "Save Ferris" idea with our own "Save Veronica Mars" riff. In the Ferris Bueller movie, an iconic scene is the "Save Ferris" water tower that appears in the film. We added that to our image below and the scene was set.

Rob did a great job with a variety of expressions and poses, and after our shoot we took some additional shots that his agency could use for promo purposes.

Below is a great little BTS video that the crew from Reel Visuals put together. I loved working with Terrell, Lauren and Richard on this, and if you need something similar, you should definitely look them up. A big thanks to Bert Mclendon and Justin Leitner who helped out on this shoot, and a heartfelt thank you to Nell at REAL Magazine for the opportunity.

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Rob Thomas Veronica Mars Image 3

http://www.vimeo.com/74776698