Fashion Project

Every so often, every good photographer has to experiment, play and expand on what they already know and do, this is how we get better. To do this, we need a 'muse', one definition of muse is "… a person or personified force who is the source of inspiration for a creative artist". Kirby Jett Harris has always been a very kind and willing model and a joy to work with. Within this project, even though her best feature is her smile, I wanted a different look, one that would expand her range.

Inspired by many photographers around the world I had some images in mind I wanted to create. A photographer is an artist in ever sense, to create and be creative, we have to think outside the box and explore new options and our creative side. This short session yeilded a great variety in a fun photo project.

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Rogers Lowell Chamber Celebration 2019

Rogers Lowell Chamber of Commerce held their annual Celebration event Saturday February 2 at John Q Hammons in Rogers. This was my fourth year to photograph this event. This year was dedicated to honoring Dick Trammel. If you live in NW Arkansas, this name his very well known, if not, take a moment to familiarize yourself with his brief bio here, and this does not cover all the many boards he has sat on and his many accomplishments for Arkansas. Also check out KNWA's video.

The event was amazing! After the cocktail hour, the event started with the University of Arkansas mascot 'Pork Chop' mixing and mingling through the crowd followed by the traveling Band and Razorback Cheerleaders getting things kicked off. As Dick was a Razorback Cheerleader in the late 50's and has participated on the field with the cheerleaders at homecoming football games for over the past 20+ years. Dick got on stage right in the middle of them to cheer and "Call those Hogs"!

Then came the awards portion of the evening starting with the Small Business of the Year award which went to Sam's Furniture. Sam's Furniture is constantly supporting and sponsoring many worthwhile events and charities throughout NWA and does an incredible business in Springdale with their 100k sq ft facility!

The list of speakers this year was very impressive with Senator John Boozman, Congressman Steve Womack and ending with former Arkansas Governor Mike Bebe. They all gave incredible talks almost, which any comedian would have been jealous of, everyone was constantly laughing and hooked on every word.

A portion of Governor Bebe's speech stood out in my memory. He spoke about the uniqueness of NW Arkansas, how it's like one big city when we refer to "Northwest Arkansas", not necessarily Bentonville, Rogers, Springdale, Fayetteville, etc, but we're all here together in one region, this type region is very rare if exists at all. He went on to say if Washington had the camaraderie, kinsman ship and willingness to work together as the people of NWA, things would be much better and much more would get accomplished.

A surprise visit also came from Santa himself. Now you're thinking WHY SANTA? I remember shaking Dick's hand and chatting with him in the past, I would ask "How are you doing?" he always answers with a big smile "Every day is Christmas and night the 4th of July"! That was his answer to everyone, and when he said it, you believed it!

Throughout the evening, Dick Trammel was presented several awards including a highway named after him among many others. Dick will also be Congressman Steve Womack's guest at the State of the Union Address in Washington this week.

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Rogers Historical Museum

The Rogers Historical Museum has a great new face and one with a incredible back story. The new location was a Ford dealership over 50 years ago, read a little more here. Nabholz Construction completely renovated the building and added on office space.

In the photos you'll notice the original ceiling and brick walls, the amazing part is the front lobby floor is all original from decades ago, I can't imagine the care and precision it took to make sure that and the curved exterior glass windows stayed in tact. So much more was kept in place from the original too. Inside you'll see information about NW Arkansas, Rogers and the history of Rogers as well.

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Stribling Inc

Fletcher McQueen, Logistics Director with Stribling Inc, recently contacted me needing images of their facility. They co-pack, warehouse and distribute products for companies such as Walmart, Sam's and Tyson to name a few. Walking through the 260,000sqft warehouse and discussing his goal for the images, he shared with me some things that were would be happening on the day of photography and an example of one thing they do. They had a large quantity of shoes come in bound for Walmart Stores. It was Stribling's responsibility to unbox them and repackage into a display box for the stores, then they put those boxes on pallets bound for their destination. That day they did 500 pallets with over 300 pairs of shoes per pallet. I was impressed with the workflow from beginning to end. This facility was packed full of flat boxes yet to be assembled, many friends likened it to the warehouse from "Indiana Jones". A fun part of the project was being able to use the sicssor lift to get the images from above to show depth.

The exterior was a bit time consuming behind the computer, as you can see, being that it's January, it gives a lifeless look, not good for marketing. So I go in and meticulously add grass and trees in with the trick to make it realistic with lighting angles and shadows.

The sad thing is, they had already had photography from another 'photographer' and were very displeased with the results, his quote: "You get what you pay for". This cost them even more by having to have the photos done a second time. This reminded me of a quote by Red Adair "If you think it's expensive to hire a professional, wait till you hire an amateur". I've worked many years, and continue to, perfect, hone and improve the photography I offer my valued clients whether the commercial photography is architecture, product, food, headshots or corporate photography of any kind. I want the best for them to help them improve their marketing and profits.


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Profab Industrial Products

I've said it many times and it still holds true, I'm constantly impressed by the companies in NW Arkansas that no one knows about, or just me. Profab is one of those companies. Located in Springdale, in the industrial park across from the airport, they fabricate industrial machines for companies all over the country. Tyson alone counts for 60% of their business. They can custom design, CNC all the plastic parts, laser cut the metal parts, assemble, weld and ship. Joe Moore, the project manager, told me that they have had several occasions where a company contacted them for a special custom project on a Friday and Profab has it to them on Monday. That may sound simple but they start in the computer, designing the machine, then it's sent to the floor where the hands on work begins with workers working all weekend to make sure the client has product on time. It's very impressive.

Mark Harper and The Richland Group designed and built their web site, go check it out, many of my images are now featured there. I have no doubt the photos will be very profitable for Profab. This photo project was fun, insuring the product was lit properly to give depth and texture, combining light and shadows working together. Then hours were spent extracting and cleaning each image. Product photography does not always mean "small products", as you can see many were very large requiring fork lifts to put in position. I am very proud to be the photographer that helps their company be more profitable.

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Sassafras Springs Vineyard, Winery & Wedding Venue

A local asset to NWA is Sassafras Vineyard, Winery and Wedding Venue, located quietly east of Fayetteville. I've been to many events at their stables and a couple at their winery and it's always a warm end enjoyable event. During the warmer times of the year, the Chapel Ruins are a great location for portraits and mostly weddings. The landscaping is always quiet and beautiful.

I had the opportunity to photograph Derek & Sarah Kilpatrick at the stables for Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce magazine. Sarah is the event manager, as you can imagine she is very busy lady. A side note, while talking with her, I discovered I photographed her cheerleader photos back in 2002 when she was in high school, small world… also starting to feel a little old. Derek is the vineyard manager and sees the the best quality wines are produced. Super nice couple who will make sure your visit and event is one to be cherished.

If you've never visited Sassafras, take a nice evening off in the summer and enjoy the back patio of the winery for a relaxing evening with their wine.


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Tyson SalesCon19

We are blessed with some incredible corporations headquartered right here in NWA. Among the largest are Walmart, Tyson, JB Hunt, Sam's Club and George's to name a few. This year I had the opportunity to photograph Tyson Salescon 19. For two partial days I created around 250 headshots of attendees, they were all very appreciative of the photography, the care and diligence in making them happy with the results.

I had the honor to meet and photograph Tyson CEO Noel White and the CCO Scott Rouse with the people who were awarded. They were both there congratulating the honorees and those who were retiring, this was impressive. Part of any successful corporation is the accolades given to top performers and the encouragement to those who could be doing better.

We all know how global Tyson is and there are a lot of places that serve Tyson that we may not know about at all. I found out earlier this year the fat and grains that Tyson provides to other companies world wide that I had no idea about. I also was surprised at first, then it all made perfect sense, that Tyson is one of, if not the largest, provider of leather world wide. To me this is an example of not letting anything go to waste.

A few days after the event, well over 100 people had downloaded their headshots and the people at Tyson HQ had received many great compliments and positive feedback from everyone across the country loving their photos. I had the opportunity to photograph headshots from Tyson associates from all over the country, from California, Virginia, Arizona, Connecticut, New Jersey, Ohio, Chicago, just to name a few (and of course, NWA).

This is a few of the photos taken…

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Veteran's Gala 2018

I want to give high accolades to Joe and Larra Donaldson for organizing and implementing the first (hopefully annual) Veteran's Gala. The line up of speakers included Coffey Anderson who was great musical entertainment of the national anthem followed by PFC Jessica Lynch who shared her testimony of being an Iraq POW. She was followed by Chaplin Captain Justin Roberts who also shared his experiences and a intro of the soon-to-be-released movie "No Greater Love". Lt Get Leroy Sisco presented a home to a young veteran and his wife provided by Wells Fargo and furniture by Sam's Furniture. Evan Owens shared information about Reboot Combat Recovery helping veterans defeat combat trauma.

George Chmiel shared his story of his run across america, along with the struggles he faced but also the people and lives he touched along the way. Lt Governor Tim Griffin, introduced the keynote speaker of the evening, Col Oliver North. I remember Col North from his long time on TV with the Iran Contra hearings back in the 80's, he gained my respect back then and I've always seen him as a dedicated American Marine, if not hero, they put him through a lot during the hearings but he came back with all charges reversed, he's been in the spot light since that time as a political commentator, television host, author and presently president of the NRA. His keynote address was one that had my attention the entire time.

The evening closed with Coffey Anderson praying over the event and gracious donations to help the veterans in need. Hopefully this event will become an annual event, the convention center was practically sold out. The bar was certainly set high for the future gala's but I know they will pull it off now that it has momentum. I would like to add that EVERY speaker received a STANDING OVATION!

I was honored to sponsor the photography for the evening of not only the speakers but at the VIP reception. On a personal note, I had the opportunity to meet Willie Robertson, of Duck Dynasty and CEO of Duck Commander. I enjoyed their show and what they stood for, Christian morals and their spiritual heart. He wasn't there to speak but rather a supporter of a great cause for his friends the Donaldson's.

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Joe Donaldson - Sams FurnitureCoffey AndersonPFC Jessica LynchChaplin Cpt Justin RobertsWillie Robertson, Col Oliver North, Lt Gen Leroy SiscoWillie RobertsonEvan Owens - Reboot Combat RecoveryGeorge ChmielLt Governor Tim GriffinCol Oliver NorthCol Oliver NorthCol Oliver NorthCol Oliver NorthCoffey Anderson, Joe Donaldson, Larra DonaldsonCoffey Anderson, Joe Donaldson, Larra Donaldson, Willie Robertson, Jessica Lynch, Col Oliver North, Lt Governor Tim Griffin, Lt Gen Leroy SiscoCol Oliver North, Keith Branch - Branch Photography

Celebrate Magazine 15th Anniversary

Celebrate Arkansas magazine recently 'celebrated' 15 years of success, what a great accomplishment to a great staff and publication! I remember several years ago, the late Greg Ogden, at the time owner of Athletic World Advertising, coming to me to ask to photograph the second issue that would feature JB & Johnell Hunt, I jumped at the chance simply to meet the Hunts and also be a part of the magazine. The photo was in the winter at a floral business that also carried Christmas trees, it was a small store and VERY crowded. I had to put them in a corner between two Christmas trees with barely enough space for lights and I was about 4 feet from them, but I got the photo and it was on the cover. The thing I remember through it all was how nice, polite and down to earth both JB and Johnell were throughout the session. Through the years, I've crossed paths with them on occasion and learned, that's just who they are, despite their great success and fortunes, they treated everyone with respect and kindness, their great fortune never went to their heads.

Fast forward 15 years, I've been fortunate to photograph and meet many very successful business people and entrepreneurs through out NW Arkansas including CEOs, Governors and VIPs in the community. I've had the opportunity to take create images for content and covers on locations such as SAMs HQ, Tyson HQ and the Governor's mansion in Little Rock just to name a few.
Congratulations Celebrate Arkansas magazine and here's to many more decades of success!



Voted Very Best Commercial Photographer #5

Branch Photography is honored to be Voted by the readers of Celebrate Arkansas magazine, Very Best Commercial Photographer. This is the 5th Year we've received this honor by the readers. I am truly blessed to be in a profession that I love so much, that I can meet so many great people, touch so many lives and blessed with a talent to create images that everyone loves. Thanks to all that voted for Branch Photography.

Tennessee Aerial Harvesting

The perspective a drone can give is mesmerizing and can give a larger sense of appreciation for the beauty of the world we are blessed with. I was born and raised in a small town of Alamo Tennessee (west TN) up until I moved to Arkansas in 1998. All the time there, I was around farming and lived on a farm. Whether cotton picking, harvesting corn, soybeans, etc, I always saw the process from the ground perspective and while it was always a great view, especially when the cotton bloomed, it was always the same view.

On a recent visit to Tennessee, I had the chance to create drone aerial images of the corn harvesting. To see not only the fields being harvested from the drone's perspective, but also see the landscape in the background to give the world perspective, was inspiring to say the least.

Hand Dryer - Product Photography

The first purpose of photos of a product is to show what it looks like, but, more importantly, to make the product SELL, MUCH more is needed. The photos must show detail that includes shape, texture and definition. How is this done? Through the use of proper lighting that uses both light and shadows working together to show the detail needed. To obtain this look, a professional photographer is required, who is knowledgeable about lighting.

This project was for Brighter Ventures, a local company. You can find their commercial hand dryers (all photos by Branch) on Amazon. Foreknowledge of the product and consultation with the company owner prompted images that were exactly what he needed. More importantly, he told me later. that the images were of such quality that his sales were 400% higher than he expected, giving full credit to the professional images we created for him.

Whether your product is large or small, Branch will insure that your product is photographed to give your company the right image and impression for higher sale.

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Newks Eatery

Does accuracy and detail matter to your business? Do you provide your clients with what they order or something close? Do you want your clients happy with the extra detail you put into your service/product? I would hope the answers would all be a resounding YES!

With an architectural photography client, who needs images created of the interior or exterior of their facility, I ask several questions, such as… who are the photos for? What do you want to emphasize? Is there a portion of the facility you want shown over others?

It's my job to make their area shine with pride. I first walk the area for the best composition, I may do several angles to make sure all areas are displayed. I also made sure all tables and chairs were straight. This is where it gets more complicated and I have to visualize what I want the final image to look like. See the images below, the "Normal View" is what the camera sees at the first photo taken, the other is after over 30 images are taken and composited for final image. The tables and floor are properly showcased so your eyes are excited to dance around the photo, thus holding the viewer's attention In addition, proper colors are held true. For example, notice the ceiling's true color is black, but in the original it has a blue cast, which is from the blue sky outdoors. I made sure all vertical lines were vertical rather than leaning because of camera tilt. It's these subtle things that the eye picks up and tells the brain "something isn't right here". Question: Which restaurant photo would you rather go to?

I'm always appreciative of my long time clients, one of which is Commercial Realty / Been Kemp Construction. I've said before but it still holds true, these clients give me the opportunity to see more new locations and meet great people than most people. This location is the new Newks Eatery in Siloam Springs, in the strip center across from Walmart. There is another location in Fayetteville off Joyce in front of Home Depot. I've had the opportunity to eat at Newks and the food is great, if you're in the area, drop in and check them out.

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Bike Rack Beer

There are many hidden gems in NW Arkansas, the more you look, the more you'll find. There are all types of products being manufactured or distributed right here in your back yard. Every company has a budget, we can only imagine what Anheuser Busch, Revlon or Nike spends on marketing much less photography in a year. As Ivin Meisner said "Why accept mediocrity when excellence is an option".

Wouldn't it be great if local companies could have a greater level of commercial photography that would compete nationally? My goal has always to offer the highest level of photographic images, whether portraiture or marketing photography. Over the next several months, I'll be taking on internal challenges to prove that for commercial photography by going beyond the norm. One such project involved Bike Rack Beer. I had a vision and this is the result. I also added a 'behind-the-scenes' to show what was involved technical side of the final result featuring this product photography image. As a commercial product photographer, I am constantly expanding the level of creativity and stretching my vision. Wouldn't this be great for a national ad campaign?

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House of Webster

I am constantly amazed at the 'hidden gems' of NW Arkansas and I keep finding them everywhere. During a recent photographic project for the Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce, I found out about Field Agent and B-Unlimited, I never knew what they did but was impressed to see both and learn more.

House of Webster in Rogers is one such impressive company. They started in 1934 by Roy and Evelynn Webster who sold baked goods. The original house is in the middle of the manufacturing facility with the plant being built around it. They now sell jelly, preserves, biscuit & pancake mix, syrups, toppings, etc. While they have a gift shop beside the manufacturing facility, they sell quite a lot on line and many companies purchase gift assortments in bulk over the holidays for their staff and the companies keep coming back, a great testimony to the great products they provide. The more I tell people about House of Webster, the more I hear how people love the jellies!

Scroll down for the 'behind-the-scenes' images and chef Will West helping style some of the food. A special thanks to Catherine Snelgrove for orchestrating the products in such an organized manner to insure all photos had the right contents. As you can guess, I gained some weight this week with some of the product left behind and it is GOOD! You must try them out either on line or go by their House of Webster store in Rogers!

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Your Website

Your website is your presence to the world, people and prospects you may never know or see. It's vital that all elements are properly included, SEO, company information, services and photography. Everything on your website is a representation and reflection on your business. No doubt you spend a considerable amount on the website presence and other funds on directing people to your site, one of the key elements on the site is photography.

The photography on your website can do two things, it can make the viewer stop and linger on your site or can let them go on to the next site. What's the difference, the quality of the image. Professional quality photography will set you aside from your competition. If it's between you and another company a prospect is deciding on and all things are very close, but your competition has bad or amateur photography and you have invested in professional images, YOU will get the job. The best photography available will return it's investment many times over.

Over the years I've had the honor to create hundreds of commercial images in use on many websites. Each time I do, I either create a blog or social media post, or both, with backlink, to give them heightened publicity. Here are just a few of the web sites with images created by Branch Photography…

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Boen Kemp Construction

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Noodles Italian Kitchen - Fayetteville Ar

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Nabholz Construction

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Nabholz Construction

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Legacy Bank

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Legacy Bank

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Eureka Pizza


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Crabby's Seafood Bar & Grill - Rogers AR


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Courtyard by Marriott - Fayetteville AR

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Courtyard by Marriott - Fayetteville AR

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Boen Kemp Construction

Business Headshot Tips

Everyone needs a good quality headshot, but what defines a great headshot.


Lets first answer the question of the purpose of a headshot
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1. Shows the face behind the business. This is pretty simple but important so the client can visualize you while talking. This gives your business a personal touch, people like to put a face behind the name, it's a step in making a relationship.

2. To show that you are approachable. Being approachable is crucial in any headshot when you're representing a business, when a prospect can feel connected and feel that they can easily do business with you through a headshot, that quickly turns into profits and more referrals. This is achieved in the posing and expression.

3. A quality headshot will compliment your biography page. While prospects are reading about your history and accomplishments, they will relate this information to your portrait.

4. It will make your website look more professional. Most businesses invest heavily into their web site, it is the 'billboard' for your business, a professional headshot is required.

5. It is useful for Branding and Marketing assets. A headshot is not limited to a website, it is vital in LinkedIn as well as printed materials whether business cards, brochures or even billboards.

So now you are ready for your headshot, here are some Tips:

1- Don't use an old photo of yourself, when you were younger, we all want to look younger, but you want a headshot that shows what you look like now. Anything else is misleading about your age and you want to be honest.
2- The average shelf life of a headshot is about every two years.
3- I always ask the client what type/color background they want. It's best, when applicable, to tie in the background color with the marketing colors or type of business. Background colors can also have a psychological effect, for example, a white background can denote clean, which would be good for doctors, black would denote a more dramatic image.
4- Solid colors work best, ladies should avoid sleeveless outfits, but 1/4 sleeves are ok. Men should be clean shaven. The type of outfit will be reflective of the type of business, a plumber will not need to wear a suit and tie.
5- Since the images can be used on web and print, make sure to get a large resolution file in addition to web resolution.

Business portraits can be in studio….

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Or on location….

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Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce Magazine

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We are blessed with great people and leaders in our community here in Fayetteville Arkansas and it is my honor and privilege to meet and photograph them. So often these men and women can be right beside us in line at Walmart and we never know it, so many blend in since they are simply humble about what they do. They put in countless hours because of their dedication and should be recognized… and looked to for inspiration.

I recently had the honor to photograph there such great people for the cover of the new Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce magazine. These men include Chancellor Steinmetz with the University of Arkansas and Larry Schackleford, CEO of Washington Regional Medical Center.

The First, the Present & the Memories in Between

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Memories are a POWERFUL thing, it can lift us up, bring us down, make us thankful or learn from mistakes. I was recently working in the shop with walnut wood and the smell triggered memories of my father and I making an entertainment center when i was 16, it's like I was there. The senses of sight, touch and sound are just as impactful.

Recently I was listening to the 70's music on iHeart Radio, wow did it ever take me back to a simpler time, you know the feeling. It's amazing when you hear a song and it unlocks memories and triggers emotions from times you thought you had forgotten, it's a powerful thing. Not long after that, I was thinking, 'what ever happened to my first camera?', honestly, i have no idea, but i had to look on eBay and found the exact model in pristine condition, an Olympus OM10. I purchased a camera exactly like this in 1979 to photograph sporting events for my local hometown newspaper. As soon as I got it, yep, I looked through the viewfinder and, more powerful than any song, a flood of memories came back as I saw the meter and heard the click of the camera and cranked the film advance. Then I looked at my current camera and thought of millions of images I've been blessed to take over the last 35 + years, the people the camera has put me in front of and the number of cameras I've had. So I had to take this photo of the two cameras, the first and the present.

I calculated I've had right at 20 different cameras between, some were very large as the second photo shows (a copy of a self portrait), the largest was a Mamiya RB67 with a 100-200 zoom lens. A few others were Hasselblad that I used at many proms, graduations and weddings and put thousands of rolls of film through them all. Wow how times and technology have changes… but thankful my memories the cameras have given me have never changed.

Legacy Bank CEO

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The great leaders we have in NW Arkansas is impressive to say the least. Whether from those small business owners who have excelled to the large corporate CEOs. I know you're tired of me saying this, but I'm truly blessed to have a job where I get to meet these great people. You never know who you'll meet out and about in NWA, they're people just like you and I.

Last year, I had the opportunity to photograph Patrick Swope, who was promoted to CEO of Legacy Bank. In the brief time I had to speak with him, I could tell he was humble and had true concern and dedication for the bank and his new role. I make an effort to listen when great leaders, such as Patrick, speak, you never know where they'll drop 'pearls of wisdom' that could enhance or change your life.

PS: When visiting Legacy Bank web site, I have the honor to have created the banner images on the front page :)