Commercial Photographer NW Arkansas
Headshots • Architecture • Product • Food • Marketing Photography

Preparedness Comes with Experience

We've all heard of Murphy's Law, "Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong". We all try to avoid this, especially in business since it is a direct reflection on us and our brand. The first way to avoid the 'inevitable' is knowledge, the best way this is achieved is through experience, we learn through experiences, mistakes and learning from them.

Another way is being prepared, 'just in case' something happens, this is something I learned a long time ago. When going on location, I always carry backup, yes, it makes for a larger load but I know I'm prepared just in case, since I've been through several situations and learned from them. I always carry a backup camera, lens, batteries, backup flashes, cords, etc. that is, I have at least two of each just in case, say, a camera falls? This has actually happened a couple of times, as stressful as it is, I carry on with the session objective in mind and deal with the problem later, because I have a backup that will complete the job. One example was a wedding about 25 years ago when I was moving from the church to the reception and the camera fell off the tripod on to the concrete, when I picked it up, all i could hear was broken glass inside the camera (in the film days). I had another camera that did the job just as good and carried on. I once had a strobe start to smoke and over heat, I immediately unplugged it and replaced it with the backup.

Another way of being prepared is knowing the environment and situations of the location. As much as I communicate about the photography project, there are times were I'm not able to see the location until I arrive. On these occasions, I bring more than enough equipment to handle a variety of lighitng scenarios, my therory is that it's better to have too much, than not enough.

It's all about making sure the customer gets what they want and delivering the quality images they expect in a professional way. If you ever have a session where the person taking the photos shows up with only a camera and flash, be forewarned, not only are they not prepared, but they also don't have experience needed to provide the images you really want.

Shown below is a sample of the equipment taken to on location jobs, it always varies. Not shown are the light modifiers, tripod and stand.

Backup photography Equipment

Backup professional Photography equipment

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.


Commercial magazine editorial and marketing photography at Sassafrass Vineyard, Winery and Wedding Venue for FAyetteville Chamber of commerce by Branch Photography NW ArkansasCommercial magazine editorial and marketing photography at Sassafrass Vineyard, Winery and Wedding Venue for FAyetteville Chamber of commerce by Branch Photography NW ArkansasCommercial magazine editorial and marketing photography at Sassafrass Vineyard, Winery and Wedding Venue for FAyetteville Chamber of commerce by Branch Photography NW Arkansas

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!

House of webster catalog photography studio commercial product marketing photography by Branch Photography NW ArkansasHouse of webster catalog photography studio commercial product marketing photography by Branch Photography NW Arkansas
House of webster catalog photography studio commercial product marketing photography by Branch Photography NW Arkansas
House of webster catalog photography studio commercial product marketing photography by Branch Photography NW Arkansas

House of webster behind the scenes catalog photography studio commercial marketing photography by Branch Photography NW Arkansas
House of webster catalog photography with Chef West studio commercial marketing photography by Branch Photography NW Arkansas
Behind the scenes of catalog commercial photography

Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce Magazine

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.

Chancellor Steinmetz with the University of Arkansas and Larry Schackleford, CEO of Washington Regional Medical Center for Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce magazine by Branch Photography NW Arkansas

The First, the Present & the Memories in Between

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.

Olympus Canon commercial studio product photographer Branch Photography NW Arkansas
MamiyaRB67Olympus Canon Behind the scenes commercial studio product photographer by Branch Photography NW Arkansas