When you look at the menu (and website), you'll see the food photos I created a few years ago. NOW, the next time you visit Noodles, you can say "HEY, I know the photographer who created these yummy photos in the menu!" to impress your friends! :)
Recently, I had the opportunity to create images for further marketing to feature the ambiance, service, behind the scenes and feel of Noodles. Being behind the scenes, I had a great view of how well orchestrated the work flow goes and how quickly they work to serve you, it is truly a well oiled machine. The entire staff I worked with was very nice and helpful in any way I needed. Noodles is one of those restaurants you can always count on to be fully satisfied every time. I had the opportunity to photograph a few scenes of a portion of the dining room with one of the kind servers, behind the scenes in the cooking area full of large flames and capable mixologist in the bar area that will all be featured in local advertising and marketing in the very near future.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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…
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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
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.
Everyone needs a good quality headshot, but what defines a great headshot.
Lets first answer the question of the purpose of a headshot.
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….
Or on location….
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 :)
The event is typically the first weekend of December and if you're not in the holiday spirit by then, after this night you will be. It's not over the top "Christmas" but an impressive event with subtle hints of the holiday season introduction. Each year the JQ Hammons center is transformed from ceiling to floor in the most elegant style, it's a real treat to open the doors and see the room for the first time each year. From the exquisite table decor to the wall displays around the entire room, there is something to look at, even the hallways outside the ballroom are filled with decor to evoke a feeling of joy and excitement.
Governor Asa Hutchison
This building, by Nabholz Construction for Admiral Movers, is in Tontitown Arkansas. The interior houses 50,000 soft of client storage, while photographing it, it reminded me of the end of the Indiana Jones movie where they show an interior of a huge government warehouse full of large wooden crates. The East & West exterior walls lean outwards slightly giving it a unique architectural design.
I was given the grand tour of the interior by Bill Locke who really informed me of how much they do, for example, the storing services for companies such has hotels until their construction is done and ready for furniture. It also features amenities for truck drivers while waiting for their trucks to be loaded or unloaded. Other storage areas are available in climate controlled spaces.
Nabholz has entrusted Branch to photograph this structure for an upcoming national construction competition. Nabholz Construction will also be entering the images we created of The New School structures as well.
Rosie is one of those people that, after chatting with her, you're thankful to know her. She works closely with people all over the world, diagnosing English as a second language problems and prescribing remedies (to borrow her words). She gives group sessions and webinars to help more of her clients all over the world with their English. Imagine you speak a language other than English and have been given a great job opportunity, but everyone speaks English. Words and phrases, and general 1-2-1 interaction, can be greatly different from your country of origin. This is where Dr Rosie steps in to help make a transition. She has a huge heart for helping others, this is quickly apparent when getting to know others, which makes her even better at what she does.
It takes a lot of thought and courage to rebrand a business, Rosie has done just that with a theme that will be memorable and tie into what she does. Visit her web site at: http://drrosie.org/
Here are a couple of the images created for her business brand…
Fast forward a few months and in August that became reality. Nabholz Construction contacted me to photograph three recently completed constructions. One of them was this building, the University of Arkansas Don Tyson Agri Science Center. I went out late one afternoon to capture a series of images to compile to form the one above. My goal was to accentuate the facility in all it's architectural beauty, eliminating any distractions, large or small, to draw the eye to the main subject. You can see the normal view below, this is what 'most' photographers would see and provide, not me.
I must add, on a personal note, I was thinking of my father during this entire photo project. My father taught high school Agriculture for 35 years in Tennessee, I was imagining how impressed he would be at such an impressive facility dedicated to the agricultural sciences.
I had the opportunity to photograph the Longhorn Restaurant in Branson MO for Commercial Realty. I ran into some challenges that forced me to work quickly to allow new staff to come in for training since it was not open yet. It's challenges that make us think quickly and how we react can make or break the job or customer satisfaction. I arrived on location at 7:30 am, since I was 30 minutes early, I took the opportunity to photograph the exterior first since the lighting was nice rather than wait until after I completed the interiors. It was a good thing I did, an hour later, an entire paint crew was out front putting on the finishing touches. When I got inside I noticed the dining area was set for training. After discussions with the GM and calling Commercial Realty, they asked that I photograph everything on the shot list except the dining room. At this point I had 30 minutes to capture three angles before training started, I was proud to say I completed the job as requested and did not interfere with their work.
I always love photographing architecture at dusk because the dark scene forces your eye on the building without distractions, but I really like the final image of the exterior. Look at the "Normal" view (as anyone would photograph it) and the final image where I took the image to another image, forcing your view to the building with little to no distractions.
I've photographed many properties for Commercial Realty and look forward to many more, helping their marketing and success.
When I have photo projects with them, I always have time during set up to visit with Gary. He's an easy gentleman to talk to, genuinely interested and concerned for others, his wife is the same. If you have the need for a counselor for any reason, you'll be glad you contacted Pinnacle Counseling.
I've tried to attend as many events as possible to be a part, as a result, I've been one of four selected as Diplomat of the Month for the past 3 months. If you want to be a part of the community, join your chamber and get involved, you'll be glad you did.
After a couple of minutes Nick asked Johnelle about how she and Johnnie got started, she immediately had my full attention. She gave their history of how they got started with the rice hulls business which I didn't know about. She went on to talk about their struggles and how optimistic Johnnie was, and very humble about her role even though we know she as a great support and very hard worker, just as she is today. I was inspired and motivated by the story she shared and how persistent optimism can pay off. I was further enriched by how they both always show gratitude for everyone that works with them, and that's a lot, and also their morality with professional values.
The day after the banquet, I was watching the movie "Founder" about McDonald's 'founder' Ray Kroc, and thought they really should make a movie about Johnnie and Johnelle Hunt, it would make a much better inspirational movie! There is a book "J.B. Hunt: The Long Haul to Success" that I am looking forward to reading more.
The same applies to commercial images. My goal is to get the view EXCITED about the image, to take the eyes on a visual rollercoaster with excitement that makes them want to stay on the ride. A ride full of peaks and valleys tall and low (highlights, shadows with great contrast) that excite the visual senses and the brain. This kind of image sticks in the mind and remembers that ride and where it was, to want to go back again. The highlighted areas draw the eye to many points throughout the image, makes the viewer examine the photo, become involved and ENJOY THE RIDE!
See how this image came to be what it is through over 50 photographs and photoshop work -
The Walmart Lobby entrance, on West St, showcases a lighting system that transitions to several colors, always giving the interior a different feel. They can program the lights to show colors based on the performance.
Just like all commercial photography I create, I take them personal. By personal I mean I put myself in my client’s shoes and take on the role of owner and look at it from my perspective as a potential client. First, how would I want my architectural photography to look or be perceived. Secondly, I look at it from a client’s point of view and what would it take to get my attention if I were to see it in advertising. According to my activity on my phone/watch, I walked about 5 miles photographing the interior. You may think, ‘how did you walk so much inside a building just taking pictures?’. To give you a brief idea, I’ve made “progression” photos that show a sampling of what goes into creating some of the interior photos, the Youtube link is below some of the photos below, please take a few seconds to watch, like and subscribe.
How this Interior photograph was created -
How this Interior photograph was created
How this Interior photograph was created -
How this Interior photograph was created -
Twilight photography is my favorite for architecture. It takes considerable more time but so worth it and rewarding with the results for the client and myself. The building pops and gives a surreal feel through transforming the reality of what is normally scene. The colors are more vivid the contrast of the interior against a dark sky gives for a very inviting feel. This accomplishes the goal of making the viewer want to visit the location and be a part.
Now for the technical side. This particular twilight photo of the exterior was one of my favorites but also the most time consuming. I have included below a “normal” view (what it looks like in normal view) compared to my finished image compiled of several photographs and eliminating distractions, how ever minor they may be. Remember those pictures in the paper that challenged you to find how man differences you could find? Just to name a few things, reflections on glass walls, proper color temperature of building and sidewalk, replacing bare trees and grass, images showing proper exposure of interior, cleaning shadows and marks on sidewalk and sky background properly exposed. To say those things in one sentence is easy, but many hours of dedication were put into the final image. I enjoyed the process because I knew what the final image would represent and be viewed and enjoyed by thousands of people across the country.
This is a list of most of what was done:
- Added in sky
- Added grass to all parts where was brown, very difficult to add and make look real, especially in small areas.
- Put in Flag from different photo
- Added trees on left and right sides.
- Cleaned concrete in foreground
- Cleaned and darkened blacktop
- Cleaned all curbs
- Added building lights from other photos
- Added street lights from other photos
- Added light and shadows below street lights
- Added windows from other photos to show interior
- Added front of building from another photo that was brighter
- Lightened light siding on front of building to ad contrast to “CARDINALS”
- Brightened and added red to “CARDINALS” sign in front to make it stand out.
- Removed garbage cans from under awning on left
- Removed pipes at front
- Removed water pipes to right of image on ground
- Cleaned concrete at base of street light poles
If your business or company needs great quality images of your facility, inside or out, call me at 479-601-6480, you’ll be glad you did.
I’m VERY picky on how I portray the images for my clients. I want them to excite the eyes and mind of the viewer to want to go into the photograph and BE there. NOTHING is half way done. In the first image you’ll see the before as you might see the room with a photo from someone else, just a point and shoot. Very boring, visually. The next one, while has a photoshop work done, would not look like that without the 130 photographs it took to make it, but only 110 were actually used. That’s right 110 photographs were used to create one photo. This was done to light specific areas of the room to entice and excite the eye to move around the room and explore the depth.
It’s my goal when photographing a scene such as this to draw the viewer in to gain visual time for my client and increase their business through photography.
I am very thankful to the staff that helped coordinate all aspects of this day to insure everything was perfect.