Magazine Time!

I recently had a couple of cover shoots for two local magazines, Lawrence Magazine and Discover Eudora. The shoot for Lawrence Magazine featured three local-ish bartenders who have created their own special cocktails. I visited J. Wilson’s restaurant, Ladybird Diner, and the super cool/funky Myers Hotel in Tonganoxie, KS. Kate from the Myers Hotel is featured on the cover and she made a delicious Smoky Sage Carrot Margarita. She actually smoked the sage in the glass before adding all the fixings(upside down glass with the smoke in the photo below)…and it really put that Marg over the top! Big perk to this assignment was getting to sample all of the drinks…

For Discover Eudora I got to spend some time hanging with the Eudora Fire Department. They just got a brand spankin’ new fire truck and I even got to sit in it. It’s a volunteer fire department and they were super nice and accommodating. Firefighter Genevieve was adorable and I’m glad she made it to the cover.

One more bonus cover was for the Kaw Valley Farm Tour booklet that features a pretty stellar image I shot of one handsome chicken.

Check out the spreads!

A tale of a popular stock photo...

Stock photography is a touchy subject for commercial photographers these days. The stock business underwent a huge change with the introduction of digital photography. Now that everyone including their Grandmas can shoot and upload stock images, the competition is enormous. A lot of photographers say you can’t make a living selling stock images anymore and I say foowee!(or is it foowy?, fu wee?..eh you get what I’m saying!)

I’ve been in the stock business for over 12 years and in that time I’ve built a portfolio of more than 2,500 images. It’s a fickle business, you shoot something that you think will sell like gang busters and then it never does. Some images just sell better than others, no rhyme or reason. This is a little story about an image of mine that has sort of gone “viral” in the stock photography world.

Earlier this year, I shot a series of images that feature a collection of musical instruments. Basically, I threw a bunch of instruments on the floor of my studio, set up a couple of lights…badda bing badda boom…I made this shot…

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Fast forward to now and this image has sold more than 1,200 times. I don’t know why this image is so popular, but I sell it on average 10 times a day. It is by far the most popular stock image I’ve ever shot and it took me maybe thirty minutes to make. It blows me away to see how this image has been used. It’s been used by a university in Bogota, the Viva Citizenship Institute of Brazil, and even on the Quito Ecuador travel site. I think it’s pretty cool and it really motivates me to keep making stock images. (below are just a few samples showing how this image has been used)

New published work

Two magazines that feature images of mine have just come out.  For the Douglas County Newcomers Guide I was on an assignment about the Lawrence local Ladybird Diner(their shakes are the bomb!) The Newcomers Guide also has a couple of images that I made of my buddy Joe and I on a yakpacking(backpacking in kayaks!) trip down the mighty Kansas River.

The new issue of Unmistakably Lawrence Magazine features some aerial images that I shot for Sunflower Publishing and a couple of shots from Ladybird Diner(look at that shake!). 

DCCF Annual Report

The Douglas County Community Foundation is a true positive force in my city of Lawrence, KS and to the rest of Douglas County.  They raise and invest charitable funds, make grants for the arts, education, environmental, health services, and housing and I've been working with them, helping to provide imaging for their publications.  Here's a peek at some of the images I shot for their 2018 annual report..

Tearsheet Roundup!

Spring was busy around here and now that the dog days of summer have set in, I thought I'd share some of the images of mine that have recently been published in print and online.  Spring had me shooting everything from llamas and traveling cats, to little James Naismiths and all girl rock bands.  The images were published in Kansas magazines, local print ads and even on French websites.  check it out.

A flight with the Kansas Air National Guard

Back in October of 2017, I was commissioned to ride along with the 190th Air Refueling Wing of the Kansas Air National Guard.  This particular mission was to refuel three B-2 Spirits, otherwise known as Stealth Bombers.  The images that I shot for this story were recently published in the new Spring issue of Topeka Magazine and I'm excited to finally be able to share it.

I arrived at Forbes Field in Topeka, KS and climbed aboard a KC-135.  The crew was super accommodating and allowed me to sit right behind the two pilots on take off.  It was such a unique experience to be in the cockpit on take off that I had to keep reminding myself "more shooting, less sitting here in awe!".  After about an hour in the air, the first B-2 came in sight and I was lucky enough to be down in the refueling bay with the boom operator as the B-2 came up for refueling.  It was truly awesome to be laying down in the belly of the plane, shoulder to shoulder with the boom operator, watching a B-2 come in for refueling.  It was a WOW! moment for sure.  I got some great shots of the operator with the B-2 hooked up.  The B-2 was so close, I could see the pilots.  Pretty freaking sweet.  Anyway, here are the images of mine that were used for the cover and the article.

Kansas Ballet Academy - Topeka Magazine

Last month I was commissioned to make some images of three young dancers from the Kansas Ballet Academy, for Topeka Magazine.  The idea was to have the dancers in their normal street clothes, performing ballet positions and jumps at a Topeka landmark, so we chose the Kansas State Capitol building for the location.  The kids were really great to work with and were all smiles, even though I made them jump over and over and over.

Here are a couple of the published images and a few extras from the shoot.

A view of Kansas at 1,800ft..

Last month I got an assignment from Sunflower Publishing to make some images of local pilot legend Nelson Krueger.  Nelson has been a pilot for 50 years and on the day that I met him at the Lawrence Municipal Airport, he turned 70.  I got to go up with him in a little Cessna 172-S on his 70th birthday flight over Lawrence.  Pretty cool.  Nelson showed me all the sights and I did my best to not drop my camera out the window.  I got some great views of the Kansas River, the new-ish Bowersock Dam, the Clinton Lake Marina, and KU.  I also got a cool shot of Lakeview Lake (a really uninspired name for a lake).  It's a natural "oxbow lake" that used to be part of the Kansas River.  Neat. 

Below are some of the aerial shots I gathered on the flight as well as an image of Nelson that was used in the article for Lawrence Senior Magazine.

Kansas Magazine and my Kansas fair project...

A few years ago, I got the idea that I needed to travel around the state of Kansas to document as many small town fairs as I could.  After two years, I had photographed over twenty different county fairs across the state.

I was recently approached by Kansas Magazine to do a feature about my Kansas fair project.  They did a nice little interview with me and ran a selection of my images in the new fall issue.  Kansas Magazine is a really top notch publication and I feel pretty honored to have my project featured by them.  Here are a few images of the spread..

Summer tearsheets..

It's finally here.  That part of summer when it's too hot to even think of going outside.  Today, there's a heat advisory in Kansas, so I'm hiding out, trying to stay cool, and considering stripping down and laying out on the cold concrete floors of my studio.  While seeking refuge from this oppressive heat, I thought I'd take a moment to share some images of mine that were recently published. 

The first few are from Unmistakably Lawrence Magazine where I photographed three different people, who sure do love living in Lawrence.  I've also thrown in a printed ad for The Merc Co+op, that I discovered in my mail the other day.  It's always nice to see an image of mine, being used just how the client intended.  The last is an image that I set up and shot here in my studio, used by GreenBiz.com.

Stay cool out there.

Best of Lawrence Magazine Tearsheets

A couple of months back, Sunflower Publishing scheduled a shoot in my studio, for the Best of Lawrence Magazine.  It was supposed to feature images of a pooch named Duke.  He was a sweet guy, but unfortunately Duke couldn't handle the pressures of being the Lawrence top dog model.  Fortunately, my sweet girl Millie has loads of experience under the bright lights and was willing to sit in for Duke.  An hour and 10 Milkbones later, we had all of the images shot for each opening section of the magazine.  Millie is the queen of my studio and the cover shot captures her "I'm the only dog you should be petting" attitude.

I also photographed a number of the Lawrence Magazine Choice sections and met some really nice folks along the way.  Thanks to Sunflower Publishing for the great project!

 

Great Plains Journalism Awards...I got a first place.

A while back, I did a job for Sunflower Publishing that involved making images that depicted a day in the life of a Kansas Klingon.  We followed this Klingon around and documented her daily routine.  Who knew Klingons had to deal with the same day to day struggles as ordinary Earthlings?

Fast forward to just recently, this image series was entered into the Great Plains Journalism Awards, which is a regional contest honoring print, web, TV and magazine journalists for outstanding stories, photography and design. The eight-state competition includes Oklahoma, Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and there were over 600 entries this year.

Anyway, my images won first place in the "Magazine Photography - Multiple" category.  Pretty cool.  Here's my page from the GPJA awards book and I've also included more of the images from this series.

Best of Lawrence Magazine

Here's a little shoot I did for Best of Lawrence Magazine.  This is Steve, a bartender at the Oread Hotel, and he's quite a character.  As soon as we started rolling, Steve was giving me pure gold.  I didn't have to ask him to do anything, he just did his thing and I was like Austin Powers, "yeah baby, yeah!".  (Here's a little behind-the-scenes and then the shot used for the feature)

the Force was strong with this one.

[editorial shoot for Sunflower Publishing]

This four year old Jedi proved to be almost too powerful for the likes of Kylo Ren(Dad) and one photographer(me), but even the most temperamental Jedi can be defeated.  You just have to let them see a photo of themselves.  Cheers them right up, works every time.    

                                       

sometimes, 30 seconds is all you get...

Last week, I covered an event at the Dole Institute of Politics that featured the Federal Reserve Bank president and CEO, Robert Kaplan.  I had less than 30 seconds to take his portrait.  It was one of those "oh boy, here we go!" moments that can certainly elevate a photographer's heart-rate.  Here's what I got.  (I also added a shot from the lecture, because the Dole Institute is so cool...)

Planned Parenthood Great Plains - The Event

One of my favorite healthcare organizations that I work with is Planned Parenthood Great Plains and I recently covered their biggest fundraiser, The Event.  The special guest was Tony Award winner and all around entertainer extraordinaire, Alan Cumming.  He put on a cabaret performance that was pretty much out of this world.  It was a great event and PPGP raised almost $200,000 that night(thumbs up).  I even got a shot of Alan taking a selfie with former Kansas Governor and US Secretary of Health, Kathleen Sebelius.  ha.