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Archive for 2008

Las Vegas Senior Portraits


Emma  and her mom Diane called a few weeks ago wanting to do a senior portrait session at the dry lake bed just outside of Las Vegas. The lake bed makes a unique backdrop and is a great location for my style of fashion inspired senior portraits. Usually any day is great for shooting out there,  but the day before our shoot  we got  several inches of rain that turned the lake bed into, well, a lake. The one day a year it rains around here, go figure. The entrance to the lake bed was closed off so we ended up rescheduling for the following Monday. Luckily for us it worked out well because we got some amazing light and lots of killer images. We shot at the lake bed up until sunset and then went downtown to wrap it all up with a few Vegas themed shots.

After sending them the images we got this kind note from Diane: “Wow!.. Too many choices – great shots!!”

Emma  and Diane, thanks for a fantastic shoot – you two were an absolute pleasure to work with.

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We made the hit-list


Thanks to my awesome web designer and business partner, johnmorrisphoto.com made it on Vandelay Design’s top 25 photographer websites. I can’t take the credit, but it is really great to be recognized for the design aspect of my online portfolio. A lot of time and work has gone into designing the site, which focuses on accessibility and aesthetics. I wanted the website to be very simple which makes it easier to navigate and also reflects my style of photography.

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I need a politics fix


This has been a very exciting and overwhelming election and even emotional for some. It will be quite interesting to see what happens in the coming years.  Generally I tend to vote democratic, however I am actually more of a moderate and do adhere to many of the Republican ideals. But whether you voted republican or democrat, you have to admit that this guy gets your attention.

Now that the election is over, I am sure some people (including myself) are dealing with a case of election withdrawal. What are us political junkies supposed to do now that we’re not huddled around watching the news in anticipation? I guess this means we will all have to get back to work.

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Election ’08: A Two-Part Series


Part I: The Vote-Down

If you have been following the election than you know it has been a long ride. Now, finally, the vote-down is here. I hope everyone out there has exercised their right to vote. Have you voted yet?

Part II: The Results

The results are in and the winner has been decided. Barack Obama will be the next president of the United States. Watch his acceptance speech here. What are your thoughts on the outcome of this election?

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Las Vegas Wedding Photography


Last weekend just as I was wrapping up a 2 hour shoot with Rachel and Guy, I looked up to see Rachel adjusting her veil and fired off a quick shot to get this amazing image. A lot of my favorite photos of people are taken when they let their guard down. Many of my wedding shoots involve some posing, but I’m always watching for those moments when the bride and groom relax and forget I’m there. That’s when the natural expressions emerge and I am really able to capture the moments that show my subjects at their best.

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San Juan Island


As a continuation of the previous post, I wanted to share some photos from my visit to San Juan Island, one of several islands that make up the San Juan Islands. The island is only accessible by boat or air and seems to be one of Seattle’s well-kept secrets. Our tour book only briefly mentioned it and the hotel guide didn’t mention it at all. In fact, I learned about it only after chatting with a local resident while watching fish throwers downtown at the Pike Place Market.

The island is known for its Orca whale sightings as well as its breathtaking scenery. We took the Washington State Ferry to Friday Harbor, a small fishing village that greeted us with its quiet charm. Instantly we recognized the island’s appeal and natural beauty. It’s no wonder the residents want to keep this place a secret. Unfortunately we didn’t spot any Orca, but we did spend a few relaxing and peaceful hours on the island before taking a ferry back to downtown Seattle.

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Washington State Ferry


I read somewhere a while ago that photography is a great excuse to explore. This statement has stuck with me because in the past few years that I have been in business, photography has allowed me to see and do some pretty cool things. I almost feel guilty sometimes that I can have so much fun while making a living. On a recent shoot in Seattle for Microsoft and Hartmann Studios, I was able to take a few extra days to explore the Northwest Coast. Far different from the sunny beaches of Southern California, the shoreline of Seattle was rugged and wildly beautiful.

I’ve mentioned before that one of the best ways to see a city is by ditching the car and getting around on foot, bike, or using available public transit systems. Whether it’s Boston’s commuter train to Fenway Park, New York’s rustic, smelly subways to lower Manhattan, or the bells of San Francisco’s streetcars as they crawl up and down the steep streets of the city, public transit is a great way for really getting the feel of a place. Seattle was no different as we hitched a ride on the Washington State Ferry from Anacortes to San Juan Island. The original idea was to arrive at San Juan to get a look at Orcas in the wild, however the ride to and from the island turned out to be a real treat. Beautiful views of the various islands and small fishing villages interrupted the otherwise tranquil cruise from stop to stop over a three hour period.

In the distance as you can see in the photo above is Mount Rainier, an active volcano encased in over 35 square miles of snow and ice, surrounded by old growth forest and stunning wildflower meadows. I would have loved to spend an entire day exploring the national park, however as close as it looks, Mount Rainier is a good two hour drive away from where we were staying in downtown Seattle and our time was limited.

We were able to stay on San Juan Island for several hours before boarding a late ferry back to the mainland. The night time cruise was almost magical as we slipped by silent shoreline and sleepy villages lit by only a few small streetlights and the orange windows of small, quaint homes. You can catch a Washington State Ferry right of the docks near Pike Place in downtown Seattle for great views of the city and the islands almost anytime of the day. The ferries are mainly used as transportation for locals who live or work on the surrounding islands, but for travelers it is a great way to get a different view of Seattle for a great price.

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Lee & Greg at JW Marriott Summerlin


How lucky am I to have a chance to photograph such a lovely couple? Lee and Greg were phenomenal to work with – beautiful, fun and extremely down-to-earth. We first met Lee at a bridal show and after a scheduled consultation she booked us right on the spot. Back in June we shot their engagement session at Lake Las Vegas Resort and a couple of weeks ago they got married at the JW Marriott Resort Hotel in Summerlin, NV. The setting was gorgeous and our friends over at the JW Marriott Summerlin were especially friendly and helpful as always. The ceremony was gorgeous and the cake tasted just as good as it looks! I would also like to mention that Lee devotes much of her time working with young kids and it was so much fun to watch all the kids at the wedding dancing and having a blast. To Lee and Greg – thanks for sharing your day with me. Your album is on the way and it looks fantastic!

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The Road to Santa Monica


Back in June I mentioned that I was getting the urge to take a 4-hour road trip from Las Vegas to the coast. Well, a recent seminar in Pasadena gave me the perfect excuse to take the drive and spend a few days at the beach. If you’ve been to Santa Monica before than you probably know that it’s a great place to bring the [mountain] bikes, which I did.

Mountain biking is about the leg work. For every 15 minutes I spend on the trail, I probably spend an hour working the roadways trying to build my endurance. Of course, some roadwork is more intense than others. I spent two grueling days in and around Santa Monica riding the beach trails from the pier down to Venice Beach and back, then on the streets and alleys of the SM Promenade in some challenging urban settings, over 6 inch curbage while dodging  pedestrians and taxi’s.

Ok, seriously, cruising around in perfect SoCal weather by the ocean is something I’d love to do everyday (and as a matter of fact, something I’m looking into). It’s so relaxing and nice to be able to leave the car keys back at the room and avoid street traffic as much as possible. Biking is also a great way to really get a feel for an area since there is a lot you can miss in a car. One of these days, a trip to the coast might just become permanent.

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The Couch Shot, JMP Style


I have noticed a trend lately – a lot of brides seem to like reclining couch shots. Who can blame them? It’s very romantic, a little sexy, and a lot of fun. Full of color and killer lighting, not to mention an absolutely wonderful and exciting couple to work with – this is the couch shot, JMP style. Bright, vibrant and relaxed, these images were a lot of fun to create and I’m definitely going to have to try this again.

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