Saturday, February 18, 2012

Foto February : Buy 3, Get the 4th Free

I tell you, the awesome thing about this Foto February project is the variety of assignments that have come my way. It's exactly what I was looking for! And I'm having a blast shooting everything.

Today's post is a little different. I decided to combine several of the smaller assignments into one post. That's not to say they aren't important enough to get their own post. It's just a housekeeping thing. Trying to keep our blog still geared toward the business somewhat. Speaking of that, if you're new here and looking for our wedding or portrait work, be sure to click the little tabs in the header to just pull up those blog posts (and if you're curious about this project I'm in the middle of, click here).

Up first is Caroline, one of our portrait clients from a couple years ago. She's a marathon runner, which is completely amazing to me. I have trouble walking a couple miles... I can't imagine running over 26! So when she contacted me about taking some photos of her while she trains, I was intrigued. I wasn't really sure what I would photograph; after all there's only so many ways to take pictures of someone running. But I was up for the challenge. In talking with Caroline, what struck me was how much she loves running a particular stretch of the Maryville-Alcoa Greenway near the Clayton Homes headquarters. She talked about how peaceful it was; secluded and beautiful. So while I was shooting, it hit me... the story isn't just about her running. It's about her relationship with this trail. So I sought to capture that.

A little stretching action.

There isn't too much traffic on this stretch of the Greenway; something Caroline loves about it.

And even though her path takes her right beneath Pellissippi Parkway, she says it's still relatively quiet and peaceful.

The solitude of this one needed that high contrast look.

Next we meet Aaron, who I used to see fairly regularly when I worked at the newspaper, and he worked for a local nonprofit. He has since left the world of nonprofit organizations to find greener pastures elsewhere. He's been struggling for a while, but luckily recently started a new job doing marketing and claims management for a local roofing company. Pretty cool job, right? For those that don't live in the area, we had some pretty intense storms last summer that dumped a lot of damaging hail on the homes and cars. Roofing is a booming business right now. There's a catch about the job though... Aaron is afraid of heights. Ha! He contacted me about doing some photos of him at work as a way to share with his family and friends that he found a new job.

The best way to conquer our fears is to face them head on. Why not walk around on roofs if you're afraid of heights.

See? King of the World! Aaron said he's getting better about the whole height thing. :)

He must be... right on the edge of a two story home in Walland using chalk to circle hail-damaged shingles.

Aaron gets low to explain the damaging effects of hail on siding as well.

Just a guy on a roof in Walland.

And one of my favorites (he's measuring the damaged area).

Alright, like most guys, I dig guns. I'm no gun nut or anything, but I enjoy shooting. I remembered Corey, one of our upcoming grooms, telling me about his custom built AR-15 during a bridal wedding meeting (that's what us guys talk about while Danielle and the brides talk weddings!) so when I mentioned that on my Foto February blog post, I was hoping he, or someone else that has built their own rifle would want some photos done. And he did. Corey was nice enough to loan me the AR for a few hours one afternoon to let me play around.

This was exactly the photo I had envisioned! And I'm not going to tell you how many times of throwing it up in the air it took to finally get it right. ;)

A little more of a "safe" shot, but it's still pretty cool.

And I got to unbox 300 rounds of .223 on the studio floor.

These Magpul magazines are really popular with the AR crowd. Maybe I can convince them to hire me to shoot their next catalog. *hinthint*

And this last one was the result of some serious experimentation (and I love it so much, that I almost posted all 20 versions of it). I wanted to do something different, so I started playing around with a video light and some long exposures to do what's called "lightpainting". The studio was completely dark and the only light hitting the gun during the 15 second long exposures was the video light as I moved it around the the AR-15 to paint it with light. Cool?

Lastly, one that hits a little closer to home. Thanks to my mother-in-law, I will always take time to blow my horn and wave back to the brave sign spinners and crazy characters on the sides of America's roads now.

You see, she is one now.

As much as I want to make fun of her (and don't get me wrong, she still gets teased by me) I can't really, because I'm proud of her. Not too many people I know, heck, no one else, would have the courage to swallow their pride and tackle such an endeavor. But being faced with tight finances since my father-in-law was laid off last year, she's doing it.

And she's doing it well; a ceaseless wave and a beaming smile throughout her day. Just like she told me after I took her picture, "a job's a job."

So next time you see one of these crazy folks on the street corner doing their thing, give them a wave or a good toot from your horn. It just might make it seem like it's all worth it to them
Thanks to my father-in-law for sending me an email and asking me to photograph her as Lady Liberty. It made me almost appreciate her role in my life. ;)

Thanks to you all, Caroline, Aaron, Corey, and Kathy, for taking part in my Foto February project!! And thanks to everyone for reading this super-long post! Coming up in a couple days, another classic Mustang on a mini road trip.


Vicki said...

You never cease to amaze me, Wes! Good stuff!

Beth C. said...

I love the black & white of the runner w/the lampposts! Even with her shades on you can see the determination in her face.

C said...

In a very bias way, the AR15 photos are the coolest thing I've ever seen!

T. Rex said...

Wes, you should try commercial work. You seem to be a natural for that. Great photos!

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