Flashback Friday: Red Gate Rodeo

Flashback Friday: Red Gate Rodeo

Is the rodeo a dying show?  I hope not.  It is a long standing tradition down by country folk.  Enjoy this #FlashbackFriday back to July 2015, when I went to go check out the Red Gate rodeo in Maynardville, Tennessee.

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An Eclipse With a Surprise

An Eclipse With a Surprise

Where were you on August 21, 2017?  I was looking up, along with a couple of thousand people, at Tsali Notch winery in Madisonville, TN, during the Great Solar Eclipse of 2017!  Come see my photos and find out how to propose with style - as James did when he asked Brittney for her hand in marriage during an eclipse!  

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People of Note: Jody Butler.

People of Note:  Jody Butler.

Meet Jody Butler, LCSW of Cove Mountain Counseling.  As part of my ongoing series of highlighting my headshot clients, I want you to learn about this healer in Maryville who offers counseling to those with addictions and PTSD, as well as a unique way of overcoming those obstacles we place in our way!

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Engagement Session at the Narrows of the Harpeth: Frances + Ian

Engagement Session at the Narrows of the Harpeth: Frances + Ian

We hiked and we climbed, but it was worth it to capture these images from Frances and Ian's engagement session at the Narrows of the Harpeth outside of Nashville.  Put on your boots and let's go!

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A Modeling Portfolio Begins

Carolina is a young lady with the aspiration to become a model.  Presently receiving instruction from Gage Models and Talent in Knoxville, Tennessee, she began creating her modeling portfolio with me on location in downtown Maryville, Tennessee.

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Married in the Field of Dreams

No, really!

During the Memorial Day weekend, I photographed the wedding of Elizabeth and Andrew Myers at an outdoor area owned by the Middlesettlements UMC called . . . the Field of Dreams!  WHat a great name for a place to get married!

But I wanted to do a special image for them that would take in the beautiful rolling hills around this area.  I wanted to showcase them but still capture the expanse of land around them.  Well, the second part could be done with a wide-angle lens, but then the new Mr. and Mrs. Myers would be tiny in the image.

Fortunately, there is a technique that has been popularized by noted photographer Ryan Brenizer; commonly referred to as "the Brenizer Method," it involves taking a series of images of the couple and around the couple using a shallow depth of field, and then using Photoshop to stitch them all together.

And this is what you get:

The image above took more than 50 separate images to make.

Does it take extra time?  Sure.  When I first saw an example, did I have to learn how to do it?  Yeah.  But . . . it's the Field of Dreams, and a little more effort for my clients is worth it when it makes their wedding pictures special.


First Snow in East Tennessee

Do not let him fool you - my neighbor's Border Collie, Gus, is a tough cookie who has shelter but prefers to stay outside in all types of weather.  Speaking of cookies, that is his "Mrs. Richer, can I get a cookie, please?" look - and yes, I give him treats.

East Tennessee got its first snow yesterday and more is promised this weekend. I could not get out and about too far from home - Nor'easterners might scoff but you have to know how our back roads go up and down steeply, and bend and curve; driving was treacherous.

But here are some images from around my homestead, Dog Hill.  Click on any to see a larger image.

Climb Evr'y Mountain: Katie + Nathan's engagement shoot

I have three primary fears:  heights, fish, and dark water.  Hence why driving over tall bridges at night is nerve-wracking (I'm lookin' at YOU, Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, spanning Staten Island and Brooklyn!).

However, I live by the words of the famed photographer, Alfred Eisenstaedt, who said, "When I have a camera in my hand, I know now fear."  And it is true - if I am looking for the shot, I don't allow myself time for my phobias.  Which was a good thing when I was photographing the engagement session for Katie and Nathan.  

Katie and Nathan are what one would call the "outdoorsy" type, maybe even the "adventurous" type.  I just think them wonderful.  Getting to know them, it became apparent that we could not simply find a "nice spot" near Chattanooga for their pictures.  They know Signal Mountain - they have hiked and climbed along Signal Mountain.  And . . . it's Autumn, so I wanted to photograph them in a natural setting that included the beauty of East Tennessee in the Fall.  So up we went to the top of Signal Mountain and hiked out to Edwards Point.

Don't ask me how far down it is.  It's . . . far.  I stayed focused on my lens while that little voice in the back of mind kept saying, go on, walk to the edge, the very edge, LOOK DOWN.  Nope, nope, nope - instead I watched a beautiful couple in love and sought wonderful light to capture them in.

But really, they made it wonderful.  

You know what makes people attractive?  Sure, physical beauty can help but it is really confidence and sincerity that does it - and watching these two, I kept thinking that if life is a journey, these two are ready for the trip having found one another.  It does not matter what bumps along the road they find - they are ready to help each other and with their attitude, their married life will be a great adventure.

I can't wait to photograph their wedding next month.  Especially, what we planned for the "special" shot, which will be . . . guess you have to check back next month to find out!

Well worth the hike I'd say!

At the Fair

This is the time of year when so many locations have their annual county - or country - fairs.  

And after indulging in some deep-fried food, nothing tops off the evening more than handing some carny a ticket, and taking a seat on a worn, cracked faux leather cushioned benchand wondering about the safety record of fair rides in general.

Right after you go and see the five-legged cow, in the tent next to the Snake Woman.

Click on any image to see a larger view.

Photowalking in Chattanooga

Concert pianists practice their scales each day.  Athletes train.  So why wouldn't photographers get out and shoot, just to keep the eye trained?

Daddy's # Draft Pick . . . and he knows it.

Finally, we had some warmer weather in East Tennessee and I just had to get out on a Sunday afternoon and walk about with my camera - photowalking, as we call it.

I was happy to meet up with two friends down in Chattanooga.  The day was fine, the park was crowded, and it just felt good to get out.  Street photography was my first love in photography and it has helped me hone my style when I am engaged as a photojournalist.  Souvenirs of anywhere I go are the images I can capture

I am ready for Spring.  Here is what I saw in the 'Noog.

Children have no problems wearing ice cream.

I loved this woman's hair and vintage look.  BTW, after seeing all these cones . . . I went and got myself some ice cream.

I took a look in the back seat and said to the owner in the front, "That's a hybrid, isn't it?"  She smiled and said, "Yup."  I know enough about dogs - and wolves - to know it would not have ended well if my camera went any further into the car.  

He was working in a sort of box while another guy sat outside.

"I'm the boss!"

"Why aren't you sitting outside?"

"Because someone has to e my Steppin' Fetchit!"

My husband is always after me to do a book of my street photography.

The best way to beat the winter blues? Have some fun!

A lot of the country is now eagerly - VERY EAGERLY - looking forward to Spring.  Here is East Tennessee, it is no exception.  We have had a few days of melting and as I write this, we are under a Winter Storm Watch for tonight.

But when you ahve a sunny personality like Phoebe here, well, it just does not feel as cold and the day gets brighter.  Phoebe is a remarkable young woman whose blog, Taken By the Lapels, is a must-read.  She had approached me after she and I did a Halloween shoot, to get some "less spooky" pictures for her blog.

Smart girl - there is nothing that stands out more in the blogosphere than original content, including images.  And using your own images or those you have engaged a photographer to take means you do not run afoul of any copyright violations.

20150218 Phoebe in the Snow (34 of 43).jpg

So go read Phoebe's blog - as you can tell from her images, it's always a good time!

Images taken in Market Square and Krutch Park in downtown Knoxville, TN.