Julianna – Senior Portraits

Kayaks, beautiful untouched stretches of beach, a beautiful summer evening, and an amazing high school senior: this is what made for a great session the other evening.  Julianna and I met up at the Isle of Wight near Ocean City and hopped in our kayaks to head around the point to a place I have longed to photograph a senior.  We got a great upper body workout while we paddled to the spots where I wanted to photograph her.  Her fashion sense, ease in posing, and personality made for some images that I am really proud to have created.  Julianna, thanks for kayaking with me to these locations.  I hope that these images are exactly what you had hoped for.  Enjoy the sneak peeks from this session until our next adventure.

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National dance day comes but once a year and that’s sad when you have such an exceptional dancer in front of your camera.  I got to spend a lovely afternoon with Liz as she showed me around her dance studio where she does Ballet, tap, and a few others types of dance.  She is graceful and so fun to photograph.  The natural light poured in through the large windows in this historic building in the heart of downtown Salisbury.  It could not have been a more delightful setting to capture her senior portraits.  I love getting to capture my seniors doing something they love and this girl loves dance…I hope that comes through in these images.  Enjoy the sneak peeks….can’t wait for your beach session in a few weeks.

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Senior Team 2018

I’m so excited about working with my Senior Team this year.  We’ve gotten off to a great start and I would love to introduce you to the AMAZING girls that I will be working with and photographing all year!  Can’t wait to see what else we capture this year and the memories that we will make together!! 














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Beauty at the beach

Have you ever been to Lewes, DE?  It is one of the hidden gems of the East Coast.  Growing up in Pennsylvania I barely knew that south of our large state lay the wonder of Delaware.  Yes, Delaware is actually a state and not just a small town or a river.  It is know as “The First State” apparently.  When I arrived on the Eastern Shore all those year ago I did not know that Lewes would hold a special place in my heart and in my destiny.  For in this small town I would meet and fall in love my beautiful wife, Jen.  I, like so many others, mispronounced Lewes and it was a dead give-a-way that I was from out of town.  I learned quickly how to pronounce what would become such a pivotal place in my life.  Lewes, for those of you following along, is pronounced like Lewis, not lose.  So remember that little piece and it will save your some embarrassment when you come to visit this small slice of heaven.

One of the young ladies on my Senior Team this year lives in Lewes, DE.  We coordinated a shoot recently and I was super excited to head back to the town where I met and married my wife Jen, so many years ago.  To get to Lewes I took the back roads that I had grown so familiar traveling when my wife and I were dating.  It’s quite an enjoyable drive, through farm land, little towns, and then the bustling thoroughfare of Route 1.  During the summer I will avoid Route 1 at all costs because it is packed with outlet and beach traffic.  Being mid-April I expected an easy trip, yet RT 1 was jammed.  I traveled down Savannah Road, past the historic Presbyterian church that Jen and I were married in.  I reminisced for a few moments on the beauty and absolute “perfectness” of that May day.  A few more turns through town and I pulled into the parking lot at the Canal Park and shut off the engine.  I got out of my car and began to walk around a bit surveying one of the locations for our shoot that evening.  Some modern elements of stone and wood contrasting with the gentle flowing water of the Lewes Canal and sprawling grass of the park.  There is a life saving station situated on the grounds and an old light-ship anchored in part of the canal.  I circled back towards the car with a good idea of where we would photograph, now just had to wait for Sydney to arrive.  She pulled in as just I was returning to the car and we chatted for a few minutes then started to wander around photographing in the park.  

I am no fashionista so I will let Sydney describe her outfit for us:  “Keeping it simple!  My go to, out of town outfit would be my overall dress, it’s super easy to throw on and it’s so comfortable and laid back.  I paired it with a white flowy off the shoulder shirt that i recently stole(borrowed) from my moms closet!  Since the shirt already brings attention to my neck I kept it simple with my bar necklace that I wear everyday.  Because it was so simple up top I added a chunky bracelet to give the outfit some pop!”

She is a natural in front of the camera and needs little direction as far as posing.  We shot around the concrete steps leading down into the grass expanse of the park, then headed over to the life-saving station and the light-ship.  The light-ship was a mobile light house, with a large light fixture on the main mast.  It is now a museum and is docked in a berth cut out of the canal.  The ship was closed for the evening so we photographed a bit around the museum building that looks like a pilot house.  It’s the building with the red strip running along the ship-lapped wall and has this awesome dark stained oak door.  We then made our way to the edge of the canal and photographed on the rocks and among the reeds that Sydney had once played in as a small child.    

Her boyfriend arrived, we chatted, and got acquainted a bit.  We still had daylight and the weather was quite amazing so we took a short drive down to the beach past the Dairy Queen and parked in a somewhat deserted parking lot.  The beach was mostly ours, only a few people were lingering about.  In the misty distance the Cape May-Lewes Ferry was pulling in to its moorings, ready to disembark its cargo of vehicles and passengers.  We climbed up on the dunes and photographed with the sun dipping behind us.  One of Sydney’s good friends randomly pulled up and even jumped in a quick photo with her.  As the gorgeous spring sun began to sink into the horizon I hurried back to my car to get my lighting set up that I love to use for this exact time of day.  The light had such a warmth to it and Sydney looked right at home in the amber glow of the setting sun.  With her toes in the sand and catching the last bit of golden light, surrounded by some good friends, we ended the evening on a great note.  

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Walk in the woods

When I first moved to Salisbury from Northeast PA(near where The Office was filmed), I wasn’t immediately won over by the flatness and the lack of variety of the terrain.  I had grown up among the Appalachian mountains and near the rushing waters of the Delaware River.   Little did I know, and would soon discover, that the Eastern Shore is one of the most beautiful places on this earth.  It may not have much to offer in terms of elevation, but the scenery is to die for.  From the salty sea air and powerful waves of the Atlantic Ocean, miles and miles of pristine beaches, little streams, marshland, and dense forests it is a photographers dream.  Since moving here I have fallen in love with the beach and count this area my home.  Not much beats a kayaking trip through the streams and lush marsh lands or an evening bonfire on the beach surrounded by good friends and good food.  This is the place I get to call home and where I get to work.  Everyday that I photograph a client is often an adventure into a breathtaking spot that you would be hard-pressed to discover anywhere else.  

As a photographer of high school seniors one thing that makes me unique is my Senior Team.  Every year I have the privilege of working with an exclusive group of beautiful young ladies.  We spend the entire year playing together and photographing in many of these locations I have been talking about.  We often meet for special shoots to showcase a theme or take an idea that the girls have and bring it to reality in coordinating and photographing them.  My aim is to not only capture amazing portraits for my clients but to tell their story.  Over the years I have shared many images knowing that those images would tell their own story.  And I believe they have.  Yet I have also wanted to deepen that experience for my clients this year, not only in the images but in the story telling of their sessions.  This blog post is a starting point for me in that regard.  This first post may be a little rough around the edges, but I want to convey what it’s like to work with me and, in a sense, have you come along with us on the shoot.

Recently, Hallie, Emily and I trecked into the Pocomoke Forest on an unusually warm spring day.  You know, one of those perfect days where it hasn’t been warm enough for the bugs to become active, yet warm enough to feel the sun on your skin and a cool breeze through your hair. As we wandered through the woods Hallie and Emily chatted about prom, life, and friendship.  They giggled at inside jokes, at me tripping over some fallen branches, and the sheer enjoyment of them being together and creating a memory that would deepen and add another facet to their friendship.  

The tall majestic oaks, the gently unfolding branches of the maples, straight as an arrow pines, and the spindly reaches of speckled dogwood trees became our backdrop for the afternoon.  The springtime sun hung low in the sky creating that perfect backlight and giving the images we created a wondrous glow.  This part of the forest is unique because it not only contains dense groupings of trees but areas where natural reeds and tall grass abound.  I do not know what the grasses are called but they are pure honey amber color, waist to shoulder height and sway gently in the breeze of the afternoon.  

I brought along my old Nikon F4 loaded with the last roll of TMAX that I could find in the studio.  I am planning on ordering some more and doing more personal work with film(but that is another story and another blog).  We stopped on the graveled road and I handed the F4 over to the girls and they enjoyed an impromptu photo session as they used us the last few frames on the roll of film.  As you can see they had some fun and Emily looked right at home with that camera in her hands.  They commented on the cool camera strap, which is older than both of them put together.  It felt great knowing that I have something vintage that resonates with them, after all I am somewhat vintage as well.  

I am not a fashion expert by any means, usually just a jeans and t-shirt guy(or whatever my wife dresses me in), but I loved the jean jacket and simple outfit Hallie wore.  Anytime your outfit moves people to see your face and your real beauty I think that is a winner.  Emily got her overall skit at American Eagle and I must say, it was absolutely adorable…another win.  They both wore some great accessories to round out their outfits(bracelets, leather choker, rings, and the shoes…never forget the shoes).  

Emily and Hallie…thank you for joining me on such a beautiful day.  Thank you for trekking through the woods and the briars for these portraits.  I am beyond excited to work with you this year.  You inspire me as all of the Senior Team has been doing this year and I look forward to more amazing experiences with you and of course capturing more images.  I hope that you loved this session as much as I did, you both rock!!!    

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Night Portraits

One thing I love in working with my senior team every year is getting to try different ideas.  I’ve been wanting to do a session at night and we finally got the chance with a nice day.  I met up with Kara and Dara over at Salisbury University.  Lot’s of off-camera flash and getting to use high ISO with the existing light.  It was so much fun wandering around campus with these two beautiful girls and getting to try these portraits.  Enjoy!

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Prom Session – Dryden Dress Co.

We’ve had a good streak of warmer weather lately and it seems as though spring may have arrived early.  I met up with  some of my 2018 Senior Team to do a shoot with Dryden Dress Co. featuring some prom gowns.  We spent some time downtown and had a blast capturing this session with these girls.  

If you haven’t gotten your prom dress yet, head on down to Dryden Dress Co. in Salisbury, Sarah and Julie will take great care of you and help you find your perfect dress.  Happy Prom and enjoy the previews.

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As the weather has taken a turn for the NICER I have been getting some sessions in with my senior model team from the Class of 2017.  Kayla and I met up downtown recently to capture a series in the stairwell of the parking garage.  Not a typical place for portraits, but I have been wanting to mix it up a little bit and try something new.  Enjoy!

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Pumpkin Patch

Got to spend a lovely fall afternoon with these wonderful young ladies for our Pumpkin Patch shoot.  Enjoy the arrival of the cooler weather and enjoy what’s left of the Fall.  

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