Midnight Run To Chattanooga For Ice Cream

I don’t know what it was or if we were talking about trips but about 10pm I thought it would be a good Idea to drive to Chattanooga for some ice cream. Considering that it takes about 2 hours to get there I was hoping that Chattanooga would be the start to the new time zone….well it wasn’t. We rolled in that faithful city at 12am. To our surprise restaurants were closing or already closed for the night. Chattanooga just seemed to be a place that you could find some late night food. It take too long but we found a home at Applebee’s.

One thing I like about road trips with my wife is that it’s like dating again. Every guy knows, or at least should know, that he should always as what the girl thinks. He should ask engaging questions. This shows interest and concern. The ladies will typically open up a bit and presto you got some great conversation. In addition, you’ll probably learn something new because being married for less than a year and a baby on the way your priorities are on other pressing matters.

So husbands…take some time out and take a road trip with your love.

On The Border Of Arizona

While driving from CA to Ga I stopped on the Arizona border to stretch my legs and get record a few minutes of the environment. I soon realized that I stopped at the same location shortly after graduating high school when I was making the trip in less than 48hrs. BTY, I made it in 47.5hrs!

2,243 Miles In 3 Days

I sometimes have to wonder what I’m doing and why I do it. After graduating high school I drove from North Carolina to Los Angeles to visit my mom. It was the first time that I drove that far alone and it was a great experience for me. The most memorable experience was when I got lost in the Grand Canyon, sleep on the ground at the bottom (with no sleeping bag) and then walked out the following day. I made the trip across country a few more times and told myself that I wouldn’t do that again alone. Well, there was an emergency in the family and I had to go to California and drive back. Luckily, the emergency happened a week before an engagement session and wedding. I started in LA at 12:00pm(PST) on Sunday and made my first stop was on Monday at 6:30am(PST) in Lubbock TX to visit with some friends. I made some good time. I already had packed the food I needed for the trip so the only breaks I took were gas, water and the bathroom. Total drive time 18.5 hours

I left Lubbock TX at about 5am(PST) and about 5hrs stopped in Fort Worth for lunch with some more close friends. The food was great because it was home cooked. I left after lunch and hit the road. I was determined to get to ATL without stopping for a hotel. While on the road I turned on my trusty dash cam to record from my perspective of the roads. View the video here. Drive Time: 24.5 hours

I happily arrived in ATL on 5:30am (PST) and went to sleep. Total Drive Time: 43hrs

Thirst Relief For All, An Intro

One of the people I got to met in Vegas was Jim Davis Hicks, the founder and president of Thirst Relief International. This guy has a heart and a passion to make the world better than wen he found it and one of the best ways to do so is with clean water. Most of the world doesn’t have clean water to drink and as a result men, women, and children are needlessly getting sick or dieing from bacteria and parasites living in contaminated water. We certainly take for granted that our water will be clean in the US. In fact, the only concern we have is with taste. If we don’t like the taste of the water coming from our own home we simply go and buy a filter or bottled water. There are those in other countries who do not have this luxury. What is also awesome about Jim is that he saw a need and did something about it. Oh, BTY, he just started with this idea to help provide clean water to the world while he was a wedding photographer. So don’t think that just because you don’t hold a “high and influential” position that you can’t make a difference in this world. For more information please visit their website: www.thirstrelief.org

Thirst Relief International is responding to the worldwide water crisis by helping thousands of families each year gain access to safe water through simple, low-cost means. A locally manufactured biosand filter or a well repaired by nationals has the power to radically improve the health and well-being of an individual, a family, a community.

A Child With The Heart Of A Lion On A Zip Line

For the past couple of years now I’ve traveled over to Rutledge Ga. to photograph the campers of Camp Twin Lakes. This usually happens in the summer so it’s really hot, humid and just one long day (mostly because of the drive). Every time I go I am so encouraged by the kids. If you didn’t click on the link for Twin Lakes:

It’s a not-for-profit organization that offers year-round recreational, therapeutic, and educational programs for children facing serious illnesses and other physical, emotional and life challenges.

I cannot express to you what a great opportunity this camp gives parents and disabled children. Children with disabilities often do not have the opportunity to go to summer camp to walk the trails, conquer the ropes course, or even travel on a zip line.  Well Camp Twin Lakes does and our story begins at the top of the climbing wall with the zip line. Camper  Alex (not her real name) was the next camper in line to go down the zip line. She walked up the steps to the top  and as soon as she got to the top in the open air she started crying. She was crying because not only the height but also because there were no walls to keep you from falling. Everyone (including myself had to latch into ropes to keep you from falling off. Heights really don’t bother me but the first time I got up there I was a little disoriented too. To put it in perspective. It’s easy to walk on a board that is a foot wide 6 inches off the ground it’s not so easy because of your perspective at 10 feet even though it’s the same piece of board.

At the top there were two camp counselors who encouraged her. This was her time to conquer her fears and they were going to be beside her the entire time.   She cried and cried and then said she wanted to come down but one of the counselors reminded Alex that her goal for the day to was to go down that zip line. It took some time but she got strapped in and went down screaming for joy the entire way. In fact, I saw her after that and asked her if she had a good time and if she was glad she did it. SHE DID!

Making sure the helmet is on right

You can see all the ropes needed to keep her secure

You can see how high it is

A little encourgement can go a long way

Won't be falling with this many ropes

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!!!

Photos From WPPI Las Vegas Pt1

A few weeks ago I headed over to Las Vegas for WPPI (wedding portrait photographers international) in which about 11,000 – 14,000 photographers new and old got together to learn from one another and hone their skills as artists and business people. The fact of the matter is that that art of photography can be learned on your own via more experienced photographers but the business side of photography has been severely lacking. This year I ditched the artsy classes of posing and photoshop and headed over to classes such as “business law for photographers 101.”  Although my business is an LLC, I do have a business checking account and a business license there are a few things that I am missing or at least not going as far as I should. I’ll talk about the specifics of business in other posts but for now I want to show a few photographs that I took while there. I have the silly problem of taking photographs but not putting them up on here or on facebook.

Ed Pierce of photovision & prized Marketer Mitche Graf

Hanging with Fashion Photographer Par Excellence Matthew Jordan Smith. He has been such a great influence on my approach to photographing brides and grooms

wonderful photographer Jesh De Rox that has a passion easily seen. Awesome work.

The True God Father of Trash the Dress John Michael Cooper of altF. What a humble man.

The Queen of Wedding Photography Bambi Cantrell and Wedding Portrait Photographer International Steve Sheanin

Social Media Guru Scott Bourne, Bambi Cantrell…two photographers from Canada..I forgot their name

Fashion Photographer Extraordinaire Dixie Dixon

What a great surprise to speak with Grace Ormonde of Grace Ormonde Wedding Style Magazine about the “to have & to hold” breast cancer photo project … what a heart she has

What a surprise while walking through the trade show floor guess who I found…GETMARRIED.COM They have been awesome to work with and I am so thankful that they are helping with this year’s Breast Cancer photo shoot

Gregory Heisler WPPI 2010 Keynote Speaker Pt 1/8

There are a few speakers that I think I will always remember and Gregory Heisler is one of them. Greg was the keynote speaker for WPPI 2010 (wedding portrait photographers international) convention and he got down to the essence of his photography career. His photographs has been seen on over 70 TIME Magazine covers! Want to know the secret of his success, ““Take the biggest chance when you have the biggest opportunity.” I found this quote on another site but it fits perfectly to his keynote. The keynote was over an hour so I split the video into 8 parts at about 9mins a piece. I created a youtube playlist so all eight episodes will play back to back here. IN SHORT, you can watch the whole thing here. You can also visit my youtube channel. Enjoy.

I’m In A Parody? WPPI 2010 Print Competition Parody

While in Las Vegas for 10 days at wppi (wedding portraits photographers international) I got the awesome opportunity to be part of my first parody video clip. Every year at WPPI Jim Garner, Bambi Cantrell, and others create a parody of some part of the convention and this year it was on the print competition. It does take a few seconds to load. Can you find me? LEAVE A COMMENT on how I did!

Also, I had the awesome opportunity to eat sushi with the print judges in the vid: Yervant, Bambi Cantrell, Jerry Ghionis, and Jim Garner my first night in Vegas. Check out their sites.

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