Summer Love – or Not….

18 07 2012

I recently traveled to Ohio for a special engagement photo session.  You never know how these are going to go…

This weekend was especially hot and we had to hike a bit to the waterfall that held special meaning for the couple.  The cicada were singing, deer fly were biting, the rocks slippery and the sweat was running. It was fun!

Or not…

You’ve gotta love love.

More on this very special engagement session shortly!  🙂

— Jeff

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Boots On The Road

27 09 2011

These Boots Are Made For Walking

This summer, I had the opportunity to meet many good people and take many different photos.  I will be posting more as the days get rainy… and shorter.  This is one of my favorites.  I’ve ordered one for the studio walls, so I thought I would share it here as well.

Roads rolling off in to the distance have always appealed to me on many different levels.  I am not sure if it comes from some unresolved wanderlust or vestiges of long ago family’s vacations when I was a boy. Either way or for whatever reason, it often serves as a artistic draw to me… as it did in this photo.

No matter where we’ve come from or where we end up, the journey on our own road is what we make of it.  Sure we have to deal with obstacles, storms, and even a jerk or two along the way… but if we pick our way with care, we can chose a path of our own making, help (and perhaps receive help) from others along the way, and end up in a place from which we can help our own children take their first steps.

Enjoy.





2010 Military Family Support Day

15 11 2010

It has been a busy summer.  It is slowing down now with the fall so it is my intent to get somethings posted that have long been delayed.  First and quickly, I want to post the slideshow from this year’s Military Family Support Day.  The MFSD was established 8 years ago by the Hawks Prairie Rotary Club to recognize the sacrifice of the families left behind when a soldier deploys.  Money raised in the community for the event are directly back into programs to assist military families in the Lacey and Olympia, Washington, area.  It all goes back.  It is a wonderful program and one that I help sponsor through my donation of photographs the event for the Hawks Prairie Rotary Club.

You can view the slideshow on YourTube here: 

Stay tune for more updates in the coming days.  I have photos from sessions this past summer and fall I will be posting!





Faces of Patriotism

4 07 2010

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I’ve had the pleasure and honor to meet and photograph many of the military families over the past couple of years as a photographer participating in the Operation: Love Reunited program.  Capturing these moments of the families together in 1/250 of a second slices for the deployed soldiers is something I truly enjoy.

Last year, I photographed over 40 families.  I doubt I will do that again this year as they are all starting to return, but I have photographed some.

First up were Chris and Tricia.  Chris was home on R&R from Afghanistan.  It was a bit chilly in March, but the warmth and love was abundant.

Tricia, William, Emma & Chris

I created a small video of their session. You can see it in an earlier post on the blog.  Patriotism there, for sure.

Next up!

Ryan and Sybil

I see a lot when I look through the viewfinder of the camera.  The Ryan and Sybil were proud and excited by their baby’s first photo session.  The pending deployment was not on their minds… at the moment.  Here are three faces of patriotism.

Next up this year were Barby and Violet.  They came down from north of Seattle to Olympia for their session to send to Aaron, based in Afghanistan.

Barby & Violet

I haven’t heard that Aaron has received his album yet, but I am certain he is otherwise occupied.  Barby and Violet – two more faces of patriotism.

Nicola called me. Her husband, Brad,  just deployed in March – also to Afghanistan.  She asked and of course, I was happy to photograph her and Eden.

Eden & Nicola

Eden hated the grass touching her legs. It was fun!

Michelle and her children, Tylor, Parker and Anya wanted photos for their husband/Dad stationed in Iraq.

Michelle, Tylor, Parker and Anya

Hey Greg!  Your family is behind the tree!

The latest family to date Tara and Eddie.

Tara & Eddie

I don’t want to leave anyone with the impression that these deployments are easy.  They aren’t.  It is tough duty for those who are overseas and for those who are left at home.  Eddie was leaving that night.  I asked for a serious look and it came quickly.  Too quickly and I realized that behind the laughter of moments earlier, pain and sadness was only held back for my benefit.  Bravery when you don’t feel it – that is patriotism.

I love these men and women for what they give and sacrifice on our behalf.

These are the real faces of patriotism.

Happy July 4th.





Family Touch Points

18 03 2010
The Distifeno Family

The Distifeno Family

I had the privilege to photograph another family under the Operation: Love Reunited program: The Distifeno family.  Chris is about to be deployed to Afghanistan and I will be sending him his album shortly after he deploys.  They are a fun loving family and their love for each other shines.  It was a great pleasure for me to share in their afternoon.

It is obvious to anyone who knows or has worked with me that I love working with families.  Capturing these images, these slices of time in their lives, preserves the moment long after the memory of the event has faded. In fact, when the children grow older and they look at the photos on their… iPhones, iPads, iWhatever… they won’t remember who took it or even that there was a photographer present.  They will see their lives – their childhoods – as they remember them and almost from the viewpoint of an omnipresent story teller.   As they grow older, photos will become the anchor points to their life’s memories, feelings, sights and sounds.  It is being the anonymous ‘man behind the curtain,’ providing these photographic touch points, that motivates me.

I created a short slide show from the shoot.  You can view it here:

Thanks for reading!

— Jeff





2009 – The Year of The Military Family

14 01 2010

I enjoy photography. I enjoy most people. But, when I combine photography and people, I really have fun!

I photographed 41 different Military Families in 2009.  41 great families all making the best of the impending separation of 12-15 months, with the Dad, husband or son heading to Afghanistan or Iraq.  Ft. Lewis opened the gates and flew 2/3 of its troops to the Middle East/Central Asia.  Ugh.  I really don’t know how they do it with a smile on their faces.  Everyone smiles for the camera when asked — most of the time…

Sensing underlying tension, I often asked  family individuals to look ‘serious’, or to not smile and look straight at the camera.  The resulting images caught me off guard… more than I thought they would.  The honesty of their emotions and their underlying sadness were closer than I thought.  The soldiers were good at quickly dropping into the ‘no smiling now’ pose, but the wives were not as practiced at masking their emotion.

Deployment is Hard On Everyone - Even the Brave.

Though emotion showed when asked, the vast majority of the time we had fun (after the families got used to me shadowing them like a paparazzi photographer!)  Those who know me may blame me for getting the kids into trouble Sometimes, though things could get out of hand…

Corrective Action

In all fairness to the Brevers, I saw the the love the children had for their Dad, and I knew they would have fun posing for this ‘Corrective Action’ photo.

Drop and Give Me Ten, SOLDIER!!

But this was NOT a posed photo!    OK… it was. (The Sanchez family really enjoyed their session!)

The military families I met and photographed gave me far more in return by sharing their love for each other than I could ever have have provided them in photos.  When you listen to the news reports, or read the paper, pray not only for the soldiers in the field, but also for their families listening and reading the same reports at home.  The USA truly is the home of the free because of the brave!

Until my next post…





Turn and Burn

5 11 2007

Big Smiles

This past weekend started the 3rd season I’ve had the pleasure to photograph the Evergreen Barrel Racing Association events. This will be the first season I’ve officially ‘sponsor’ the association through the use of my photography on their website and photograph gift certificates for their yearly raffle. Now, if you aren’t familiar with barrel racing… hold on to your hats cause these ladies (and even a few guys) get on these rockets on four hooves and race the clock around three barrels and a cloverleaf pattern at breakneck speed! Pretty much the distance between the barrels is the same, but the distance from the line where the time starts and stops can vary depending on the space in the arena. This weekend’s race at Stewart’s Arena was held inside and winning times were just over 15 seconds, if my memory serves me right.

Barrel racing is set up for everyone from Peewees (as in the attached photo) through and up to those over forty. Males and females compete in the same divisions. Horse and riders range in experienced from those ‘not very’ to ‘professional’. While competitive, races are a great social gathering of like minded folks and a great times seems to be had by all.

As a photographer, the biggest challenge besides dodging flying dirt clods is trying to use enough flash to produce a pleasing photograph while not scaring the horse as it rounds the second barrel were I am pre-positioned and waiting.  Action is fast and with the flash, continuous shutter release is not possible (at least on my budget).  Timing is important!!  Speaking of budget, I shoot all of these events on ‘spec’: meaning I am not being paid to be there by the race promoter. I only get paid if I sell a photo. It takes the sale of many photographs to begin to cover the costs associated with a day of shooting … but hopefully the work will sell itself.  And on those days that it doesn’t, being a horseman it is just plain fun to be around the horses.

The dark arena will eat as much light as you can through at it. Finding the right lighting is a challenge.  I will continue to wok on until I get it right.