I’m totally famous…

I just got interviewed by Shane from PhotoProofing’s* new “Business of Photography” section. I think that officially makes me a superstar… Or the only person willing to respond. Jury’s still out … :p

Anyway, if you want to get your photo-biz talk quota for the year (and a little history on your’s truly), go do some reading

It’s actually part 1 of a 2 part series of questions he asked about me and my business over email.  It’s all based around starting a new photography business and trying to give people starting out a little learnin’.  For the budding photographer, it’s a worthwhile site with experiences and viewpoints from many different aspects of the industry.

*I do not use nor endorse photoproofings products. Wait, that sounds bad… I don’t not endorse them I’m sure they are perfectly fine… I just don’t….  bah, this is going terribly…. this newfound big head I have is not working very well…. I’m going to go on time out…


Here comes decade #4

I just turned 30.  I’m now older than 42% of Americans.

Not totally sure if I’m pumped about this or not.  People say that I’m now old enough to know what needs to be done – yet young enough to still do it.  I hope they are right.  I do have a 99.003% chance of making it to age 40 – so that’s something to be pumped about.

Up-and-coming will no longer describe me — does that mean I’m “there”?  I like to think I’m still on my way.

81% of women have been married by age 30, 72% of men… I’m on track there.  What other things was I supposed to have done by now?  Meh – ‘supposed to’ is boring… I’m happy with what I’ve accomplished.

“You’re younger than I expected” was something I got used to hearing when meeting people for the first time.  I’ll need to recalibrate my expectations.

I loved my later teens and 20’s – I had a great time and the world was laid out before me.  I might have uncovered a bit of the map now, but I believe there is still a lot left — my dreams still exceed my memories — so I’m good to go…

Speaking of people that have big dreams … Here is an engagement session from last fall: Kelly and Justin, and their dog.  We strode around Minnehaha Park in St. Paul and took full advantage of the off-leash dog park.  I’ve got to get my guy down there sometime too…


Andrea and Mike : Stillwater Engagement Photographs

Andrea is perhaps one of the most excited-about-life people that I’ve met in a long while; she just oozes happiness.  One can’t blame her, she’s marrying a really cool guy who happens to also be a professional ‘balla’  (okay, that’s as thug as I get).   Then again, he’s quite the lucky guy as well…

We snuck in an engagement session this fall before they had to leave Minnesota.  She had to head out east for school and he had to head to Europe to “rain three’s”  (though, I must admit, only speaking English makes it hard to follow how he’s doing… but looks like he’s doing great)  Feeling adventurous, we took a bit of a trip of discovery, just deciding to drive north from Stillwater until we found something cool.  The unplanned sometimes brings the coolest stuff…

I’m really excited for their wedding next summer.  It’ll be interesting to see how wedding planning goes via skype. 😉


Another one bites the dust….

It’s the New Year – time for some reflection and refocusing. What worked in 2010, what didn’t; perhaps more importantly: what needs to change to make this upcoming year better than the one recently past?  I truly believe that simply going through life without some sort of reflection and change based on said reflection is silly.  We don’t even go across town without a plan including map, times, address, and itinerary… yet we often go decades without any thought as to where our life is going.

2010 was in many ways a great year for me – it was my most successful year in business yet and has resulted in a better booking season for the future year than I could have dreamed. I transformed an unused part of my home into a beautiful and functional new meeting and work space (almost complete – photos soon) and grew a half-ton of gourd that the neighborhood kids were bonkers over. I managed to stay connected with friends that I feared would slip away; and kindled new friendships with people that could have easily been nothing but a fleeting passing of strangers. I got to be with, and capture images of, a bunch of truly cool people during the most intimate moments of one of the most special days of their lives.  Colleen and my’s third year of marriage has shown the first two weren’t just lucky flukes. Family and friends have been more-or-less blessed with good health; and have shown more support than one could reasonably expect. For these things, and many others, I am eternally grateful to what 2010 brought, and to what it showed us.

However, 2010 also was also extremely hard. ‘Doing’ all the time, I rarely had time to spend just ‘being’. I lost a lot of this year planning and prepping for the next years; a lot of now prepping for someday.  To much planning hurts just as much as not enough. Though I love what I do, I missed many memories of my own making memories for others. I only blogged around a dozen times in 2010 – that’s a sadly small amount.  Family life was a bit hard – both because I was not available and because the company my wife worked for since college shuttered it’s doors. I could have done better supporting her.  I only got to wakeboard twice. My grass suffered from neglect.  Much of my time was spent letting perfect be the enemy of good. I use too many emoticons. 🙂

Kona Dog as Pet Police and Colleen as Prison Bride

Lessons learned, things to change: I have to purposefully focus on not biting off so much; even if I know that when I do, family and friends will help me chew. Kona is kind of high-definition awesome. Relaxing is not necessarily a ‘waste of time’. My wife is beautiful.  Making a list and sticking to said list are completely different things – I need to work on the latter.  Good friends are worth it. Things will only work well for so long without maintenance – be that a car, a camera, a marriage, or even your own body.  I’m really slow at drywall, but can fish electrical wires like a… uhm… fisherman? (and by that, I mean: ‘good’… heh)  Listening harder is almost never the wrong choice.

Branch covered in snow at sunrise

I’m going to go work out for the first time in 6 months.  The best kind of start is a good one, right?

May 2011 be great to you and yours….

Mel and Eddie : Rockin’ Photostation

Get it?  Rocking? Rock background? Eh?  … Puns are fun. 🙂
Mel and Eddie had a wedding that put Elm Creek Reserve at capacity… so there was no room for the photostation.  No room inside that is. 😉   A few days prior, the weather was looking beautiful, so we decided to give it a go outside.  We’re resourceful like that.
They ended up putting yard games and other fun games on the veranda so the outside wound up being a natural extension of the party inside; it worked really well.  The sun tried to squash our fun with some crazy lighting at the start — but nothing was going to stop the party.  We even had our largest photostation shot yet — 28 people!   Try sticking that in your photobooth. 😛


Happy Anniversary, Anna and Mark

For some reason, last year, I never got around to blogging Anna and Mark’s absolutely amazing rustic wedding. (though you may remember that we did blog their photostation) This wedding was all-out, from them building a commercial kitchen on-site to the bride and groom helping rebuild the floor in the barn that would serve as their reception site. Their connection to the farm is something to behold and their commitment to sustainability is inspiring. (for more info on their wedding, the farm, and some of their cool ideas take a look on the wedding website I made for them: www.WillowLakeFarmWedding.com )  Here we are exactly one year later, busting out a blog in full force. Here is to remembering….