I took a few quick pictures of my son and his friends before home coming at Miamisburg. Here is a link to the pictures: HOME COMING
This morning I went to the AM Centerville Rainmakers business networking meeting. I had the privilege to invite Dave Herlihy to visit and find out more about this group. Dave is the owner of FLOORCO which is a flooring company in Miamisburg just down the road from Interstate Ford.
It was fun to introduce him around to various key contacts for him. A realtor, a builder, a remodeler and others. He left the meeting excited about the Rainmaker model of business oriented social networking.
Dave is well known in our church, Fairhaven here in the Dayton area and I was meeting with him later to discuss advertising in REACH magazine for his flooring company. As we discussed what his ad might look like, I suggested that it would be important to have his picture in the ad. The person who shared at the Rainmakers meeting talked about how she had lost business because people went with someone else saying, “I didn’t know that you did that, I would have called you if I had known.” She explained that she now has 30-40% of her business coming from networking. So in my discussion with Dave, I told him that we did not know (me and Patty, my wife) that his store was also retail flooring. We thought it was just direct to the trades. I suggested that the first thing he would want to do in his ad was to put his picture in it so that all the people who have the same misunderstanding that Patty and I had, would see his face and think of him when they had a flooring need. Many people at Fairhaven, for example, have the same misunderstanding about his business. By the way, Dave is coming to my home to measure our back porch and recommend flooring options for us. I trust Dave and know that as I do my barn studio build out that I will be calling him again.
In today’s business environment, more and more, people like doing business with people they know. Dave knows boatloads of people, but many don’t know they could go directly to him to purchase flooring. My feeling is that since Dave is such a well know and likable fellow, that as soon as we can “get the word out that he sells direct too” he will begin to gain business.
Leaving the Rainmakers meeting with a half dozen or more very good contacts, Dave decided to join Rainmakers on the spot and take advantage of special savings being offered that day. When I met with him to discuss REACH Magazine, the first half of our meeting was spent discussing the Rainmaker networking model. Then we talked about direct mail with REACH Magazine targeting the south part of the Dayton area market.
What does this all have to do with a photography blog? I have helped people in Rainmakers by improving their PROFILE picture on the business networking web sites like LINKEDIN and RAINOHIO. As I have met and gotten to know fellow Rainmakers, I startled one young lady by telling her that her profile picture did not do her any favors in promoting herself. I suggested that at the next meeting I would take a profile photo of her to use. She was a willing candidate, but seemed very skeptical that it would have any impact for her. I sent her several pictures to choose from and she uploaded one as her new profile portrait. The first thing that happened was that she got complements on her new profile portrait almost daily for several weeks. You will have to ask her yourself if it had direct impact on the number of appointments that she was having, but I suspect that it made a lot of difference. For anyone who is on FACEBOOK or LINKEDIN or RAINOHIO with a blank profile (No picture uploaded), you are severely cutting down your potential impact.
Does your profile portrait show you as relaxed, enjoyable, confident, outgoing, etc……?
This is Melody McCord’s new profile portrait. What do you think? What did her old profile picture look like..it was a picture of her at a resort and it was so far away that you could not make out her face. You can look her up at the Rainmakers web site for OHIO at RainOhio.com. You can also look at the EVENTS tab along the right of the page to see where the Rainmakers meeting will be. You are welcome to come and visit and, if I am there, please introduce yourself to me.
Here is a link to Spook Run Endurance Ride 2010, 2009 is at the bottom of this post. 2010 Spook Run
(2009) I was planning on photographing both days of the Spook Run Endurance Ride near Henryville Indiana, but we ended up packing up and heading home after the first day. We arrived Thursday night and set up camp. I told Patty, “If it stays like this, this is going to be a great ride”. It was breezy and about 50 Degrees, but the weather forcase was for rain.
The rain woke us several times throughout the night. Waves of heavy rain kept coming. When Patty got up to feed the horse she stepped out the door of the trailer into water about 3 inches deep. It was getting much cooler and Cocoa started to shiver so we put a horse blanket on him. Start of the ride was delayed by one hour. Patty had her mucking boots, but I just ended up with soaking wet shoes (my hiking boots in the truck would provide me with dry shoes later on).
The rain stopped for a little while just long enough to get the ride started in heavy mist and fog. This is a picture of the start where they just walk for about 100 yards on a road until they meet the trail head where the pace gets much faster. I pulled my truck up into a driveway and shot out the window, but nothing that I would call salable images. Maybe a bit “cool”, but difficult to identify riders.
I stationed myself at about the halfway point for the Limited Distance group hoping that I could shoot them, then go back to where the 50 mile riders would be coming out of the trail into the vet check area. Patty came out of the woods with a friend she was riding with and as she passed she told me that Cocoa had tried to lay down in the creek (roll) and she was able to give him a swift kick and get him back up. Only, apparently his butt rug had gotten wet and apparently felt different to Cocoa and spooked him. He went into a bucking fit and Patty bailed off and landed in the mud for a somewhat soft landing. She was shook up, but said she was just fine and off they went. They were midway in the pack of riders doing the Limited Distance.
When I headed over to where the 50s would be coming out, it started pouring down rain so I gave up shooting for a while. I parked near where all the horses were coming in for their vet checks. I knotted off for a short nap and when I awoke, the last of the Limited Distance riders was coming in (I thought). Patty must be with the horse by the trailer, but when I went there she was no place to be found. I went back up to the timer and her and her trial buddy had not come in yet. That’s weird, as they were in the middle when I left them. After another 30 minutes I started to get concerned. Finally, very late, they both showed up. Seems they accidently took a turn that took them back through most of the entire loop again.
They both went through the vet check and did the second loop of the Limited Distance ride. Cocoa was a little off on the right front so Patty was not going to be able to ride him the next day. With the weather changing to much cooler and our horse blanket soaking wet from the night before, we decided that we would take up camp and head home. If we had a living quarters trailer, we could have had hot showers and dry clothing and we would have stayed, but since we did not we left. On our way home Patty was not feeling too well. I told her it was probably from her fall. Ya-know, even though you landed in the mud, I’m sure that was quite a jolt to your body. By the time we arrived home Patty was pretty soar all over. If we had slept the night in chilly conditions, I don’t think she would have been able to move in the morning. As it was, we both took nice hot showers and slept in our warn soft bed at home. She woke soar all over, but soon loosened up and is feeling pretty good after just doing some easy stuff throughout the day.
The pictures that I did get after the rain finally stopped were very pretty showing fall colors and a bed of leaves on the trails. Here are just a few.
The rider above is Janet Kirkpatrick. I owe her an 8×10 from the last ride (Cracked Oats Crunch). I have the list with some others that I need to send out soon, so she will have it soon. After the ride she was telling me that she ended up in the hospital because she had a gallstone between her pancreas and her liver and was in very serious condition with liver failure. They were able to create some sort of bi-pass and will have to go in again to remove the stone perhaps when she gets back. I imagine, you will want this picture too, so I will send both to you Janet. Take care of yourself.
This rider was in the vet check waiting for her time to go out again. “Hey Peter, can you take a couple shots of me here”, she said. She then pointed out where her children had woven a ribbon into the braids of the horse that had the name of their dog which had recently died. “We decided that this ride would be to commemorate our dog.” You cannot see the ribbon from this picture, but I saw it and it is there.
These next couple images show just how pretty the woods and the trails were.
And last of all, if anyone want to purchase images from the ride, here is the link to the few pictures I did take SPOOK RUN ENDURANCE RIDE.
Just thought I would share this because I have a spring and a winter picture of our home near Germantown, Ohio. Our home is a perhaps 1910 Farmhouse with hand hewn beams in the basement under the oldest portion of the house. At one point we had to lift the front of the house to replace a rotted out sill plate which was a 10×12 solid mahogany beam. We’ve re-sided the home, added insulation (it had none) replaced all 33 windows and replaced the barn. Here is a fall picture with a blanket of leaves surrounding the front of the house. Some time in the furture I hope to convert the large room in the barn into a portrait studio. I also want to have a long overdue barn warming and invite my friends from the Equine Photographers Network to come and take pictures for a day. We have three photogenic horses and my wife makes a great model too.
So what happens when two moms who were best friends as kids grow up and both become teachers. What happens when they move to the same city and just happen to become teachers at the same school? Well, there youngest sons become best friends through elementary school, through middle school and through high school. It was pretty fun doing their senior portrait session and seeing just how comfortable they are in their own skin. Still clowns and always having fun.
Here is some history for you to enjoy, then I am going to share some of my favorite images from the session.
Two mom’s and two kids on trick or treat night long, long, ago. Patty DeMott, my wife, on the left and Jennifer Damon on the right. Our Evan is Santa. Kyle was the head elf.
Patty, Evan, Kyle and Amy (another teacher in the fifth grade team)
Here they are today, both seniors getting their portraits done. As a High School Portrait Photographer, I can play around as much as they do. It was actually quite fun because these two young men are completely comfortable in their own skins. Letting they play around a bit, and even showing them a couple of these goofy images helped them to relax and have a great time.
Still Clowns and a couple of nuts when they are around each other, but getting more serious about life too.
Enough to make two mom’s cry. To see more images from this session click on this link Evan & Kyle .
Evan and Kyle are seniors at Miamisburg Highschool in Miamisburg, Ohio.
I’ve love to hear what you think of these images. Please feel free to leave a comment.
Karen Smith Hupp is a friend from High School. We used to be on the Arlingtonian School Newspaper where we went to school in Upper Arlington which is a suburb of Columbus. And of course I was one of the photographers. Facebook has been fun in that I am connected with people that I have not seen in years and that is fun. It has a feature where you can list your graduation date and school and everyone on facebook who has the same listing will show up so you can connect with old friends. Karen and I have had a couple conversations on facebook over the last several months.
A couple of days ago Karen sent me a note on Facebook asking for ideas that would help people take better group pictures. She was writing an article for a newspaper and needed some good ideas. I threw together a few ideas that I frequently use and sent them over to her. She told me they were just the sort of ideas that she was looking for and mentioned that she would send me a link to the article.
This morning I noticed that some folks had come to my web site from an online newspaper site. When I checked it out, it was Karen’s article quoting me several times and even including a link to this site.
You used several of my ideas and even listed my web site. Thanks Karen, that’s fun and cool. And, yes, those were some good times back in the day. If you are not on Facebook, it is growing by 10s or thousands of people every day and it is a great way to keep up with friends and family. Even friends you have not seen for many years.
Here is a link back to the article if you might be curious. There were some other good ideas for better group pictures that Karen used from other photographers as well.
Here are two ideas that were quoted:
“He suggests telling them that you realize it might feel too close but that you need them to stand even closer. He adds you might need to show them by placing yourself next to someone, and rather than placing people shoulder-to-shoulder, place them like a fanned deck of cards or back to stomach, for example.”
“A group looks better when the heads are not at the same place throughout the image, and you can use a chair or steps to introduce varying heights, or place someone with one knee down,” he said.
And here is a recent family group portrait the shows both of these ideas. First I arranged everyone in such a way that their heads were at different levels, not straight across and all lined up. When you see group pictures where the heads are all at the same level, they look boring and uninteresting. After I lined everyone up so that their heads were not lined up, I asked them all to touch someone. Another great thing that happens when you do that is that EVERYONE SMILES. I forgot to mention that to Karen.
We were all set to meet at the Cox Arboretum for their family portrait session when we realized that there was a garlic festival going on so it would have been a major hassle to get into the park. My wife suggested that we consider doing the session at their home in Miamisburg. Last spring they had beautiful new paver walk and patio along with landscaping done at their home.
When I arrived I checked things out and set up some chairs by their front porch. As you can see it worked out wonderfully and Jen said later that she felt even better that it was at their home. It gives it a very personal feel. This is a one-of-a-kind piece of art that they will cherish for years to come. Ken Damon is the pastor of a Baptist church in Oakwood. Jennifer is a 5th grade teacher at Mark Twain School in Miamisburg, Ohio.
The other thing I found is that the love in this very close family just shines through. Posing was easy and relaxed and everyone had a nice time, even Kyle and Joel who very seldom have their pictures taken. Still hoping to arrange for Kyle’s senior portraits. He wants to wear the crown from being elected the king of the homecoming court at Miamisburg High School. Sure we can do that for part of the session.
Kristen and her mom Michele have known me for several years. We have met several times at horse shows in the Dayton area. In addition, they attended the same church in Germantown that my son Jordan participated in. In an earlier post I said that Kristen had asked me about senior portraits this spring at one of the DLSC (Dayton Local Show Circuit) horse shows.
We talked about it each time we saw each other at the other horse shows. Michele and Kristen wanted to wait for the fall colors. When I arrived at her home in Miamisburg Michele pointed out one tree that was very vivid and bright. It was a perfect background for some of the images.
Kristen had a real workout trying to keep her horse’s head up out of the grass. I think that both Michele and Kristen doubted that we were going to get ANY good images from the session. I explained that it is always like this and that I have a very quick trigger finger. Even though the ears are perked forward for only moments, I would say, “got that one” to their surprise and we would move on to other poses. As a photographer with a specialty in equine photography (taking pictures of horses) Kristen and her mom chose the right person for her senior portraits with her horse.
When I was processing the images late into the night (some people don’t realize that after taking 200-300 images I have to sort out all the very best images and do my special processing on each image that I plan to show in the proofing ablum) I came across this image. It is definitely my favorite from the entire session. I made a Facebook version of this particular one and tagged Kristen with it on Facebook. Shortly, to my surprise, she replied with,” I know it’s just one image, but I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it!!! Now she has all the portraits to look at. I wonder if this one is still her favorite. To see all the proofs from this senior portrait session just click on this link: Kristen Lay’s Senior Portrait Session
Here are some other highlights from the session.
Autumn called me about senior portraits a couple of weeks ago. When I asked her if there were special places or things she had in mind she explained that she would like her portraits taken at her grandparent’s home. They live out in Farmersville and their neighbor has a horse she wanted me to take her portraits with. In addition they had the restored hotrod Charger SS that used to belong to her dad.
I have other posts of people with their horses and I thought that these portraits with a car that has special meaning for Autumn turned out great so I am sharing a few here. To see other images from the session you can go to the proofing gallery Autumn Cates.
I am excited about the results of working with Zac Henne or Henne & Associates, LLC graphic designers. I met Zac through Rainmakers Networking group here in the Dayton area. It took us three design tries to come up with the new look. After the second group of ideas, I said I had to see something that made me say, “Ooooh, I like that” because I will have to live with this for a long time. Thanks, Zac, for your willingness to go to bat three times to come up with that “Ooooh, I like that” design for me.
I also changed the header of my web site to show my current work in senior portrait photography here in Dayton. I’d love to hear what you think about my new logo and the new header.
Here is the new header which shows some of my most current work. I will also include this as part of my signature file when sending emails.
I still do equine photography. That means if you are a senior high school student and you want portraits with your horse, I’m still here for you, but I am going back to my first love in photography which is people. Pet photography on location at your home or in a nearby park is something that I am also open to. All of my sessions are guaranteed so even though I don’t have samples of work with other pets right now, there is no risk to you if you like my style and want to give a pet session a try (Money back, no questions asked guarantee on the session fee if you are not happy for any reason or a reshoot of the session if you like).