Happy 2022 everyone! With the Holidays, I am just getting around to posting about my last Engagement session of 2021. I was so glad we still had beautiful foliage for Amber and Connor on the day of their engagement shoot and we got even luckier with some perfect weather. Not to mention this was at the Ramapo County Reservation, where my wife and I did our engagement photos years back so it will always have a special place in my heart.
This session was part of their wedding package and I am so excited to also be photographing their wedding later this year in 2022. Like most of my couples, they were concerned about not having much experience in front of the camera and not being photogenic, but like all my couples, they were absolute naturals! The chemistry between the two of them was so visible when I was doing their photos that I knew all of these final images would be perfect and I could not wait to start editing as soon as we parted ways.
I was really hoping for some colorful leaves to get close-up photos of Amber’s gorgeous engagement ring and I had a specific shot in my mind that I wanted to replicate. I was so happy when that shot materialized and both of them were just as excited as me when I showed them a preview during the shoot. I am absolutely loving my L-series Canon 100mm 2.8 Macro lens for ring photos and it is slowly becoming my favorite lens not only for jewelry but also for portraits. You just cannot beat the crispness of a prime lens. I am looking forward to a productive 2022 with all of my couples and clients and I cannot wait for the weddings that I have booked already. I do still have a few weekends available for weddings or any other shoots and I would love the opportunity to discuss if you or anyone you know are looking for a photographer. Happy New Year and I wish everyone a safe, happy, and successful 2022.
2018 has already been a busy year right out of the gate but I don’t mind one bit if it means more time with my camera. I am just now getting around to organizing all of my photos from the last several years together on my new computer at the new workstation I just built. I have not been too active online lately with the holidays and last-minute clients but now it’s back to business!
As 2017 came to end, I got to work with two amazing clients right before the holidays to capture their special day. Alexa and Vincent were less than a week away from moving hundreds of miles away to Louisiana for Vincent’s service in the United States Army and they were about to about to give their “I Do”s. It was safe to say that they had a lot on their minds and some huge milestones were about to take place. With everything happening in their lives, the two of them were some of the most calm, easy-going, and organized couples that I have had the pleasure of working with. They enjoyed every minute together between themselves and all of their friends and family and it really showed in their photographs. We met them each in their perspective rooms to capture the special moments getting ready and the process leading up to the ceremony. From the intimate portrait session on the dance floor to the moment it was packed with happy guests, the moments after the ceremony were certainly just as special.
Off all of the weddings that I have done, this was certainly the first where the Bride and Groom’s dogs also walked down the aisle! They were even there to assist in getting ready before the ceremony and obviously pose for photos as well. It is all of quirks and details like that which truly make me love and enjoy what I do more and more each day. With every wedding that I do and with each couple that I meet, the more I appreciate how many factors have to come into play for two people to meet, fall in love, and decide to spend the rest of their lives together. When I work with a client, I aim to know and appreciate all of those factors and the people surrounding them that allowed it all to be possible and how that culminates on a wedding day. If that can translate through my photography and I can leave a lasting impression on a client through my work, then I know I have succeeded and I can bring that happiness and motivation to the next one.
Here’s to a great 2018 and thank you to all my past and present clients!
It is one thing to have a close friend of yours get engaged, but it is another thing to be involved in the planning of the proposal and capture the moment on camera. Eric chose the perfect spot at Pier A in Hoboken and had a picnic planned while I waited in the distance with my 5D and canon 70-200mm 2.8. Not only did the entire thing turn out perfectly, but the photos came out great as well. This lens always allows me stay at a good distance from my subjects without disturbing the scene, especially great for reaction shots at weddings. Luckily the lighting was perfect so no flash was needed and we planned for mid-day so the sun would be overhead. Of all the sessions I have done for a client in the last few months, this was one of the most enjoyable and meaningful. Eric is also a pretty talented photographer himself and you can take a look at his work at https://www.instagram.com/ericdmiller/. I would love the opportunity to be able to capture another milestone moment like this so please reach out if you would be interested!
Is there really anything better than a puppy? Like honestly?? Last week I had an awesome session with Hank the 9 week old Yellow Labrador. Like usual, I used my Canon 5D and mostly stuck with the canon 70-200mm 2.8, which is my favorite lens for pet photography and portrait sessions with moving subjects. The bokeh it provides is beautiful and it really makes colors pop, like the green of the grass. I am looking forward to watching this little guy grow up through the viewfinder of my camera and I have plenty of availability for weekend pet sessions this summer. I have plenty of great spots in mind here in Jersey City or we can meet anywhere you would prefer. You can fill out the contact form on the website or text or call me at (201) 739-8984. Whether it is a dog, cat, turtle, bird, or whatever other strange creature, I’d love to work with you! If I could spend just a few minutes a day with a puppy I think I would be pretty darn content.
A few weeks back I got a 9-month old African Spur Thighed Tortoise or Sulcata as they are also known as. We named him Sebastian and he has been an absolute delight to live with and he brightens out day. He is obsessed with Kale and refuses to eat anything but the freshest greens like a true spoiled child. We recently took him to Westwood Pets in Westwood, NJ to meet Soupy, an 18 year old Sulcata who has grown up there. They shared some grapes and zucchini and it is pretty unbelievable to look at the difference in size between these two guys and realize that is how big Sebastian will be in 18 years. I think we may end up having to leave him in our will to our future children or maybe taking him on a pilgrimage to a farm out in California but he is going nowhere for a long time! We love him and look forward to watching him grow!
Yesterday I did an engagement photo shoot with some close friends of mine from my home town of Mahwah, NJ. As it happens, they have recently moved to Jersey City as well so we chose Liberty State Park for the location and we could not have asked for better weather either. I love working with clients whom I already know because they are so comfortable with me and I know their story as a couple too. Mike and Mandy have been dating since 2008 and my girlfriend and I have been lucky enough to have know them throughout and to enjoy some great times with them. As far as clients go, they were perfect; so natural in front of the camera and even willing to climb over some railings to get the shot!
As usual, I was shooting on my Canon 5D Mark III all day and spent most of the day with my 24-70mm 2.8 II attached. From wide to close, this lens is the most versatile in my arsenal and when I only have the room for one lens, this is certainly my go-to. When I needed to get a little closer I used my 70-200mm 2.8 II. When I can let them be themselves and laugh and not be so close and interfere at all, the telephoto provides some excellent shots.
Overall, we had a great time and I will definitely be using Liberty State Park for future shoots, as well as for catching a sunset after work. Nina and I could not be happier with living in Jersey City and the more we explore, the more I find some great locations for shoots with clients or just for exploring alone with my camera. I wish Mike and Mandy the best of luck on all their endeavors and cannot thank them enough for the opportunity to do their engagement photos. Congratulations guys!!!
For the last month I have been quite ill so I was unable to get out and take photos, let alone explore. (Hence no blog posts for the last several weeks) Now that I am finally feeling better, Nina surprised me with tickets to Top of the Rock at 30 Rockefeller Plaza in Manhattan. We got there early to get some lunch and get a good spot for sunset. I was switching between my Canon 70-200mm 2.8, 24-70mm 2.8, and 16-35mm2.8 but eventually settled on the 24-70mm because it is the most versatile and as the crowd got larger, I would not be able to get the room to safely swap lenses after sunset. That is usually my go-to lens when I know I can only bring one lens or need to save weight and space while out and about and it also happens to be the first L-series lens I ever purchased.
Aside from some cold fingers, we had a great time and ended up getting a really awesome sunset with plenty of color. I wish we stayed longer to watch the colors fade as all of the lights went on throughout the city, but with all of the people packing in and our stomachs growling, we decided to pack it in and head back for dinner. I am looking forward to more exploring and photo adventures throughout the winter now that I am feeling back to normal! Now if we could only get some snow….
Today I was the photographer for The Brew Hop 5k and Beer Fest, another event put together by Peak Projects. There was a great turnout and despite the weather forecast, there was some beautiful weather as well. There were some impressive performances by the runners as well and the line for BareBurger would say that they saw a pretty great audience as well (myself included). I was shooting on my Canon EOS 5D mark iii and most of the time with my Canon 70-200mm 2.8. That is always my go to lens for any event photography and it always provides stunning results. I shot a lot of video today too which was a nice change of pace and there should be an edit sometime in the near future. I always like to focus on candids when I do events like this because they really capture the atmosphere and show how fun it is for everyone. And I must say after doing many weddings this summer, I have started to focus more and more on candids for any type of event. More info can be found at http://www.thebrewhop5k.com/nyc/ and I am looking forward to more Peak Projects events too!
I recently added the Canon 50mm 1.2 USM L-series lens to my arsenal and I could not be happier with it. Coming from a lot of experience with zoom lenses, I wanted to focus on prime lenses for portraits and weddings this summer as well. The image quality is absolutely stunning and the bokeh at f1.2 is as smooth as silk. I brought it with me to work last Friday and explored outside the office on my lunch break. If you couldn’t already tell, the Flatiron is one of my favorite buildings in all of manhattan and I had a great time playing around with the nearby flowers for framing. I love how the prime lens forces you to move your body and walk to different distances to get the perfect framing instead of relying on the zoom to get your shot. I have a feeling this will become my desert island lens and I do not see it coming off my Canon 5D anytime soon until I absolutely need that longer focal range.
While going through my photos from our trip to Shenandoah National Park, I found some shots from Luray Caverns in Virginia. It was an amazing place, with some formations that were over 7 million years old. And it is crazy to think how long it had been there before someone stumbled upon it. Nature really amazes me sometimes and it makes capturing it with my camera that much better. I was shooting on my Canon 5D Mark III with my 16-35mm 2.8 USM II with my Canon Speedlite 6ooEX. I just got the Gary Fong diffuser for the flash because I noticed the lighting was coming out hard indoors. This really made a difference and softened the light and gave it a more even look.