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With this Ring-With this Ring-

Pinhole lens

December 13, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

This post is going to be a little on the photo geek side today.  But part of what my blog is about is the art and craft of photography, and helping others to become better photographers. So let get to it.

Well, I ordered a "toy lens" the other day, or rather a couple of weeks ago, just to play around with.  It seemed to be on the slow boat from Hong Kong even though it was shipped via air mail.  The lens I ordered is a Holga 60mm.  Holga is best know for its "lomography" cameras.   For those not familiar with lomography it is simply just a low image quality style of photography, popularized by the filters and such that people are applying to their cell phone images used on social media sites, such as Instagram.  In you phone apps or computer software the filters take these super high resolution photos that our cameras produce today and apply effects that replicate the old school look of the photos from our past.

The Holga cameras are made from a very cheap, plastic body, and lens.  They are film cameras and not digital.  The imperfections in the cameras and lens are what give the images they produce a lot of individual character.  

Plastic body no glassHolga lensThe simple Holga pinhole lens

The Holga company also has a line of lenses that are still very inexpensively made, from cheap plastic, that can mount on your DLSR.  These lenses are kind of like snowflakes, no two are the exactly the same, so you get vastly different results depending on the lens you have.

If your like me you are asking "why would you want to put a low quality lens on a hight quality camera?"  Indeed.  I have asked the same question about some of the filters that we are using on our phones as well.  We pay top dollar to get hight quality only to make the image look like it came from the 60's or 70's.  Well the reason I wanted to try a lens is that I like to get it right in camera as much as I can.  I have photoshop and lots of software that I can use to make an image look old fashion, but like I said above, the lenses have a quality or character that you just can reproduce well with software.  So I guess it is more about the art of photography and less about the post processing.  These low quality lens make you focus more on the composition and lighting of your images.

Well I mentioned that I had ordered a 60mm lens.  What Holga shipped is something entirely different.  They shipped me a pinhole lens.  The term pinhole goes back to the very beginnings of photography.  If you have ever taken a photography class you more than likely made or at least used a pinhole camera, just to teach you how photographs were made in the past.  The first cameras had no lens just a "pin hole" for the light to travel through the box and onto the film.  So there is no focusing, no aperture to adjust, just a hole that you covered until you were ready to shoot.  Then you would remove the cover from the hole for a given amount of time, and then recover the hole.  

IMGP9143Holga Pinhole for Pentax DSLRHere you can see no lens and plastic body IMGP9144See the pin holeAll the light from your image has to pass through that small opening


Above up can see the tiny opening that the light must pass through to the sensor on the camera.  

Since they shipped it, I thought it might be fun to play with as I have not shot a pin hole camera in probably 30+ years. 


Here is the fist image I took.  You can see the lens is very soft.  

IMGP9134-EditSoftness of the pinholeYou can see just how low the image quality is with this style of photography

There is no focusing and no aperture adjustment.  You can only adjust your exposure by changing the ISO (sensors sensitivity to the light) and or the shutter speed (length of time of the exposure).  I read somewhere that the aperture is somewhere around f.152 which means you have to have a LOT of light or a tripod for a very long exposure.   This image is shot at ISO 3200 and at 1/20th of a second.  








Then I turned the camera towards the sun, and turned the ISO down to 200 because I knew that I was going to be letting a lot more light in so it did not need to be so sensitive to the light.  This first one is also shot at 1/20th of a second to expose for the sky.  It has an interesting flare going on around the tallest stack and then in the lower part of the image as well. IMGP9135-EditISO 200 1/20th secExposed for the sky


Then I decided to crank up the shutter speed to 1/1000 to expose more for the sun and go for a much darker effect. 

IMGP9139-EditSun shot through a pin holeIso 200 1/1000th sec

I have emailed Holga about the error, and they came up with a resolution that made it so that I will be keeping this lens, and the other will be here in week or so.  I must say the customer service with Holga was top notch.  Very responsive and took care of the situation in a way that was great for both parties.  Errors are made, but what makes for great customer service is how you handle those errors.

I would not have kept the lens, but I don't want to deal with sending it back, & it just did not cost much to begin with.  It will be fun to play around with, but there are not many things that I can think of that would fit my style of photography.  However having said that, that is exactly the point of playing around with a lens like this.  It will slow you down, and really make you think about your composition and the way the light is falling on your subject to hone your photographic eye. 

So now you might know a little more about lomography and pin hole cameras & I got to mess around with some old school photography techniques.  Still looking forward to getting the correct lens, and will post some samples here once it arrives.  






Antonelli Family Full Gallery

November 16, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

I have posted the full gallery for the Antonelli Family photography session from last weekend.  We had a lot of fun creating these images at Hafer Park in Edmond, OK.   Below are a few more of my favorites form the session.

Now is the time if you are wanting to get your family photos taken in time for Christmas / Holiday cards, or just need to update your family portraits.


This is one of my favorite from the day.

Antonelli Nov 2015 -22Antonelli Nov 2015 -22

Antonelli Nov 2015 -29Antonelli Nov 2015 -29

Here are the boys having some fun with the leaves.  

Antonelli Nov 2015 -19Antonelli Nov 2015 -19


Thank you to the Antonelli family for having me photograph their family.  It was a beautiful morning, and a great location.

You can view the full gallery here.

Antonelli Family Sneak Peek

November 08, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

This weekend I had the privilege to meet up with the Antonelli's at Hafer Park in Edmond for a family photography session.  A couple of days out it looked like we might get rained out, but it turned out to be a near perfect Fall morning.  

This is just a peak at the photos that I shot.  I should have the full gallery up later this week.

IMGP8498The Antonelli's

IMGP8534Antonelli's Lisa & AndyLisa & Andy IMGP8645Oh Yeah! IMGP8506The boys IMGP8634-EditThe Amazing Caidy


Thank you again to the Antonelli family for choosing me to take their family photos.  It was a fun morning, and was great spending time with your family, as always. 

Pennington Family

November 01, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

I want to thank Mark and Tammy of allowing me to photograph their family last weekend.  They picked a nearly perfect day to go shoot their families fall portraits.  We went to Will Rogers park in Oklahoma City, on a mildly cool Saturday fall morning.   Like I said the other day, I look forward to returning to this park for more photography.   

Click here to open the full gallery. 

Pennington FamilyPennington Family Pennington FamilyPennington Family Pennington FamilyPennington Family

The leaves are changing and being to fall from the trees, so this is a great time for your family portraits. 


Thanks again to the Pennington's for having me photograph their family.  I had a great time with you all. 


Heidi & Darren Wedding Gallery

October 26, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

The full gallery of images for Heidi and Darren's wedding in now on-line.  This is the complete gallery, less a few images that the bride ask to hold back for a special project or two.  I will add those, once those projects are complete.  Please click here for the complete gallery.

Here are a few more just incase you don't have time to look at them all now.

Very interesting cake.

IMGP7070A cake dividedVery interesting, beautiful, and delicious cake.


Amazing location.

IMGP7107IMGP7107Amazing location!

A generational dress, and custom flowers.

IMGP7131Great dress and flowersGenerational dress, and custom flowers


Trying to sneak a peek.

IMGP7130IMGP7130Trying to sneak a peek.

Perfect day for an outdoor wedding

IMGP7196-EditIMGP7196-EditPerfect day for an outdoor wedding

Here comes the bride

IMGP7281-EditIMGP7281-EditHere comes the bride

Done deal

IMGP7351IMGP7351Done deal!

Incredible Bouquet by Nicole Moan

IMGP7334IMGP7334Bouquet by Nicole Moan

Getting pelted by the bird seed.

IMGP7481IMGP7481Bird seed time.

The happy couple.

IMGP7315IMGP7315The happy couple


These are just a small sample of the full gallery.   So please check out the rest of the images here

I want to thank Heidi and Darren again for including me in their wonderful day.  It was one of those rare weddings that absolutely very thing went to plan.  The weather looked questionable a couple of days ahead of time, but ended up being a perfect day, at an amazing location.  

Portrait session at Will Rogers Park Sneak Peek

October 24, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

If you have been wanting your family portraits done this fall, now is the time.  The fall colors are just starting to pop, the leaves are beginning to fall, and the weather is nearly perfect.  Shoot me an email and lets get together. 

This morning I had a great session with a fun family of five.  We went to a local park here in Oklahoma City.  I had not been to this location in many years, but after today, I will be back soon. 

Here are a couple of images as a sneak peek at our session today.   

Penningtons Sneak Peek (1 of 2)Penningtons Sneak Peek (1 of 2) Penningtons Sneak Peek (2 of 2)Penningtons Sneak Peek (2 of 2)

Just want to say thank you to Mark and his family for picking this beautiful setting.  We could not have had a more perfect morning to shoot fall photos. Full gallery will follow in a couple of days.  

Also the full gallery for the Heidi and Darren wedding will also be available in the next couple of days.

Heidi & Darren Got Married

October 01, 2015  •  2 Comments

It seems like just a few weeks ago I was shooting the engagement photos of Heidi and Darren.  Then on Sept 19th,  I had the privilege to shoot their  beautiful wedding, that was held at an amazing home in Oklahoma City, OK.   Here are a few of my favorite moments and images from the day.


The Rings - I had never seen rings like these.  They are the fingerprints of the Bride and Groom.  They were very well done, and extremely interesting.

The RingsThe RingsVery interesting and original wedding rings



The Dress - First worn by the Mother of the Bride, then by the Aunt of the bride.  The bride was the flower girl in the aunts wedding when this dress was last worn.  The flowers are made of porcelain, by an amazing artist Nicole Moan.   The DressThe DressThe Dress, Shoes, and Bouquet



With this ring - Here is tight shot of the exchanging of the rings.  

With this Ring-With this Ring-With this Ring



Tying the knot -  The couple did a knot tying ceremony.  From my understanding, this is a Celtic ritual, and is the source of the phrase "Tying the Knot"

Tie the KnotTie the KnotTie the Knot


Presenting Mr & Mrs -  The expression on their faces, sums up the entire wedding day.  Extreme happiness. 



The First Dance - This one speaks for itself. 

First danceFirst danceThe couples first dance


The Dip - I am not sure she knew this was coming.  If she did, I am not sure she was ready for it.  This is probably one of my favorites images from the day.  

The DipThe Dip


I cannot thank Heidi and Darren enough for including me in their incredible wedding day.  I enjoyed being around their friends and family, and the opportunity to photography such a fun wedding in a beautiful setting.  Join me wishing Heidi & Darren a happy life together. 







New tool in the camera bag

September 02, 2015  •  Leave a Comment
A while back I posted about a wireless transceiver set that I had picked up so that I can use and adjust a flash remotely while off camera.  Well today I got in and had the opportunity to use a companion piece to this equipment.  

This is the Cactus RF60 flash.
Cactus RF60Cactus RF60   
The Cactus RF60 can work in several ways.  
1) It can be used on top of the camera, just like any other flash.   
2) It can be used on top of the camera and control other flashes that are connected to the Cactus V6 transceiver.  These transceivers are different from most in that you can control the output (brightness) of each flash independently in up to four groups.  
3) It can also be used off camera, to receive signals and commands from the Cactus V6 on top of the camera.
Today I was able to give this a test drive shooting a product for Jayco Vent Valve Inc.  I have shot their products in the past, but we needed a shot from directly above looking at the lid of the hatch.  Here is the photograph that I made.
Jayco JT81040 lid on white-Jayco JT81040 lid on white-Jayco Thief hatch JT81040 Lid

Here is how I set up the shot.  I placed a white background under the product.  The camera has one Cactus V6 transceiver in the hot shoe on the camera, as the transmitter, controlling the settings on the flash units.  The RF60 is set in receive mode on camera right.  Then I had a Pentax flash unit above and to the left with a Cactus V6 set as a receiver to control the Pentax flash. 
So basically two Cactus transceivers, one Pentax Flash and one Cactus flash.  You can adjust each flash separately from each other right from the controller on the top of the camera.  In the above photo the Cactus flash was set to 1/128th power, and the Pentax to 1/64th power.  
I had a few connection issues when a first started, but once I worked those out, I had full control of the light output from both flashes.  All without the need to touch the flash.  Very cool.  
I will be shooting a lot of Jayco products over the next month as they work on putting together a new website and catalog pages.     

My book arrived today

August 03, 2015  •  1 Comment

I just received my copy of my book "John Marshall High School - The Final Days".   I had used this same company to print a photo book for me once before, and was impressed with their work.  This book did not disappoint.  It is exciting to see my photography in book form, and wanted to share this with you guys. BookBook arrivedHere is the 1st copy of my new book


Thank you to those of you who have already ordered your copy.  I look forward to your feedback when yours arrive.  If you have not yet ordered one, please see my blog entry below that announced  its release.  Or here is a link to the bookstore where it can be purchased.  If you are local and want to see it in person before you order, just contact me and we can get together somewhere.

John Marshall - The Final Days - The Book

July 23, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

Many of you have been asking me if / when a book of my John Marshall photos would be done.  I am very excited to let you know, that day has arrived.  

You can now go to the link below to preview and order the book, which will ship directly to you.  

The book details:

  • Hard cover, ImageWrap with no flaps, in 8x10 Landscape format
  • The paper used is a semi-matte 80#
  • 48 pages with approximately 100 images from the final days of the original John Marshall High School in Oklahoma City

I have used this company to print a book before and the quality is second to none in the industry.  The ImageWrap covers look amazing.  



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