Sunday, October 28, 2007

Playing around in the dark

Happy Sunday everyone! This weekend I traveled to Northwestern University to capture several images as part of my homework assignment for class. Unfortunately, I arrived at dusk and didn't capture everything I wanted. But, the lack of natural light gave me the opportunity to have fun and play around in the dark.

Northwestern is a beautiful campus that sits along Lake Michigan. I will be returning soon to capture the true beauty of the campus and the town of Evanston, IL, where it is located.

Here are several of my favorites from this weekend's excursion that I hope you enjoy. Be blessed and NEVER stop believing!

This image has been "tweaked" in Lightroom. The original, although being correctly exposed, was just too dark and "blah" for my taste so I gave it a little "SamTheMan" love. Unfortunately, I can't use any of my Photoshop or Lightroom skills in my photography class. And that's OK - I think?

This is one of the buildings that are part of the Medill School of Journalism. I have interviewed at Northwestern and am standing in faith to return for my Master's in Journalism and Integrated Marketing.

Going to another level!

Well, I did it. I am back in school. I guess I'm one of those "weird" ones as I really enjoyed college and love being in an environment dedicated to learning. As some of you may know I am self-taught and have never had a photography class - until now.

This particular class is taught by Jim Summaria at Harper's College. Jim has over 25 years experience as a professional and I'm looking forward to learning his "old skool" approach to photography.

I'm sharing all of this with you to encourage you to never stop believing in yourself and the gifts God has given you! Yes, some aspects of your gifting will come easy and others will require development. Never be afraid or ashamed to seek counsel, instruction and direction in your area of gifting.

As gifted as they were both Mozart and Beethoven practiced daily. And, Michael Jordan who is arguably the greatest player in the history of Basketball, shot 300 jump shots before every game his entire career. So, never back away from an opportunity to develop yourself.

This is definitely going to be an adventure and I'll keep you posted. Have a joyous and power-packed week!

This is just part of the school at night. What a beautiful campus!

It took me 10 minutes to figure out where to park as all of the signs said that buildings "L - P" were in this section. But, as you can see building "Z" is in this area. Must be the new math...

The master at work. In this image Jim is giving us a "pop quiz" on the elements that make a great photograph. Man, what a hard dude as we had a test and homework on the first day of class. ;-)

It is hard to tell in this image but Jim is looking right at me and he's not happy. I think he just realized that I was taking pictures and would probably post some of them on my blog. Now, would I do something like that?

Thursday, October 18, 2007

The Heavens Were Dancing

Today we were under severe Thunderstorm warnings and this afternoon we enjoyed one of the most beautiful storm cloud formations I have ever seen. According to the news reports we had wind gust of up to 70 mph. I believe it as my camera was almost blown right out of my hands as I captured these images.

Unfortunately, these images don't do the storm justice as not only were these large masses of clouds moving quickly across the sky, but in each mass of clouds there were other clouds churning and moving about. It was truly beautiful and it was as if the Heavens were dancing.

I didn't shoot much of the ground as I was in an industrial area and there wasn't anything visually appealing to capture so you can't really appreciate the scale and size of these formations (the one with the airplane literally covered 2/3 of the sky). And as fast as these huge storm clouds appeared, they also disappeared just as fast. Believe it or not within 20 minutes the show was over. But, what a show it was!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Beating the Sun

Happy Monday! On my way to sleep but wanted to share a few more gems from my morning adventures at the marina. Have a great evening and an even better Tuesday!

Sunday, October 14, 2007


As I am writing this post I keep hearing the Luther Vandross song "Creepin'" playing in my head as that's what I did this morning. No, not like in the song - I got up super early to photograph the sunrise at the marina. After admiring the beautiful sunrise over Lake Michigan during last week's Chicago Marathon, I just had to return while the weather was still warm to spend some quality time admiring and photographing God's handiwork.

Fortunately, it rained this morning and the streets were still wet enough to to give that lovely "gloss" effect to the pavement. Despite the early hours Chicago is a town that never sleeps. But, unlike New Yorkers Chicagoans do take a break every "now and then" and I found the solitude and glow of the street lights to be absolutely gorgeous. Chicago is truly a beautiful city during the day and at night. Here are a few images from my early morning adventures that I hope you enjoy. Be blessed and have a great week!

And, here's part of the reward for beating the Sun out of bed.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Taking a break, well sort of...

Happy Saturday! Wow, it's almost gone and I'm just waking up. But, that was deliberate as I needed to seriously catch up on my rest as I didn't get much last week.

I'm almost done with the all of my Chicago Marathon editing (plus the editing from another project that a very patient client has been waiting for) and I'm kinda anxious to finish the slide show because it is going to be so cool. And, while organizing my HD I found these images I've wanted to share with you for months. Gotta run, have a great weekend and enjoy this beautiful Saturday!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

I didn't win but it was fun!

This is my entry in Jessica Claire's Shootsac website contest. She held an open contest to give away the new BluDomain website template called "Madison." The contest required that your image have three things: a pink Flamingo, something blue, and a Shootsac.

Since I was covering the Chicago Marathon it seemed like a great idea to have "Pinky" cross the finish line with his own news article. But, unfortunately "Pinky" and I didn't win. Even though I was a little dissappointed I have to admit that creating this image was a boat load of fun!

I want to publically thank Tasha Sykes of TS Designs, LLC., and Jerrold Daniels of the Daniels Design Group, for putting up with my myriad of Photoshop questions and helping me dig deep and use my creative gift in a new and exciting way. Checkout Jessica's Shootsac Blog to see the winning image and the runner-ups. Plus, don't forget to order a Shootsac while you're there!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

What Inspires You?

Have you ever been asked that question before? Probably. How did you answer? And, had you given any thought to this subject before you were asked?

I've been reflecting on all of the celebration and sense of accomplishment that I witnessed at the finish line of yesterday's race. And I have to admit that I am not only inspired but am seriously considering several lifestyle changes that have been long overdue. Why? Because, yesterday I realized that nothing is impossible to him who believes. Yes, I know we've all heard that scripture over and over again but that scripture "came to life" for me yesterday. So much so that I believe my life will never be the same.

I witnessed firsthand people of all shapes, sizes and physical condition do the impossible, in the scorching heat, and run a marathon. I was there to cover a running team of 100 runners who have created a system where anyone with a desire to run a marathon can do so in 8 months - regardless of their physical condition. During my "day" job we're working on creating a bunch of new collateral to help share their story as they have "tapped into" the power of God and have a testimony that will literally blow you away.

So, as you move into this week let me ask you a question. What "moves" you on the inside? What makes your soul and spirit jump to attention with anticipation and expectation? If you know the answer, right it down and begin documenting every experience that touches your soul. Pretty soon you will have documented the experiences that make your soul dance and created a blueprint to building a life around the "real" you. And, if you can't answer these questions then make it your life mission over the next month to find out what "moves" you. It's crucial and in some cases "life threatening" if you don't know what inspires you. Have a blessed day and never stop dreaming!

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Off to the races

There's something I must tell you. I've been keeping a secret from you and I can no longer hold it in - I am officially one of the press photographers covering this year's Chicago Marathon. Is that cool or what! This morning I'm off to pick-up my credentials (I'm taking my camera as there is always something interesting to capture when you're "kickin' it" in Chicago). I'm so excited as this is going to be a great photographic experience. Have a great weekend and we'll talk more after the race.