Sunday, February 22, 2009

The Artist At Work

The Artist
Originally uploaded by Thorpeland
Saturday night I accompanied my wife Emily to a local tattoo parlor. She'd been wanting to get a tattoo, her 3rd, before her 30th Bday. Of course I thought there might be some interesting photo's to be had. So, camera in hand we got her appointment made and returned later that evening so she could get "inked". As the tattoo artist worked on her with his tattoo gun, i started looking around the room. In the area next to the one we were in, another tattoo artist began working on the design for someone else's tattoo. It just looked like a shot too good to pass up as I peered over his shoulder. Shortly after this, they finished up working on Emily's tattoo and we headed out. Overall it was a very interesting evening. Since I don't hang out in tattoo shops often, I found it interesting an full of potential shots. If I just had more time and more reason to be there longer. The people coming in the door alone would provide a 1000 interesting portraits. Ive tucked that idea away for another potential project. Hhhmmmm...

Learning to Skateboard

Skateboarding Class
Originally uploaded by Thorpeland
Woke up early and headed out to the Denton Skate Park this past Saturday morning for an actual paid photography gig. I had a lot of fun watching this small group of 4 to 7 year olds learn how to skate board. Most were more interested in running up and down the ramps on foot, or sitting on their boards and riding them like karts. But a few showed they truly enjoyed skate boarding and were interested in learning. It was a COLD morning. The temps weren't actually that low. But there was a steady 35mph wind blowing what cold there was, right through any layers we had on. The kids seemed un-phased. Quivering lips, snot running down their noses.... didn't matter. They wanted to keep playing and skating. Overall I took around 400 pictures. This one was one of my favorites. The instructor stopped to get a drink of water and the kids were all playing on this ramp. I quickly asked them to line up and show off their boards. I had the 10mm lens on and sat down low to get an interesting perspective on the little ones. I was really happy with how it came out. Especially how one has his helmet slipping over his eyes. Classic kid stuff! I was surprised at how well they responded to my instruction. They went from total chaos to lined up and smiling in a matter of seconds. No fear of the camera. I wish adults were as brave.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Sushi and Dan

Saturday night I got a chance to expand my "People in my life" portrait series when my old friend and former college roommate, Dan, dropped in town for the weekend. Dan and I go waaaaaay back to our freshman year in college. While sitting in my freshman algebra class, confused, I noticed the guy next to me looking just as lost. Our conversation started up and I learned he lived on the same floor as me in the dorms. We were pretty much buddies ever since then. We played on the same soccer teams, joined the same fraternity and have kept in touch pretty much daily since leaving college in the late 90's. Dan now lives in the Los Angeles area as a project manager for a (somewhat) major car company. haha He's a good buddy, like a brother and im happy to make him a part of this project. Thanks for posing for the shot Sparky!

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Battle in the Sand

Blast Off
Originally uploaded by Thorpeland
Sunday was a day I'd been looking forward to for a couple weeks now. My friend Kyle and I were headed about 1hr Northwest to a remote town called Bulcher for the TORRO off road race series. Our friend from work, JB, was racing in it and we wanted to come out and get some action shots of the event.

Things didn't go as planned though. We arrived at the race track at 10am to find neither of our mobile phones had even the slightest hint of a signal. And we had not yet established contact with our friend JB. So we stood atop a hill overlooking about 200+ dirt bike riders and hundreds of vehicles and bike trailers. We never found our friend the entire day! But that didn't stop us from making the most of it as photographers. We loaded up our camera gear and began walking the track to find the action. We found the popular spectating area at a river crossing. This gave us plenty of action shots. Getting back into the trails of the race event proved too difficult. Too far to walk, too thick of woods and too many hills to make it worth trekking. After a quick trip back to the car for drinks and snacks... we headed down to another water crossing. This proved to be a real goldmine for shots. With the bikes coming straight at the camera, I got some nice keepers. And later had the surprise of finding out one of the riders I snapped was our friend JB! Bonus!

Over all a fun day out with friends and camera. Can't complain.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

One year to the week I have completed my 52 Week Self Portrait Project! This shot was my final pic of this final week. For those wanting to tell me its too dangerous to get this close to a train just for a picture, you can relax. The magic of photoshop assured that train was no where near me while i was balancing on those rails. ;-) Looking back over this past year of self portrait photo's, I can see I really evolved and learned as a photographer, massively improved my post shoot editing skills and not to mention got over my fear of being in front of the camera. I used to HATE IT. Now, I can tolerate it. Big thanks to all those who stopped by each week on Flickr to comment about my shot of the week. Those are the kind of things that kept me going and kept me trying to be creative. Some have said I should attempt a 365 Day Self Portrait project. To that, I have to say, No. I just could not produce creative, well done self portraits each day to add to my photo stream. And since I try to keep the photo's on my flickr page to a certain quality level, it would annoy me to know i had just uploaded a snapshot of my face to "count" for that days photo. So, Im not sure yet if I'll attempt another 52 week project, or try something totally new. Either way, im taking a break from selfie's for a bit. But I'll still upload to flickr in the mean time. Stay tuned, im sure I'll announce something as the days go by. In the mean time, i'll stll be updating my blog with the latest events and photo's.