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Formula Drift Round 4: New Jersey

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Just got back from New Jersey Formula Drift Round 4, where I was out shooting for Falken Tire again!

I wasn’t originally planning on being in Jersey for Round 4, but after contacting Falken on a whim it turned out they needed additional support that weekend. So that worked out great for me since I still had that weekend of June open and am always down to fly to a race to photograph.
So after what will likely be my last direct-flight to an East Coast race (you’d be surprised how many tracks I can fly to direct from San Diego) I met up with the video guys and headed out to grab a bite. This was actually the first time I’d really seen the Falken video crew this season. The other races I had be on, Le Mans Sebring, Atlanta Drift, Long Beach, etc, were all for other clients or Falken bookings where I was the only media support.

It’s always a blast being out with the team. They’re such a busy company that I don’t always get to see many people from their crew, which makes catching up on life less frequent. Plus, BS’ing with the video guys is fun since we can nerd it up and talk about cameras, software, hardware, and debate all the stupid things that none of my family or friends in SoCal really care about. Creative Cloud for Adobe?! Ripofffffff, what do you guys think? lol

The race weekend was great, and went by pretty quickly. Overall Falken did pretty well. Justin took second place. Darren barely missed third place, finishing fourth.

Next up I’ll be heading out to Seattle for Round 5 in Monroe, Washington. Looking forward to that since Falken has said I can go ahead and start being as artsy as I’d like with my imagery from the races. That “they have plenty of action shots” so I can feel free to be more creative with everything. So I’m stoked for that.

Also, I just talked and met with Sony Digital Imaging, I’m going to be testing some of their gear! This is pretty exciting. I was given a bunch of gear to test during the month of July! So I’m currently working with Black Flys sunglasses to set things up with their athletes for some awesome shoots with their athletes. Stay tuned. July is going to a lot of fun with all this new gear….

Anyway… on to the Drift photos!
There’s a bunch for you guys that just want to see a lot of photos of cars/etc. You will be able to tell the images that are straight from camera and don’t really have any heavy editing applied to them.

Oh, also, I’m trying something different for this blog and all the photos that follow are going to be 800 pixels at the longest edge… I’m trying it out to see if I prefer photos a bit larger than my typical 650 pixels at the longest edge. Let me know what you think in the comments about the size change. I’ll need to adjust the right column links though I realize.

More photos after the break

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The Thesing Wedding – Clearwater, FL

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So, last month I was at the Thesing wedding – pronounced “Tess-ing”…
Did you guys know that we’ve all pronounced Aaron’s last wrong for ten years and he never bothered correcting us?! I’m completely serious. Aaron NEVER corrected us… ten years… TEN years, guys. Joe and I couldn’t believe it.
Seriously. We – as in “all of us from lifeguarding” – have pronounced it THES-ing… apparently the “H” is silent. Ha! Joe and I, in shock (TEN!!!) asked Aaron why he never said anything. Aaron laughed and said “Well, how often do you guys really use my last name… and it’s not like you don’t know who I am. So it didn’t matter”.

Just wait til my wedding, guys. You’ll find out that you’ve pronounced my name wrong all these years, too!

So a little back story for those of you who don’t know much about me and my past. I lived and worked in Florida briefly during college. While working as a lifeguard and lifeguard trainer for the Disneyworld Water Parks I made some of my closest and best friends that I still keep in touch with and visit to this day. The choice of going to Florida during 2003 was easily one of the most significant impacts on my entire life.

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Above: Ryan, Me, and Aaron – somewhere on Disney property. I’m fairly sure it’s at Disney Quest. 

Anyway, because of that decision I have friends scattered all over the country. Most of them I still keep in touch with to this very day. And quite a few of them I’ve even done photography for.
But the coolest part, for me, is the amount of weddings of these great friends I’ve been able to attend. When Aaron proposed to Danielle and then invited me as part of a very small list of friends and family I knew I would have to figure out how to get out to Florida for what would be my second of three trips to Orlando in 2013. It didn’t take long for me to convince myself to just put the trip on my credit card and go have a great time with my friends out there. I’ve been to pretty much every wedding of all my Disney friends that have invited me (in Texas, Boston, Oregon, Calif., etc.).
I wasn’t about to miss Aaron’s.

While working as lifeguards in ’03 Aaron and I were carpool buddies for several months. It worked out well since Aaron had a car in Florida and I’m punctual and always wake up on time for work. So, I would knock on his door at 6:45 each morning, and he’d wake up grab his things, and we’d leave for work at 7:30 at Blizzard Beach. Haha! He’s also been a great host to me over the years when I would visit Florida on Spring Break or during various trips. I crashed with him at his place two or three times – including during my move to England for school when I stayed at his place for several days before leaving the US.

After seeing Danielle and Aaron in March when I was in town to photograph the American Le Mans season opener race I knew I had to solidify plans for the weekend of the wedding. Danielle gave me permission to bring Joe as my date since he’s another Disney friend of Aaron’s and I don’t have a girlfriend/wife to bring anyway, lol. The week that I went out to Orlando – and eventually Clearwater – for their wedding I spent most on my laptop working and doing email.
But regardless of how busy I was with email/calls on the weekdays leading up to the weekend, the actual ceremony and two days in Clearwater with Joe, Aaron, Danielle and their families was a blast.

I had permission from both Danielle and Aaron to take some photos during their wedding, too! Which to me, is great. I’m all for enjoying the ceremony, however photography is enjoyable for me. And, more importantly, I want my own photos of such an important event in my friends lives.

So I’ll stop rambling and reminiscing about Florida, Disney, and all my great memories with my friends there. Click past the break for over 150 photos from the Thesing wedding!

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Barnes Wedding – A Beautiful Ceremony In Triple-Digit Temperatures

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Who would have guessed that the Saturday of Vu and Thanh’s wedding would turn out being one of the hottest weekends of the year?
And at 107 degrees out at the hottest point in the afternoon it tops any other wedding I’ve shot for high temperatures… haha!

But regardless of the weather the entire weekend with their families was a blast! I’ve known Vu for several years – he’s one of my good friends from the Bay Area S2ki crew. And even though I can’t hang during conversations about suspension and engine stuff when the guys all get together, I certainly can take part in the photo-related talk that goes on since Vu and several other guys are photo hobbyists themselves.
To be perfectly honest, when Vu first contacted me about possibly booking me the weekend of June 8th I assumed it was for a track day with the car guys and they were hoping I would be available to shoot for everyone (something I’ve done in the past).

Turns out that Vu and Thanh decided to get married and were quietly planning a wedding ceremony that almost no one was aware of! Woo hoo! Secret wedding! Haha, well, sort of… Everyone found out fairly quickly once plans were solidified.

As the weekend approached I was getting excited to head up to the Bay Area for the wedding since I knew it would not only be a great time with an awesome couple, but that there would be quite a few old faces there that I hadn’t seen in a very long time.

So, on to the photos! There are a ton of them. I decided to just do a massive, massive post with around 275 shots from the weekend. Click past the break, and read on if you have the time to kill

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Kane Sumabat’s Controlled Labs Supplements shoot

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About a week and a half ago I spent the afternoon with Kane Sumabat, a fitness trainer (and pretty hilarious Instagram personality), who was in California visitin from Canada where he grew up and lives.

Kane and I were put in touch with each other through a mutual Instagram friend, fitness bikini competitor Rae-Ann Camacho who I’ve been working on setting up a photoshoot with. She recommended me to Kane when he was looking for a photographer to shoot with in California for various images.
As it turned out, his supplement sponsor Controlled Labs Supplements was also interested in updated photos of Kane. So after some discussion and scheduling we were able to set up a day to shoot the various images that Kane was looking for for himself AND Controlled Labs. It was a very cool opportunity for me to work with Kane, and as you guys may have read in one of my recent blog posts I was also able to work with Kane on a personal project of mine as well (he was Shredder for my ongoing Ninja Turtles series, full blog coming soon).

My good friend, and usual assistant, TJ Lauters was on hand with me all day as first assistant. He also shot a number of Behind the Scenes photos which you’ll find toward the end of this blog post. TJ also assembled a BTS Video! Check it out

Kane is hilarious in person. His sarcastic humor that he has online is no different than how he is when you’re talking to him. And when it comes to fitness the things that he has the strength to do is just incredible.

Anyway, read on past the break and check out the various images from our shoot. These are the ones I liked and edited. Some of them are pretty straight forward, others may have various effects that I was playing around with on them.

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