Thursday, November 29, 2007

New Web Site is LIVE!

Ahhhhhh....can you feel it? My new photography web site is now live!

I turned to my good friends at Plenty Creative to come up with a new site design that highlights my commercial photography. I couldn't be more pleased with the results...check it out!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Brian Vander Ark - short film

Just got back from NC late last night...a mind-numbing 14 hour drive. Over the next day or two I'll be posting some quick photos of Brian Vander Ark as he put the finishing vocal touches on a new record with legendary producer Bill Szymczyk. Bill's worked with The Eagles, The Who, Bob Seger...Brian Vander get the drift.

My brother Brad (that's him with the camera) also shot hours and hours of film footage to be cut into a redBrick short film documentary that will debut before the album is released (target of February). Brad drove back to Boston to start cutting the film together. We've got really interesting interviews with Bill, Brian and tons of North Carolina scenery to hype the new record...

My first impressions of Brian's new album...his best yet...both lyrically and sonically. It's fantastic.

It's exhausting work. Here BVA takes a combat nap next to James Brown (who apparently still isn't buried and is staying at Bill's home).

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Brian Vander Ark - North Carolina

Here's a couple photographs I took with Brian this morning. We had to scramble down a small ridge and dodge some hunters with dogs (and shot guns) to get to this location. The large rocks and morning sun peaking over the ridge made this particular shot work well.

Here's another shot close to Bill Szymczyk's house...there's a cool old mine near there. We tried a few things with the mine in the background but we both weren't really feeling it. So instead I put the sun right behind Brian's head to create a dramatic portrait.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Varnum photo shoot

I was working today all around the state for Varnum, Riddering, Schmidt & Howlett. I've been shooting for them for years and always love working with them.

I was shooting attorneys (figuratively speaking) at their Novi office as well as the Lansing office. By the time we hit Lansing in the late afternoon, the weather was as beautiful as a fall November day can get....with that perfect raking light photographers drool over.

I noticed this tree in front of the Capitol Building while parking the car and decided to photograph one of their enviromental lawyers on the Capitol lawn. Here's the shot:

I'd like to take a moment to thank our inept Michigan Legislature for leaving on vacation today even though they've been unable to pass a budget agreement in the last 6 months. It's politics as usual in Lansing and in the meantime the clock keeps ticking for the citizens and businesses of our faith is government is gone.

They don't rake leaves there apparently this case it worked to my advantage!

Monday, November 5, 2007

Shooting Brian Vander Ark

Exciting news! I just got confirmation this morning that I'm going to North Carolina next week to photograph Brian Vander Ark while he records his new album. We'll shoot some cool portraits and hang out in the recording studio. It'll be fun to watch the creative process of a great singer/songwriter.

I've been fortunate to work with Brian in the past and he's just the best...he'll do whatever it takes to push the envelope and get something outside the box. Here's a shot from a session we did in 2006 for his last album, Angel, Put Your Face On. This shot didn't end up being used but it's still one of my favorites from that shoot.

My brother Brad (who is a killer cinematographer) is coming down as well and we'll also be shooting a mini-documentary/short film of Brian as he records the album. We'll be doing interviews with Brian as well as his legendary producer, Bill Szymczyk. We'll cut and edit this footage into an EPK (electronic press kit) to promote the release of the new record.

Brian tells me the new album is targeted to be released in February...lots of work to do for all of us!

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Via Design photo shoot

Here's a couple of shots from a recent photo shoot I completed for Via Design here in Grand Rapids. They are an absolutely incredible architectural design firm with projects going on all over the country and the Caribbean.

This shoot incorporated both architectural shots of Via's offices as well as portraits of their was a blast!
And here's a portrait of one of Via's interior designers:

In Boston for Josh Rouse Concert

I flew out to Boston for the weekend to hang out with my brother Brad and take in a Josh Rouse concert...incredible show.

If you're unfamiliar with Josh's music, your life is most likely sad and incomplete. Pick up a copy of Nashville, 1972 or Country Mouse, City House and feel the Love Vibration.

Brad snapped this photo of Josh and band mates at the Somerville Theater. I didn't really get permission to use it from him...but I did pick up dinner before the show.

Caution - New Blogger onboard! blogger here! I'll try to not to step on any one's line (golfing term) while I get the feel for this. The catalyst for this giant leap into the matrix is that within the next couple of weeks I'll have an entirely overhauled photography web site (

Thanks to my good friends at, it's going to be a fantastic looking pressure PC!!

Part of the new web site enables me to link to my new blog. I'll be sharing photo highlights from recent shoots. It's also likely that I won't resist spilling some of my opinions about my home city of Grand Rapids, MI.

G-Rap is jammin'...and I'm lucky to have a front row seat with my camera in hand. Check back often...