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Cameron & Josh’s Wedding at the MEET in Las Vegas

About three years ago I photographed Audrey and Matt’s wedding in downtown Phoenix, and when I found out Audrey had a bunch of sisters, I wondered if I’d do a good enough job that I might get asked back when one of the others got engaged 🙂

Sure enough, Cameron met Josh, they decided to get married, they called me and the rest is history!

We did their engagement photos in downtown Phoenix earlier this year, but their wedding was at The MEET in Las Vegas. Their wedding will always be a fond memory for me, and especially my second shooter Jay Worsley. The groom and his groomsmen had to take an elevator downstairs when it was photo time, and Jay jumped in with them. The elevator couldn’t handle all the dudes and got stuck between floors…with NO air conditioning and no room to sit, for over 90 minutes! Insane!

Needless to say, the fire department showed up, the ceremony started late and the wedding happened anyways 🙂

Such a fun time, especially as I’d never used smoke bombs before and we had a great time with that! Really loved how they turned out. I am so in love with this family as well, they are so good to me, so hospitable, especially Karen, mother-of-the-bride! Thank you Karen for everything. And also getting to meet Audrey and Matt’s little boy Atlas. I think that boy is destined for great things.

Cam and Josh, thanks for having us up and trusting us with your big day, and to my buddy Jay for helping me and being stuck in an elevator for a long time 🙂 Hope you enjoy these photos!

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Brianne & Craig’s wedding at Caesar’s Palace

I’ve shot about four weddings in Las Vegas now and every one of them is unique and fun. One thing in common though: They are all laid back and chill. I think people go to Vegas to party, and usually these weddings consist of a smaller group of people which makes the day super easy.

Heck, on this day the bride and her father had to sorta make me sit down and take a break, something I’m not great at! Gotta love that.

The reception was a simple, family style dinner with belly dancers at a Marrakech restaurant. Loved it!

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Vendors
Venue & Wedding Planner // Caesar’s Palace
Makeup // Sin City Makeup
Dress // Wendy’s Bridal Cincinnati
Reception // Marrakech Mediterranean Restaurant

Let’s go places

Let's go places
(please click to view on black // canon 5d mark iii, rokinon 14mm f/2.8, ISO 3200, f/2.8, 20 seconds // buy print)

Last Tuesday I left my house around 4pm for Colorado and two days of chasing storms. Around 3 in the morning I couldn’t go any further, so I pulled over at a parking area north of Las Vegas, New Mexico to grab a few hours sleep.

A perfect spot to grab a shot of Vera II against the Milky Way. Loved how dark it was here…not to mention open and flat. Standing there, seeing the stars blaze in the sky like you don’t usually living in a big city…is always awe-inspiring.

TJ and Shannon’s destination wedding in Las Vegas

First they wanted just a courthouse wedding. Then they wanted it in Vegas, but weren’t sure about getting pictures taken. And then they finally reached the obvious decision…um yeah, they should have someone take some photos! And these two are wedding photographers from Wisconsin!

Hey, I’ll be the first to admit…we are around so many weddings every year, that thinking about doing your own could be daunting. The idea of keeping it simple sounds uber appealing. I get it. Although of course I don’t have to worry about that ever again (16 years this June, heck ya baby).

BUT…I’m so happy TJ and Shannon changed their minds…because it ended up meaning I got to drive to Las Vegas and photograph a couple that felt like old friends. There really is nothing like shooting a wedding for people who know the ins and outs of your job. They were just so warm, friendly and understood what it’s like to be in my shoes. It meant a lot.

The funny part was…they had no idea what it was like to be in a bride and grooms’ shoes…and all day they were like “This is so weird being on the other side of the lens.” It was a blast watching them squirm here and there…but mostly, they were so laid back and happy…it was a fantastic time for me personally. And I have to thank the wedding party and the entire family for being awesome, helpful and for all the kind words since the wedding. You guys rock!

The wedding started at Planet Hollywood (and thanks to TJ and Shannon for putting myself, my wife and our baby up for two nights…that was a much needed break from the other kiddies!) and then ended up with the ceremony at Ceasar’s Palace. After that, we headed to Fremont Street to shoot under the long walkway of lights.

I really love these photos…it’s weird how the relationship you have with your clients affects how you feel about the photos you take of them. These are special to me and I’m so pumped to share them all today.

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First look at Shannon and TJ’s wedding in Las Vegas

TJ and Shannon. Wedding photographers from Wisconsin. Married in Las Vegas at Ceasar’s Palace on Saturday. There is nothing quite as awesome as shooting a wedding for people who know exactly what it’s like to be behind the lens. I already know this will be one of my favorites of all-time. I seriously love these two people and they were so kind to me, my wife and treated us so well. Thank you guys for the room, the round of applause and the hugs at the end of the night.

Here’s some of my favorites from the day, the entire wedding coming soon!

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World Market Center

Last week I posted a shot from the parking garage of the World Market Center, but other than me telling you what it was, you’d have no idea unless you knew the place. But it looked awesome from the outside, so before I left, I wandered into the outdoor “lobby” between a few of these buildings and was just struck by the awesome architecture, lines and especially the shadows highlighting the name of the place.

One of the highlights of taking this shot was that the security guard across the way never once bothered me or even approached me. And I was sitting there sprawled out on the ground to get as low as I could in order to capture the ground all the way up to the top of the buildings with my 17-35mm. I was sure someone would come ask what the heck I was doing.

But this is Vegas I guess…they’ve probably seen it all.

On Top of the World

(Rebel XSi, Tamron 17-35 2.8, 17mm, ISO 100, F8, five exposure HDR)

I’ve been to Las Vegas a lot over the last four years, mainly for my day job. We have a couple of clients there and on occasion they involve extended stays. While I don’t always pay attention to all the newest buildings and attractions, it had been so long since my last visit that there was a ton of cool stuff to see.

This parking garage is an 8-story behemoth that apparently serves an amazing set of structures called The World Market. The reason I even ventured up here was the view it had of the interchange between the 15 and the 515. As always happens though, the shot I wasn’t planning on became my favorite from the excursion.

The journey up here was a bit freaky. The garage was empty save a few cars at the bottom. The hallway to the elevators was barely lit on the first floor. I took them up to the 8th and ended up in a hallway with zero lights. But the sun was still shining a bit, so it wasn’t bad. But when I was done shooting and returned to the elevators…well, it was PITCH black. I had to pull out the ol’ cell phone in order to light up the room enough to push the elevator button.

It was a bit too quiet and a little creepy. It was like an old, abandoned building except for the fact that it was brand new.

I loved the parking garage though. It was newer, so everything had this clean, crisp feel to it. Really dug how the World Market building itself complimented the “parkade” and  stood out like a monolith against the evening sky.

Ah, but if it wasn’t for that arrow, I probably wouldn’t have liked it half as much.

On a side note, you might guess how sad I was that there were no clouds around to include in this image 🙂

The Fountains at The Bellagio

(Rebel XSi, Tamron 17-35mm 2.8, 17mm, ISO 100, F16 (or F22, can’t remember), two exposures blended)

I was in Las Vegas this week for my day job and while I didn’t have a ton of time to explore, I did get out for a few hours each of the two nights and look around.

I just happened to walk out of The Bellagio just 10 minutes before the first water show started for the night and thus I had a nice, flat railing to put my tripod on to capture the event. If you’ve never seen this water show before, it’s definitely a MUST if you ever are in Vegas. It may not last too long (it plays to music, so when that song runs out…), but it’s majestic, inspiring and beautiful to watch.

If you are just there to see it, I recommend being in the front, which would be those roundish portals on the left side of this image. But from where I stood, I liked the lines and perspective on the left, the way the lights reflected off the water creating even more lines, plus the rising City Centre buildings in the distance. And if you look closely, there is a sliver of the moon on the upper right.

This is not an HDR shot, but just a blend of two exposures. Although recently I got into a debate about that, but I am fairly certain exposure blending is not considered HDR.

Vegas Baby…Vegas

As many of you may know about me, I love to shoot the weather with the best composition I can come up with in whatever situation arises…however, sometimes all you can do is run up to the top of a parking garage and snap photos of a monster storm and not care about anything else.

I was in Vegas two weeks ago during some good stormy weather, driving back to the airport with a colleague from another company, and I can’t even tell you how badly I wanted to pull the car over. I didn’t have a tripod or lightning trigger, but I would have done anything to get into a better position to shoot this thing.

However, as it ended up…this vantage point was awesome. I was lucky enough to have some time before my flight, so I got to the sixth floor of the employee parking garage (I guess) and was somehow not harassed by any security guards. Maybe it was the lack of a tripod, who knows.

Awesome storm though…and I couldn’t decide between two images I made from it. The top is an HDR from 3-railing-propped brackets…and the bottom is a single bracket with some processing done to it.

(BTW, if you don’t know where the quote “Vegas baby…Vegas” comes from, please go rent Swingers 🙂