Monday, May 12, 2008
Okay, so it looks like I lied when I said that if you currently subscribe to this (now) old blog you would automatically get email notification when I posted new content to the new blog with no effort required on you're part. These things never seem to go as smoothly as I envision in my head.
In order to continue to get notifications on new posts, I need you to do me a tiny favor and skip on over to the new blog (www.mattnicolosiblog.com) and click on the "subscribe" link in the upper right hand corner just below my logo. I promise I won't spam you with offers for the Ronco 5-tray electric food dehydrator or solar-powered blow dryers.
So, go ahead and head on over and sign (back) up. See you on the flip side.
Friday, May 9, 2008
So there's good news and bad news. Bad news first? Okay, this blog is now officially closed for business. It's a difficult thing... she's been a good little blog, but like most things in our lives - or at least like the Big Wheel I used to cherish as an 8 year old - she's been replaced with something better. In case you missed it, that was the good news. So don't waste any more time here...
CLICK HERE TO GO DIRECTLY TO THE SHINY NEW BLOG
If you're a current subscriber to the blog, you should still automatically get notified by email anytime something is posted on the new and improved blog (blog 2.0 you might call it) - no effort required!
It's okay to take a moment to say goodbye to blog 1.0. She's given us some good times, and she'll still be here if you ever wanna come back and reminisce. She'll be missed, though... for about 2 seconds. Now go on, get outta here and stop in over at www.mattnicolosiblog.com. See ya there.
Okay, I dare you to tell me these two aren't beautiful. Go on... I dare you. Meet big sister Genevieve and little Sophie. Aren't those the coolest names, too? Man, I feel sorry for mom and dad when these two get a little older... they're gonna have to beet the pursuing princes away from the front door with a stick.
I met mom Sharon through a photographer's forum, and her and fellow photographer Karen asked me to come to Houston to photograph their families. I was especially honored - and a bit nervous - just because they're both photographers, so I couldn't bluff my way through their sessions. It's kinda like driving with a cop behind you... you just naturally get a little tense because they know when you're doing something wrong. I don't wanna give the impression Sharon and Karen were looking over my shoulder at all because they didn't in the least. They were great, and just let me do whatever I wanted to. It was just me creating the extra pressure in my mind I guess.
Anyway, both sessions went great, and I had a lot of fun during my weekend in Houston.
Here's some of the images from Sharon's family session. Stay tuned for a few from Karen's family in the next day or two.
Monday, May 5, 2008
I feel very blessed that God has put Kylie in my life. We've been through some challenging times, especially recently, and we even went separate ways for awhile because of some things I needed to deal with and grow through. It's been a tough road at times and there's still a lot of work ahead, but God - through his mercy and grace - has recently given us another chance to renew & restore our relationship. Such a gift, and I'm so thankful. I'm excited about the road ahead.
Yesterday we took advantage of the killer weather and went down to the Dallas Railway Museum for a birthday party for her friend Laura's one year old son and then up to the Cottonwood Arts Festival to check out and stalk some featured photography artists.
Here's a few images from the day.
Too funny. We saw this sign painted on several of the vintage train cars, and I'm sure it has some kinda technical meaning to anyone who knows anything about trains, but we thought it was too funny to pass up. Hmmm... early 20th century subliminal Christian values marketing, maybe?? Kidding!
Sunday, May 4, 2008
I'm finally home from Texas School, and I'm. Worn. Out. It was 5 awesome days of tons of photography instruction, a load of networking, and just a little fun. Just a little. [grin]. It's a good thing it's only 5 days - my body was going into shock from all the early mornings - both on the getting up and finally going to sleep. And after all the free fried/barbecued/greasy/grilled food I had all week, my digestive system rejected the first inkling of green, healthy food I ate when I got back Friday night. I can't even begin to guess what my calorie intake for the week was, but I'm half expecting a call from the FDA to do a case study on me any moment now.
It's good to be home, but I'm already looking forward to next year's school.
My friends Tina and Cecily went down with me this year, and we stopped a couple times on the way home to snag a few images. Here's a few of my favorites. We're such western wanna-be's.
We found this incredible old abandoned gas station near Normangee, TX. So cool, and so much character.
I love this shot of the gas pump with Cecily in the background. Check out the price of gas back in this station's hay day... $.31/gallon. Good grief - I need to get a horse.
Cecily just happened to have these sweet boots on during the trip home. Perfect for this shot.
Again with the boots.
Oh yeah, and Cecily grabbed this image of Tina trying to teach me how to 2 step early in the week. Dear Lord, I was terrible... further proof that God has a sense of humor. Sorry, Tina.
Check out Cecily looking all sultry.
And finally, here's Tina enjoying a little Spasmatic action.
Thursday, May 1, 2008
'What's the deal? How come he hasn't posted anything in a week??' I know all 6 of you out there have been wondering where all the new posts are and what's taking so long. In my head I'm hearing (in a voice fit for scolding a dog), "Bad blogger! Bad, bad blogger!!"
Sorry about that. This week I'm at Texas School on the Texas A&M campus in College Station with about a thousand other photographers from all over the country. This year I'm in Bry Cox's class, and he's one of the best around. Tons of awards. Amazing work. Sharp business skills... I could go on and on. I honestly don't know how he does it, because he's got a thriving one-man-show photography business and still has time to travel the country for speaking/teaching engagements as well as making time for his other talents including accomplished Jazz musician and authentic western pistol/rifle shooting ace.
Here's me with Bry doing what guys do... hanging out in from of men's bathroom doors.
"Photographing kids is exactly like hitting on women." ~Bry Cox.
This might be - no, is - the funniest analogy I've heard all week, but stay with me here... I think it's true (at least for the kids part). Often times when you first meet little kiddos at a photography session, they can be disinterested, shy, or scared of you. So, to get them to warm up to you, you've gotta slowly break down those barriers, so you talk to them for just a few seconds and then you walk away and leave them alone. After awhile, when you ignore them, they'll let their guard down and begin to show a little interest, and eventually they'll hopefully warm up to you.
I'll let the ladies out there be the judge on whether that works on them, but I know from experience it does work with kids. And don't shoot me, I'm just the messenger. We all laughed in class about that one, though.
It's been a long week with every day starting at 8:30 with class all day and then some type of social event ending late each night. I'm beat already, and it's only the end of day 3. But I'm having a ton of fun, too.
Here's a few more images from our event on Monday night at the Texas Hall of Fame.
This is my 4th year coming to Texas School, and this year my friends Cecily and Tina made the trip from Dallas to attend VIcki & Jed Tauffer's class.
Each year the Texas A&M Wranglers come out and put on an incredible show. TO call their stuff line dancing is an injustice. They are simply amazing and show more coordination and athleticism in 02 minutes than I've shown in my entire laugh. It's really part country-western dancing, part acrobatics, and a whole lotta fun.
The highlight of the night was the Spazmatics. The best way I can describe these guys is a cross between Devo and the guys from Revenge of the Nerds. They were freakin' hilarious and played all the great 80's songs. They rocked!
Thursday, April 24, 2008
These are the things life's made of. I wish I could say these kinda things don't happen very often to me, but truth be told it's more frequent than I care to admit. Case in point - remember poor Mac? (On a side note, just this past weekend I left poor Mac's replacement in the seat back in front of me on my flight from Houston to Dallas, and I didn't realize it until I got all the way out to my car. Long story short, I'm sure I looked like OJ dashing through the airport in those old Hertz commercials, but I got the laptop back from the gate agent just before the plane went on to Toronto.) And just a couple weeks ago there was the pile of spaghetti that free-falled onto the white carpet below when the plate it was on just randomly snapped in half as I was carrying it to the couch. And I can't count the number of times I've searched for my car keys for more than a few minutes only to realize they're in my hand... I could go on (and on, and on), but I digress.
Any long time blog readers know I'm a big fan of Fruity Pebbles. Yes, I'm 35. Yes, I know 12 year olds love this Bedrock favorite. Yes, I know it's basically pure sugar. I. Don't. Care. Nothing you can say will change my fondness for the Pebbles. Sometimes I like to take a bowl with me to eat on the drive into the office. I know, I know... I shouldn't be eating and driving at the same time especially given my multi-tasking deficiencies, but it's a trade-off. I can either get up 10 minutes earlier in the morning and eat breakfast, or I can sleep in 10 more minutes and eat on the road. I dunno 'bout you, but it's no contest for me. Maybe God was telling me he doesn't approve of my choice because this morning as I was walking out the door with hands full, well... you can see for yourself below. Sorry Fred. Sorry Barney.
It's usually when I'm trying to do too much or too many things at once when these things happen. I think God's got a sense of humor (after all, He did invent it), and these are his ways of saying 'Slow down, chief. Maybe you need to focus just a bit more."
I'm getting the message. And I'm also getting more Fruity Pebbles.
Last week I got to photograph my friend Melanie in her wedding dress for a few bridal images, and you're a lucky man, Mike... she looked gorgeous.
The whole thing almost didn't happen (the bridals, not the upcoming wedding), because to say that the weather looked ominous was an understatement. Melanie and I talked a couple times throughout the day as we watched the weather reports and kept checking the skies, and if there was any way possible to do the images on the day we scheduled it, we were going to make it happen. Ladies, you know how much planning, effort and money goes into getting the hair and make-up done and getting the dress on... it's an ordeal. Melanie was a good sport about it, and I kinda tried to talk her into rescheduling because the skies were dark and gray and it was sprinkling on the way to meet her at the park. We decided to just stick it out and make a decision once we both got there, and God smiled on us. Almost as soon as we pulled up, the rain stopped, the clouds parted and the sun even came out for a bit. Apparently God knows what an ordeal it is to plan these things, too.
Melanie told me I couldn't post anything until after the wedding so Mike couldn't see the dress until they get married a month from today. Whatever. Here's a few cool images from our session.
I love the way she's standing in this image. Looks so natural and relaxed.
Don't her eyes look amazing here. And her hair looks fantastic.
This is probably my favorite image from the session. Check out the way the sun's providing awesome backlighting on her hair and dress. Awesome.