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d800

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Umphrey’s Mcgee Live at Meadowbrook Music Festiva

Last night UM brought their amazing live show to Rochester, Michigan with friends Sound Tribe Sector 9 (photos coming for STS9). It was a perfect Michigan summer night in a beautiful wooded setting. 

For those who aren’t familiar with their music; imagine a rock band mixed with Al Di Meola, Frank Zappa and a touch of shred metal, then you have Umphrey’s Mcgee (sort of). All top notch musicians! 

I have followed them for well over 13 years and have experienced over 15 shows in the Michigan area. From intamate venus like The Magic Bag to the most recent Meadowbrook Music Festival which is the largest I have seen them play. I shot photos for them at The Fillmore a couple years ago as well, click here to see those. 

The shows have gotten bigger and better but never losing sight of the music. This venue was great because it gave the band a chance to breath a bit and allowed Jefferson Waful (Lighting Designer for UM) room to play with some of the greatest lighting designs I have ever seen (and I have seen A LOT!) 

Enjoy these photos, more will be posted at www.Umphreys.com

brian. 

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Firework photos… we’ve all seen em and after many years I just got board with taking them. The I recently read an article on a new technique some folks were doing and it sparked an interest again! 

The process is fairly simple but does take some practice. Throw your lens out of focus and while the shutter is open you roll it back into focus. These are all done in camera not photoshop. Lots of fun and a little unique. Give it a try. 

Happy 4th of July everyone!

Brian Craig Photography

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The Nikon D800 Geek Post. 

Taking a brief brake from my Africa posts to show the power of the D800 that i am discovering while editing my Kenya images.

This is cropped at 145% (original image below). And There I am, right in the eye ball. I love the detail this camera can capture. It is a pleasure to work with. And no, i don’t care one bit about how large the file size is. Can you have image quality that is too high? I say NO!   

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Deep Thoughts from Kenya… 

The Children are The Reason…

The reason we traveled 15 hours by plane and another 16 hours over mountains and dried up river beds by truck. The reason we’ve spent months planning, day dreaming, meeting, prepping, stressing and praying. The reason we got multiple vaccines shot into our arms. The reason we showered with our mouths sealed shut (because of the water) and gave up all the comforts of home. The reason it was all worth it? For The Children. Without all of this they may never know love, clean water, education and food. 

 

Our primary mission on this trip was to collect data for the child sponsor program www.NoChild.org . My job was photographer, specifically to take portraits of approx. 800 children to be used for their profiles on the website. I was also to get photographs and “b-roll” video of life with the Potok people. 

 

Of course as a photographer I shot much more than just portraits. Every where you looked was “that photograph”. A cute little kid playing beside a mud hut, a little boy driving a cart pulled by donkeys, a warrior out in the woods hunting with a long bow, women washing their clothes in a muddy river along the road side as we traveled… the list was endless. And I tried to make the most of being in such a remote location.

 

I was given a great piece of advice from my friend and frequent Kenya traveler, Clint… “you will get plenty of photos, just put the camera down and immerse yourself with these kids lives and they will change yours”… Boy am i glad i listened to his wise words. All of my greatest memories did not come while behind the lens but when it was put away. I will share more on that in another post. 

I was prepared to me an emotional wreck while at these orphanages, the thought of these kids all alone with nothing sounded heartbreaking… and it is. But when i was there I found myself filled with joy for these kids. They were all SO happy. They were surrounded by their friends 24/7, had clean water, 3 meals a day and had the privilege to attend school. And it was viewed as a privilege. When talking with many of the teenage boys they were so curious about America and just learning in general. Most had a very mature mindset.

There is probably a good reason for that, most of them were forced to care for their siblings at a very young age. One boy who was 15 and had 2 younger siblings had to become the family provider at age 7. His parents were murdered in a cattle raid. He told me that he “felt blessed because God gave him the gift of being able to go a long time with out needing to eat so that he can feed his brother and sister first”. Blessed?!  Let that sink in… This is a 15 year old boy man talking. Stories like that were all around when you talked to these kids but yet they had such true joy and appreciation for what God has blessed them with each day. To hear a boy actually thank God for providing water, food and health was humbling to say the least. But that’s just it, they view all these things that we take for granite and expect, as a blessing. I came away with a strong feeling of Appreciation. Not one of guilt or sadness, but to simply appreciate the basic things in our life. At any moment we can walk 10 feet and have clean disease free water, for most in this region that is not the case. 

 

The wonderful, extremely loving, Pokot children changed my life. It is my hope that, as I raise my boys, I will filter decisions through the lens of my experiences among the Pokot. If I keep these children close to me, my experiences can help to change, not just me , but the legacy of my family as well.

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People of West Pokot, Kenya

This month I had the amazing opportunity to travel with a missions team to a VERY remote region in Kenya called West Pokot. After landing in Nairobi we drove 16 hrs into the “bush”. We were way out there, but it was an amazing adventure. One that will alter your mind and perception on everything going forward.  

I was there to take photographs of all the children(700+) in 3 orphanages that we (Kensington Church) work with. These photos will be used to update the sponsor program Kensington runs, www.Nochild.org 

I also had the amazing chance to ride along into some of the local villages to look at a few proposed water well sites in the area. This was amazing in that it gave me a chance to see life outside the walls of the orphanage. Life was devastating as we know it but was life as usual for the Pokot. The big issue every where we went was water… CLEAN water. Working with http://www.hopewaterproject.org  they are able to raise money to drill wells for these people, giving them access to clean water that will not make them sick. Its simple but so basic. 

I will be posting more when I edit through my thousands of images captured of life in this remote region Kenya. Please follow along if you like and share with your friends to help raise awareness. 

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Working on some print photography for the new building for @kensingtonorion #d800

Working on some print photography for the new building for @kensingtonorion #d800

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I had the great opportunity to do a photo shoot with World Culinary Olympics gold medal winner Chef John Miller C.C.C. HE recreated a few of his winning dishes which he prepared in Belgium this past October for the competition. You can easily see why he won! Awesome talent John! 

Gear talk: I used my Nikon D800, 2 SB-600 strobes (shot through white umbrellas and 1 silver reflector umbrella), charcoal seamless paper roll and a big window of natural light for the food photos. 

I wanted to shoot for something dramatic. “Iron Chef” like. Something that made John “pop” off the backdrop and add that “hero” feel.

These will be featured in a magazine in the next month or so. Hopefully I will be able to post the links or scans from that. 

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Late Night shoot for some new offices. Also loving the new built in HDR merge feature in the Nikon D800! #nikon #d800

Late Night shoot for some new offices. Also loving the new built in HDR merge feature in the Nikon D800! #nikon #d800

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This past week I had the pleasure of shooting photos for this amazing guy. We had a tight time schedule and were working in a newer location for me but we were able to get some great stuff with some really cool different settings.  
 Remember when you are shooting its all where you stand. As Ansel Adams famously said “A good photograph is knowing where to stand”. I couldn’t agree more.  
 This shoot I also tried to do something different on my end, to shoot less. I worked on being more intentional with my shots, slowing down and getting to know Andrew more as i shot. I was very happy with the results, even though there were less images, there were a lot more quality images to choose from which made editing a joy. I heard a great quote this week; “If your photos aren’t good enough then you aren’t close enough”. Spend time and get to know your subject more, build those relationships.  
 As for the different location, don’t think you always have to go to the local hot spot, try something new and force yourself to work with something different. You might be surprised.  
 Enjoy.  
 ps I feel like I sound like the end of a Doogie Houser episode… 

This past week I had the pleasure of shooting photos for this amazing guy. We had a tight time schedule and were working in a newer location for me but we were able to get some great stuff with some really cool different settings. 

Remember when you are shooting its all where you stand. As Ansel Adams famously said “A good photograph is knowing where to stand”. I couldn’t agree more. 

This shoot I also tried to do something different on my end, to shoot less. I worked on being more intentional with my shots, slowing down and getting to know Andrew more as i shot. I was very happy with the results, even though there were less images, there were a lot more quality images to choose from which made editing a joy. I heard a great quote this week; “If your photos aren’t good enough then you aren’t close enough”. Spend time and get to know your subject more, build those relationships. 

As for the different location, don’t think you always have to go to the local hot spot, try something new and force yourself to work with something different. You might be surprised. 

Enjoy. 

ps I feel like I sound like the end of a Doogie Houser episode… 

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Happy Halloween everyone! Hope it was a great evening filled with lots of candy to steal from your k…. i mean share with your kids.  
 Here is an image from last night. Hope you enjoy it.  
 Shot with my Nikon D800 and the Nikkor 50mm 1.8. 

Happy Halloween everyone! Hope it was a great evening filled with lots of candy to steal from your k…. i mean share with your kids. 

Here is an image from last night. Hope you enjoy it. 

Shot with my Nikon D800 and the Nikkor 50mm 1.8. 

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Took a nice drive off the beaten path this afternoon. Found some places be never seem before. Had a lot of fun taking photos. Both digital and polaroid. #polaroid #d800 #glenarbor (at Lake Michigan)

Took a nice drive off the beaten path this afternoon. Found some places be never seem before. Had a lot of fun taking photos. Both digital and polaroid. #polaroid #d800 #glenarbor (at Lake Michigan)

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Man Up. As many of you probably know by now, I shot photos and video this past weekend at the Kensington Church mens retreat. This was a great weekend, and is every year. A time to get away into the northern woods of Michigan during fall time and spend time talking, hanging out and just goofing around with a bunch of friends.

One night we had an amazing sky so I decided to skip on sleep and head out with the tripod and get some photos. Here are a couple favorites from the set. 

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One of the shots from my weekend in northern Michigan. There really are some beautiful places in this state. I think i need to travel around more.  

One of the shots from my weekend in northern Michigan. There really are some beautiful places in this state. I think i need to travel around more.  

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One of my ongoing photography gigs is shooting for most of the events at Kensington Church in Michigan. Over the past 5 years this has been the greatest training ground a photographer could ask for. Great stage production, talented musicians and actors and an awesome lighting team. 

This has helped me build up my skill as a live event/concert photographer and has opened  more doors than i can imagine. 

Here is a shot of one of the teaching pastors, Chris Zarbaugh. 

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Loving my new work horse. Full frame and a 35mm 1.8 is a thing of beauty.  #nikon #d800 #photography (Taken with  Instagram )

Loving my new work horse. Full frame and a 35mm 1.8 is a thing of beauty. #nikon #d800 #photography (Taken with Instagram)

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Good day and welcome! This is my first post ever on Tumbler. Have a look around. Follow my feed and keep up with all my photo gigs and experiments in the world of photography!  
 I welcome open communication and community in the photography world. No secrets here. 

Good day and welcome! This is my first post ever on Tumbler. Have a look around. Follow my feed and keep up with all my photo gigs and experiments in the world of photography! 

I welcome open communication and community in the photography world. No secrets here. 

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