Blog

Charleston Engagement Photos | Rachel & Matt

Carolina vs. Clemson, a battle of the ages, but not for these two…Rachel and Matt managed to come together despite that. Rachel graduated from Clemson and Matt has graduated from Carolina, but is now finishing up at MUSC next year right just before their wedding. These two first met a couple years ago while interning at the Wild Dunes Resort in Mt. Pleasant. It was quite an adventure for both of them, especially when they first started dating. When it was time to go back to school, they both made the commitment to continue their relationship even after returning to their separate schools. With lots of phone calls, texts, and weekend trips to see each, it was certainly an adventure for them. And of course these two are incredibly fun people and I must say, they go great together. You can tell in the photos how much fun all of us had running around downtown Charleston on Sunday night taking their engagement photos! I’m excited to photograph their wedding next May, I know it’s going to be a fun one! You guys rock!

Charleston Engagement PhotosCharleston Engagement PhotosCharleston Engagement PhotosCharleston Engagement PhotosCharleston Engagement PhotosCharleston Engagement PhotosCharleston Engagement PhotosCharleston Engagement PhotosCharleston Engagement PhotosCharleston Engagement PhotosCharleston Engagement PhotosCharleston Engagement PhotosCharleston Engagement Photos

Pittsburgh to Niagara

Niagara Falls

It was an amazing weekend. The trip began early on Friday morning as my alarm clock violently woke me at 3am. My flight was leaving at 5:30; therefore I had no choice but to crawl out of bed and drive to the airport. I could have stay asleep for at least another hour because when I got there, turns out no one was working and apparently the check-in counter isn’t open before 4am. I figured since all the airport security problems, I’d better get there early in case something happens. After arriving in Pittsburgh I spent some time exploring the area. I was walking around downtown when I noticed a large crowd of people storming to a barricade blocking the street. It was Paramount Studios filming the new Batman movie, not sure why Paramount was there because I thought it was Warner Bros. Nevertheless, it was intriguing to see them filming a real Hollywood production. I wish I had all the gear they had on set, wow what a lot of gear.

Later that night in Pittsburgh I got to see my favorite band, Hillsong United. It was an amazing concert and well worth flying in for. The next morning, I headed north to Niagara Falls. It was only about a four-hour drive. Not to bad, especially since I’ve wanted to see the falls for quite some time now, it’s good to be back in the lower 48. Note: If you ever go to Niagara Falls, be sure to take your passport and cross the border into Canada, the best view is on their side of the water.

What a great weekend trip. Sadly it has once again come to an end. Well I’ve been sitting in the airport for seven hours now, my flight has already been delayed twice. Looks like we’re boarding soon…hopefully I’ll be home before midnight. At least I was able to write this post while waiting. I’m glad I decided to bring the laptop with me. =)

[smugmug url=”http://studio1250.smugmug.com/hack/feed.mg?Type=gallery&Data=18531480_vsmzQP&format=rss200″ imagecount=”100″ start=”1″ num=”100″ thumbsize=”Th” link=”lightbox” captions=”false” sort=”false” window=”false” smugmug=”false” size=”XL”]

Niagara Falls

Quick Update: On the way back to Charleston, we flew through some lightning clouds. It took me a few minutes to realize that my phone was not the correct camera to be using…lol. Pretty neat though, I’ve never seen lightning from the sky before. It was really amazing when the strikes were parallel to my window.

The Abandon West Virginia

Abandon High School

This weekend I ventured off into the unknown territory of West Virginia in search of historic towns and abandon buildings. I had a pretty good feeling that I’d find exactly what I was looking. West Virginia has an important role in our country’s history, one of those being West Virginia’s coal industry. Coal is responsible for fueling quite a few different things, the most significant uses are in electricity generation, steel production, cement manufacturing, and also as a liquid fuel. Towns in West Virginia, typically, only survive because of the coal mine they were built around. Meaning, that when the coal mine discontinues operation, things tend to fall apart. This is the case for many places I passed through in the southern part of the state. You can find these places if you get off the main roadways. Google is a great place to start looking for these particular spots. I browsed the Google maps for small roads veering off of the main ones. Look at the map, notice the that Coalwood is pretty much secluded from the bigger city of Welch. This is a good sign that there isn’t much there, at least not anymore. You can also check out Panoramio where photos with GPS coordinates are displayed on a map.

After picking a place, do some more research and see what you can find out about it. There just might be a chance that you picked the right place with precisely what you’re looking for. I did this and found the few spots you see here. At first it was pretty sketchy walking into these buildings. For some reason everything around you seems to make a really loud sound and gets your mind imagining a million different horror scenarios. After exploring a few different places and racking up 1350 miles (total including the drive from SC) on this weekend trip, I ended up finding a few different abandon buildings to photograph, those of which included two different schools that you see below. Driving back on Sunday, I took yet another back road, this one however slowly funneled down to a small trail through the backcountry mountains. I have a Jeep so of course I continued on. Along the way I came upon three white tail deer running ahead of me on the trail. Sadly I wasn’t fast enough to get a photo of them before they vanished into the forest. Excellent drive through the mountains.

This trip has inspired me to seek out more abandon buildings to find, I imagine that a place like Pennsylvania would be an excellent place…

[smugmug url=”http://studio1250.smugmug.com/hack/feed.mg?Type=gallery&Data=17810153_BBbds3&format=rss200″ imagecount=”100″ start=”1″ num=”100″ thumbsize=”Th” link=”lightbox” captions=”false” sort=”false” window=”false” smugmug=”false” size=”XL”]

Smoky Mountains Hiking

smoky-mountains-large

The weekend was coming to an end and it was time to head back home to Charleston. I spent this weekend with the family, up in Bristol, Virginia. Unfortunately Sunday was finally here and it was time to hit the road. But I just wasn’t ready for it to be over yet. During my stay, I got to go bike riding with my mom and sister, talk tech with my 2nd cousin, Lonnie, eat yummy home cooked meals, and enjoy local music at the Border Bash! I was also introduced to Lonnie’s good friend, Gary, who is a mastermind at electronics. Gary was kind enough to build me a custom lightning flash detection sensor for my camera. This way I will be able to start doing lightning photography and capturing the power of our southern thunderstorms! C’mon where are those big thunderstorms at when you actually want one? I’m more anxious than a child waiting to open presents on Christmas morning.

On the way back home I decided to take a slight detour and venture off into the Smoky Mountains. I found a quiet trail to hike near the Little Pigeon River. The perfect way to escape the chaotic madness of the crowded streets in Gatlinburg. The weather was warm and humid but surprising enough the mosquitoes only decided to bother me near the streams. When you walk through the forest its amazing how big noises always seem to be made by such small creatures, I don’t know why I imagine it to be a huge beast that’s about to attack me…it almost always seems to only be a small squirrel. When you’re surrounded by silence, I guess every sound gets amplified by 1,000. I continued up the trail in search of the perfect streams and of course singing in the process, I needed some entertainment, oh and to keep the giant beasts away LOL. Crickets were chirping beside the trail and the sound of the flowing stream echoed in the distance. It wasn’t long before the sun disappeared and the clouds rolled. Soon the rain would come, I decided to take a few shots and head back. By the time I got back to the Jeep, the rain was pouring and I knew that was my queue to hop on the interstate and head back to Charleston. Not to mentioned it was 7 o’clock and I still had 6 hours of driving left to do. I’d better turn on the iPod and get ready for a long night. But as you know, hiking in the Smokies is always worth it.

Smoky Mountains, Tennessee

I decided to post a few old photos in order to have a tad bit more post, all of the panoramic ones are from this trip.

[smugmug url=”http://studio1250.smugmug.com/hack/feed.mg?Type=gallery&Data=17426063_sRF3ff&format=rss200″ imagecount=”100″ start=”1″ num=”100″ thumbsize=”Th” link=”lightbox” captions=”false” sort=”false” window=”false” smugmug=”false” size=”X3″]

Our Beautiful City, Charleston

Downtown Charleston South Carolina

One of the most remarkable things about Charleston is the abundance of historic buildings, mansion style homes, tiny alleyways, and rustic textures throughout the city. Charleston or the “Holy City,” has it is often called, originally began in 1670. Since then has been through more than we can imagine including hurricanes, wars, and even earthquakes. But still, here it is today and many of the same buildings still stand. One of those being St. Philip’s Church, seen in the top photo, opened for its first service on Easter of 1723. Rainbow Row, a line of colorfully painted houses on East Bay Street that were originally built in the 1720s-1730s. It wasn’t until the 1900s that the houses were renovated to look the way we see them today. As I walk through the streets this evening I’m enjoying the calming breeze and the gorgeous sunlight that surrounds me. I know that its only a couple more months until the weather is unbearably hot again and to the point that I will probably wish I was back in Alaska. But I love Charleston enough to make it worth it, just might have to take the top off the Jeep a little more and make a few extra trips to the beach this summer. The first set of photos were taken with a new lens I just got. This particular lens was specifically designed to photograph architecture, its the 24mm tilt shift lens. It basically allows me to get perfect perspective without distorting the buildings or making the image look stretched. By doing this I can achieve images that regular cameras just can’t get. Not to mention the fact that this lens is unbelievably sharp and has excellent contrast has you can see.

[smugmug url=”http://studio1250.smugmug.com/hack/feed.mg?Type=gallery&Data=17077013_qk9xmd&format=rss200″ imagecount=”100″ start=”1″ num=”100″ thumbsize=”Th” link=”lightbox” captions=”false” sort=”false” window=”false” smugmug=”false” size=”XL”]

The next set are some old photos I took back in 2009 when I came down to photograph Mike and Baillie’s wedding. These were taken while just randomly walking around downtown. I’ve posted these up before but I just wanted to add them on the blog for all the new readers to see. Enjoy.

[smugmug url=”http://studio1250.smugmug.com/hack/feed.mg?Type=gallery&Data=17146838_cFzvRQ&format=rss200″ imagecount=”100″ start=”1″ num=”100″ thumbsize=”Th” link=”lightbox” captions=”false” sort=”false” window=”false” smugmug=”false” size=”XL”]