Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Where Did the Time Go?

I always hated the feeling of waking up, looking at the clock and feeling that instant burst of adrenaline, knowing that I'll never make the bus on time. It's the worst way to wake up when you instantly have to jump out of bed, throw some clothes on, brush your teeth so fast that you stab you gums head on and fly out the door with one shoe on and half a bagel hanging out your mouth. That didn't happen today, but I did wake my son up ten minutes before his bus arrived. 

 My day was filled though with lab deadlines to be met, technological issues, meetings, snow tire installation, a trip to the post office, coaching a varsity hockey game, a coaching class final exam and philosophy paper. I didn't stop running until 12:30 a.m., just enough time to check Facebook before going to bed. My cousin Lisa left me a note on my profile that she was thinking about me today and that she misses Uncle Eddie (my Dad). That's when the burst of adrenaline hit. My life is so full of stuff that I completely missed the fact that it was the anniversary of my Father's death. How could I forget? I never called my Mom to see how she's doing. I didn't go to dinner with my sister Ellen to celebrate his life. I never sat down with my kids and talked about how incredible he was as a father. Is this what 11 years does, making it fade to the point that the insanity of my life doesn't allow a minute for the thought of my Father enter my head? I feel guilty for not remembering. 

 My Father died 11 years ago after a 9 month battle with esophageal cancer. Ironically, I just had an endoscopy yesterday to keep tabs on the damage I've already done to mine from acid reflux. I go every two years to make sure I don't follow the same path my Dad took with his. I slept through most of yesterday while recovering from the anesthesia. I usually don't remember much of the day when I have an endoscopy done. The medication they give me makes it so I don't remember the unpleasantness of the procedure which I have to be awake for. I remember the first one I had done back in 2002, shortly after my father died. They must not have given me enough of the medication since I remember all of it. Swallowing a camera with a tube attached to it is not an easy task. Ever since then, I make sure they give me plenty. In fact, my wife Sue usually has some very funny stories of the things I do or say in my drunken stooper while coming out of the anesthesia. For example, last year while driving home, I saw an adult sized beaker, like the one's from Chemistry class in high school, fighting with a large bundle of helium balloons on the sidewalk along North Pearl St. I also had trouble getting up the three steps to the front door because I couldn't lift my legs high enough, however after reaching the door, I somehow felt the need to start running in the house. Thankfully I don't remember how that turned out. Yesterday's recovery was somewhat uneventful aside from the occasional hallucination in the recovery room. 

 I'd love to think I forgot about the anniversary of my Father's death because of the medication. Unfortunately, the only thing I can attribute it to is the insanity I've allowed my life to become. 'Tis the season I suppose. I miss you Dad.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Gift Certificate Sale

Back by popular demand, we are once again offering our gift certificate sale for Christmas. Beginning now and continuing through Christmas Day, we will be offering "Buy One, Get One Free" Gift Certificates or "Double Value" on one certificate. The gift certificates are for new sessions only and will be valid from January 1st, 2013 through April 30, 2013. The certificates are good toward sessions and product orders. After April 30, 2012 the certificates are still good, they are just at face value. Call the studio at 585-393-9242 to purchase a certificate which comes tastefully wrapped for immediate giving.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

It's Alive!!!!!

Just got an e-mail from Caren. Dad's bench survived! It moved a few hundred feet inland but it survived intact.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Sandy Claims Eddie

My Dad woke me up in the middle of the night to see the wind. It was August 9th, 1976. I was six years old and experiencing my first hurricane on Long Island. We had a fairly large backyard for Long Island standards. It was the neighborhood soccer field and kick ball court with all my friends. There were two tall, skinny trees spaced perfectly that we used for soccer goals. 

 We stood at the back sliding glass door that had a huge X taped across it with duct tape, probably not the best idea during a hurricane. The trees would sway and bend in the wind with sheets of rain pelting the glass. As the eye of the Belle came on shore just ten miles away, I remember a minute long wind gust that raised the hair on the back of my neck. The trees were no longer swaying, they were just being pushed in to an unnatural position like a bully pinning a scrawny kid to the ground. They bent further and further until one of our soccer goals snapped in half five feet off the ground. 

 As a six year old there are things in life that just exist without question, like trees. They're massive, immovable objects that hurt when you run in to them. I speak from experience. So to see one tossed around like a rag doll and then snap in half was both sad and terrifying. Several other trees of the same size did not fall, but they developed large humps at their base which we used for years as ramps with our bicycles. They no longer stood straight up. After Hurricane Belle, things that seemed as concrete as the ground beneath my feet, were no longer guaranteed to last forever. 

 In 2001, I was taught that same harsh lesson again. My father, Eddie, who was stronger than any tree and more solid beneath my feet than Mt. Everest, passed away from Esophageal Cancer. He was pushed and bent by the cancer, much like the tree in my backyard, until he broke. We were left to pick up the pieces, especially my Mother, Sandy. 

 It is now eleven years since he passed, and although we've picked up the pieces, the scars of that storm will last forever. As a tribute to my father, my sister Caren had a bench placed on the boardwalk in her hometown on the Jersey Shore. It sits facing the ocean and watches every sunrise. It's a solid bench made of wood and concrete. It has sat their peacefully since 2008. 

 As Hurricane Sandy churns just off the Jersey Coast today, the fate of my Dad's bench is in jeopardy, as is the entire boardwalk the entire length of the Jersey Shore. It's ironic that the only thing that can move my Dad from the boardwalk is named Sandy.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Hover Wedding

We kicked off last weekend with the wedding of Kayleigh and Brett. They were so much fun, playing with a Film Noir feel, complete with fedora hats and a cigar bar. We started the day at Woodcliff in Perinton, then went up to the gorgeous Asbury Church on East Ave. in Rochester. We finished the day with a reception at Shadow Lake. 

 One of our stops included the graffiti wall at Village Gate. It used to be one of my favorite places to shoot until they blocked it off with a fence and razor wire. That doesn't seem to stop the graffiti artists from entering, but I wasn't about to bring a bridal party in to forbidden territory. There was a small section outside the fence though that was just big enough to get some cool shots. 

 After Village Gate, we headed up to High Falls in Rochester for some great shots around the old flour mills before making our way to Shadow Lake. We had a great time with Kayleigh and Brett, as well as with Andrew from Paper Moon Productions who was doing the video.

Blain Wedding

I am so far behind blogging weddings it's crazy. What better time to do it than when I'm awake at 4 a.m. staring at the ceiling. This is my first weekend in months without a wedding, so you'd think I'd take the opportunity to sleep in. Apparently someone forgot to tell my eye lids. 

Last weekend was the last of a long run of multi-wedding weekends. We finished the run with a great wedding with Natalie and Jarrod, who got married at Belhurst Castle. Jarrod is a pilot in the USAF and is a very big dude. He was very excited to lift his bride in the air every chance he got. 

It's always good working with some of the regular vendors at Belhurst. The awesome flowers were from Sandy's Floral Creations in Clifton Springs and we got to work side-by-side with our good friend Dave Carro from Carro Video.

Santa Claus is Coming to Town

He's back! We're doing our Santa photos again this year, even earlier to give everyone time to send out their cards. We've also decided to do them on a Friday evening and Saturday this year, beginning November 9 from 4:00-8:00 p.m. and then again on Saturday from 10:00-4:00 p.m. 

This is not your average mall Santa! Spend a full 15 minutes with Santa with each session to get creative for a truly unique photo experience. We have several different settings to choose from and you're encouraged to bring your own props as well. We've done all sorts of fun things with Santa, including Hawaiin beach photos, hockey jerseys, Santa wrapping kids in Christmas lights, etc... 

Each 15 minute session includes 1-8x10, 2-5x7s and 25 photo holiday cards for just $75. Session slots are limited and are filling fast with our loyal following of Santa lovers. He is the real deal. Call the studio at 585-393-9242 or e-mail to reserve your spot. Prepayment is required to hold your spot.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Something's Fishy

I love rediscovering a toy that I've had all along but often gets overlooked. My 10.5mm fisheye lens makes the trip with me to every wedding, yet I probably haven't touched it in years. Rich and I shot a wedding in Brooklyn last Sunday and I threw the lens on a camera just for fun. Rich used it more than I did that day, but it ended up back in the bag mounted to the camera. When I got to yesterday's wedding of my good friends Brian and Heather up in Sodus Point, I left the lens on the camera and began shooting. With clear blue skies and the help of my wife holding the wireless flash, the results with the fisheye were spectacular. 

 Not only did I rediscover a lens to use, I also had the pleasure of discovering Sodus Point. Located on the shore of Lake Ontario between Rochester and Syracuse, Sodus Point has the charm of Alexandria Bay on a smaller scale. With a quaint little business district chock full of waterfront restaurants and bars, and a sport fishing industry second to none, I will be certainly visiting again. At just under an hour from Canandaigua, it's a mini vacation we can take on a moments notice. It's a must see for lighthouse lovers.

Thursday, August 30, 2012


I don't think I've gone over a month without blogging since I started this in 2007. One would think I was slacking off, but it was more like robbing Peter to pay Paul. It's been so busy at the studio that I've been sacrificing my blogging time to edit photos. 

When I began as a photographer, so much of the process was handled by outsourced companies, both in the developing and printing process. My job was to get business in the door and photograph it. So much has changed. I am now a computer technician, graphic designer, social media guru, marketing manager, editor and oh yeah, sometimes a photographer. 

Don't get me wrong, I love what I do, but with the digital age I have become a control freak. The way I light, photograph and edit a photo is as much my signature as my John Hancock. The past few months I have been posting the new "Extreme Collages" that we have been doing on the blog and Facebook. To say they have been well received is an understatement. Because of them we have been able to book three sports tournaments, three sports leagues, two seniors from Lafayette, NY, and more. 

We have since expanded doing them for equestrian photos, dance photos and I'm working on a Car Extreme. There really is no limit to what we can do with them. The only limit appears to be how many hours a day can I sit at a computer before I start twitching. I guess we'll find out.

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