May 15 2011 Lighting and Skillset Bootcamp Information

For Lighting and Skillset Bootcamp Information click HERE

Dec 4 2014 Nikon Behind the Scenes Video- More Light is NOT better light-Philadelphia Wedding Photographer

As a Nikon Ambassador, it was a great honor to take part in the second season of the Nikon Behind the Scenes series. The production days were long and rigorous, but I really believe we were able to come away with a series that contained terrific information to share with photographers- both professional and those who are aspiring to get better. For me, everything begins with light. It's the very definition of our craft. When I begin a wedding day, my goal is to capture the essence of my client, but I want to do so in the most organic process possible. By simply setting the stage for those moments to take place- then allowing those moments to unfold without staging the moments, I'm able to allow my brides and those around her to just be themselves and interact naturally.  
 
it's this approach that allows the moments to look real- because they ARE real. By creating an environment that has beautiful light, all of the moments that unfold before me have a "texture" to the light that adds drama and impact to the image. I'm incredibly grateful for the efforts of so many with this video. Corey Rich and his team, Mike Corrado from Nikon USA, our models Sara Viteri and Veronica Lane, and our make up artist Beke Beau all enabled me to fulfill my vision for this brief, but informative educational video. It's my favorite BTS series video I've done so far. I hope you enjoy it.  
 
 
 
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Dec 3 2014 Nikon D750-Philadelphia Wedding Photographer-My First Impressions

I'd like to be VERY clear about this post. This is NOT a review of the Nikon D750. As a Nikon Ambassador, I don't really think it would be fair, nor would it really be ethical for me to "review" the camera. I do believe, however, that it's my job to give my honest impressions from my first real world experiences using the newest body in the Nikon DSLR lineup, and how I plan on incorporating it into my workflow. If you want to read an excellent review of the camera, my much more beautiful and talented wife, Susan Stripling, has reviewed the D750 on her blog- The Dynamic Range. It's an excellent, honest, informative review. It's good reading.  
 
I've been a Nikon Shooter since 1978. Stop doing the math. Yes, I've been shooting that long. I began with the Nikon FE, then the FE2- then the F3, which was a killer camera in it's day. It was built like a tank. You could literally hammer nails with that thing and it kept on going.  
 
Below, you'll see an image with nearly every pro body Nikon has made over the last 26 years. I dug up a few from my storage area, and I had to blow a bit of dust off of them. From L-R front row is the F4, F5, F6, D3, then L-R top are the D3S, D4, D800, D4S and the D810. I sold my old D2X and D2XS years ago. Why show all of these bodies, other than for the sake of nostalgia? Um, no reason. Just nostalgia, and the fact that each and every one of these bodies represented incremental improvements in photographic technology.


The question to ask, when looking at this photo, is "what camera did you shoot that with?" The answer- The Nikon D750. I used an AF-S Nikkor 28mm F1.8G @ ISO 10,000(not a typo).  
 
Now, my impressions. To be honest, my very first impression was during the filming of my Nikon Behind the Scenes videos in September. I held it in my hands for a moment and thought it was a nice little camera, but I instantly wrote it off as something I wouldn't have use for. It didn't seem robust enough for me. I'm a flagship kinda guy- See the photo above! I figured I was all set. I use my 2- D4S bodies for the bulk of the wedding day, I'll mix in some portraits with the D810 when I'm seeking a file with a little more meat to it, and I'll have a D4, and a D3S as emergency back up cameras. 5 bodies to a wedding, 10 lenses or so, an assortment of speedlights, a few other lighting essentials, and I'm good to go. My VERY first impression was simply wrong. I realize It didn't have the "pro" dials. It didn't have the "pro" ergonomics that were consistent for the past 30 years or so. But, I only HELD it for about 10 minutes, and I never fired a frame or downloaded one file.  
 
Jump to a few weeks ago. I'd NEVER just dive in and begin using a new camera on a wedding before testing it. I played with it in my studio, put a few different lenses on it, and downloaded a few files. I must admit that it took a little getting used to the mode dial on the left. It also took me a minute to learn a different method of changing my ISO and white balance. However, these are such minute issues, it was pretty simple, and it wasn't as if I needed to hit up the manual. I mean, who the hell reads manuals, anyway? 
 
After viewing the files, which looked killer sharp, I was ready to SLOWLY try it at a wedding. My few frames were during the very late stages of a wedding, and I put an SB910 on the hot shoe, a Nikkor 16-35mm on the camera, and I shot some dancing late in the evening. The most impressive thing to me was it's ability to nail focus. The responsive nature of the camera was exactly what I was looking for. I only shot 20-30 frames and put it away.  
 
 
The following week, I had a little more confidence in the camera. I gave it a little taste by putting a AF-S Nikkor 35mm F1.4G on it, and I just kept it on my shoulder. All I can say now is "holy crap". I honestly never dreamed that this camera would earn any significant "playing time" during the course of something so important as a wedding day. I have my D4S's and why would I shoot with anything else???? The answers? Read below.  
 
 
The Nikon D750 weight is incredibly refreshing. At 29.5 ounces WITH the battery, it's incredibly easy to wear for hours on end 
The autofocus capability is absolutely astounding 
The low light autofocus capability is also astounding.  
The files are killer sharp, dynamic range is excellent, and at 24.3 mp, they're large enough for nearly anything 
The high ISO performance is stellar. ISO 10,000 is a walk in the park 
Did I mention the weight?  
The ergonomics took a little getting used to..... now I'm used to it. No worries there.  
It's got group area AF, just like the D4S. I really like the group area AF at times.  
Built in WIFI- haven't use it much, but it's pretty darn cool 
Did I mention that it's light as hell? 
I find the battery life to be quite good, and it's the same as the battery for my D800 and my D810 
 
 
Sorry pixel peepers, I'm not going to put the pixels under a microscope and talk about all of the technical stuff that makes for great internet fodder. It focus great, it focuses great in low light, it produces beautiful, sharp files, renders excellent color, AND it has a back up slot. There's not much more I need in a camera body. Oh, did I mention how light it is?  
 
There are a few things I'd like to stress. This camera is NOT replacing my D4S's. However, it's absolutely going to supplement them, and it's going to be my go to body with a short, fast prime- usually my AF-S Nikkor 35mm F1.4G. I'll use the D4S/D750 combination for nearly all elements of the day. For the bridal prep, I'll use the larger AF-S Nikkor 85mm F1.4G on one D4S, and I'll use the D750 with the 35mm on it. I'll generally keep a short lens on the 750, and I'll use the longer glass on the D4S for the purposes of balance. The D750 does seem a bit out of balance with a long, heavy lens on it. The biggest difference for me is that I'll be using the D750 for ALL of the compulsory dance floor photos with either a 24-70 or a 16-35 on it. This camera, for me, is a game changer. My arthritis in my neck and shoulders are already less painful after just a few weeks of shooting the D750. Wearing 2- D4S camera bodies for 8-12 hours at a time has never been good for anyone with a healthy body- let alone arthritis.  
 
To sum it up, this camera was a complete surprise. I NEVER expected to like it as much as I do. Anyone who knows me, anyone who has taken my workshops, or has heard me speak at a seminar, knows I'm all about being open and honest. This camera is the real deal. There is nothing "prosumer" about it. What it lacks in frames per second, it makes up in so many other areas. I'm still getting used to this camera. I'm not sure how I'll use it in the weeks and months to come. However, I can only see myself using it more, not less. Again, it's not replacing my D4S, but it's already carved out a nice place in my bag, and my Sandisk SD cards will be getting plenty of use. Just like my D4S's, I'll fire raws into the primary slot, and backup fine JPGS into the secondary slot.  
 
For those of you considering purchasing a Nikon D750, I will make a bold statement. This camera, pound for pound, for the money, might be the very best value of any DSLR to date. Did I mention the weight? 
 
 
 
NIkon D750 AF-S Nikkor 35mm F1.4G shot at 1/200th @F2.2 ISO 1600 
 
 
 


NIkon D750 AF-S Nikkor 35mm F1.4G shot at 1/125th @F2.0 ISO 10,000


NIkon D750 AF-S Nikkor 35mm F1.4G shot at 1/125th @F1.8 ISO 10,000




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Nov 12 2014 Yuna and Travis-Prospect House- Princeton University-Princeton NJ

I posted a preview of this beautiful couple's event a few weeks ago. We began the day at the Westin in Princeton NJ. Yuna and Travis were married at the Prospect House on Princeton's campus. We had a gorgeous day with great people. It's an incredible venue and I hope to work there again soon!




























































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