Martial arts students outdoors
Miles, Gopal & Prahlada on the Chenango River in upstate New York
         A few weeks ago I made a much overdue trip to upstate New York to visit my sister-in-law Susan, her husband Rick and their son Evan. Evan designed my new logo, business card and mailer and in exchange I shot new images for his dad’s martial arts school. In particular they wanted new photos to promote the youth karate program.
Karate student
       We decided to shoot in nearby Ostinango Park. We got there half an hour before the kids arrived so we could scout the location. While the park was very nice, it was too well groomed for the timeless look I was after. Walking toward the edge of the park through the trees I could see the sparkling waters of the Chenango River. In the middle of the river there was a small island covered with vegetation and surrounded by river rock with a shallow stream flowing through the middle. That was the location I wanted but I wasn’t sure I could convince the others, especially the kids, to do a stream crossing. The water was only up to my knees but the current was swift. When the kids arrived they all watched as I made the first crossing carrying my cameras and lenses in a backpack and holding a flash mounted stand in each hand. When I got to the island I turned to see everyone rolling up their pant legs and getting into the water.

Senesi Evan

Senesi Evan of Triple Cities Marshal Arts Academy


         Once we were all assembled on the island I had the kids stand in the shallow stream positioning them so the sun was to their side and slightly behind them. I then crosslit them with a bare Vivitar 285 on manual at full power to over power the ambient light. I used a 17-35 lens on a Canon 7D. The Exposure was 1/250 @ f/11 with an ISO of 100. Sensei Evan and Sensei Rick directed. 

     Big thanks to Tommy, Gopal, Prahlada and Miles for putting up with the heat, sharp rocks, bugs, water crossing and me! 

Here’s a link if you’d like to check out their website: 3 Cities Martial Arts Academy

Martial arts students
Miles, Prahlada, Gopal & Tommy

Happy New Year!

It has become an tradition in our family to spend New Years Eve with my wife’s sister and husband in Upstate New York. We go to the city of Binghamton for their First Night celebration. First Night consists of live music, plays, puppet shows and other performances throughout the evening, ending with a bonfire and fireworks at midnight.

I had hoped to upload a bonfire image to the blog but the temperature was in the single digits and the wind chill made for a bone chilling evening. After catching a puppet show, a poetry slam and a Hip-Hop performance we decided to skip the bonfire and fireworks. We went back to the house and watched the ball drop at Times Square, on the TV.

I decided to upload a comic that I think pretty much sums up the last year for a lot of us. “What the Duck” is from the mind of AAron Johnson. You can click on the title to visit ‘WTD’ site and start the new year with a few good chuckles.

Used with permission.