Dont Sit Back!!

jessie 20 a

I just watched a Live feed on Facebook by Stel Bailey. She was talking about being a GO GETTER!!!. I do believe that gigs and clothing etc… Is not going to be just handed to you in the photography and modeling industry. Yes you will be able to land designers and yes they will want you to shoot their stuff, but not with a ton of footwork and talking so they get to know you and what you can do for them.

Over the past several months I have worked with an awesome friend/model Jessie Ann and I have done a ton of footwork to get where we are at as a team. Not only have I done promoting her Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram etc.. But she has also promoted herself to get where she is at. I went to the companies with her original photos she had from another photographer and said here is a model I would like to shoot your stuff with. 3 companies and 1 designer have jumped at the opportunity.

The point is I did not sit back and let those companies come to me and expect they just are going to send stuff. I worked my butt off to get them to want us and me to shoot for them. Just to mention a few names, Swimrags Swimwear, Rock God Eyewear and even now Husk Apparel. This was not easy!!! People it takes hard work and alot of determination.

Many hours were spent planning the shoot for me to go from Illinois to Pennsylvania. Spent alot of time discussing locations, getting lodging for the weekend, food , and transportation from here to there and then to the locations once I get there. It is not easy to do all that and then you have to battle weather elements in the middle of April. We shot on a beach for the swimsuit part of our shoot, on Lake Erie again in the middle of April. Be prepared for elements if you are doing this in April, and make sure you have the proper attire for in between wardrobe changes, so your model stays comfortable. I would rather I freeze than my model. So in between shots she was in my jacket, In a Pink Victorias Secret Hoodie covered in towels just so she was warm and could be ready to go brave the elements for the next suit.

Like I said sometimes in order to get results though you must produce the results. It is not just about things being easy. I have invested alot of time and effort to get where I am at and It has been very rewarding at times. Make sure when you approach companies you have a good body of work or a great portfolio. that is absolutely necessary. They want to see what you can do who you have shot with, where you are published, etc….

Getting published is a whole different ballgame and again that I will discuss in another blog because there is alot more to write on that!!!

Thank you for reading again,

Brian Andrews

Memorial Day, May we Remember

b94e8b97-8e65-4694-96f4-b668fe156dc2_FULLSCREEN

On this Memorial Day we recognize those who have made the ultimate sacrifice to this country. We sit here and not only mourn the loss of those who gave their lives but remember those who did. I took this a few years ago In Woodstock, Illinois. As the soldiers you see changing out the old flag with the new salute as the change is made, the Rifle was with the pair of boots, and the helmet and dog tags adorned it. This is a way to honor a fallen soldier in the battle field.This is called the Battlefield Cross this practice goes back to the Civil War possibly earlier. It was a way to mark the dead or fallen before they were removed from the battle field.

This one was raised on a memorial day vigil for a fallen soldier from the surrounding area. I never did read the dog tags on the rifle. I often wondered who it was. I wish I knew the man who gave his life for this country. My way of showing he was remembered was from this photo. It was later published on Vogue.It Photovogue.

We often forget those who watched their brothers fall on the battlefield and do not think what they watched, what they witnessed or how they felt at that very moment. They watched their brother in arms fall before them. They were possibly a friend or even family member at times. Soldiers looked out for each other as they even lay dying. Some would try to comfort them in their last moments as they drew their final breath.

I am sure I cannot imagine the pure horror as soldiers came off a troop transport and stormed a beach as German soldiers following their orders to open fire opened up their full arsenal on our soldiers.the pure horror as their friends fell and they had to move over them as they lay there dead. Bombs dropping, the beach being shelled from a distance by battleships to try to compromise enemy positions and destroy them. Bullets flying through the air, and grenades, and mortars exploding all around them. I really cannot imagine the sights the sounds or the screams. To me it was the ultimate sacrifice. these soldiers were out to stop a ruthless dictator who had his sights set on taking over the world.

Soldiers who have died during battle knew the ultimate price they had to possibly pay, and yet they enlisted to defend you and I. They had families to lets also not forget them, moms, Dads, Brothers, Sisters, Cousins, Uncles, and Aunts. Those people have had to deal everyday with the loss of their loved ones. They watched their family members leave for war knowing they may never see them again.

Memorial Day is not just about your backyard Barbecue, or that beer you hold in your hand. It is not about going out to the lake, or seeing how drunk you can get. Memorial Day is about recognizing those who have served and  gave their lives for our country defending our freedom. It is also about honoring the families of the fallen those who have had to watch as their loved ones casket was carried that last 15 feet, with an American Flag Draped over it. It is about the Mother, or the son daughter or father who stand and lay their head on the casket as they weep because their family gave their life. They gave their lives for their families, friends, and for us the strangers they never knew so that we could have our Freedom.

Today as you watch the parades, or the wreath being laid on the tomb of the unknown soldier on television. Please take a moment of silence and say a prayer no matter your religion. people of all different races and religions and sexual orientations gave their life to defend you. They defended you so that you could be with your family, and be there to honor them today.

Thank you to those who gave their lives,

Brian Andrews

My trip and photoshoot in Pennsylvania

 

jessie 36 a

Last year I met a model on Facebook by the name of Jessie Ann. Originally we started talking as friends discussing life and among other things. After awhile well I showed her some of my work, and told her I would love to shoot with her someday. She told me she did not know if that was possible since I lived all the way in Illinois.

Several Months went by we continued to talk sometimes for hours on end and alot of times about stuff that would just make us laugh, and we grew as friends!. The months had passed we continued to talk occasionally bringing up shooting, but alot of times it just would not happen for one reason or another.

She had had a few shoots with some pretty strange and shady photographers, one gave her the photos pretty much in Jpg form and unedited. To me he was just looking for a pretty face and body and that is pretty much it. His posing the model was absolutely not what I would have ever expected from someone who invested so much money into studio equipment. Photographers like this absolutely piss me off. Because those of us who struggle and use the same old equipment and provide amazing images really almost never get noticed, we even get cut on by other supposed professionals telling us we should upgrade our equipment but that takes time and money.

After she went to this photographer and he gave her the images which he never edited, she had asked me to go back and edit the photos. I gave her edits of his photos because I wanted her to atleast get something nice and not images that she never could use!. after a month or so of editing she finally said hey lets shoot again. This time we not only planned this shoot but we landed 3 different designers.She put in so much effort in order to make this shoot happen night after night we threw ideas at one another.

Finally the day came after all our reservations were made and it was time to leave on the Amtrak to Pennsylvania. After a year of talking and a few months of planning this was finally happening. It took me from 9:30 at night til 7 the next morning to arrive in Pennsylvania. I was nervous at first, I was afraid that after all this planning one of us would somehow fail to make it. But that was not the case.

After about an hour of waiting and her getting ready and us talking we finally started to shoot. I was really super impressed by her pushing herself physically to make this shoot happen. Jessie gave 110 percent of everything she had from start to finish, and although we froze at times on the beach as we were shooting, she would cover up and take a break to warm and we would start over again!!. Even when we were indoors only real break we took was to eat!!. Jessie wanted to go from one wardrobe to the next bang bang without hesitation. I was seriously amazed at how much she loved to model!.

Sunday night after all was said and done we sat on her porch where we we went through over a thousand photos, and had some dinner we chilled and talked. We came to the conclusion that we needed to shoot again lol. After awhile one of her neighbors she went to school with years ago walked up and started to talk we spent the next several hours before I had to leave talking and laughing. When the time came to go I was actually sad I had to leave and well It both kind of hit us that leaving was real. I cannot wait until we shoot again!!

Brian!!

 

 

Night Time Phototography Long Exposures Done Right!

chicago 1 aI have often gone out at night and thought about all the lights and how amazing they look. nothing though looks more amazing than a long exposure photograph. Cameras can capture all the ambient light the human eye cannot see.

It Is easy to think well I’m going to go out and go to the city with my camera and take photos. Long exposure photography is something that is somewhat skill and somewhat just plain dumb luck and timing. You can take one long exposure photograph thinking this will be amazing once I am done, but I have looked afterwards and thought there is really not the lights I wanted and it does not look as good as I first thought it would.

Usually I wind up trying to find some amazing Locations first. Take the photo above for instance, this was taken on a Chicago night facing the Chicago River in the foreground. The buildings make for all the light you need. The boats that passed by made for the streaks of light on the river. Lights will normally look like small starbursts especially Street lights. Here I set My Shutter speed to bulb so I could get about a 45 second exposure my Iso was set to about 200 and my F stop to about 14.

After I took the photograph I did not know how amazing this would look thinking this better turn out well, only because I forgot one essential. I forgot My Tripod that day!. I found the flattest surface I could possibly find where the camera would be steady, and set the camera there with my shutter remote attached because pressing the shutter button manually usually causes blur because the camera tends to shake. The photo above was one of the prettiest long exposures I have taken.

5e662d12-07df-42f8-9921-2f0dadbe6ea2_FULLSCREENThe photo you see here with the light throw from a Projector at the Harvest Moon Drive-In Theater in Gibson City, Illinois was taken on a rainy night. Again I forgot one important necessity at home and that was my tripod again. There was a picnic table in the front of the lot and I used that to Steady the camera. normally you cannot see the light from the projector like this on a clear night with no rain, but I got lucky on this night the rain produced this amazing light throw. I set the Camera to about a 30 second exposure here and let the camera capture this scene. So here you see the light flooding through the rainy night as families sit in their cars and watch movies. I would never suggest forgetting your tripod!!

water 2 aHere was one of my favorites here I remembered my tripod this was taken In St. Charles, Illinois. I was born i this town so this photo means a bit more to me than just some random night shot I took. Here there was a small dock off the river walk it was fairly steady, and several times i had to tell people to stay off the dock to because walking tended to cause shake, and I had to deal with the swarm of mosquitoes trying to attack me on a warm summer night and ignore the how uncomfortable I felt from them constantly biting me. This was one of the hardest shots to accomplish because of all the elements working against me, but I finally got the shot I wanted after almost 10 minutes sitting in discomfort.

This shot was on a Tripod and I set the shutter to bulb again, my F stop to about 14 or so and an iso of about 200. I took this photo just after the sun had set and the skies turn that pretty blue. i let this exposure go for about 45 seconds or so!. So not only do you capture the light but also the amazing reflection on the Fox River.

So this is just a little about long exposure photography hope you enjoyed if not for the story atleast for the amazing photos!!. Please feel free to follow me I know I Have not written in a while, but it is Valentines Day and It is Snowing well I have nothing to do so writing seemed like the best option. Like I said hope you all enjoyed. I will try to write a bit more often. Feel free to follow my blog. There are more stories you can read some just for fun and some educational.

Thank You,

Brian

Are We offended?

First-American-Flag-by-Betsy-Ross.gif

Recently it seems as if America is offended by EVERYTHING!!!. Well here you go you want to take offense to something, the flag above was flown 1776. This flag represented the 13 original colonies. Oh but from 1776 until 1861 the American flag was flown all over up until the Civil war, Which means there was slavery under this flag. Betsy Ross the maker of the flag, and George Washington who helped create this flag were both slave owners. So does this mean we should abolish the use of this flag to?. My answer is a big resounding NO!! What people do not realize the confederate flag they are complaining about is not even the original confederate flag.

810px-Flag_of_the_Confederate_States_of_America_(1861-1863).svg

This is the Original Confederate flag, also known as the Stars and Bars. Does this look familiar?. This was the first flag captured by the Union Army. the problem with this flag on the battlefield is it was to close to the American Flag flown during battle by the Union Army. So there had to be a change so people knew who they were at war with. The Change came with the Confederate X with the stars. Not the one you see flying these days. The one they replaced it with had a white field where the Red and white bars were. Yes the white field on the flag was about white superiority. Although I do not believe in slavery or white supremacy myself I believe we are losing sight of our history.

1280px-Flag_of_the_Confederate_States_of_America_(1863-1865).svg

Above is the Confederate Battle flag that was flown on the Battle field. The X in the Corner with the White field. Now if someone flew this flag I might be a bit offended. But this is not the modern Confederate flag at all. this flag was also designed so that the two armies could tell each other apart on the battle field. The confederate army had beliefs just like the Union did. Right or Wrong it is part of history, and if we forget where we came from as a nation, we will repeat our history.

confederate-flag-1-1024x768

This was the modern day Confederate flag. WHITE field removed for obvious reasons. This is NOT the same flag that flew during the Civil War. Although some people have taken this flag and used it as a symbol of hate and violence. I do not believe it even meant the same thing. they removed the part of the flag that meant that completely. It was used as a symbol of the south for many years. This whole thing went to far as to even remove the show Dukes of Hazard off the air from T.V. The General Lee Was a car we grew up with and were entertained by. Although other programs such as Hogans Heroes, The Jeffersons, All in the family were not removed off the Air. All of these programs dealt with racial tensions of some sort. George Jefferson used the word HONKY 21 times in the first season alone. Although I may not like the Jeffersons, I just do not watch it is all!. All in the family dealt with bigotry almost every episode. Sammy Davis Jr. would appear on the show and Kiss Archie Bunker on the cheek breaking down racial barriers a bit. Hogans heroes was about a Prisoner of War camp in Nazi Germany ran by buffoon Nazis. I do not like the show again because it is making fun of a very serious subject, again I can turn the channel as simple as that. I can even go as far as Threes company, Jack Tripper had to pretend to be gay, just so he could stay with 2 female room mates. He had to do this because his landlords were old fashioned, and believed that men living with women should not be done unless you were married. His landlords were always making fun of him being supposedly gay. Do you see any of these shows being removed off the air?

christian-flags-2

Here is the American Flag flying with the Christian flag. Some people believe this flag should be removed to. there is that white field. I do not believe this flag should be removed. This is a flag that represents God and Country. No matter your belief. A flag can be flown that is why this country was once a great nation. It was a melting pot for all races, and creeds. Men worked came home and made good. I do believe if it were not for today’s modern electronics and media. We would still be a nation that would flourish. We would not have these people offended by everything just because someone tells them to be offended, and they change with the wind!!! . I am a believer in every man has the right to be equal and have their own opinion and thoughts. If you were in some countries you are not allowed to fly any flag but that nations flag. In some countries women have to cover their bodies and faces. Isis kills women who are raped because they believe it is the womans fault. Is this the type of country you want?. A nation where we are told what we can do in our spare time, and how we think? Just a thought. I hope I brought some light to this situation in our country. Only reason I wrote this today is because I saw an article about some lady politician. She decided to get a petition to change the name of a a high school, all because it was named Robert E. Lee high school. Nobody ever complained up until her. the media only covered her petition, and not that alot of students filed a separate  petition to keep the name. Again if we forget our past we repeat our past.

Thank you for reading.

Where were you when the Towers fell?

 479971_3927953245986_1422468973_n

I was reading a blog yesterday by my friend Jax Turnya Who is a model, and who works on the Mancow show in Chicago ironically enough, because he will later be involved in this story. She asked where were you on September  11, 2001? Well thinking about it it brought back many emotions sadness, anger, and my thoughts raced.

September 11th, 2001 Started out pretty ordinary all except the night before I was out with some friends, and we eventually wound out at Steak and Shake. The night progressed and I got tired so I told my friends I was going out to my car to nap for a bit, and when they were done there let me know. The morning came around and The sun had rose. My friends were still inside talking. Must have been a pretty important conversation to be up talking all night at a restaurant.

I turned on my radio, Ironically here is where Mancow Muller comes in. Mancow was on the air that morning and anyone who loves in the Chicago land area knows he has kind of a sick sense of humor, and would play jokes on his listeners and such. Well the news came across the air a plane had struck one of the World Trade Center buildings. I thought no way it was another joke but I soon realized he was not playing a joke at all.

I soon ran into Steak and Shake and told my friends I was leaving. For some reason my gut instinct told me to go home and watch the news. At that time I was staying with my Friend Jeff in Johnsburg, Illlinois. I soon got there I told Jeff to turn on the T.V that a plane had hit the World Trade Center. No sooner did we turn on the T.V, we saw the 2nd plane hit the World Trade Center.

This was no private aircraft these planes were full fledged Jumbo jets carrying fuel and passengers. America all came to the same conclusion we did this was not a random accident. This was a terrorist attack on our own soil. There had been terrorist attacks on American Soil before, but nothing of this magnitude. Reports had hijacked planes heading all over the United States. This was the first time I felt scared. Even being 70 miles from Chicago, what if they decided to hit a small town? thinking that I called my Mother and asked her if she had heard the news. If I recall she was working that day. I remember saying I love you to her at the end of the conversation, and thinking if something should happen this could be the last time I say this.

Not to long after I got off the phone with my mother reports came another plane had crashed and hit the Pentagon. We were under such high alert suddenly that the F.A.A shut down all airspace and ordered any planes to land. One more plane never laded safely an American Airlines flight that crashed in a Pennsylvania field because of some heroic Citizens everyday average Joes who had decided to take the plane back and stop an attack on another target.

We watched in an almost trance like state watching the world trade centers collapsing. It was like something you would see in a movie, but this was real. No special effects no stunt doubles. Sheer terror, undeniable sadness, and anger for terrorists who had taken several thousand lives, INNOCENT LIVES!!!

As the day moved on I stepped out for a cigarette finally. The air was still perfect blue skies, and not a car on the road, or plane in the air, not even a child playing outside. It was eerily the strangest feeling in the world to feel like you are the only person outside, and a tear finally streamed down my eye. I went into a state of shock and sat on the front porch putting my face in my hands.

The rest of the night I do not think I went outside much. I remember spending most of the day sitting watching the news. They played the collapses over and over again. Nighttime had come around I remember the bucket brigades trying to clear the rubble and find survivors. Occasionally a body was found and you would see a stretcher escorted to an ambulance with an American Flag draped on it. I had had enough and finally went to bed but knowing the world had changed forever that day.

These are my recollections of September 11th, 2001 the photo you see above is from a sign near me not to long after the attacks happened. Need I say these were the sentiments of most Americans. America Came together Democrats, Republicans, Whites, African Americans, Gays, and Straights. We had all learned we were all one people, We learned we were all Americans. We had no division lines. Sometimes I still wish we felt this way. Most of us have forgotten what it understand what it means to be American and it is only 13 years Later.

GOD BLESS AMERICA!!!

If you would like to read Jax Turnyas blog the site link is below!!

http://petitegirlsrock.blogspot.com/2014/09/where-were-you-that-september-day.html?spref=fb

Thank you for reading this!!!

Shooting at the beach!!

kate 41 (2)

    There is something about shooting at the beach. I started thinking about this because today it is raining, and has been for about the past 2 days here in Central Illinois. I think the reason I find it an experience to shoot at the beach is because not only is it challenging, but it is relaxing and fun at the same time. Well also if you get to hot you can also take a quick dip in the water to cool off. DO NOT FORGET TO BRING SUNSCREEN. I have forgot and have regretted it and head to go home and soak in lukewarm water in the tub for several hours. Also another tip bring a towel, if the model forgets to, atleast you have one!. Also make sure you bring some clothes like a swimsuit for yourself that you are willing to get wet in to get the best shots because you will be in wet sand, and even sometimes in the water too. Also make sure you have your camera strap around your neck and quick reflexes because the waves can become tricky. If you are someplace like Lake Michigan also realize the water is cold!! Only stay in for 5 to 10 minutes tops along with the model. Then you can move to the warm beach and shoot the sand photos. I try to watch the weather before a beach shoot to so even if it is warm atleast we have blue skies. If you have blue skies you have blue water and it makes for a much prettier shot!!. Be careful also obey the warnings if they say do not go in water due to riptide, IT MEANS DO NOT GO INTO WATER!!! you do not want to put your life on the line!!!. Make sure you are not to far from a car or shelter to because even though the day seems nice it can turn nasty really quick. I was on a shoot with Miss strawberry, and the day started out beautiful, and suddenly Dark clouds rolled in the lighting started to flash so we left quickly to our car. Needless to say tornado sirens went off not to long after. Lake Michigan is actually not a lake it is scientifically considered an inland sea and will create its own weather patterns quickly sometimes without warning. the shot you see above though is with a model Hunny Bunny and was a perfect day but the waves were massive so we did not go into the water much due to that!!!. These are just a few tips for shooting on the beach hope you enjoyed this blog, and if you want please do not forget to follow me!!!