Professional photographer Jim Crotty. Fine art prints, photography workshops, stock images and commercial/assignment photography, based in Frisco, Texas but frequently returns to Hocking Hills, Ohio to teach weekend workshops at The Inn at Cedar Falls.
Recently I have been providing onsite consulting services to firms interested in improving and enhancing – or even just starting – their own in-house product photography studios and capabilities. I thoroughly enjoy these opportunities to show companies how they can improve the online appearance of their product lines by not only recommending the right equipment but offering the right training for their staff to shoot exceptional product imagery, from capture to edit to posting. If your firm would like to break away from stock images or lackluster photographs of your products I can help! Additional information @ http://jimcrotty.zenfolio.com/consulting-services. I’d be happy to provide a free estimate over the phone or via email.
The great expanse. Perhaps we are naturally drawn to scenes of great distances not just for the beauty of the vista but also because of what such scenes have come to represent within ourselves. The opening, a journey, an adventure. More than anything else the overcoming of the fears that keep us stranded within our starting points and our visions limited and small. Out upon that great expense is our faith. Beyond ourselves a love far greater and more powerful than what we assume keeps us safe and comfortable. The ships of our souls weren’t built to be tied and anchored. They were built for full sails toward the light.
Seek authenticity, marvel in its presence but resist the urge to simply imitate. What is truly authentic should only inspire you to find what is already authentic in you. Doing so has become increasingly challenging in the popular culture of today where the emphasis is on appearance and immediate visual stimulation. Popular culture devours the authentic with an insatiable appetite and then sits in the corner, sad and empty-hearted. Just look what has happened to the most well known art and music “festivals.” There’s the perfect example. Imitation is a disguise for those who can’t – or have failed to – locate their own voice and it doesn’t help that we have entire industries that cater to imitation. Inspiration is the far better journey. Defy popularism. Be true, be inspired and become a source of inspiration versus imitation. That’s where you will find the good and lasting stuff.
Nature is a persistent and patient teacher with the life lesson of change. Having been involved with nature photography for over 40 years has allowed me to observe the power and importance of this lesson. The one thing that doesn’t change has been change itself. It is consistent.
People naturally fight change. They hate it. Honestly I do to. The very thought of ever moving again brings on a sense of dark doom. Change is so disruptive to what most perceive as safety and security. It goes against this inherent human fallacy known as control. But then nature comes along with her lessons, sometimes subtle; sometimes quite harsh. Late summer and into early autumn seems to be the time when mother nature too likes to put school back into session, with vigor and suddenness, particularly for those living in the coastal states.
Ohio’s lessons on change this time of year tend to be far more subtle but there they are, nonetheless. Summer ends, school begins, cool evenings give way to fields and meadows covered in webs and dew. The balance between day and night returns, and life goes on.
The opposite of fighting change within our own lives is to fully embrace it, with courage and faith. To emulate nature not in the struggle but in the quiet acceptance of what is meant to be will be. Ego insists on the struggle and attempts vainly at controlling the inevitable. Nature flows with it. She goes with the confidence of what changes never truly goes away but is returned again and again in new seasons and forms.
But with our modern lives embracing change is easier said than done. Ego and security are often buried generations deep with the help of inherited fears. This dire need for the “bricks and mortar” and monuments to persona do little to assuage wounds never properly healed. The falseness of our beliefs in ourselves and controlling everything prove to be powerful barriers for free spirits to overcome.
Nature continues to teach otherwise. I think it’s why I could never really leave her classroom. My camera has become my pencil and the photographs my growing stack of doodled and dogeared notebooks.
Change in the seasons and in life flow with an energy that when it comes down to it, I never see as negative. It’s continuous and so are the lessons. With energy so immense and eternal how could anything – or anyone – truly “end.”
In our lives we are given this gift of continuous love that we would rather shove into the corner in favor of what’s immediate and more serving of our needs for control and security. It isn’t until the hard lessons are put upon us whereby we return to the treasure behind our here and now. This gift of continuous love can be found and observed in both nature and in each of us. Change is the energy for it to fly in orbits that will never end but only become better and brighter through time and generations.
When completing photographic assignments for a client’s marketing and web site, I strive to capture the light and setting that is best suited for the particular product or service being advertised. To do so requires more than just technical skill. It requires an understanding and appreciation of the client’s clientele and their customer service goals. This was my goal while photographing the newest additions to the accommodations at The Inn and Spa at Cedar Falls in Hocking Hills, Ohio last week, the “yurts.” These structures are a beautiful and unique combination of both framed tent with all the comforts of a completely furnished cabin.
With this particular assignment I wanted to convey the atmosphere of the “glamping” experience – glamorous camping – but including in the imagery both the comforts of the yurts and the intimate connection to the natural surroundings. With The Inn being a client of my photography services since 2003, as well as the location for both my autumn and spring nature photography workshops, I was very familiar with the “guest experience” goals of such a special retreat location in this beautiful area of Ohio. Another goal of the assignment was to capture the natural light of the setting of the yurts throughout the progression of the day, from morning to afternoon to dusk to evening.
In today‘s world of so much of a company’s products and services being visually communicated via the web and social media it’s vital to invest in photography that will do just that – convey the essence of the experience through professional imagery that both reflects the uniqueness of what is offered and a commitment to the customer who will likely return. again and again.
The photographer artist is beholden only to the limits placed on him or herself, to see, to surrender, to express. There must always be somewhat of a returning to the original story, the essence of what has never failed to move the artist to act deliberately to carry the beauty of the conversation between light, subject, photographer and viewer. The motivation never ceases because the rewards go far beyond simple recognition of a statement made and the person making the statement. For the artist art is life itself.
Fine Art – Stock – Commercial – Portrait – Workshops