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Following My GPS Photography   

Ascending the Summit of Photography

N 37° 54′ 56.8″  W 81° 07′ 23″

During the Summer of 2022, I took on a staff photographer project at the Summit Bechtel Family National Scout Reserve (SBR) that is located in West Virginia’s New River-Greenbrier Valley Region adjacent to New River Gorge National Park; America’s newest National Park established in 2020.

The Summit Bechtel Reserve is one of four high adventure facilities managed by the National Council of the Boy Scouts of America. The Summit is the current home of the National Scout Jamboree, the Paul R. Christen National High Adventure Base, the James C. Justice National Scout Camp, and the John D. Tickle National Training and Leadership Center. The reserve comprises properties totaling over 14,000 acres.

I served the Boy Scouts of America as part of the SBR Digital Media Team assisting the Summit’s Marketing group. It was an amazing experience to join the creative mission for BSA’s premier high-adventure facility situated on 14,000 acres in the mountains of West Virginia. The creative challenges were as vast as the Summit property. Each day brought new creative engagements with summer camp, trek, and high adventure participant and unit images along with architecture, facilities, and production sessions. Here is a gallery with a sampling of my images produced for the Summit Bechtel Reserve. Most images were composed for the flexibility to be used in a variety of digital and print promotional materials. The images are also made for easy use in social media and web delivery avenues.

Transition to Nomadic Life & Launching FMG

N 28° 39′ 54″  W 82° 6′ 46″

  • Untitled photo
  • Portland Head Light At Dawn
  • Elegant Bow

There are some pinnacle years in our life that are remembered for their impact and significance to our personal story, certainly, 2019 will be that for me. Most of the year has been focused on selling my home of twenty years in Massachusetts and getting rid of most of my personal possessions accumulated over a lifetime. I have chosen to create a simpler lifestyle and one that will allow me to focus on my photography, travel, and experience what life has to offer. I went from a traditional ‘sticks & bricks’ home to an Airstream travel trailer that can travel anywhere it can be towed. I have transitioned from a townie anchored to one community to an American Nomad that has the freedom to travel and explore the world around me. I look forward to sharing my transition to nomadic life and all that it entails in Following My GPS online magazine. While I have been setting up and getting used to nomadic life in my Airstream these past couple of months I have also been busy preparing the Following My GPS online magazine and FMG Photo websites. It has been fun sorting through hundreds of photos and writing about the adventures that I have had over the past four years to share with you on the Following My GPS online magazine. The work has been daunting but also a labor of love to get all the elements of Following My GPS established and ready to share with you. When Following My GPS comes to life in early December it will be the culmination of a lifelong dream about being a travel photographer and also the planning and transition over the past four years from a traditional domestic lifestyle to that of a nomad will have become a reality. I look forward to sharing my lifestyle and travel adventures with you in my photography and in the stories on Following My GPS online magazine.

College Church - Vision Project
N 42º 19' 14.806"  W 72º 37' 23.097"

It was a pleasure working with the folks from College Church in Northampton, Massachusetts on feature images for their ‘Vision’ project. The images below are samples from the final collection of images representing each one of their Vision elements. These images were staged to represent the concepts embodied in the different Visions. The strategy was to have feature images to accompany the Vision titles to be used together as branding for their message. I anticipated ‘visual fatigue’ to be an issue if the same images had repetitive use. However, I wanted to provide a way for College Church to leverage the visual branding of having familiar images to reinforce their message. The solution was to provide each image as a visual set; which included a couple of different cropping ratios and a number of Black & White and Duotone colored versions. Using the image sets would provide consistency of message branding while providing variations to keep the repeated use visually fresh. My approach to serving my clients is working holistically with their visual needs to provide images that have a longer use-life, making custom images more cost effective.

Consumer Product Still Life
N 42º 28' 32.3"  W 72º 36' 53.5"

Created as a self-promotion concept, these two consumer product still life images were developed in a studio setting. The concept was to provide an environment themed setting for the products to compliment the branding and to establish an overall mood. Since these images were to be used in print media in an oversized self-mailer, care was taken to leave appropriate open space for headlines and copy. The creativity and styling was a family project as my eldest daughter Allysen acted as my Photographic Stylist; putting her background in theater props and set dressing to good use.

Massachusetts WWII Weekend

N 42°33'42.3"  W 72°17'36.1"

I had a fun time capturing the Massachusetts World War II Weekend held at the Orange Municipal Airport, in Orange, Massachusetts. This World War II reenactment event was a historical reenactment of the combatants involved in World War II in the European Theater. Along with the main players--the Americans, British and Germans, there were also units of the Italian axis fighters and French Resistance Maquis. This event included living history of each of side’s units in the field and simulated combat. My approach to photographing this event was to have the gritty and period feel of a photographer in the field during WWII. Most images are black and white, captured ‘in-the-moment’ on the battlefield. I enjoyed giving the images a period feel and imperfection that is often seen in the historical images of WWII.

Wall Décor - College Church

N 42º 19' 14.806"  W 72º 37' 23.097"

College Church in Northampton, Massachusetts was looking to decorate a long entry hall with images to warm-up the space and make it more inviting for people entering the church on the basement level. A couple of considerations needed to be taken into account—the images needed to represent the College Church community and fellowship of its’ members and regular attenders. Also, the hallway is the main access for families with small children; so the displayed images needed to be safe if knocked off the wall. So traditional framing was not an option from a safety (frame and glass breakage) and cost standpoint. The solution for the types of images was within my photographic style; the images are warm journalistic moments of the College Church community in action. These natural un-posed situations show the fabric and genuine nature of the people of College Church. The image display was a series of vivid prints done on flexible, durable plastic that comes with its’ own aluminum tension hanging system. The prints are easy to hang and have the appearance of floating away from the wall for a modern gallery look. The system is called Xpozer by Bay Photo of Scotts Valley, California.

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