harnessing the power of photography for good

Last Frame

new beginnings

in the span of 4 days i had the honor of helping document the wedding of lorse & lisa and the homecoming celebration of mary jimenez.  when youre at life events like this in such a close span of time, you surprisingly hear similar themes…of the beauty & promise of new life and the old being replaced with the new.

these type of life occurrences arent lost on me.  you cant help but think about life and your own mortality.  you start taking inventory of who you are and what your all about.  this of course includes photography…

celebrating the life & homecoming of mary jimenez

on our recent fieldtrip up to san juan capistrano i had some time to chill with God, have some fun taking photos and to listen to what He wanted to tell me.  i was reminded from the above photo, that we do things for God with our gifts and talents, but unless we do it with God’s master plan in mind…the advancing of His Kingdom and sharing about Jesus, it doesnt matter.

the bell tower at the mission is still standing, but much of the surrounding structure is gone…but the flowers are blooming.  it reminds me that it really doesnt matter what camera i have, what techniques i use to edit photos, or if i belong to this or that photo association.   the challenge from God continues to be, am i using the gift of photography to glorify Him, to the best of my ability.   in the end, He is gonna hold me accountable for how i used my gifts for Him…God will certainly not care if im a pc or mac, canon or nikon, or if i shot raw or jpg.  its all a tool to Glorify Him.

sometimes you have to take what God gives you, and march on…be obedient and trust!

Semper Fi!

last frame…take 2

Can you handle the truth…

ive been mulling over the idea of branding in my head and in conversations with trevor this past week. Last week trevor lead a sharing session on the idea of branding in relation to getting your photography business up and running. We had some interesting discussions and it started me thinking…but that was just the beginning. On wednesday of last week i heard an interview frank luntz on the dennis prager show, frank has a new book out titled Win. The book is about taking your business from ordinary to extraordinary.

As he was sharing about his book, frank said something like if he could get rid of one word from the english language it would “branding.”

branding is defined by websters as the promoting of a product or service by identifying it was a particular brand.

Frank explained the branding is about creating an “image” of yourself that you want others to believe in, its about marketing yourself. its about how you want others to perceive who you are, who you want them to believe you are, whether its the  truth or not, it doesnt matter.

Its style over substance.

He believes that style and substance need to go together. And we should desire and covet “reputation.”

websters defines reputation as an overall quality or character, as seen or judged by people in general;  a recognition by other people of some characteristic or ability. Or a place in public esteem or regard, a good name.

reputation is based upon the truth. its about character and who we are as a person, organization, or business. You cant fake or hide who you are at the core, all the time.   The truth will come out!

Your reputation is your name. Its what will give you meaning and purpose as a person in business.  People will want to be associated with you (or not) because of your reputation.

The problem is that you can create a brand around yourself pretty quickly, but reputation takes time and patience to build…and it really must be earned.  But as we all know, your reputation isnt always good.

i saw this photo online today. In the original photo, hes holding a firefighter helmet. But a ny law firms pr/ad agency decided to use it for a company ad, switching the helmet for a photo of the world trade center. The problem is that the model in the photo is a real fdny firefighter, who didnt join until 2004, upon seeing the ad it made him feel like a “scumbag”…needless to say, the ad was pulled. You can see the article online HERE

after seeing this article and the photo, i thought, how easy it was to switch out the helmet… think integrity.

branding isnt necessarily bad, it just that if done without integrity or character, its fake…like the picture.  This all fits into the ongoing discussion of the last frame.

As followers of Christ, are we using the gift of photography to the fullest of our abilities? Am i helping fulfill the great commission? Are the photos that i take being used for good or evil?

I think, and this is just my opinion, that in the same manner that God is gonna hold me accountable for my actions & the words i speak….he is gonna hold me accountable for the photos that i take.  The good, the bad, the meaningless…along with the AWE inspiring, God honoring photos that i take.

i think run-dmc said it best… “calvin kleins no friend of mine, dont want nobodies name on my behind.”

i dont want to be a brand!  i rep Jesus!!